Spring has sprung and I am sure there are many of you, like me, who have rushed off to the garden centre to stock up on colourful annuals. I like to think that I have a green thumb and good intentions when it comes to my garden, but the plants seem to think otherwise! In the spirit of wanting a beautiful garden without having to worry about drooping plants, I am busy potting up a collection of indigenous varieties and succulents.
You will have seen the latest additions to my collection with the aloes that I managed to source at my local Builders Warehouse in their newly spray painted pots. I have also planted a variety of cotyledons and other hardy succulents that I have no idea of the names since there are so, so many different species – but they look stunning in pots.
While I would love to plant up an entire bed with indigenous aloes, cacti and succulents, for the time being I have popped my mini collection into containers and pots to keep them out of harm’s way, since I have dogs running around.
Aloes, cacti and succulents love a sunny spot but don’t mind an hour or two of dappled shade. They aren’t fussy about soil, as long as it drains quickly, so don’t plant them in a soil with lots of clay. These plant species don’t like getting their feet (roots) wet too often. Most of the smaller varieties are ideal for containers and pots and make a stunning feature in the garden.
There are hundreds of different varieties to be had and some can be fairly pricey. Probably better to start out with a few affordable plants and slowly add to your collection as you can afford to. Your local garden centre or nursery should be able to offer advice on how and where to plant, as well as companion planting, especially if you want to make a bold colour splash or add an interesting feature.
Aloes, cacti and succulents require very little maintenance apart from a dash of water during the dry season, but it is necessary to remove dead leaves and keep them pest free. A little cutting back now and again will encourage bushy growth.
If you are looking at establishing a new garden I have put together a visual collection of colourful succulents and flora that would look stunning in any garden.
With a hot summer ahead I am looking forward to watching my little water-wise garden expand and grow – without any worries!