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Summer Succulents

Attractive to look at and virtually impossible to kill, succulents are the ‘on trend’ plant choice for both indoor and outdoor. Seeming to thrive with minimal care, their name gives a clue to their survival tactics, it comes from the Latin ‘sucus’ meaning juice or sap, their fleshy leaves are designed to retain water, so making them ideal for dry climate and soil conditions…and perhaps busy plant parents who might forget to water them!


Succulents - A Quick Guide

  • Native to desert habitats, their tightly packed rosette shape allows the plant to conserve even the tiniest drops of water.

  • They like to be warm in the winter and cool in the summer and appreciate a difference in air temperature between day and night.

  • Over-watering is their biggest threat; water in spring and summer once the compost starts to dry out. In winter, water only enough to keep them alive.

  • They don’t require extra humidity but do like to be outside in the summer – they appreciate a blast of fresh air every now and then!

  • In warmer parts of the UK, i.e., the south-west, they can stay outside in a sheltered spot all year round, further north they need to be taken inside to be protected from frosts and cold.

  • Feed during the summer months only.

  • They have a shallow root system and need free draining compost, use a sand and grit mix or specialist compost is available.

  • They enjoy a brightly lit spot but should be shaded from direct sunshine.

Succulents thrive planted in a mix of sand and compost with a gravel top dressing.


Upright or trailing, the beauty of succulents is that they come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.


Complement the coppery tones of the showy Aeonium by planting into rustic terracotta.


Designing with Succulents

With a shallow root system, succulents are ideal for unusual displays, transforming this chair into a funky, eye-catching design.


Succulents can be used in surprising ways! Long lasting and resilient, they were a popular choice of plant material at this year’s Chelsea in Bloom.



 

Su Whale

Su Whale is a florist and freelance writer with over twenty-five years' experience in the floristry industry. She is the author and publisher of three best-selling books: Cut Flowers, 4th edition (2020) Cut Foliage, 2nd Edition, (2021) and Houseplants (2019), all bookshelf essentials for the professional florist.



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