Succulents enjoy great popularity, because they are easy to care for and inspire with their interesting appearance. The only thing that is often difficult is the selection of hundreds of succulent species. In this article, I would like to give an overview of the most important and beautiful species of purple succulents.
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- 1 Succulent Leaves Turning Purple: What's Happening?
- 2 Pale Purple Succulents
- 3 Bright Purple Succulents
- 4 Deep Purple Succulents
- 4.1 Sempervivum ‘Purple Beauty'
- 4.2 Anacampseros Rufescens
- 4.3 Echeveria ‘Black Prince'
- 4.4 Sempervivum ‘Raspberry Ice’
- 4.5 Echeveria Agavoides ‘Romeo'
- 4.6 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze'
- 4.7 Echeveria ‘Chroma'
- 4.8 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Red Heuff f/ Munich University'
- 4.9 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Beacon Hill'
- 4.10 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Violet'
- 4.11 Sedeveria ‘Sorrento'
- 4.12 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Mystique'
- 4.13 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bros'
- 4.14 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Inferno'
- 4.15 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze'
- 4.16 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Milady'
- 4.17 Sedeveria ‘Jet Beads'
- 4.18 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Artemis'
- 4.19 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Hot Lips'
- 4.20 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Miller's Violet'
- 4.21 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bora'
- 4.22 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Brocade'
- 4.23 Chick Charms® Plum Parfait™
- 4.24 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bermuda'
- 4.25 Sempervivum ‘Killer'
- 4.26 Sempervivum ‘Director Jacobs'
- 4.27 Sempervivum ‘Pacific Blue Ice'
- 4.28 Sempervivum ‘Thunder'
- 4.29 Sempervivum ‘Duke of Windsor'
- 4.30 Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Gild'
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- 4.33 You May Be Interested In:
Succulent Leaves Turning Purple: What's Happening?
Succulent plants are generally green in color by nature. However, under the right circumstances, some succulents will produce anthocyanins (pigments) which give them their red, blue or purple color.
When a succulent changes color to red, blue or purple, it is actually producing anthocyanins. Meanwhile, when a succulent changes color to yellow, orange or red, it is actually producing carotenoid. The concept is similar to how the human skin produces melanin and changes color (a process called tanning).
So if you see your succulent leaves turning purple, there is actually no reason to worry!
The 3 criteria that affects the production of anthocyanins and carotenoid in succulents are light, water, and temperature. To induce a succulent to produce anthocyanins or carotenoid (hence a colorful appearance), you need to ‘stress' the succulent. This can be done by adjusting the following conditions:
Providing more light will cause succulents to stress and produce more anthocyanins and carotenoid. The more light they receive, the more vibrant their colors will be. Do be careful, however not to provide too much light that they get burns.
Depriving succulents of water will cause them to stress, thus producing more anthocyanins and carotenoid. However, this needs to be done gradually as sudden deprivation of water can cause a succulent to wilt. This should be done by slowly reducing the frequency of watering without the succulent showing any signs of wilting.
Succulents tend to change color in the cold, which is why you see more colorful succulents in the winter.
When stressing a succulent out, bear in mind to only change one variable at a time. For example, do not increase the light exposure and reduce watering at the same time. It is better to allow the succulent to adjust to its condition before changing another variable. That way, you can stress the succulents beautifully without damaging it.
Pale Purple Succulents
Echeveria ‘Perle von Nürnberg'
Echeveria ‘Perle von Nurnberg' is a small evergreen succulent that forms a solitary rosette of fleshy, rounded, pointed, pastel gray leaves with purplish-pink highlights. The leaves are delicately dusted with a fine white powder (pruinose), which adds to the plant's appeal. Its light color and beautiful rosette help it blend right in with floral arrangements. Over time, the rosette grows up on a slender stem. It is one of the most prolific succulents, making it very easy to propagate, making it one of the most popular purple succulents.
Graptopetalum ‘Superbum' (Beautiful Graptopetalum)
Graptopetalum ‘Superbum' is a small evergreen succulent that forms compact, open rosettes up to 5 inches (12 cm) wide. It has fleshy, thick, pale-gray lavender to pink leaves. The rosettes grow at the tips of ever-lengthening stems, that cascade beautifully over time. In spring, it produces star-shaped pale yellow flowers with red markings on their tips. Graptopetalum ‘Superbum' is one of the purple succulents that are attractive for groundcovers, in hanging baskets, containers or for spilling over walls.
Sedeveria ‘Lilac Mist’
Sedeveria ‘Lilac Mist’ is a recent hybrid cultivar. It gets its name from it color, which is grayish-green with a lilac blush. The shape of the plant is rosette, with nice fat leaves. It grows compact with a chunky shape. One cutting fills a pot about 3.5 inches (9 cm.) across. The leaves are not as easily detachable as compared to other Sedum hybrids.
