Easy and Eclectic: The joy of growing succulents

The Sooke Garden Club begins its new season with guest speaker

Succulents are the topic at the next Sooke Garden Club meeting.

Succulents are the topic at the next Sooke Garden Club meeting.

These days, it’s not surprising to see gorgeous displays of succulents just about everywhere – at garden centres, of course, but also at shopping malls, public gardens, and private homes. Indoor succulents have long been in style. Broadly speaking, these include such plants as Christmas cactus, jade plant, aloe vera, and mother-in-law’s tongue/snake plant, and we probably all have one or two. However, the popularity of ‘outdoor’ succulents clearly seems to be on the rise.

As I see it, the reason for this growing interest in incorporating succulents into the landscape is fairly straightforward: Succulents are lovely easy care, put-me-just-about-anywhere plants that come in an enormous array of sizes, forms and colours. They are incredibly versatile, equally at home in an old shoe, a cracked pot, a rock garden, a stone wall, a perennial border or a stately urn. Some types stand tall, some stay short or flat, others cascade. Some are narrow, others wide. Some are round, some spiky, some ruffled. Colour runs the gamut, everything from soft greens, blues and pinks to vibrant orange and burgundy. And, yes, succulents flower, but their flowers may prove far less interesting than their many other features.

As if this versatility weren’t enough, most succulents thrive with relatively little water and fertilizer. Indeed, some require very little soil. And because succulents make such fine container plants, anyone can have a display so striking that it stops visitors in their tracks. In short, succulents provide endless options for beautifying even the smallest yard, patio or balcony. All that’s needed is a little creativity.

‘Savvy Succulents’ is what’s it’s all about at this month’s meeting of the Sooke Garden Club. Guest speaker will be Katy Nelson, whose 30+ years of gardening experience in retail and landscaping includes 15 years with GardenWorks in Colwood. Katy’s life-long obsession with plants incorporates a keen fascination with the world of succulents. She will share both this fascination and her expertise as they pertain to choosing and caring for these rewarding plants. Focusing mainly on ‘tender succulents’ (those needing some winter protection), she will bring samples and discuss some of the types most common and available to local gardeners.

Please join us Wednesday, September 25, 7:30 p.m., at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church on Townsend Road.

Also on the agenda: Fall Parlour Show, Potato Contest awards, and submission of entries for Photo Contest.

New members are welcome anytime. Annual membership is $15. For more information, email sookegardenclub@yahoo.ca or phone Rose at 250-642-5509.

“mailto:sookegardenclub@yahoo.ca”sookegardenclub@yahoo.ca or phone Rose at 250-642-5509.

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