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“A garden is a grand teacher.  It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.” 

This quote by Gertrude Jekyll encapsulates perfectly why some have a hard time gardening.  Gardening is this perfect mix of constant care with a complete reliance on trust.  You trust that the water, and the soil, and the sunlight are all enough for that plant to thrive.  When working in a retail nursery setting for 7 years many a frustrated gardener would walk in returning plants or upset that they couldn’t keep the plant they purchased alive.   This is about the time I would say “Why don’t you try a succulent?”   

Succulents are some of the most trust worthy plants you will find.  You can almost forget about them and they will still survive.  They aren’t the most rapid growers, or scented, or even some the most beautiful to look at, but when given the right space they will be your most constant companion in the garden.  Most succulents can handle cold temperatures, although if the temps are going to dip to 33 you would be best to cover them with some plastic or cloth.  They can handle the heat with only watering once or twice a week.  They rarely need to be pruned back or clipped, and most of them do not attract bugs.   Sounds like a dream 

Right?

You’ve probably noticed that succulents are all the rage right now.  Little 4 inch pots at $6 a piece can set you back when you are looking to fill up a larger space.  I have good news.  If you have friends, or see a space with succulents that you like ask if you can have a cutting?  Cut a stem of the succulent off like you would a flower, then soak that cutting in water for a week.  You will start to see roots growing out of the stem.  You can keep that succulent in water for up to a month even then plant it straight in to a pot of sandier soil or the planter you would like it to be in.  

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When arranging your succulents in a planter or pot they will look best with a variety of colors and textures together.  Pair darker foliage with brighter and spikier with rounded.  Pay attention to the shapes they take on.  Some will spread and spill while others are more upright.  The popularity of succulents has caused more stores to provide greater selection, but if you want to step into a mecca of succulents I highly recommend visiting Simply Succulent nursery in Fort Bragg, CA.  It’s right off HWY 20 before you enter Fort Bragg and has what feels like every succulent in every size that has ever existed.  You could spend most of your afternoon browsing and marveling at all they have there.

If you feel like you can’t trust the plants anymore and don’t have the patience start small and try rooting and planting a succulent from a friend.  Once you start to see it grow try another then another.   They can be very forgiving and I don’t know about you but I can always use a little more forgiveness in my life.  

Amber is our Resident Gardener, business owner, and all around green thumb.

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