Crassula muscosa (Watch Chain)

Scientific Name

Crassula muscosa L.

Common Names

Watch Chain, Watch Chain Plant, Princess Pine, Lizard's Tail, Zipper Plant, Toy Cypress, Rattail Crassula, Clubmoss Crassula


Crassula lycopodioides

Scientific Classification

Family: Crassulaceae
Subfamily: Crassuloideae
Genus: Crassula


Crassula muscosa, also known as Crassula lycopodioides, is a sparingly to densely branched succulent with erect to decumbent stems. It grows up to 10 inches (25 cm) tall, and it is very variable in size and leaf shape. Branches often curve towards the light. The main branches are woody and up to 0.4 inches (1 cm) in diameter. Tiny leaves are light green or grey- to brownish-green and densely packed around the stem, forming a square mass. Flowers are cup-shaped and pale yellowish-green to brown.

Photo by Wayne Fagerlund


USDA hardiness zones 9a to 10b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Plant in well-drained soil in full sun to light shade or indoors. If planting indoors, place in a room that gets a lot of sunlight, such as near a southern-facing window. The best color is maintained with a little shade, even on the coast.

Watch Chain has typical watering needs for a succulent. It is best to use the "soak and dry" method and allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings.

Since Watch Chain is not cold hardy, it should be brought indoors when the temperature falls below 20 °F (-6.7 °C).

During the growing season, the plants should be fed with a controlled-release fertilizer. They can be fed weekly with a weak liquid solution.

While in summer, it needs a lot more water, and it should not be exposed to full sun, as it only values brightness but would suffer under excessive sunlight. When these conditions are not met, the plant begins to dry and stiffen, generally starting from the stem's base up to tips.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Watch Chain (Crassula muscosa).


Crassula muscosa is native to Namibia and South Africa (Eastern Cape, Free State, North West, Northern Cape, Western Cape).


  • Crassula muscosa f. cristata
  • Crassula muscosa f. variegata
  • Crassula 'Imperialis'


  • Back to genus Crassula
  • Succulentopedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus

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How to Propagate Crassula Muscossa

Crassula Muscosa is best propagated in an area of the garden that gets 6 hours of sunlight per day. If you want to grow the succulent indoors, look for a window that gets direct sunlight. When temperatures fall below 20° F (-6.7° C), it is advisable to bring the plant indoors.

Watch Chain grows in abundance and can be invasive. The recommended method for propagating the succulent is through stem cutting.

Stem Cutting Method

Step 1: Use a sharp knife that has been sterilized to cut the stems of the succulent.

Step 2: Cut a stem from the main plant.

Step 3: Leave the stem to harden for a few days.

Step 4: Place the stem on a pot filled with well-draining soil and has good drainage.Step 5: Water the soil whenever it has completely dried out.

Crassula Muscosa Guide: How to Grow & Care for “Crassula Watch Chain”

Any patio or porch will become the center of attention when decorated with a few succulents. With over a thousand species, the Crassulaceae family presents a huge range of succulents, from large treelike shrubs to tiny plants. While some members of the family produce stunning flowers, most of them are prized for their curious forms and highly decorative leaves.

No other succulent family, except perhaps the Cactus, has contributed with so many beautiful and familiar plants to our homes and gardens as the Crassulaceae or Orpine family. Crassula muscosa is a succulent plant belonging to the family Crassulaceae and to the genus Crassula.

As it became more and more popular worldwide, Crassula muscosa acquired several nicknames such as Crassula Watch Chain, Zipper Plant, Rattail Crassula, Lizard’s Tail, and Princess Pines. Read on to learn more about growing, planting, watering, and propagating Crassula muscosa.

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