The leaves of Crassula atropurpurea have attractive, variable colouring that gave rise to the plant's specific name. The plant is largely a winter grower found in the winter rainfall area along the west and south coasts of South Africa.
Blooming lasts from spring to midsummer. This exertion compounded by thirst and heat of the dry season brings about stress facilitating the colouring of leaves. Moisture relief may keep them greener, as this fortunate plant in the Stellenbosch University Botanical Garden receives (Bond and Goldblatt, 1984; Manning, 2007; Smith, et al, 1997).