Agave ‘Kissho Kan’, a succulent hardy to zones 9-10, was a big hit at Gardens, Gallery & Gifts. I sold these in black pots topped with lava rocks and as a trio in designer containers with shiny stones to finish the look! Many visitors took one home. This plant grows to about 15″ tall eventually. It has an interesting white edge to the margins with sharp red infused spines.
I believe the main factor which attracted attention is the fact it is a tough plant that can take droughty conditions – something we experienced all summer long in 2010 – and on the days of our first annual GGG event in Broad Brook, CT. (Take Note: We are holding our 2nd Annual GGG Event again this June 4-5th!).
The other factor enjoyed by GGG visitors is it could be taken indoors as a houseplant at the end of the season. Reusing the plant for a new purpose and saving money. The key however is to take it in before any (repeat any) chance of frost damage. In fact, well before. As you reach the final end of the summer when temps begin to cool, take this plant inside.
Succulents require even less attention once inside. By a sunny window during the winter, they recede into a semi-dormant state. You can greatly reduce the watering and let it loose some weight, so to speak. And this type of plant can be left alone should you take some time to travel during your winter – or prior during the summer months on vacation! It is very undemanding but offers a good show. Mine is doing wonderfully by my kitchen garden window, watering it very, very lightly and only occassionally (weeks can go by without watering).
The other succulent receiving applause at the GGG event was Senecio mandraliscae ‘Blue Chalk Sticks’ (Groundsel). It was a new offering by the grower and caught my eye. This blue chop stick looking form produces small white flowers around July-August, which mine did! It has a spreading, reaching habit thus can serve as a “spiller” in Container Gardens. Visitors to the show commented on it for it was unusual. Many had never seen this plant before. Again, the fact that it is a sun lover (to part-sun), deer resistant, and tough made it high on their list. In warmer clients, this one could be considered as a groundcover too.
I’ve already placed my order for more succulents – but of a different twist. They will be offered again in June at the GGG show. I’m looking forward to sharing the one’s I’ve selected and seeing your reactions….And to the snow melting in time! Cathy T