Obsessed With Succulents

Ever have that moment when you realize you’re becoming your mother?  Let’s be honest, it’s usually not a positive one.  Sorry, Mom!  However, this time it’s positive, and I’m having that moment!  In fact, it’s a double whammy. I’m not only my mom, but I’m also my mother in-law too!  Shh, don’t tell my husband!

I don’t take gardening very seriously.  But all of a sudden I’ve become obsessed with succulents.  My mother’s yard is loaded with them.  And between my mom and mother in-law,  they’ve brought loads of clippings and planters to fill up my yard (thanks, Ladies!).  Some have even been there for a couple of years.  And somehow, I’ve managed to overlook their beauty – until now!  The two of them have really become my green thumbs.  I don’t have one, but between them, I have two.  My mom usually focuses on maintaining the indoor plants, while my mother in-law brings over new plants from her secret nursery all the time!  They’re my personal landscapers!  Am I one lucky chick, or what?  My friends have even recruited my mother in-law to help out with their yards.  Maybe I should start charging a finder’s fee for her!

Okay, back to the succulents. For a long time, I’ve been seeing succulent planters at Home Depot.   I’m sure you’ve seen them too.  They usually come in a wrought iron hanging planter.  They typically have a variety of different succulents in different shapes and colors.  Well, I’m OBSESSED with them!  However, I’ve never purchased one.  Why?  I’m sure you know why!  I can make one!  

A couple of Sundays ago, while working on a slew of projects, that weren’t working out as planned, slightly discouraged and distracted, I got a wild hair.  I decided to call my mother in-law to have her direct me to her secret discount nursery.  I was feeling the itch for some colorful flowers in my garden.  She just happened to be going, and so we met there.

Upon my arrival, I was greeted by all those yummy succulent baskets that they sell at the Home Depot.  She sells them for a discount.  Essentially, this nursery has all the left overs that Home Depot can’t take, so they purchase them and sell them for a much lower cost.   And when I say “much”, I mean MUCH!  They had rows and rows of small succulents that were perfect for starter plants.  While looking over them,  I found some pretty ones and I picked up five of them.  But this really got me thinking of all of the ones that I had in my garden already, as well as my mother’s.  I could take some clippings from those as well.  Wouldn’t mom be so proud?

For at least a year, I’ve had this white wrought iron hanging planter that my mother in-law gave me sitting on my patio.  Every time I’ve walked past it I wanted so much to be able to find a home for it.  I couldn’t think of a better opportunity to fill it with these perfect plants to inhabit it and grow!  ENTER:  the succulents!  I was a little nervous about this project because I’ve never done this before, but I read that succulents really are super easy to grow.  They require little water, and sun.  That’s my kind of plant!  I knew that I probably couldn’t mess this one up, so I got to it.  

I pinned this photo as a guide.  


Okay, let the fun begin!

First, I emptied the planter that still had the soil remains from its previous owner.

Then I pulled together all of the plants that I had purchased, clippings from the plants in my garden, and grabbed two different bags of dirt:  1) Miracle Gro Potting Soil  2) Miracle Gro Cactus, Palm & Citrus Soil

Then I just started adding the mix of soils, and began adding the succulents.  I made sure not to remove too much of the roots from the original pots (per my mother’s last minute suggestion), and then I made sure to add enough soil around them.  I then fiddled with it until I got it just right.  

Next step, I watered it.  Then I had to find the perfect home for it.  I had an idea of where I wanted to put it, but realized that I didn’t have the right nails/tools for hanging the planter in the stucco walls of my home (where is my carpenter brother when I need him?).  I contacted him and he advised, but I wasn’t able to remove myself from this process to get to the hardware store.  

After moving this and that around, I decided to hang it in my front entry way.  There was a planter already there, but I was ready to hang this one and not willing to wait until I made the trip to the hardware store.  I’m eager to watch it grow.  That’s also why I put it here.    

This succulent obsession began a snowball affect.  I began re-potting this and re-potting that.  And then I found a purpose for a beat up old chair that I couldn’t get rid of.  It was a “leave behind” from my girlfriend who moved out of the country.  She told me it was her father’s and pretty much said not to get rid of it.  So, I hadn’t.  My mother in-law had painted it, but the weather has taken its toll on it.  I just didn’t know what to do with it.  Until now (light bulb moment). One of the planters that I picked up at the nursery that day, was the perfect fit.  I knew it still had a purpose!

Here’s the label that was on the this Geranium planter that you see sitting inside the chair.  I got it for $4.50.  Now that’s a deal! 

I should give a big shout out to the two wonderful mothers in my life that have given me the desire and courage to do this!  It was very easy, and rewarding to tackle something that I really wanted to do. Thanks, Moms!  I love you!

Have any gardening tips you’d like to share with a girl who’s trying to grow a green

thumb?    Please share them!




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