Hobbit Jade Vs Gollum Jade: 3 Unexpected Differences

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Last Updated on February 5, 2022 by Cristina

You’re not a real J.R.R Tolkien fan if you don’t get yourself one of the plants named after his characters, but beforehand, let’s compare Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade. These succulents have been around for ages but drew more attention after people started referring to them by the book’s characters. Like most succulents, they’re easy to grow, ornamental plants.

But if you’re wondering which one will fit your space, take a look at our Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade comparison. Or, why not get both?

Differences Between Hobbit Jade Vs Gollum Jade

Crassula ovata Gollum and Crassula ovata Hobbit are the scientific names of the two plants, often referred to as the Tolkien succulents. Unfortunately, they’re often confused even by garden centers that sell them. You’ll love the jade plants if you’re in for an easy-to-care-for plant that you can set and forget for a while.

Also referred to as the money tree in some parts of the world, the jade plants are native to South Africa. They love warm and sunny sections of your garden and work as a unique addition to your landscape. Beware they’re both toxic to pets and humans if ingested.

Differences Between Hobbit Jade Vs Gollum Jade

However, this makes matters even more confusing, so are they the same plant? No, they’re one of the 4 cultivars of the crassula ovata plant. The main difference lies in their leaf shape.

Read more about A Deeper Study Of Jade Plant roots

Leaf Shape

The Hobbit jade plant has small spoon-shaped leaves with curls at the edges. The leaves can grow up to 2 inches. They have a deep green color.

The Gollum jade has longer but narrower, trumped-shaped leaves. The leaves have a red color along their edges that becomes more noticeable as the plant receives more sunlight. The red tint can also become more intense during the cooler months. The plant is often called finger plant due to the leaves’ shape.


Both plants need at least 4 hours of indirect sunlight, but the Hobbit jade can tolerate low light rooms.

When kept in a shady or partially shady spot, the Gollum jade leaves become darker green. The leaves are light green with noticeable red tips when it receives the needed light.

Outdoors, the Hobit jade vs Gollum jade are not much different. They can withstand bright sunlight but need to be slowly exposed to it. Optimally 6 to 8 hours of daylight is ideal.

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Outside, the Hobbit jade thrives in USDA HArdiness zones 9 to 10 and can withstand temperatures as low as 25°F. During such low temperatures, the plant goes dormant, preserving energy.

The Gollum jade thrives in much warmer zones, 10 to 11. So it might withstand winters down to 28°F, but it’s not cold hardy.

Comparing Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade summer temperatures, you’ll notice how both plants’ upper limit is 85°F. They will burn at higher temperatures, especially if exposed to the sun.

Click Here to Learn How To Get Seeds From Succulents

Hobbit Jade Care Tips

As any succulent, the Hobbit jade loves drought and low humidity. Plant it in well-draining soil, like a succulent mix with added sand, and a medium, sturdy pot. Even though it’s a slow grower with no more than 2 inches per year, the Hobbit jade reaches up to 3 feet tall and gets heavy. Therefore, the pot needs to provide support so it won’t tip over.

Underwatering is the better option for the Hobbit’s water needs. This plant is prone to root rot, so you can water only when the soil is completely dry. Deep soak is best.

The hobbit jade stores a lot of moisture in its plump leaves, so if you notice any wrinkling or discoloration, you might be keeping it too thirsty. Use a moisture meter until you build your foolproof watering schedule.

Fertilize the hobbit jade every 2 to 3 weeks during spring and summer with a 50% diluted fertilizer. Stop as fall approaches and during winter. The plant goes dormant in the cooler months, so applying fertilizer can stress it out.

Does The Gollum Jade Need Different Care

Caring for Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade is almost the same. The second one requires a slightly warmer environment, but they both benefit from drought and well-draining soil. Place the Gollum in a brighter spot to develop the characteristic red tips.

Check Out The Best Fertilizer for Cactus and Succulents

Hobbit Plant As Bonsai

The wide trunk of the Hobbit jade makes it perfect for growing as a bonsai. If you’re keen on doing it yourself, here’s what you need to do.

  • Purchase a suitable bonsai pot that will support the fully grown tree.
  • Bonsai is watered by soaking, so check the drainage holes. If they’re too wide, the soil might drain with each watering. Cover them with mesh.
  • Install wire going from the bottom of the pot and upwards. This will hold the plant.
  • Put a layer of bonsai potting mix and some granular fertilizer. Remove the Hobbit tree from its pot, and trim the downwards growing roots.
  • Place the Hobbit jade in the pot and fill it up with soil. Top with decorative pebbles and place in a south-facing window.

Can The Gollum Jade Flower

Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade, which one is more decorative? Surprisingly, both can flower! The plants can produce white to pale pink, five-petal flowers during winter.

However, to bloom, the plant has to reach its maturity. This is more common in plants that are over 3 years old.

Hobbit Plant As Bonsai

Keep the plants in the same spot with constant light and temperature to encourage flowering. But make sure to replicate the natural temperature changes. This means lower night temperature from 60°F  to 65°F and lower winter temperature from 50°F to 55°F.

Keeping them dry and cool during winter grows the chances of blooming. Fertilizing during spring and summer provides them with the needed energy for growing flowers.

Final Say: Hobbit Jade Vs Gollum Jade, Which One To Get?

There’s no greater artist than nature, and the Crassula ovata is living proof. It evolved into two similar plants with distinguishing leaves. While comparing Hobbit jade vs Gollum jade, it becomes clear why most people confuse them.

Both succulents require the same growing conditions, with the Hobbit being slightly more cold-hardy. The Gollum has unique leaves that resemble fingers with deep red suction tops. Whichever you choose, you won’t go wrong. And if you know a Tolkien fan, make sure you gift them a Gollum or Hobbit jade!

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