Sunday, December 9, 2012

Loving their new home

Steady growth is a deceptive thing. It wasn't until I compared my September and December photos of the revamped succulent garden that I realised how much things have grown there. At least I know they're loving their new home, and that's the main thing I wanted to happen. Digging in vast amounts of sand has provided them with the free-draining soil they needed, and this relatively dryish spring has suited them just fine. Thank you Huey, the Rain God, very supportive gesture. And so it's on with the guided tour, and if any succulent experts can help me with a few names, I will be forever in your debt.

This morning, December 9, a happy little succulent patch.
Check out the photo below, to see how well it has grown.

This is the day I planted it all out, September 2. 

This hovering 'helicopter' shot shows how there's a bit of
crowding going on, but most of them have room to grow.
The main problem here is the green Sedum 'Autumn Joy'
centre left, which is making life hard for the sempervivums.

These portulacas (yellow and red flowers) have come up by
themselves. They are a weed of  a thing, so weedy I waged a
 battle to be rid of them a few years back, but with all the digging
of soil in so many places, some seed has come to the surface
and, typical of portulacas, raced away. Letting them grow on
might prove to be a mistake, but I do grudgingly admire them.

Sedum rubrotinctim 'Jelly Beans' with a little
pink tinge to the tips, are doing outrageously well.

Ditto the grey-blue Senecio nearby. Slow down!

At the back of the bed, a formerly neglected,
potted Crassula argenta 'Coral', a fat-trunked
mini tree, is loving its new home. Its interesting
dimple-ended fat succulent leaves were sparse
when I transplanted it here, but it's piling on the
foliage now and is now looking much more imposing.

Black-leaved Aeonium 'Schwartkopf' has grown a lot, so too
its neighbour, who I think might be a Senecio ameniensis.

Well-named, Kalanchoe 'Copper Spoons' in
front, with another Senecio amaniensis at the
back, both belting along in the sandy soil.

This weirdo is an echeveria, E. 'Topsy Turvey'.

Euphorbia caput-medusae, or Medusa's head, will soon
be wearing a veil of these pretty little yellow flowers all over.

This trailing succulent, about to flower, is Senecio jacobensii.
It's probably happier in a hanging basket, on the edge of a
rock or ledge, but I am hoping it will grow down the gentle
slope. I have another one in a basket, just as a back-up.

At this stage, its flower looks like a bunch of julienned carrots.

As mentioned earlier, these sempervivums are being crowded
by the rapid spread of the Sedum 'Autumn Joy'. I'm keeping
a watch on this, which I suspect is an unfolding disaster.

Now, for the bit where the succulent experts might be able to
help. This person is growing well, colouring up nicely, but as
for its name I've got short odds on it being a graptoveria, but
go ahead and surprise me, tell me it's something else. All the
original plant label said was 'succulent'.

Same deal with this fascinating person, whose name I don't know.
When planted back in September, it looked decidedly unhealthy,
a bit 'wrinkly' in the foliage, but now it looks like it's back from
the health resort. Searching for something like it in books and
online has come up with the possibility it's an Argyroderma
of some sort (a what?); and there's a rough chance it could be a
haworthia even, but I honestly don't know its name.

EDIT: thanks to reader/commenter Ngeun, who has a great 
blog called Lithopslandat first it looked like this person is
a Lapidaria of some kind, but then a kind friend of Ngeun's 
had a look, and the final decision is that it's Corpuscularia,
Probably C. lehmannii. Thank you LT Expanded!

Finally, if you have spotted one or two weeds lurking in the background of photos, yes they are there in numbers at all times. So far I roughly estimate that I have yanked out a few thousand baby weedlets in the last three months (lots of oxalis, natch). From this experience I think pebbles might be pretty but they are the least weed-suppressing mulch ever! Fortunately, in the extremely soft, sandy soil the weeds come out, roots and all, very easily. Wandering outside in the morning to pull out another few dozen weedlets has become part of the daily routine, but I think it has helped a lot. 

The other important benefit of spending those few minutes fussing over the succulent patch every morning is that it is so much rewarding fun. And that's the main thing!


Lucy said...

Like your 'weirdo' plants, astonished by your grated carrots - and can't imagine why you are wary of yellow flowers that spread themselves so happily - they look lovely.

pontos said...

Ciao, che belle queste immagini estive! Qui รจ inverno e per quella luce e calore devo aspettare ancora mesi :)

heidi said...

...this just helped me identify another 2-3 of my succulents! My medusa's head is a cutting, though, and not very happy. Topsy-turvy cuttings are doing well though. Great photos, thanks for sharing!

Ngeun said...

Wow, I can't believe how much your succulent garden has grown in 3 months - very impressive!! They evidently love their new home. The weedy/pretty portulacas look beautiful; I'm glad you've let them live. Schwartkopf's a beauty, likewise Copper Spoons, & the Topsy Turvey is a work of art! :) That last one is a masterpiece & my favourite. I don't know what it is but I believe that Argyroderma are winter growers, & your plant is growing like crazy. I researched online & it looks to me it could be a Lapidaria ( or perhaps a Gibbaeum? I'm likely wrong. Their flowers may help with their id. What ever it is, I am jealous! :) Congrats!

Jamie said...

Wow, thanks Ngeun. I feel like a detective who's been give some 'hot leads'. I'll go check out the possibilities with Lapidaria and Gibbeaum.

Jamie said...

I had a chance to have a good look through Google images, and your first conclusion, that it's Lapidaria margaretae. The second option, Gibbaeum, doesn't have the very distinct 'sharp' edges of either my plant or the Lapidaria.

So thank you so very much for going to all that trouble of tracking that one down! I'll change the blog text so that readers know what it is.

Ngeun said...

No worries Jamie, I'm glad I could help. It really is hard to properly id a plant without an id, lol, esp. when there are so many possibilities. I've further researched & it appears that a synonym of Lapidaria margaretae is in fact Argyroderma margaretae or Argyroderma roeatum (, so you were correct all along to have called it Argyroderma if that is what it is. So, were you just testing us? And I apologise if I spoke out of league. Plant taxonomy is a puzzle at the best of times, & I hope I haven't made the effort of naming this plant more confusing. Can I ask where you got it from & how old it is, because I really want one. :)

LT Expanded said...

Hi, Ngeun asked me to come and look, the last plant is a Corpuscularia, most probably lehmanii, but could be taylorii also.

Lapidaria always have 3 leaf pairs, not more.

Nice post! LT

patientgardener said...

It really has filled out quickly hasnt it - amazing.
I love succulents, can't risk putting them in the ground here so have to resort to pots

Jamie said...

Thank you LT Expanded for the ID on the Corpuscularia, much appreciated.

And Ngeun, I'm sorry I don't know where I bought it. So many of my succulents are 'finds' that Pam and I come across while away on holidays. We can't resist visiting little nurseries in country towns, and we often come away with unusual succulents whose name we don't know.

Ngeun said...

Thanks LT! Oops, now I feel a little embarrassed, lol. :) I found an intriguing plant on Ebay by a seller in Tasmania called Delosperma lehmannii. I googled it for more info & pics, & it seems that it also has a synonym of, wait for it, Corpuscularia lehmannii. It's such a great looking plant with a bit of mystery. There are more pics here:


LT Expanded said...

Yes, I have seen this as well, Delosperma. They root fairly easy from cuttings too.