Echeveria pulvinata ‘Jasper’™
Echeveria x ‘Pulv-Oliver’
Echeveria pulvinata x Echeveria harmsii
ech-eh-VER-ee-a pul-vin-AH-tuh x E. HARMS-ee-eye
This Echeveria is another succulent given to me by the owner of Pleasant Acres Nursery in Leland, Mississippi. It is another Proven Winners Selection and the label in the pot said it is was an Echeveria pulvinata ‘Jasper’. In one of several emails to Margrit Bischofberger of the International Crassulaceae Network in 2013, she said the name is wrong and it is possibly Echeveria ‘Pulv-Oliver’. She could be right, but it is hard to say at this point. I would never argue with her because she is a prominent Crassulaceae expert with a HUGE collection.
According to research, the hybrid Echeveria ‘Pulv-Oliver’ is the result of a cross between Echeveria pulvinata and Echeveria harmsii by Victor Reiter. San Marcos Growers was given this information by Brian Kimble, curator and Aloe hybridizer from the Ruth Bancroft Garden. They were told at the time the cross was made, the Echeveria harmsii parent was named Oliveranthus elegans and the name ‘Pulv-Oliver’ comes from a combination of both parent’s names at the time. Ummm… What about Echeveria pulvinata? A cross between Echeveria and Oliveranthus would have been considered an intergeneric cross, wouldn’t it? I am not doubting this, but something is screwy and I will tell you why in a minute…
PARENTS OF ECHEVERIA ‘PULV-OLIVER’:
Echeveria pulvinata Rose is the correct and accepted scientific name for one of the parents. It was named and described by Joseph Nelson Rose in New or Noteworthy North American Crassulaceae on Sept. 12, 1903. Details on Tropicos says the species was collected by Mr. Rose and Walter Hough on a dry ledge in Oaxaca, Mexico at 3,000 feet on June 15, 1899. The plant was also named and described by Joseph Dalton Hooker as Cotyledon pulvinata Hook f. in Botanical Magazine in 1903.
The other parent, Echeveria harmsii J.F.Macbr. is the correct and accepted scientific name of the other parent. It was named and described by James Francis Macbride in Publications of the Field Museum of Natural History in 1931. Tropicos says the specimen was collected by Rose and Hay, as a cultivated plant (not in the wild) at Amecameca, Estado de Mexico, Mexico but doesn’t give the date. Tropicos further states Echeveria harmsii J.F. Macbr. replaced the name Echeveria elegans (Rose) Berger and the name Echeveria elegans Rose was blocked…Both Oliverella elegans Rose and Oliveranthus elegans (Rose) Rose are listed as synonyms by Plants of the World Online and the 2013 version of The Plant List (no longer maintained).
NOW WAIT A MINUTE!!! Let’s look at those last two names…
Oliverella elegans Rose was named and described by Joseph Nelson Rose in New or Noteworthy North American Crassulaceae, published on September 12, 1903. Tropicos states the specimen was “cultivated at Amacamaca near City of Mexico” in August 1901… The spelling should be Amecameca. That is the second error I found… The first was the names of who collected the original specimens. First they said Rose and Hough then when they were describing Echeveria harmsii they said Rose and Hay. At least I think they were talking about the same specimen…
Amecameca is a town located in the eastern panhandle of Mexico State between Mexico City and the Iztaccíhuatl and Popocatépetl volcanos of the Sierra Nevada mountain range.
In 1905, James Nelson Rose renamed his plant Oliveranthus elegans (Rose) Rose and described it as such in North American Flora in 1905, using Oliverella elegans as the basionym. Maybe he realized the genus Olivera was a genus of plants from South Africa (more about that in a minute).
He also named and described Echeveria elegans Rose in the SAME publication in 1905. Tropicos states Mr. Rose collected the specimen in the mountains above Pachuca in Mexico in 1901…
SOOOOO, he described these plants as TWO separate species. So, were they actually different plants or was he hallucinating?
This is where it gets weird….
Ernest Friedrich Berger named and described Echeveria elegans (Rose) Berger in Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien in 1905. An annotation in Tropicos says: “not E. elegans Rose”. It lists Oliverella elegans Rose as the basionym and says the new name is Echeveria harmsii J.F.Macbr., blocking Echeveria elegans Rose. It also lists Cotyledon elegans (Rose) N.E. Br. and Oliveranthus elegans (Rose) Rose as synonyms…
Cotyledon elegans (Rose) N.E. Br. was named and described by Nicholas Edward Brown in Botanical Magazine in 1905… Also using Oliverella elegans as the basionym.
