It hasn’t taken me long to turn into a full-tilt succulent
hoarder collector. My little plant collection grows by the week (sometimes by the day), and I’m slowly developing my niche interests and plant preferences within the succulent world. Putting some major time and research into things like growth versus dormancy cycles, what plants are compatible with each other, sunlight exposures…all of that really makes a difference. Another major component of growing success has been where I source my plants. There is a major difference between getting plants from dedicated succulent growers and sellers versus the nameless big box stores that don’t know the difference between an aeonium and echeveria.
Yes, I’ve got some what I jokingly call my “rescue plants” that I’ve salvaged from utterly clueless nurseries, mostly to try my hand at seeing if I can save them, or learning what constitutes “too far gone.” But by and large, my healthiest plants are the ones who have come from exclusive succulent sources.
My top sources for plant buying:
Cedar Creek specializes in the world of rare imports (succulent breeding and hybridizing is a huge thing) and I’ve had the best time exploring the CCF world, and the community message board chats during the live upload sales. It’s a slightly different format than typical online buying, but because most of the plants are super rare or even one-of-a-kinds, doing a live upload is a super fun, interactive, everyone-has-a-shot-at-it unique approach. And she takes custom requests if there’s a certain plant that you’re dying to have and want a guaranteed shot at it. The plants you get are amazingly gorgeous and healthy, and they are rapidly becoming some of the stars of my collection. But honestly, I have too many to play favorites. It’s more like “plant of the day” or maybe “plant of the week” around here. Feel like a peek and photo tour of the current garden offerings?
Indoor transition/water propagation station. The Cedar Creek plants come from a cold room, so they need a few days to acclimate in room temps before getting moved outdoors. his is also where I work on getting roots going on some cuttings/salvage efforts.
Hand to scale. The tiniest variegated Fred Ives. Great root system already and super healthy, but so tiny.
One of the stars of the gig. This echeveria Afterglow is huge. And in certain (morning and evening) light she looks like a purple flame.
These two on the left are echeveria Lemon Berry, and they’re slight “rehab” projects.
I love this echeveria Bluebird. She’s more muted now in her “summer” colors, but come winter, she should throw some bright pinks and blues. Look at that gorgeous, sugary farina.
This echeveria Atlantis is an overachiever. That’s her fourth bloom spike since April, with a 5th one starting.
I still don’t know what this mystery echeveria actually is. Weirdo, but I like it.
My quirky echeveria Cubic Frost. She was a nursery rescue. Her stem has this weird calloused vertical split, at one point she obviously went really stretchy, but her current rosette is tight and gorgeous and she’s starting throwing these beautiful lavender shades now that she’s outside. I could behead her, but I love her quirkiness and just want to leave her to her weird glory.
Aloe castilloniae on the far left. Really rare species from Madagascar.
Gorgeous Fred Cora cutting is finally settling in and rooting, as well as putting off some pretty colors.
Random catch-all planter. Some echeveria, some ghost plants, several different aloes and aloe-hybrids.
My pot of “chubbies.” Moonstones, lavender pebbles, grapto-something, pachy-something.
This weirdo made me break my “no cactus” rule. Don’t remember the proper name but scientific is “ming thing.”
The “rare collection” corner. Not all of them, but most are some kind of slightly rare/exotic echeveria.
The lower pot is my pot of weirdos. SOme really funky ones in there. Upper pot is the pot of plants that I have a sketchy relationship with. Mostly crassula and aeonium, both of which I have marginal luck with.
My Inception-eque “planter within a planter.” Mostly sempervivum hens-and-chicks, and used the open spaces to tuck random tiny pots.
My hangers. The burro’s tail on the left isn’t thrilled with life. I think he probably needs a bit more sun, but I’m afraid to cook him.
Bottom’s up! This thirsty guy loves a “bottom watering” at least once every couple of weeks to get a really good drink. Very thirsty for a succulent.
We’ve had one heat wave roll through already, and so far, everything is holding its own, with just a couple of plants pulling a diva routine and threatening to keel over on me…so fingers crossed that I’m able to keep managing them.