For a long time succulents have been unfashionable and considered to be almost bad taste, but they are now back in a big way! They’re colourful, easy care and well suited to living in pots or troughs. When planted in some of the beautiful pots that are now available, succulents can look stunning.
Don drilled some holes in the bottom of an old Turkish dough bowl. He filled it with half conventional potting mix and half coarse river sand to give it good drainage, then planted it with a mix of succulents. He then mulched the surface with coloured river pebbles as a finishing touch to this charming centrepiece or curio for the garden. Don chose a burgundy coloured pot to offset the silvery purple foliage and mauvy pink flowers of a kalanchoe (Kalanchoe pumila). Dwarf cushion bush (Leucophyta brownii ‘Silver Nugget’) is an Australian native member of the daisy family. Silver foliaged plants such as leucophyta look very effective mass planted in burgundy coloured pots. Consider also groups of coloured conifers. Don used Thuja occidentalis ‘Heatherbun’ and Chamaecyparis thyoides ‘Arndelyensis Nana’. To frame the entrance to a white house, Don planted standard azaleas (Azalea ‘Christmas Cheer’) in large silver pots, and succulents in smaller silver pots. The rims of the pots were not glazed, so they were painted with a silver tinted plastic paint and carefully stippled with some black paint until the colour matched perfectly.
Interesting pots are available at many large nurseries and pot specialists. Pots used in our segment were purchased at:
Michele Shennen’s Willoughby Garden Centre
132-134 Penshurst Street
Willoughby NSW 2068
Phone: (02) 9958 6631
- Burgundy/Oxblood: small – $9.95, small – medium $19.95, medium – $27.95, large – $34.95
- Silver/Charcoal: 2 smaller ones with echeverias in them – $34.95 each, bigger ones with azaleas – $69.95. Other sizes also available
- Dough Bowl Price: $165 retail Standard azaleas are available at nurseries for around $80
- Pebbles and gravels are now available in many different colours. The silver paint Don used costs $28 for 1 litre, and is from Porters Paints. It is not guaranteed for external use and may have a limited lifespan outdoors.