Ideas for Succulent Planters

Succulents are drought-tolerant plants that survive by storing water in their fleshy leaves. The cold tolerance of succulents varies considerably, and many varieties won’t withstand frost. Otherwise, succulents adjust to any climate provided that they have good drainage. Succulents current opportunities for experimentation and creativity because they thrive in almost any container, including teapots, urns, soup tureens, hollow logs, cooking pans, old boots and tennis shoes.

Dish Garden

A dish garden full of a miniature landscape created with succulents is simple to care for because the plants require no fertilizer and hardly any water. Proper containers include a pan, pottery dish or other container measuring approximately 2 inches deep. Promote drainage using a potting mixture consisting of one part sand and 2 parts potting mixture. Plant modest, slow-growing succulents like miniature agave, jade, aloe or echeveria. Interesting stones or figures complete the landscape.

Strawberry Pot

A strawberry pot is perfect for planting a variety of vibrant succulents. Fill the container with a fast-draining potting soil like regular potting soil mixed with sand or a potting mixture formulated especially for cacti and succulents. To include interest, plant a different succulent in each pocket of this container and two or three taller varieties in the container’s leading. Succulents that function well in a strawberry pot contain red stem portulacaria (Portulacaria afra), black knight echeveria (Echeveria affinis “Black Knight”), coppertone sedum (Sedum nussbaumerianum), flapjack kalanchoe (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) and striped finger (Senecio talinoides var. mandraliscae). Place the pot in a sheltered place when temperatures fall below 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Hens and Chicks

A large bowl full of the succulent called hens and chicks (Sempervivum spp.) Adds visual interest because the tiny chicks fill the spaces between the larger hens, eventually forming a closely packed mound of texture and color. With time, hens and girls form a film of spidery white hair on the top. Any low, round bowl functions for hens and girls, and even a concrete bowl or an older, cracked urn makes an effective container. Be sure, however, that the container includes a minumum of one drainage hole in the bottom. Catch the container outdoors year around or pull it inside during cool, wet winters.

Groups of Three

Small potted succulents arranged in groups of three is a simple way to create a number of interesting arrangements. For instance, plant three succulents in three individual pots of different shapes or of slightly different sizes. The 3 succulents should vary in color and size, like two rosette-shaped echeveria (Echeveria spp.) , which develop in a number of colors, including blue, red, green, purple and brown. Change the third container with a long-leaved succulent like burro’s tail (Sedum morganianum) or pen cactus (Euphorbia tirucalli). Arrange the 3 containers any manner that pleases your eye, or place all three with a circular tray, platter or terracotta dish. Make sure each container has a drainage hole to stop stem rot.

Water Requirements

Even though most succulents are incredibly drought-tolerant, the plants benefit from occasional irrigation during warm, dry weather. Water them generously but only when their dirt is dry, and allow the pots to drain completely. The containers should never stand in water because succulents in soggy dirt develop stem decay quickly. Succulents require little or no water during their dormant period, which can be indicated by a marked decrease in their growth. Although many succulents go dormant during the winter season, some varieties, like Dudleya, a succulent native to California, are dormant during summer.

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