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Almost any garden, if you see it at just the right moment, can be confused with paradise.

~Henry Mitchell~

Nooks, Crannies and other Small Spaces

What do you think of when you hear the term 'succulent'?
I used to immediately picture a lovely stand of 'Autumn Joy' sedum in our side garden. Since attending the last trade show, however, I now think of living wreaths and roofs, ground covers and dish gardens. A fantastic group of plants are represented by the catch-all 'succulent', read on and let your imagination run wild!

Whether one believes in global warming or not, it appears that the climate and weather is changing. Prolonged droughts in much of our country last year and probably the wettest spring in a decade this year, plants have to be tough to survive. Succulents are a category of plants that are wearing their tough skins and waders.

Sedum's to sempervivum's, aeonium's to agave's, one thing they all have in common is their ability to tolerate both prolonged droughts and rainy seasons. Some of the low-growing sedums even survive when walked upon and have been marketed as Stepable's. Available varieties of water wise succulents are astounding: from pale green to near black, there's a type out there to fit most any location and use. Best of all, most varieties are good growers and easy to root, a single plant will go a long way in just a season or two.

Fillers and Ground Covers

Both hens and chicks (sempervivum) and low-growing sedum will look good in between stepping stones, tucked into a rock wall or as a ground cover in places grass won't grow.
Occasional foot traffic will be tolerated and broken stems usually root in again quickly. Succulents are not a fix-all, areas with heavy traffic will look rather bare before long.
If your garden is hooter and drier and you really are tired of watering, give some of these succulents a shot.

Green Roofs

Aren't they a hot item? Lots of web sites have popped up and I think they will be the roof for the future. Green roofs promise lower energy bills and sustainability, both qualities that are important in the 21st century.
While you may not be able to put a green roof on your house, your dog and backyard birds will appreciate a cooler abode. Our green roof birdhouse hosted a family of titmice this spring, they were not in the least bit bothered by the traffic coming and going to the greenhouse which passed within a foot of the nest box!

Dish and Container Gardens

Now that I have found aqua globes and plant nannies, my container plants don't have to suffer quite as much as they did in years past. Instead of forgetting to water them, now I forget to refill the globes. Succulents to the rescue!
Have you seen the cool pots shaped like a head? Grow a succulent and give your creation a haircut now and then -- fun for gardeners of all ages.

Living Wreaths and Topiary

A wreath, hanging from the door, has been a sign of welcome, greeting, and hospitality for centuries. A simple wire frame filled with angel moss and succulents, hung from your front and/or backdoor will show off your creativity. Do you have some topiary wire forms in a closet, not quite sure of what to do with them? Angel moss and succulents to the rescue.
Your creations will almost immediately look good enough for display and still look decent after a month of neglect.

Click here to see an article about us in our local paper and go on a tour of our greenhouse.


June in the Garden:

Green Roofs:
Dish Gardens:
Plant Nanny Globes: