Aeonium arboreum grows as a less branched subshrub and reaches stature heights of up to 2 meters. The more or less upright or ascending, smooth, not net-like patterned stem axes have a diameter of 1 to 3 centimeters.
Their leaves are in flattened rosettes with diameters of 10 to 25 centimeters at the end of the stem axes together. Young leaves are pressed tightly together. The obovate to oblate lanceolate leaf blade is pointed toward its apex and wedge-shaped at the base. It is 5 to 15 inches long, 1 to 4.5 inches wide and 1.5 to 3 millimeters thick. The green, usually purple-colored, glossy leaf surface is almost bare. The leaf margin is set with curved eyelashes.
The conical to ovate inflorescence has a length of 10 to 25 centimeters and a diameter of 10 to 15 centimeters. The inflorescence stem is 5 to 20 inches long. The flowers sit on a 2 to 12 millimeters long, slightly fluffy flower stem. Its sepals are also slightly fluff-haired with a pointed top and wedge-shaped base that is smooth and shiny green, red or purple. The yellow, narrow oblong to lanceolate, pointed petals are 5 to 7 millimeters long and 1.5 to 2 millimeters wide. The stamens are bare. It bears rosettes of leaves and large pyramidal panicles of bright yellow flowers in the spring.
The plant is endemic to the western Canary Islands of Tenerife, La Palma, El Hierro, La Gomera and Gran Canaria. The populations found on the Iberian Peninsula, the Moroccan coast and the Mediterranean are likely to be considered neophytes. In temperate regions it needs to be grown under glass.
Aeonium arboreum grows in sunny or slightly shaded places on weathered volcanic soil. The purple cultivar 'Zwartkop' ('Schwartzkopf') has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. and a variegated form is grown as cultivar 'variegatum'.
- Aeonium arboreum var. arboreum
- Aeonium arboreum var. holochrysum H.Y.Liu
- Aeonium arboreum var. rubrolineatum (Svent.) H.Y.Liu
- The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species, retrieved 30 July 2016
- "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-01-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
- Reto Nyffeler: Aeonium . In: Urs Eggli (ed.): Succulent Encyclopedia Volume 4 Crassulaceae (thick-leafed plants) . Eugen Ulmer Verlag, Stuttgart 2003, ISBN 3-8001-3998-7 , p 13.
- "International Crassulaceae Network: Aeonium arboreum". International Crassulaceae Network. Retrieved 19 February 2017.
- RHS A-Z encyclopedia of garden plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. 2008. p. 1136. ISBN 1405332964.
- Aeonium 'Zwartkop' AGM. Royal Horticultural Society
- "Aeonium arboreum". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved September 25, 2006.
- House tree-leek. Retrieved February 7, 2011.
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