Dudleyas are hardy succulents native to California and Mexico. They are extremely drought tolerant and will almost thrive on neglect. In their native habitat, many of these species are becoming endangered and it’s illegal to harvest them.
However, many plant producers have been able to propagate and cultivate these plants so that home gardeners can enjoy them as well. This also helps to protect the species and stops them from becoming extinct.
There are over 50 different species of Dudleya succulents but not all of these are available for succulent lovers to grow as some are not in cultivation.
However, there are still quite a number of species that you can easily obtain if you want to grow these easy to care for succulents at home. Here are just a few Dudleya varieties.
Dudleya albiflora (Live Forever)
This small Dudleya has blue-green leaves that are lance-shaped and form rosettes. The leaves curl upward slightly. Each rosette only grows to around 6 inches in diameter.
The flowers are borne on long red stalks and are white in color. They appear in spring and continue on to early summer.
Dudleya attenuata (Tapertip liveforever)
This interesting succulent has pencil-like tapered leaves that grow upward but in a rosette. The leaves are blue-green in color but turn a lovely shade of rosy-red when exposed to direct sunlight.
The plant has a spreading habit and can form large clumps. The flower stalks grow up from the clumps and produce flowers that are open and usually white in color.
Dudleya brevifolia (Short-leaved Dudleya – endangered)
Dudleya brevifolia is a tiny succulent that has small cone-shaped leaves. These leaves have a variety of colors depending on their growing conditions. They can be green, reddish-purple, or even brown. The leaves are arranged in small clusters.
The flowers are star-shaped and white in color. They are borne on short inflorescences. This succulent is currently on the endangered list, however, both the Center for Plant Conservation and the San Diego Zoo are trying various conservation methods to preserve this lovely specimen.
Dudleya brittonii (Britton Dudleya, Giant Chalk Dudleya)
This is quite a showy succulent with its almost white leaves. These leaves are thick and fleshy and form a lovely rosette. The color of the leaves is due to the white, chalky powder that covers them. This coating helps to protect the plant from sunburn.
The flowers are borne on silvery-white spikes that can reach a height of 2 feet and turn a lovely rosy-red. The flowers form clusters on the ends of the spikes and are pale yellow. This is one of the more commonly grown Dudleya and it’s no wonder why. The contrast between the silvery-white foliage and the rose-red inflorescences is simply stunning.
Dudleya caespitosa (Coast Dudleya)
This is another attractive succulent with gray-green leaves that form pretty rosettes. The leaves are quite long and oblong in shape. Each rosette can grow to a diameter of around 8 inches.
When the plant flowers, it produces inflorescences that support around 10 to 15 flowers. The flowers are generally bright yellow but some variants will have red or orange flowers.
Dudleya candelabrum (Candleholder Dudleya)
This Dudleya has spade-shaped green leaves that have a pointed tip and grow in a nice rosette shape. The flower stalks can grow quite tall and are often arching. The flowers themselves are usually pale yellow to almost white and are surrounded by green sepals. In fact, at first glance, you would think that the flowers are actually green.
Dudleya cymosa (Canyon Dudleya)
The most impressive thing about this succulent is the very tall flower spikes that hold huge clusters of red trumpet-shaped flowers. The leaves on the plant are almost spoon-shaped and arranged in a nice, neat rosette.
Dudleya edulis (Mission lettuce)
This Dudleya is quite different from some of the other Dudleya types in that it has tall, tubular leaves that grow straight up and form small clumps. This plant has small star-shaped flowers with white petals and greenish stamen. It is also sometimes known as “Fingertips” due to the shape of the leaves.
Dudleya farinosa (Bluff lettuce)
This succulent is another species that has almost white leaves thanks to the powdery coating. The leaves are spade-shaped and form lovely rosettes. Depending on the growing conditions, the older leaves can turn crimson-red when exposed to direct sunlight while the younger leaves can have some tinges of red on their edges.
These succulents flower in summer. At this time, each plant produces erect flower stalks that are pale green but will have some red or pink tinting. The flowers appear on the ends of the stalks in clusters and are usually pale yellow.
Dudleya gnoma (Munchkin Liveforever)
This succulent is quite rare and very compact in growth. It produces small rosettes of almost triangular leaves that have a waxy coating. Each rosette grows from a caudex and will only reach around 2 inches in diameter. In addition, each tiny leaf will only reach a length of 0.5 inches.
In contrast, the inflorescences on this plant can grow to a length of around 5 inches. These have multiple triangular leaves and terminate in a cluster of bright yellow flowers. There are up to 10 flowers on each stem. This is definitely one to add to your indoor succulent garden due to its compact growth.
Dudleya greenei (Greene’s Liveforever)
This is another Dudleya that is dwarfed by its tall and impressive flower stalk. But, even though they’re quite small in comparison, the leaves are quite interesting too. They grow in tight, upright rosettes and are quite thick and fleshy with a pointed tip. Each rosette can reach a diameter of 6 inches and the leaves can grow to a length of 4.4 inches.
However, the inflorescences can reach a majestic height of 16 inches which means that they tower over the diminutive rosettes of the plant. The flowers on the tips of the tall stalks are yellowish in color and also quite fleshy.
Dudleya ingens (Baja live forever)
This is quite a bizarre-looking Dudleya with its spotted leaves. The leaves form loose rosettes and are relatively large and triangular-shaped. They very much resemble the leaves of many species of Agave. However, it’s the red spots on the pale green leaves that make this plant such an interesting specimen. It almost looks like the leaves have been splashed with splotches of red paint.
The flower stems are also red and they bear clusters of white or pale yellow flowers in spring and early summer.
Dudleya lanceolata (Lanceleaf Liveforever)
This is a highly variable Dudleya. The leaves do form neat rosettes but they can vary in shape from elongated and thick to flat and spade-shaped. Their color can also vary greatly from pale green to red. Some plants also have leaves that have a waxy coating.
During spring and summer, the plant produces erect flower stems that may contain as many as 20 flowers each. The flowers are also varied in their color. They can be red, pink, orange, or yellow and most have pale green sepals.
Dudleya pachyphytum (Cedros Island Liveforever)
This is a cute little succulent that only grows to about 1 foot tall. It has tightly packed rosettes with leaves that are thick and fleshy and blunt on the tips. Each rosette grows from a thick, basal stem. The leaves have a waxy coating that makes them appear quite silvery.
The flowers are borne on long inflorescences that are slightly pink at the base. The flowers are pale green to white.
Dudleya pulverulenta (Chalk Dudleya, Chalk lettuce)
This succulent produces slightly larger rosettes that can grow to a diameter of around 18 inches. The leaves are a blue-green color and somewhat flatter than other succulent leaves. They have a chalky coating and a pointed tip.
The flower spikes are silvery-white and can grow to a height of 2 feet. At the tips of these spikes are large clusters of red flowers. These appear in late spring and early summer.
Dudleya virens (Green liveforever)
This is another rosette-forming Dudleya with green leaves that are quite narrow and point directly upward. These leaves can grow up to 8 inches long and can sometimes have a waxy coating. The tips of the leaves will change color to a pale orange when exposed to sunlight.
Small white flowers appear in spring and summer. These flowers are star-shaped and have five petals.
Dudleya virens subsp. hassei (Catalina Island Dudleya)
This species is closely related to Dudleya virens. The main difference is that this plant produces pale white flowers on 1-foot red stems. This species also tends to form larger clumps of tightly packed rosettes with the chalky, gray leaves that point upward.
*image by yhelfman/depositphotos