Succulents: A Friend for All Seasons
So now that it is fall, what is there that we can look forward to as we progress to winter? Brown branches against a cold dim sky? Blinding white landscapes as far as the eye can see? With the coming of winter means a lack of all things green and living. So how do we get our plant fix to keep ourselves from going insane? Here is my simple solution. House Plants. More specifically, Succulents. Succulents are easy care, cute, and can be very colourful. A good ‘pick-me-up’ for those of us dreading the coming snow. While most of us know of succulents and how easy they are to care for, what makes them so great? Why is it that every garden centre and social media site seem so obsessed with these little plants?
Well the first and easiest answer is their care regime. Sun-loving and care-free, succulents require so little care that it is easy to forget they are there. They are a desert plant so they thrive on as little as one watering per two weeks (sometimes more or less depending on locations and humidity within the house). My succulents only require water upwards of once every three weeks, but they are in the more shady spots of the house, leaving them to dry out more slowly.
The second perk about is that even though they love the sunshine, they can thrive most anywhere. They do need some sunshine, and cannot be kept in a windowless room. But again with my little ones they are on a basement windowsill getting as little as three hours of direct sunlight. Mostly just receiving indirect sunlight for the majority of their lives. Now succulents will always grow faster and be more colourful in lots of sunshine, but again they will do just fine in a less than sunny spot.
That is a good segway to the third feature. Colour! We all love a plant with good colour and succulents can offer that. Though a lot come in varying shades of green, there are many that come in different colours and textures. Ones such as the Copper Spoon, my personal favourite, comes with an icy green to the underside of the leaves but a brilliant copper colour on the top! The contrast of the colours on that particular succulent is astonishing. Other types like the Royanum Hens and Chicks can have coloured tips to their leaves such as red, purples, and pinks. Another personal favourite of mine is the Black Knight succulent. And it lives up to that name. The core of the plant is a pale green, but the long leaves are black giving it such a unique look.
Textures and growing styles are next. Succulents come in all sorts of textures! Now this might seem like a weird feature to highlight but hear me out. Some succulents are fuzzy, FUZZY! Like you just want to keep petting them. My one succulent, the Chocolate Soldier, is the softest, most velvety plant I have encountered. And I have experienced with a lot of plants. The Chocolate Soldier or Panda Plant is a pale bluey-green with chocolate brown traced tips. When in the sunlight it can almost look like its glowing due to its soft fuzzy coat. Needless to say, this is one of the cutest succulents I’ve set eyes on! Now for growing styles. When we think of succulents we tend to think of the typical Hens and Chicks, a spiky little ball of leaves. Cute, but not very original. We in the plant society typically want variety. Different heights, colours, textures and growing patterns. Well succulents have that covered too. They vary from upright, single-stemmed and almost tree like (such as the Copper Spoon) to trailing and vine like, (like the String of Pearls). They cover almost all different heights, patterns, and growth styles making them easy to fit in with your home aesthetic and your personal taste. So with winter on the march make sure your army of plants is ready to keep you going through the cold and gloomy days!