Growing Succulents

I love the textures and colors of succulent plants.

They tempt me every time I go to the garden centers. It’s been a while since I gave in to them, but lately, I just haven’t been able to resist.

They’re pretty easy to grow, but they don’t get along well with chickens. In other words, the chickens think they’re a delicacy. The other day after I had planted some of these in an urn, I turned my back for about 30 seconds to scoop up some crushed granite to top the potting soil, and when I turned around, Ava was pecking away at one of my tiny little succulents. I think Tice thought he was in trouble when I started yelling at her.

I’ve potted five urns in various sizes and shapes with an assortment of succulents. Because of the chickens and lighting conditions (they like indirect light or part-sun), I’ll keep them up on the front and back porches.

I haven’t ventured into cacti, but they have similar growing needs as most succulents. I fell into one when I was four or five, and I still haven’t made peace with them. Harper and I couldn’t stop laughing when we spotted this one at Treeland Nursery in Round Top two springs ago…

If you’re more mature than us, then I apologize for exposing you to that–or exposing that to you. I’m still laughing, though. You just can’t make that up! Nature can be cruel, but it obviously has a sense of humor, too.

Here are a few succulents that I planted in 2008 in one of my spare chicken feeders. It was already rusted out on the bottom, so I didn’t even need to drill drainage holes. I simply added wire across the back and hung it on our picket fence.

If you’re interested in growing succulents, here are a few of my recommendations:

- Give them soil that drains easily. Add rocks or sand, if necessary.

-Allow them to almost dry out between waterings, but don’t let them get too dry!

-Give them bright, indirect light or part-sun. The ones I’ve had that survived for multiple growing seasons were grown on my front porch (west-facing). I have several on my back porch now (east facing); I’ll have to let them go longer between waterings since they won’t receive as much sun/heat.

- Keep your chickens away from them.

Happy growing!

–Natalie

 

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3 Responses to Growing Succulents

  1. Robyn Farmer says:

    I’m inspired and laughing.

  2. Jay White says:

    Your containers are beautiful! You are a very talented designer and photographer! You should work for a magazine! :)

  3. The urn looks beautiful, and if they really are easy to keep alive then I might just have some luck with them. Especially since I don’t have any chickens :)

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