Tag Archives | Succulent Container Gardens

How to Create a Succulent Tide Pool Garden

An article I scouted and wrote for Sunset is in all regional editions of the September issue. (Most Southern CA garden articles appear in the Southern CA edition only.) One reason is Brett Gum’s gorgeous photography. These are my own photos here.

The location is a bluff-top home in the Orange County community of Corona del Mar. The designer is Joe Stead, a horticulture teacher at Orange Coast College. The amazing colors in the tide pool-themed garden resulted from a phenomenon called “stressing.” To learn more, see my YouTube video, “How to Stress Your Succulents…and Why You Should”. Continue Reading →

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What You Didn’t Know About Debra Lee Baldwin: Reflections on Her Childhood

I asked each of our GGW Contributors– Debra, Saxon, and Noel– to write some thoughts about their childhood that left an imprint on them—–and how it led them to where they are today.  It will give you a glimpse into the backgrounds of three extraordinary individuals whose passion for what they do comes through in their outstanding contributions to the gardening world.  Fran Sorin

In Debra’s words:

“It’s a preverbal memory of bright sun, intense color and a tubular moving object ringed with black and white. I was 2, watching a kingsnake undulate amid geraniums. The flowering shrubs grew outside the picture window of my parents’ home, located in the foothills 30 miles north of San Diego.

Sometime later, my father expressed indignation than anyone would kill a kingsnake. Despite its impressive length (4 feet isn’t unusual) it’s a harmless rodent- and rattler-eater. He also felt sorry for hapless tarantulas, invented recipes for excess guavas, knew a cirrus cloud from a stratus, and could smell rain on the way.

Baby w sprinkler-debra lee

As a child I took his knowledge of the natural world for granted, but now it seems marvelous. He had earned a masters in business from Stanford, but chose to work part time as an accountant and full time as a rancher. I tagged along with him through groves and garden.

Continue Reading →

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Bling for Pots: Crushed Glass

Leave it to LA. Designers in that city are using crushed glass to snazz potted plants. The glass, tumbled so the edges are smooth (it’s often from recycled bottles) lends a splash of glamor. Continue Reading →

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Grow this Succulent for its Flowers, Then Throw it Away

Prior to hosting the 2011 biennial convention of the Cactus & Succulent Society of America, a San Diego hotel replaced water-thirsty annuals in planters with succulents. After several months, hotel management discovered a surprising benefit: $4,000 in reduced water bills and labor costs. Continue Reading →

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Succulent Centerpieces

The ideal Thanksgiving centerpiece…
– Is low so guests can see over it.
– Is festive, in keeping with the holiday.
– Has colors that convey autumn.
– Looks good with your decor and china.
– Doesn’t take up too much table space.
– Is simple to assemble and can be done days ahead.
– Is in a pretty container.
– Is a conversation piece. Continue Reading →

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