Sempervivum, sometimes known as “hens and chicks”, semps, or houseleeks, are a succulent plant used both as a houseplant and outdoors as they are hardy to -20 degrees F (zone 5). This family of succulents are known for their diverse seasonal color, natural resilience, and their rosette leaves. Sempervivums make an interesting addition to your rock garden or landscape as they make a dense mat of rosettes with seasonal color change. As a houseplant, they are easy to care for and can stand alone or accent a succulent arrangement.
The “hens and chicks” description is derived from the way the mother rosette (hen) sends out new offsets (chicks) forming mats composed of tufted leaves in rosettes. Their name Sempervivum comes from the Latin Semper (“always”) and Vivus (“living’) giving them the common name live forever. These succulent perennials have earned that name given their tolerance for cooler climates and their many uses indoor and out.