Tag Archives | Succulent Container Gardens

Potting Workshop with GGW Winner Bonnie B.

Garden designer Bonnie Barabas was the winner of the one-on-one succulent potting workshop in my giveaway here on GGW to celebrate the release of my latest book, Succulents Simplified. Bonnie drove to Escondido from Santa Barbara recently to meet me at Oasis Water Efficient Gardens nursery near my home, bringing with her several containers to pot up.

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This one had a coir liner that was a bit shaggy, but since we didn’t have a new one to replace it with—and we agreed it looked a lot like a nest—we decided to keep it. In it was a large Aeonium nobile rosette, which I pulled out and set aside. Then we hunted for succulents that look like feathers. A surprising number do…like watch-chain crassula, for example. We agreed that Aloe variegata (which has the appropriate common name “partridge breast aloe”) was perfect, and positioned several of the plants in the container so they’d suggest wings. Bonnie has chickens, so I left it to her to select filler plants, because I couldn’t quite envision a chicken. She chose Echeveria ‘Black Prince’ and Crassula ‘Baby’s Necklace’. Continue Reading →

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Succulent Plant-Pot Pairings

What comes first for you, the plant or the pot? For me it’s usually the pot. When a friend presents me with a special pot, it’s a given that I’ll plant it with succulents. But I don’t always know what will look good in it. So I ask the pot what it wants. I take it to the nursery, and walk the aisles with it, trying on plants. What I look for are  good scale and proportion; repetitions of shapes, colors or patterns; and (sometimes) an element of whimsy.

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Above: This was a gift from potter Don Hunt, whose work I collect, and who sells at San Diego’s Cactus & Succulent Society shows. Dots in the glaze, and the fact that the pot seemed to be asking for a trailing plant, inspired the selection of string of pearls (Senecio rowleyanus). I added beads for bling. Continue Reading →

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Succulent Books and Bouquet Giveaway

Did you miss the chance to win? It’s not too late! There’s another drawing going on over at my publisher’s website, now through Friday, June 7. All you have to do to enter to win a copy of Succulents Simplified is say “hello” in the comments!

 

Announcing the winners! It was really difficult to select among so many excellent entries. Consequently, I’m giving away an additional book for a total of SIXTEEN prizes. Many thanks to all who participated!

The winners of the links to the online photo library of container compositions are Alyssa Tang, Lisa Lonsdale, Rita Frakes, Rita Shaw, Pam O’neall, Sara Chantell, Sonia Deetz, Nicole, Laura Crowley and Rita Ericson. 

The winner of the mug + book is Chip Milligan

The winner of the notecards + book is Cheryl Baker

The winner of the bouquet + book is Jeanine Campos

The winner of the two-hour workshop + book is Bonnie Barabas

The winner of the watercolor + book is Diana Clark

And an additional book is going to Eden Yaege for her aunt! 

 

To celebrate the release of  Succulents Simplified: Growing, Designing and Crafting with 100 Easy-Care Plants, I’m giving away FIFTEEN succulent-themed items!

My “Succulent Books and Bouquet Giveaway” continues through Sunday, June 2. Winners will be announced June 3. If you’ll be at the Succulent Celebration June 7-8 north of San Diego, you can pick up your prize then. Entry details follow, but basically all you have to do is leave a comment stating which prize/s you’d like to receive.

Drum roll…the prizes are…

Agave watercolor DLB-1

(1) An original watercolor by me of an agave, 9-by-12, unframed. You’ll also receive a signed and personalized copy of Succulents Simplified. Continue Reading →

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Succulents Simplified – An Interview with Debra Lee Baldwin

Anyone who knows Debra Lee Baldwin is aware of her extraordinary prowess as an author, writer, photographer, and artist. As a co-contributor at Gardening Gone Wild for 4 plus years, I’ve had the good fortune to develop a professional relationship and friendship with her. Not only is Debra Lee all of the above, but she is also a kind and generous individual. In this discussion, she talks about her newly published book, Succulents Simplified ~ it is a work of art. Fran Sorin

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1. Can you share where your passion for succulents began and how it developed over the years?

I grew up with succulents in dry gardens in Southern CA and never thought of the plants as special. They were what people grew if they couldn’t afford automatic irrigation. If you neglected to hose-water, the succulents usually survived, at least the big, mature ones did—agaves, jade and prickly pear were bulletproof. Later, I planted cuttings from my parents’ garden in my own, and succulents proved to be the least trouble. But I was much more enthralled with cannas and roses. Then several things coalesced: the seemingly endless CA drought; more varieties of succulents than ever before; and a realization on the part of the gardening public that flower or tropical gardens may be unwise in terms of time, water and aesthetics over the long run. Rosette and sculptural succulents were what forward-thinking designers were installing. After seeing my scouting shots of many such gardens, my Sunset editor suggested I write a book. Designing with Succulents, the first in the trilogy, came out in 2007.

Continue Reading →

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Of Succulent Wreaths and Cuttings

I’m often asked to recommend sources of succulent cuttings for wreaths, topiaries and other projects. Unfortunately, most online sources sell cuttings for around $1/apiece, which means a wreath—not counting its moss-packed wire donut—may cost $100 to make. But pre-made wreaths available this time of year not only cost much less, they’re also a great source of cuttings.  Garden Life offers wreaths similar to those shown here for $30 plus shipping. Another good mail-order supplier of seasonal wreaths as well as assorted cuttings—including a mix of highly desirable echeveria, sedum and sempervivum rosettes for vertical gardens—is Robin Stockwell’s Succulent Gardens. Continue Reading →

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