Graptoveria ‘Debbie’ is one of the few stunning purple succulents with dramatic foliage. This cultivar form in a tight clump of rosette made up of fleshy, lanceolate, frosty pink-purple leaves. Its rosettes grow to about 8 inches (20cm) in diameter. In cooler months, the colors become more intense, turning into a deeper purple. The rosettes offsets easily to form dense clumps. In the spring, the Graptoveria ‘Debbie’ produces small, apricot flowers.
Echeveria haagai ‘Tolimanensis'
Echeveria haagai ‘Tolimanensis' has a distinctive form for an Echeveria, with fleshier, upright leaves of deep purple to dove grey for a looser rosette look. It offsets freely and can grow quite tall while maintaining full leaf coverage on its stem. This variety grows a tall bloom stalk each summer from which hang numerous orange to yellow bell-shaped flowers. It has a high success rate for propagation from both offsets, leaves, and stem cuttings.
Graptoveria ‘Araluen Gem'
Graptoveria ‘Araluen Gem' (also known as ‘Aphrodite') is a stunning, intergeneric hybrid that is a cross of Graptopetalum paraguayense x Echeveria purpusorum, both of which are also purple succulents. It has lovely soft lilac to green leaves with flushes of pink when grown in bright light. Each year it can send up a tall bloom stalk with multiple bell-shaped, pink and yellow flowers.
Bright Purple Succulents
Echeveria ‘Afterglow' is an evergreen succulent with large rosettes (up to 16 inches or 40cm) of fleshy, powdery lavender-pink leaves with delicate bright pink edges. It grows on a short stout stem and displays deep orange-red flowers that emerge either from below lower leaves or sometimes as terminal flower stem.
Graptoveria ‘Fred Ives'
Graptoveria ‘Fred Ives' is an evergreen succulent that forms large clumps of rosettes up to 12 inches (30cm) wide. It has broad, waxy, pearly bronze leaves with shades of pink. Depending on the time of year and growing conditions, the rosettes may blend shades of blue, teal, salmon, coral or yellow. The flowers are pale yellow with red-orange centers and appears in summer on up to 2 feet (60cm) long, arching stems. ‘Fred Ives' offsets readily and will eventually create a nice flower carpet. It is one of the purple succulents that are highly valued for amazing color and beauty.
Echeveria ‘Cubic Frost'
Echeveria ‘Cubic' Frost is among gorgeous purple succulents that grows up to 8 inches (20cm) tall and 10 inches (25cm) wide, with cool lilac to pink lilac leaves. When happily stressed, the ‘Cubic Frost' changes color to deep lavender. Its large rosette is made up of distinctive, wavy leaves that are upturned, pointy, symmetrical, and fleshy. Its leaves has a thick overlay of powdery wax, which protects the plant from direct sunlight. In the spring, the Echeveria ‘Cubic Frost' produces beautiful orange and bell-shaped flowers.
Sedum Dasyphyllum ‘Lilac Mound'
Sedum Dasyphyllum ‘Lilac Mound' is a small perennial succulent with blue-green and purple opposite leaves that blush lavender in full sun. It is a hardy ground cover species and has creeping stems forming shrubs. The Sedum Dasyphyllum ‘Lilac Mound' makes a colorful outdoor choice of succulents. The flowers are small and white with tiny black dots on the petals.
Kalanchoe x houghtonii
Kalanchoe x houghtonii is a bryophyllum type Kalanchoe that's a hybrid of K. daigremontiana x K. delagoensis and ‘Mother of Thousands', both being purple succulents as well. This variety has opposite, narrow leaves that reach 3.0″ to 6.0″ long with margins that bear young plantlets. It is aggressively prolific and will choke out other plants around it. All parts of this plant are poisonous if ingested.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Notah'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Notah' is one of the gorgeous purple succulents with coloration of jade green with a pink to lavender blush. Its leaf margins are highlighted with a bright white outline. This cultivar is particularly fun watch as it changes colors through the seasons. It is super frost hardy and drought tolerant. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Echeveria ‘Neon Breakers'
Echeveria Neon Breaker is a stunning Echeveria with distinctive crinkled fluorescent magenta, orange, and purple tips on blue-green leaves. When received full sun, it displays amazing bright neon colors that make it an awesome statement to any garden or planter. In late summer or early fall, Echeveria Neon Breaker grows bright pink flowers on purple-ish stems.
Echeveria ‘Orion' is a silvery blue rosette that flushes pink to purple when grown in bright sunlight. It is a fairly wide, low rosette with lots of round, slightly cupped leaves. Echeveria ‘Orion' is a hybrid of E. lilacina x E. pulidonis.
Echeveria ‘Dusty Rose'
Echeveria ‘Dusty Rose' is one of the purple succulents that form fast growing rosettes of wide, powdery violet leaves. The beautiful color on these succulents only gets better with more sunlight! It offsets freely to form clusters up to 8 inches (20cm) in diameter. The flowers are orange in color.
Deep Purple Succulents
Sempervivum ‘Purple Beauty'
Sempervivum ‘Purple Beauty' is a beautiful succulent that forms silvery pink semi-open rosettes with purple shading on its leaves. This succulent can show “watermarks” or wavy striations of natural farina wax. Sempervivum is comprised of one large rosette called the “hen” which sprouts many smaller rosettes around it called “chicks”. As the plants age, the “hen” may die out and be replaced by the “chicks”. Plants can be divided easily at any time by pulling up some of the “chicks” and replanting them elsewhere. Although they will grow nearly anywhere, these prefer the sort of well-drained conditions found in a sunny rock garden or wall.
Anacampseros Rufescens is a perennial species of small growing purple succulents, which are excellent for indoor containers. The tops of its leaves are dark green, while the underside is a deep purple color. The green gives way to red when it is happily stressed. Another distinction is the long growing white hairs of their stem. Flowers are also purple with yellow stamens.
Echeveria ‘Black Prince'
Echeveria ‘Black Prince' is one of the few slow and low-growing purple succulents that produces clumps of short rosettes. These rosettes are up to 3 inches (7.5cm) wide with thin, triangular and dark leaves. These leaves first emerge green, but when stressed with light, they darken to a deep lavender brown.
Sempervivum ‘Raspberry Ice’
Sempervivum ‘Raspberry Ice’ is a dense and perennial succulent with raspberry-red leaves that turn purple-red when mature. Its leaves are cobwebbed little white hairs. The rosette can grow quite large and form a dense, impressive cluster. During summer, it features unusual clusters of shell, pink, star-shaped flowers rising above the foliage.
Echeveria Agavoides ‘Romeo'
Echeveria Agavoides ‘Romeo' is the most distinctive among purple succulents that forms clumps of compact rosettes up to 5 inches (12.5cm) tall and 11 inches (27.5cm) wide. Its leaves are grayish-purple with red edges. Like most Echeverias, this particular cultivar, being dark burgundy, needs bright light. In the spring and summer, the Echeveria Agavoides ‘Romeo' produces red flowers with yellow tips, slightly smaller than other Echeveria Agavoides species.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze' is a lavender to pink rosette with a muted green base tone. Its leaves are lined in white, which really makes it stand out. Its colors tend to deepen in cooler seasons and lighten in the warmer months. It is super frost hardy and drought tolerant. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Echeveria ‘Chroma' is a sturdy rosette with psychedelic hues of blue-green, purple, and peach all swirled together. This variety has a very variable appearance depending on the light in which it's grown. Each year it can send up a tall bloom stalk from which dangle yellow, bell-shaped flowers.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Red Heuff f/ Munich University'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Red Heuff f/ Munich University' is a large red and green rosette. It flushes a glossy, near-black shade of purple in winter, highlighted by silvery, ciliated leaf margins. It is super frost hardy and drought tolerant. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Beacon Hill'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Beacon Hill' (Fearnley) has a delightful purple bronze rosette that holds its color year-round. It is one of the purple succulents that can have a light green center and its leaves outlined in a bright white margin. It is super frost hardy and drought tolerant. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Violet'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Violet' is a wonderful blush red rosette that deepens to purple as winter approaches. It shows just a trace of blue-green at base and has a bright white margin outlining the leaves. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Sedeveria ‘Sorrento' has bronze to coral foliage and a bright green center. Its most vibrant colors are seen when it grows in direct sun. The leaves are faceted with distinctive, light veins. Look for yellow blooms each summer.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Mystique'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Mystique' is a fairly large rosette with reddish-brown leaves and a hint of green at its center. Silvery cilia line the leaves and give a glowing effect to the rosette. This variety turns a near-black shade of purple in the winter. It thrives outdoors year-round and holds vibrant colors through the seasons. To produce vegetative offsets, a mother plant will divide and develop into a neat cluster of new rosettes. These rosettes can be cut apart and transplanted or left to cluster. After several years, a rosette will bloom and die but its offsets will live on.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bros'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bros' is a favorite for rock gardens and other outdoor landscaping because it retains a bright crimson color through all seasons and tolerates extended drought, full sun, and temperatures down to -30F. This medium rosette is glossy and glabrous and each leaf is edged with fine cilia. As it grows, the rosette will divide and separate into a cluster of new rosette offsets. Eventually, each rosette will send up a 4-8″ bloom stalk covered in tiny yellow flowers. The contrast of red and yellow is a beautiful sight, but it ultimately means the end of that rosettes life cycle. Fortunately, all of the non-blooming offsets will live on to survive through whatever your climate throws at them.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Inferno'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Inferno' is a cultivar descended from S. heuffelii ‘Tan'. It's a brilliant red rosette with a green heart that flushes purple in winter. ‘Inferno' has a heavy silver fringe of cilia outlining its leaves and can grow quite large.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Purple Haze' is a lavender to pink rosette with a muted green base tone. Its leaves are lined in white, which really makes it stand out. Its colors tend to deepen in cooler seasons and lighten in the warmer months.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Milady'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Milady' is a glossy, red to burgundy rosette with a lime green heart in some seasons. It turns a deep purple in cold weather, which contrasts with the white cilia lining its leaves.
