I never delete a design*sponge digest email. While the home decor stuff rarely interests me, I dig the arts and crafts, the pretty pictures and the decadent recipes and never want to miss out on an interesting post. After seeing the write up on heat proof flowers this week, I tweeted “succulent shopping may have just appeared on this long weekend’s agenda.” Not one who likes to go back on her word, I engaged the assistance of the most avid gardener I know (my mom) and headed out to the place that is reportedly the authourity on succulents in these here parts, Western Independent Greenhouses. There, I found row upon row of gorgeous plants that could potentially come home with me.
My observations combined with a little reading on their site and some research online prove that I am doing the plants a huge disservice by referring to them all as succulents. My photos include an array of echeverias and aeoniums as well. Unfortunately, while I know I saw all types, i’m not knowledgeable enough to identify which is which.
Because these plants have adjusted to life in dry and arid climates, they’ve developed various ways of storing water into their leaves, stems and roots and they appear more fleshy than most other plants. This makes them easier to care for and great indoor plants for which there is no concern when summer heat hits. Provided they are supported with good drainage and less frequent watering, they can dress up a home in a different way than the usual green, leafy houseplant style.
While some varieties will grow big, tall and hardy, my greater interest is in the rock garden type planters that are more commonly found at flower shops. Instead of purchasing one of the gorgeous ready made groupings that were available (for very reasonable prices) today, the intention for my visit was to select the plants that appeal to me and to put together my own creation later this week.
The shades of most plants don’t stray far from greens and reds or greys and yellows, but it’s fairly easy to combine them to produce complimentary and attractive pieces with a lovely desert feel to them. some variations even offer shoot up flowers in pinks and purples to add some spikes of colour.
We had a pretty good time exploring all the different options available and collecting the ones I liked the best. After all was said and done, I have all the makings of a killer succulent garden of my own and can’t wait to put it together.