Monday, 8 July 2013

weekend DIY - succulent planter box.

I absolutely love succulents. They are perfect for people who lack the time, inclination, or green thumbs to garden, yet enjoy the odd low maintenance pot plant.

As I try and keep my garden exclusively native (with the exception for a few native look-a-likes) I indulge my love of succulents by displaying them in pots in outdoor areas. With a free sunny spot on our back deck and time to potter about, over the weekend I decided to create a mini succulent garden. It was super quick to achieve and unlike larger backyard landscaping projects, it didn't require digging massive holes or shifting cubic metres of soil which is always a plus.

STEP 1 - Find the perfect location and planter
I unearthed this great vintage washing tub in my Dad's shed. You could drill holes in the bottom, but I find if you choose the right soil and aren't heavy handed with watering, drainage isn't a problem.

STEP 2 - Fill with potting mix
Make sure your planter is in the perfect spot, as once it is filled with soil, moving it becomes a little more tricky. Keep in mind you'll also need a lot more soil then you think. I chose a special succulent/cacti potting mix from Bunnings which is a little drier and less dense than regular potting mix.

STEP 3 - Plant out a selection of succulents and cover the soil with tumbled rocks
I inherited a few succulents and bought a couple more from my local weekend market for just a few dollars each. My favourites are flapjacks and Echeveria varieties which form tight little rosettes. As the rocks are quite a feature in themselves, particularly when the plants are still small, it's important you select good looking ones. I am a bit obsessed with rocks and collect lots of them, so I used a selection of different coloured tumbled stones I'd found on the beach.

My favourite variety of Echeveria
STEP 4 -Step back and admire the finished pot
One of the easiest and smallest gardens you may ever create, but still very satisfying nonetheless. Once assembled it simply needs the occasional sprinkle of water when (and if) you remember.  

Happy miniature landscaping!