I've long been drawn to succulent wreaths and vertical gardening. Not that I have/do any, but I admire them. From afar. I like succulents, plain and simple, but bringing them inside, away from weeds and bugs and the hot, hot sun - genius! Discovering these beautiful redwood frames, made by Succulent Gardens, absolutely pushed the idea over the edge. For some reason, I'm just not a circle person. The "square" version... I LOVE!
So this Sunday my mom (who is a total green thumb, btw) came over and together we gardened... inside. In case you'd like to try your hand at it, here are some tips.
First, read this tutorial on Prudent Baby. We mostly followed those directions, except that we got our succulents from Succulent Gardens. A brown paper bag full of beautiful rosette succulents came with my frame shipment. They were in excellent condition and already ready to root! I kept them spread out on paper towels and misted them occasionally, until our date.
You could also try buying succulents at your local nursery. If so, buy a few big gallon-sized plants and make cuttings from them, rather than buying many small plants, to keep costs down.
We used: one 12" redwood frame, one wire wreath (same as tutorial), sphagnum moss by Miracle Grow (which was more like dirt than moss...), wire and fishnet stockings to hold the "moss" in place on my mom's wreath, rooting hormone and bobby pins to hold each succulent clipping in place.
These frames are made as one solid piece, so you must drop the moss in through the wire mesh. It took some time to really work it in, which my mom said was important. Didn't like this part. My sink and I got pretty dirty.
Since the Miracle Grow sphagnum moss was soooo loose, my mom figured she'd need to net it to prevent it from falling away from the wreath. A trip to the store was avoided when I found an old pair of fish net knee highs. Whaaaaat? Yeah, don't think I need those.
Then the fun part... the plants! We dipped the stems into the root hormone or used a spoon to sprinkle the hormone directly on the dirt. Once the plants were in place, we'd attach them by sliding a black bobby pin around some bottom petals and into the wire mesh frame or wreath. At first I was going really slow because I hated to hurt the plants. But, my mom says succulents are really resilient. I hope so!
Here's mom's wreath! Because we used bobby pins, she could hang it right away rather than waiting for the plants to root. Even so, I noticed she had it still sitting flat when I came by her house today for our walk.
Me too, mom. I just love, love, love how it came out and want to give the plants every opportunity to relax and survive after being brutally bobby pinned. I'm keeping this baby flat for a bit. It's kind of like a center piece like this. So pretty!
This is how it really goes... vertical. When it's upright the plants show off their texture.
When I feel ready, we'll hang it on the wall among the picture frames and little shelves we've arranged on that (previously) Big Empty Wall. See that spot kind of center and to the right?
I'll have to take down my succulent frame to water it by misting with a spray bottle. Succulents don't like much water, so it won't be about soaking the soil. Fingers crossed it survives!
Well, that's another home decor project tackled and thoroughly appreciated. Our dining room exudes so much more personality now. But just wait 'til I get those curtains up! Mmmmmm, it's going to be good!