Jade Plants: Crassula Ovata vs Portulacaria Afra

Jade Plants: Crassula Ovata vs Portulacaria Afra

Rolling Nature brings you the most desired money luck plants. JADE! Yes!

Jade plants are very common as houseplants due to their low maintenance care requirements and association with luck and prosperity, according to Feng Shui. There are two common versions that are available and are in much demand in market or nurseries. The beautiful Crassula Ovata “The true Jade plant” and also the Asian equivalent of it Portulacra Afra “The Asian Jade”.

Jade plants are quite popular as gifts or in offices, since they are considered to help bring good fortune. With their easy to care for succulent qualities, they make an excellent choice for beginner houseplant owners.

People generally lack the knowledge of how to differentiate between two.  The primary difference between Crassula and Portulacaria is growth habit. Prized for the decorative value and many unique growth forms, Jade plants are an important part of any succulent collection.

Jade, Plant, Good, Luck, Money, Tree, Ovata, Crassula, Crasula

Let’s know about two most common Jade plant varieties available in India.

Crassula Ovata “The True Jade Plant”

Common Name: Gollum Jade, Jade Plant, Jade Tree, and Money Tree
Plant Family: Crassulaceae
Origin: South Africa

Crassula Ovata has thick, shiny, smooth leaves that grow in opposing pairs along the branches. Leaves are tear shaped shaped. The leaves of Crassula ovata are 1.1-inches to 3.54-inches long (2.79cm to 8.99cm) long that have a red margin and a pointed end. The leaves are arranged in pairs and cluster toward the end of the branch.

The colour is a rich jade green, although some may appear to be more of a yellow-green. Crassula  ovata may display a red tinge around its leaves when grown with bright sunlight. The succulent shoots are gray-green. The bark of older branches peels off in horizontal, brownish stripes. Sometimes these leaves can grow bunched together and be quite numerous, making the jade plant resemble a tiny bushy shrub.

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Portulacaria  Afra “The Asian Jade”

Common Name:  Elephant Bush, Mini or Dwarf Jade, Purslane tree, Spekboom and Pork Bush
Plant Family: Didiereaceae
Origin: South Africa

Despite the confusion, Portulacaria  Afra “The Asian Jade” is actually a different plant in a completely separate family and has some incredibly unique qualities. It does not belong to family at all. Also called as Elephant Foot, this jade has hick green glossy oval-shaped succulent leaves which can have reddish margins when exposed to direct sun but leaves are a cm or more in length. They are small that’s why it gets its name as Dwarf Jade or Mini Jade. The leaves grow in a cross-opposite pattern on the soft shoots on speckboom. The bark of younger plants is soft and green. Later it turns reddish brown with age. Also, P. afra stems are super rubbery and moveable, unlike C. ovata whose stems will snap off with pressure. Portulacaria afra sports red stems and smaller leaves than Crassula ovata.

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Symbolism in Fengshui

Jade is commonly known as Jade Tree Plant, jade plant, friendship tree, lucky plant or Money Plant in Feng Shui. Generally speaking, the most popular Feng Shui plants are evergreen plants with round, heart-shaped, thick and succulent looking leaves. As said above the Jade plant gives off nourishing “chi” the positive energy for fixing any Vastu or Feng Shui defects. The effects come into play only when the plant is placed in correct direction or area. The jade plant is an evergreen, keeping its foliage all year long. Evergreens are tied to the symbols of youth and growth.

Jade earns its fame, as Feng Shui Money Cure or Money Magnet. It activates financial luck of the recipient with vibrant and well-rooted energy; growing energy that gets reflected in financial situation. The Jades plant attract auspicious chi energy owing to the shape of their leaves and arrangement. There’s a saying “Jade at the door, poor no more”. Jade plant, have beautiful jade-green color fleshy leaves that stands for growth and renewal, while the shape of the leaves resembles small coins, attracting material wealth and prosperity to the owner.

Let the Rolling Nature Jade plant invite abundance, wealth, and growth into your home.

Placement Directions

Jade presence in the house or office is considered auspicious. At the entrance of home/ office/ business/ cubicle. In the southeast corner which is wealth area. West: For new projects & children luck. East: For family harmony.

A Jade Plant near the entrance of restaurants or shops, or in a southeast location brings prosperity and success. It reflects vibrant, well-rooted energy. That’s an ever-expanding energy you would like to see reflected in newfound money. The money tree plant is supposed to produce positive vibrations that will bring prosperity to the owner of the house or business.

Flowering Jade Plant reflects well on the owner and symbolizes great friendship, luck and prosperity. The green leaves signify energy and the joy of friendship, and the flowers represent the fragrance of great friendship.

Air Purification & Jade

Both the jades are not air purifying plants. As there is no evidence of their filtering toxic chemical pollutants from air through the plant through phytoremediation.

The Crassula jade & Asian jade plant is not an air purifier plant as mentioned by many websites. However there’s this species Crassula Argentea which was proven as an air purifying plant as per State University of New York at Oswego research in 2016. The internet is flooded with the latter two species of Jade as Air Purifying Plant. However there’s no evidence to support it.

Climate Change & Asian Jade

These jade thickets also absorb large amounts of carbon dioxide. Many countries are planning to plant thickets of speck boom calling it a “wonder plant” which can mitigate the carbon emissions on our planet. This one is now being considered as a blessing for climate action. It’s a drought tolerant, a phenomenal carbon sponge and an excellent soil binding flora that prevents soil erosion. They also help to provide shade and food for other plants and animals. P. afra can grow to 12 feet or higher outdoors and develops a bush or shrub-like appearance with soft, woody stems and succulent leaves.

The Jade bush is an important source of food for elephants, black rhinos, and other herbivores. The elephants eat these jade and that’s why the name “Elephantbush”.

Plant Care Instructions

The Dwarf Jade (Portulacaria afra, or Elephant bush) is very similar to the Money tree or Jade (Crassula ovata) and the same care guidelines apply to both species.

Rolling Nature provides you ready potted, low maintenance, low watering need, top quality fresh plants which are ready to display when received. The Rolling Nature plants will grow well in the provided pots in years to come. In case you prefer repot those in your choice of planter be careful while doing so. Follow the plant care instructions sent along with the plant to maintain the plant well.

Light: Fares well in bright day light or few hours of morning & late afternoon sunlight.

Water: Always remember that Jade is a succulent. Its water requirement is lesser than other plants. Water your jade plant when the top of soil is just dry to the touch. Make sure you do not over water, it can lead to root rot. Water on a schedule. Also check for any signs of shriveled or dry leaves it may be because you are neglecting the watering part.

Don’t move the plant much here and there, the jade plant loves staying in one spot with little sun or bright day light.

Upon delivery please remove any packaging from the plant. Water thoroughly, as the plant may have been in transit for several days. You may keep the plant outdoor in sunlight for 2-3 days. After that you may choose to place the plant indoor or outdoor as suggested. Safe Packaging and Secure Delivery.

Hope from now on you won’t get confused between two most common Jade plants! Crassula Ovata & Portulacaria Afra! Happy Shopping! Happy Gardening!

Author: Vandana Chaudhary

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