Crassula Tom Thumb

Crassula Tom Thumb


Plant Type: Succulent
Family: Crassulaceae
Sun Exposure: Bright, indirect light
Watering: Infrequent. Let the soil dry between watering.
Colors: Green leaves with red margins
Size: Up to 6 inches tall and 8 inches wide
Hardiness Zones: 9-11
Soil Type: Well-draining cactus or succulent mix
Soil pH: 6.0-6.5
Propagation: Leaf and stem cuttings
Toxicity: Non-toxic to humans and pets

Crassula Tom Thumb, also known as Propeller Plant, is a unique and eye-catching succulent that adds a touch of whimsy to your houseplant collection. This dwarf cultivar of Crassula perforata is characterized by its propeller-like leaves that grow in a stacked, spiral pattern. In this comprehensive guide, I’ll share everything you need to know about caring for, propagating, and maintaining a healthy Crassula Tom Thumb.

How to Care for Crassula Tom Thumb

Light Requirements

Crassula Tom Thumb flourishes in bright, indirect sunlight, which is crucial for maintaining its compact growth habit and vibrant colors. Aim to provide your plant with at least 6 hours of bright, filtered light daily. South- or west-facing windows are ideal locations, but make sure to shield your plant from harsh afternoon sun using sheer curtains or by placing it a few feet away from the window.

If natural light is limited, a full-spectrum LED grow light can be an excellent alternative. Position the grow light 6-12 inches above the plant, and keep it on for 12-14 hours daily to mimic natural sunlight. Regularly rotate your Crassula Tom Thumb to ensure even light exposure and balanced growth.


Crassula Tom Thumb thrives in bright, indirect sunlight for 6+ hours daily. South or west-facing windows are ideal, but protect from harsh sun. Use full-spectrum LED grow lights if natural light is limited.

Watering Crassula Tom Thumb

To maintain a healthy Crassula Tom Thumb, it’s crucial to water it correctly. As a succulent, it stores water in its leaves and is prone to root rot when overwatered. To determine when your plant needs water, insert your finger about an inch into the soil – if it feels dry, it’s time to water. When watering, use the “soak and dry” method: saturate the soil, then let it dry out completely before watering again. It’s better to underwater than overwater, as the plant can recover more easily from drought. During the growing season (spring and summer), water every 2-3 weeks. In the dormant season (fall and winter), reduce watering to once a month.


Water your Crassula Tom Thumb correctly soaking the plant then making sure the soil is completely dry before watering again. Water every 2-3 weeks during the growing season, and reduce to once a month in the dormant season.

Soil Needs

Crassula Tom Thumb requires a well-draining soil mix to prevent root rot and ensure healthy growth. A commercial cactus or succulent mix will work well, or you can create your own custom blend by combining equal parts potting soil, perlite, and coarse sand or pumice. This mix will provide the necessary drainage and aeration for your plant, allowing excess water to escape and preventing root rot. To further improve drainage, plant your Crassula Tom Thumb in a container with drainage holes and avoid using saucers that can hold standing water.


Provide a well-draining soil mix, using a commercial cactus mix or a custom blend of potting soil, perlite, and coarse sand. Ensure the container has drainage holes.

Temperature and Humidity

Crassula Tom Thumb prefers moderate temperatures between 65-80°F (18-27°C) during the day, with slightly cooler nighttime temperatures around 55-60°F (13-16°C). Keep your plant away from drafty windows or heating/cooling vents, as extreme temperature fluctuations can stress the plant. Additionally, avoid exposing your Crassula Tom Thumb to temperatures below 50°F (10°C), as it can be sensitive to frost and may suffer damage or die. While this succulent doesn’t have specific humidity requirements, it adapts well to average household humidity levels. If you live in a particularly dry environment, consider using a humidity tray or grouping your plant with other humidity-loving plants to create a more humid microclimate.


Maintain temperatures between 65-80°F (18-27°C) during the day and slightly cooler at night. Crassula Tom Thumb adapts well to average household humidity levels.

How to Propagate Crassula Tom Thumb

Crassula Tom Thumb

Leaf Cuttings

Propagating Crassula Tom Thumb through leaf cuttings is a simple and effective method. Begin by selecting a healthy, mature leaf from the lower part of the plant, and gently twist or wiggle it away from the stem, ensuring a clean break. Allow the leaf to dry in a well-ventilated area for 1-2 days, forming a callous over the cut end. Once calloused, place the leaf on a well-draining soil mix or propagation tray. Avoid burying the leaf, as this can cause rot. Mist the leaf lightly every few days, keeping the soil slightly damp but not wet. In about 3-4 weeks, you should notice tiny roots and new growth emerging. At this stage, you can transplant the new plantlet into its own pot and follow standard Crassula Tom Thumb care.


To propagate Crassula Tom Thumb, use leaf cuttings. Allow a removed leaf to callous before placing it on well-draining soil. Mist it lightly, and after 3-4 weeks, transplant the new growth.

Stem Cuttings

Taking stem cuttings is another effective propagation method for Crassula Tom Thumb. Choose a healthy stem with at least two sets of leaves and use a clean, sharp pair of scissors or pruning shears to make a cut below a leaf node. Allow the cutting to dry and callous for 1-2 days in a well-ventilated area. Once calloused, plant the cutting about an inch deep in a well-draining soil mix. Water sparingly until new growth is visible, which can take anywhere from 2-4 weeks. After this point, you can gradually transition to regular Crassula Tom Thumb care.


Alternatively, use stem cuttings for propagation. Allow the cut stem to callous and plant in well-draining soil. Water sparingly until new growth appears, then transition to regular care.

Fertilizing Your Crassula Tom Thumb

Proper fertilization is essential for supporting your Crassula Tom Thumb’s growth and overall health. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer, such as a 20-20-20 formula, diluted to half strength. Apply the fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer) every 6-8 weeks. When fertilizing, ensure the soil is damp to prevent root burn. Refrain from fertilizing during the dormant season (fall and winter), as doing so can lead to leggy growth, weak stems, and an increased risk of root rot.


Fertilize with a half-strength, balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 6-8 weeks during the growing season. Avoid fertilizing in the dormant season to prevent leggy growth and weak stems.

Common Pests and Diseases

While Crassula Tom Thumb is relatively pest-resistant, it can sometimes experience infestations from common succulent pests, such as mealybugs, aphids, and spider mites. Regularly inspect your plant for signs of infestation, including the presence of pests, honeydew, or webbing. If you detect any issues, treat the plant with insecticidal soap or neem oil, following the label instructions. For more severe infestations, you may need to apply several treatments, spaced 7-10 days apart, to ensure complete eradication. To prevent the spread of pests, isolate the affected plant from other houseplants and maintain proper hygiene by cleaning tools and surfaces.


Crassula Tom Thumb can experience infestations from mealybugs, aphids, and spider mites. Treat with insecticidal soap or neem oil, and maintain proper hygiene to prevent pest spread.

Where to Buy

Buy Crassula Tom Thumb from Mountain Crest Gardens

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