Sedeveria ‘Jet Beads'
Sedeveria ‘Jet Beads' has small, pointed leaves with color tones of dark copper, green, burgundy, and black. Its coloration can darken in cool weather (around 40F). These colors contrast nicely in arrangements with the more common succulent pastels. It grows around 4.0″ tall with short, semi-upright stems. ‘Jet Beads' is often reluctant to bloom, but can produce yellow flowers in the summer months.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Artemis'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Artemis' has a neat pink to purple rosette with coppery undertones. It is lightly pubescent and has a white outline of cilia lining its leaves. The whole rosette turns a deep purple in winter.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Hot Lips'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Hot Lips' is a gorgeous dusty rose to purple with a touch of green at its base. A ciliated leaf margin makes for a nice highlight to this open, wide-leaved rosette. This cultivar turns a vibrant purple in winter and was bred from S. heuffelii ‘Chocoleto'.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Miller's Violet'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Miller's Violet' is a purple to burgundy rosette with a green center. As the days shorten in fall it takes on more blue tones and turns deep purple with a white outline in winter.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bora'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bora' is a lovely red rosette with a lime green heart. Its colors deepen to a near-black shade of purple by fall and its leaves are fringed by long cilia.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Brocade'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Brocade' is a deep burgundy rosette with a touch of green at its heart. This cultivar turns a deep purple in winter, offset by the glowing white margin that outlines its leaves.
Chick Charms® Plum Parfait™
Chick Charms® Plum Parfait™ (also known as S. ‘Prairie Sunset') has tones of pink and gold mix for a lovely warm appearance. This cultivar can show distinctive “watermarks” or wavy lines from its coating of natural wax. Cold winter weather brings out more purple tones.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bermuda'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Bermuda' is a sweet, color-changing rosette with a glowing white margins. Through the seasons, it shifts between blue-green, pink, and purple tones. It turns fully purple in cold winters.
Sempervivum ‘Killer' is a lovely olive-green rosette that gets splashes of dark red to mahogany through the seasons. Its leaves are long and pointed and it produces new offsets on long stolons. This variety benefits from a dappled shade and a gravel top dressing between the soil and leaves.
Sempervivum ‘Director Jacobs'
Sempervivum ‘Director Jacobs' is a year-round favorite for color and form. It is an eye-catching red and has lots of cupped leaves. A heavy lining of long, white cilia give the rosette a frosty appearance. This variety closes into a ball and deepens to purple in winter. Bright sunlight will help it express its brightest pigments.
Sempervivum ‘Pacific Blue Ice'
Sempervivum ‘Pacific Blue Ice' is a stunning silvery blue cultivar that can flush pink to purple. It is a medium to large rosette with short cilia lining its leaves and rippling watermarks. Additionally, it is a solid, easy grower.
Sempervivum ‘Thunder' has a distinctive form and color. It is a wide, open rosette with silvery green leaves tinged a rosy pink. This velvety cultivar turns a deep lavender in winter and in spring it produces offsets of long, hot pink stolons.
Sempervivum ‘Duke of Windsor'
Sempervivum ‘Duke of Windsor' is a smaller, tufted rosette with densely packed leaves. Its colors shift between apple green and burgundy through the year. Each spring, it produces lots of new offsets and can develop into a tidy clump.
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Gild'
Sempervivum heuffelii ‘Gild' is a nice, clumping rosette that shows a range of reddish tones through the seasons. Summer sun lightens the leaves to a coral pink and shorter, colder days cause them to deepen to royal purple. It is highlighted by a bright, white leaf margin. This cultivar is a strong grower and can develop into an impressive clump.