First of all, the plant Mr. Rose named and described as Echeveria elegans Rose in 1905 has nothing to do with Oliverella elegans which he renamed Oliveranthus elegans in 1905. They were two completely different species that looked nothing alike. Echeveria elegans is a rosette-forming plant that looks similar to a Sempervivum.
<<<<NOW IN MISSOURI>>>>
I sold the mansion in Mississippi and dad asked me to return to the family farm in mid-Missouri. I had to give up over 200 plants but I took most of my succulents, Alocasia, and quite a few others…
The names got messed up when Ernest Friedrich Berger renamed Oliverella elegans Rose to Echeveria elegans (Rose) Berger in 1905. It seemed as though he was “re-documenting” Echeveria elegans but that was NOT the case… This is why the Tropicos page “blocked” the name Echeveria elegans Rose because it was NOT the right plant. This is the result of two people naming two separate species the same name…
SO, when we look at Echeveria harmsii J.F.Macbr. in Plants of the World Online, it only lists Oliverella elegans Rose and Oliveranthus elegans (Rose) Rose as synonyms… Tropicos takes us deeper. Oliverella elegans being the basionym of Oliveranthus elegans. Where Tropicos lists Echeveria elegans (Rose) Berger as a synonym of Echeveria harmsii, NOT Echeveria elegans Rose. Echeveria elegans Rose is STILL an accepted scientific name.
Now I can’t even remember why I went on this wild goose chase… Oh yeah…. Oliveranthus elegans being a synonym of Echeveria harmsii and Oliveranthus elegans being a basionym of Echeveria elegans (Rose) Berger not Echeveria elegans Rose.
Of course, all this may be useless information for some but I find it very interesting.
I finally decided I better do some pruning on this plant and “regrow” the rosettes on the top of the plant’s branches.
I didn’t discard the old plant and soon new growth started to appear.
Zones: USDA Zones 9-11
Size: 8-12” tall x 8-12” wide
Light: Sun to part shade
Soil: Fast-draining. Good quality potting soil amended with pumice (50/50) or additional perlite and chicken grit (2-1-1).
Water: Average during the growing period, sparse in winter.
Propagation: Leaf or stem cuttings.
I eventually had to bring the plants inside for the winter and I put this Echeveria ‘Pulv-Oliver’/’Jasper’ or whatever you call it in the kitchen windowsill.
If Proven Winners actually did something to make an improvement over the species Echeveria pulvinata, enough to make it a registered trademark name, wouldn’t it be nice to know what they did? I think the industry needs to help educate their customers and not just sell plants. Sure, they include labels, but correct names would be a plus…
I almost forgot about the genus Oliverella… While the Oliveranthus genus became a synonym of Echeveria, Oliverella IS a correct and accepted genus of plants native to South Africa in which there are three accepted species. The genus Oliverella is a member of the family Loranthaceae in which there are 73 accepted genera. The family is commonly referred to as the showy mistletoes… Ummm… Many of the species are hemiparasites. So, why would Mr. Rose name a succulent from Mexico Oliverella elegans in the first place?
I decided to put all the plants in the same pot. It was weird how one of them had grown so much faster than the others.
I really liked this Echeveria, whether it is Echeveria pulvinata ‘Jasper’ or the hybrid ‘Pulv-Oliver’. It seemed that this particular “type” of Echeveria tolerated lower light levels inside the house over the winter much better than the “rosette” forming species. The rosette-forming type seemed to stretch and get all out of shape.
Sorry to say, I have up most of my plants shortly after the above photo was taken. I have started rebuilding my collection and hopefully, someday I will fun across another Echeveria pulvinata, cultivar or hybrid… Maybe even a “real” ‘Pulv-Oliver”. There are many sources online.
I hope you enjoyed this page and maybe found it useful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, I would like to hear from you. Please click on “like” if you visited this page. It helps us bloggers stay motivated. 🙂 You can check out the links below for further reading. The links take you directly to the genus and species of this plant. If you notice I made an error, please let me know.