Succulents!

(Image: Flickr member davitydave licensed under Creative Commons.)

After many years of loving plants but killing them, I’ve decided to chill out with the ambitious gardening for a while.  It’s not that I’m a bad gardener per se.  It’s just that I can’t seem to stay home consistently enough to tend my garden properly.  (I guess you could argue that neglect is, in fact, the hallmark of a bad gardener, but my ego won’t allow me to agree.)

On a recent trip to San Francisco, I noticed an abundance of lovely succulents of all sorts creeping out of flower beds and large decorative pots and window-boxes.  I had never really noticed succulents before then, save my mother’s Christmas cacti which I have always admired.  I would have tried to take cuttings of some of them, but I just didn’t see how I would manage to bring them home successfully, and since I’m already too eccentric for words, I thought I’d just wait until I was home to try to get my hands on a few.

For the moment, I’m just researching the options to determine what I like.  I am particularly fond of the ones that come in gradations of color like these tendril-looking ones below.

I also really admire the ones that have a sort of cabbage look to them.  Or the purple ones, or the ones that are shaped somewhat like flowers.  Perhaps I like most of them.  This medley is pretty cool – it’s one of those trendy succulent walls.

I also like the flowering ones because who doesn’t like a little bit of color, really.

This one is especially lovely.  Do you now what it’s called?

So wish me luck because I’m determined this time to be successful and cruelty-free with my plants.  Please feel free to offer advice or recommendations for plants to try.  I’m especially keen on ones that I can get from taking cuttings (free) from established plants.  Thanks in advance!

I think I’ll start by getting a cutting of this plant.  I think it’s called Purple Heart or Tradescantia pallida.

According to someone on Gardenweb

It’s native to M.exico. It’s related to wandering jew, grows incredibly fast, roots in almost no time, is hardy to about 20F, and is terribly underappreciated outside the South.

It may also not be a succulent, but it’s in the ballpark anyway and very common around Louisiana.  Plus, it’s kind of nostalgic for me because my grandparents had it in their flower beds and in a big, old syrup pot that they used as a planter.  I used to enjoy breaking off the leaves as a child and seeing the juice seep out – somehow the fact that it was juicy struck me as interesting.

Purple Heart
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7 Comments

Filed under beauty, farming, gardening

7 responses to “Succulents!

  1. Hey, how’s it going? Love the succulent post. Man, you were just in SF…next time give a shout out. We are usually up for checking out gardening in our town.

    That yellow flower looks like it from an Echeveria. Not sure what part of the country your growing, but for indoors you may want to try some Crassula, Haworthia, or Sedum. You may want to seek out Sedum rowleyanus, and S. morganianum…both good trailers. Haworthia are slow growing, not great for cuttings, but pop out babies out the sides. Crassula tetragona and C. lycopodioides are good for cuttings. Then there’s gold old fashion Crassula argentea. All of them water sparingly…serious, like 1/ wk at most. Some we only water every month or longer. They typically all like bright light, and well draining soil. You’re on your way. Good luck. Matti

    • Hey!

      Thanks so much for your informative and supportive response. You blog definitely has a lot of good info on succulents. I will be referencing it frequently. I’m in New Orleans which is probably too wet for most succulents but at least it’s warm.

      I took some cuttings off of an aloe and a echeveria recently so I’m hoping to get some of those soon. They both appeared to be well-established plants and were outside on the street, so they must be able to handle New Orleans climate. Anyway, thanks for the recommendations. I’ll be looking into them soon!

  2. David Little

    You’re a succulent.

  3. Pingback: Destruction-proof succulents make apartment gardening easy | RENTCafe rental blog

  4. Pingback: Cacti Green – Color A Day #42 « Color Nerd

  5. Pingback: Destruction-proof succulents make apartment gardening easy | RENTCafe rental blog

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