“Preserving tomorrow” is the 2016-2017 theme for the Ceres Garden Club. Following the theme of preservation, particularly our resource of water, a behind-the-scenes tour at Poot’s Succulent Garden in Ripon, CA, highlighted the beautiful drought efficient succulents/cacti.   The personal tour which lead through the succulent/cacti landscaped yard, magnificently showcased these unique plants around a fantastic water feature of a running riverbed into a large pond full of huge multi colored koi fish.  Continuing through the hot houses, the diversity of color, texture, design, and growth habit was totally awesome.

It was learned that cacti are actually succulents.  Also, that many of the species are century type in that they will grow for 20 plus years to put up 1 large bloom stalk, then die.  During the summer, watering is done about 1 time per week, and maybe 1 time per month in a dry drought winter.  If a wet winter, then water is not needed.  These plants like to dry out completely between watering.  The effect of hard water on some species results in a very darkened hue, whereas softer water results in a much lighter and greener color.

Many varieties are perfect for outdoor landscape, preferring a south exposure with full sun.  They come in many sizes and shapes from tall thin to short round.  The color differences of bright green with yellow accents or grey blue with burgundy accents makes using succulents with far too many choices.  Throw together a few rocks and boulders with colored pea gravel and you have a very intriguing rock garden.

There are varieties which are more delicate and perfect for indoor container display.  They will grow and bloom given proper sun, water and planted in the correct soil medium.  The use of unique whimsical containers can show-off the amazing uniqueness of these intriguing plants.


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