About me

About me
๐ŸŒฟ I've been gardening ever since a child, when I spent time with my father in his vegetable garden. But my fascination with Echeverias started in the 1980's, when my father gave me a pot with five Echeverias, which turned out to be E. imbricata. At first I wasn't much interested in them and planted them in some obscure corner of the garden and completely forgot about them. How great was my surprise when, a couple of months later, I noticed that they had spread and made a beautiful display - I was hooked!
Tell a Friend

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Earth's little gems - Gasteria glomerata

My newly-acquired Gasteria glomerata on the left sharing a pot with Huernia longituba


I acquired my Gasteria in February this year (2015) by way of an on-line auction on FaceBook and after winterizing inside my house for two months, I was thrilled to discover a small! flower soon after I put it outside at the beginning of spring. I juts can't wait to see it fully open!



Gasteria glomerata is a stemless, compact succulent plant with an unspotted but slightly roughened grey-green leaf surface. Leaves grow in a single line (distichous), but the plant clumps up freely to make a mat. Already I see a baby peeping through on the left! It is native to the Eastern Cape of South Africa.
.


G. glomerata is a rare endemic confined to the lower Kouga River, now part of the Kouga Dam. Although it is rare, its status is not threatened at all due to its cliff face habitat and it is protected within a reserve. The seed is also dispersed world-wide and the plant is commonly grown in many collections. Its ease of propagation ensures that it is not necessary to collect plants from the wild.

The terrain of Gasteria glomerata is rugged, inhospitable and the plants occur on sheer, vertical, shady, south-facing rocky ledges (altitude 500-700 m), in minerally poor, slightly acid quartzitic sandstone soils. Gasteria glomerata is pollinated by sunbirds. Its fruiting capsule, opens from the top to release the flattish seeds. The fleshy leaves store water and are therefore drought tolerant, making this an ideal water-wise garden plant. Even though its habitat on the cliffs is very exposed, and is bone dry at times, the plants receive enough water from seepage for survival.
.


It is popular due to its horticultural value, and can be grown in small containers or in succulent plant gardens and is easily propagated from leaf cuttings or seed. It is a slow growing, but long-lived species. Leaf cuttings should first be allowed to dry and heal by placing them on a cool windowsill for at least three weeks. The basal part should preferably be treated with a fungicide. Plant the leaves in an erect position or lying on their side in sandy soil. Rooting is rapid and young plants can be harvested the following season.

.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Succulents in hanging baskets

If you are someone who has always been partial to hanging baskets, yet you like cacti and succulent plants, you might be wondering, “What are my choices?” There are plenty of succulent plants that hang down that are perfect for hanging baskets.
.
.
Last spring I planted a few succulents in a hanging basket that used to contain Plectranthus verticilatus, which unfortunately died during winter. The story goes that, as long as your 'money plant' (Plectranthus)  grows well, you'll never be short of money, and I had my plant for years. When it died last winter, I must say I started getting very worried! he he!
.
I used a few Echeveria imbricata, Echeveria elegans, some Gasteria and a few sprigs of Crassula imperialis. They have all survived the winter and really filled the basket nicely! Hanging from a wooden beam on the patio, they get morning sun and late afternoon sun and very little water.
.
.
.
.
.
More succulents you can use :
.
Burro’s tail (Sedum morganianum)
 
Ragwort vine (Othonna capensis)  – This is one of the creeping hanging succulent plants. A member of the daisy family, this is not as common as some succulents. But, it has much to offer. Native to South Africa, this creeping plant features slender, trailing stems. These can eventually reach several feet in length. The shiny, green leaves are usually in clusters. Spindle-shaped, these look as if they are suspended on the stems. The yellow blooms, which look like daisies, need sun to open.

String of hearts (Ceropegia woodii) - being a succulent it is very forgiving to being under-watered.

String of pearls (Senecio rowleyanus)
 
String of nickels (Dischidia nummularia) - This trailing succulent plant has interesting foliage that screams for attention. It consists of round grey-green leaves which are flat and reminiscent of little coins (about nickel size) hanging  from a string.

The Rattail cactus is another succulent that actually prefers a hanging basket, as the trailing stems can get several feet long.

Vygies is another creeping succulent that does well in a hanging basket. I've got mine in a little basket on a plant stand on my patio and is already starting to hang down. I'd like to plant him in a hanging basket, but would just have to find the perfect sunny spot in the garden to hang him.

I'm sure there are many more species that can be used in your basket, so just use your imagination and give them a try, you might be pleasantly surprised!

.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Sedum rubrotinctum


Sedum rubrotinctum has small, glossy, bead-like leaves that take on a reddish hue in full sun. In a climate with very strong sun this Sedum needs light shade. Leaves tend to drop off the sprawling stems and root to form new plants but stem cuttings can also be taken. The leaves are considered poisonous if ingested and their sap may irritate the skin. Heads of yellow flowers, with reddish sepals in strong light, are produced in the Summer.


Commonly known as the jelly bean plant, or pork and beans, it is a species of Sedum from the Crassulaceae family of plants. It has been classified as a hybrid plant — of Sedum pachyphyllum × Sedum stahlii — named Sedum × rubrotinctum.

A newly-planted stem of S. rubrotinctum

S. rubrotinctum, originating in Mexico, is cultivated as an ornamental plant for planting in gardens and as potted plants. It is grown very easily and tolerates all types of soil except for those that are poorly drained. It grows very well in summer, can take variations in climate, although it is not frost-tolerant. New plants may be grown from leaves (or beans) that drop off or are separated from the stem and laid on the soil.


Water the jelly bean plant more in the spring and summer, but still let it dry out in between waterings. Plant in well-draining potting soil and never let it sit in water. Fertilize in the spring and summer once a month with a cactus and succulent fertilizer. No insect pests or diseases are known to severely attack this plant.

Be careful when touching this plant as it can irritate some people’s skin. Also make sure that no pets or children eat this plant. Jelly bean plant leaves are delicate and can fall off easily.

.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...