As the weather continues warms up here in the Midwestern U.S., we’re counting down the days to get outside and start planting.
With so many different options to choose from in the wild world of gardening we are loving succulents right now.
If you’re looking for easy care plantings consider adorning your patio or front porch with containers of succulents.
Succulents are the perfect plant for forgetful gardeners.
Succulents and Sun
You could easily use succulent plants inside or outside of your home in the warm months. Succulents need a lot of sunlight to grow happy and healthy.
Some succulents, like Haworthia, don’t like direct sunlight in the heat of the summer when they are outside, and can be prone to sunburn, where the leaves may turn white or yellow. Rather, if they are outside put them somewhere they will receive some shade and stay relatively cool. Morning light is good with a bright shade in the afternoon.
If your plants are inside, put them somewhere they’ll receive bright light for most of the day. They are less likely to get sunburned inside, but it can still happen. Usually a south facing window sill will provide enough light but if you notice signs of sunburn, move it to a place where the light is not quite as direct.
Planting Succulents Together
When using a single planter — like our Bombay® Jardin Lattice Planter below — we recommend a variety of succulents planted together. Here’s the succulent combination our designers came up with. (The planter is part of our new collection of outdoor living items at Bombay® Company.)
The plant combination itself is an interesting mix. Here’s a look at the succulents we used from a top view…
Some Succulents We Used
One of our choices choice was Echeveria Black Prince, a hybrid succulent that makes an excellent container plant. Like many succulents, the fleshy leaves store moisture, making the plant drought-tolerant.
You can purchase Echeveria Black Prince at, among other places, Monrovia.com, and have them delivered to your garden center.
We also chose Sedum morganianum, commonly called Donkey Tail and native to Central America and Mexico.
Although it doesn’t do so well in extreme heat, Donkey Tail is a splendid container plant, especially in hanging planters, where it’s trailing stems drape beautifully.
This is yet another succulent that has has won the RHS Award of Garden Merit!
Group several pots together to create excitement at the entryway of your house. Unify the collection by repeating a plant in each container.
Include some trailing types, such as donkey tail (also called burro’s tail), which would look nice cascading down the edge of the pot. Here’s a beautiful cascade from a balcony in Spain…
Vintage and Unique Appeal
Do you love a “one of a kind” conversation piece? Combining vintage containers and succulents is a quick and easy way to get your guests talking.
Flea markets and antique stores are a great placed to find unique vintage bowls, trays and containers. Nancy Wallace of Wallace Gardens, a garden artisan, used an old wine box as a succulent planter! What a great repurposed object!
Surround a large-leaf succulent with a ring of rosette-forming ones for a quick container fix. Mulch with dried sheet moss for a decorative touch. (Keep the moss dry so that it doesn’t cause the succulents to develop stem rot.)
We saw this vintage pedestal and bowl on Better Homes and Gardens — they provide the perfect backdrop to the plants. Here are the plants used…
A. Ghost plant (Graptopetalum paraguayense)
B. Echeveria shaviana ‘Mexican Hens’
C. Paddle plant (Kalanchoe luciae)
D. Lola echeveria (Echeveria ‘Lola’)
Fairy Gardens/Mini Gardens
If you’re looking for an option that doesn’t require a lot of space we recommend trying miniature gardens and fairy gardens in small containers.
New trends in small container gardening offer a fun way to create tiny realistic landscapes that reflect the atmosphere and charming beauty of real natural settings.
You can find mini succulents at your local nursery as well as The Home Depot and Lowe’s.
And if you want to learn more about miniature gardens, check out “Teeny Tiny Gardening” by Emma Hardy — which has 35 projects for horticulture on the smallest scale.
DIY Wine Cork Planters
Here is a fun and creative DIY project courtesy of It All Started With Paint, and a blog post showing how to make plant mini succulents into old wine corks.
Create magnet planters for your fridge or other fun places!