Monday, March 22, 2010

Cactus and Succulent Basket/Topiary

Happy Cactus Monday!

One single cactus

This cactus photo was taken when I visited the Melbourne Botanical Garden on Saturday. I went a bit crazy taking photographs at the cacti/succulent sections. There were so many varieties that I have not seen before. I have yet to sort out all the photos so for now, I only have this to share…

Cactus in black and white © Evelyn Howard 2010

I am enjoying taking Cactus photos in black and white.


Succulent topiary © Evelyn Howard 2010

I put this together a few months ago. It is an easy and cheap project. Here are the few easy steps:

  • Buy a shallow basket (this one was $1 from a charity shop)
  • Line with plastic, then make a few drainage holes
  • Place the basket horizontally, fill with soil.
  • Line the top with sphagnum moss
  • Secure the moss to the basket tightly using wire. Ensure that nothing falls out when it’s vertical or upside down…
  • Add a hook at the back (*)
  • Plant succulents : make holes using a chopstick and insert succulents.
  • Leave the basket in a horizontal position until the succulents have taken root

I have not hung this basket until recently, because I have been contemplating replacing/rearranging the succulents. But it has been growing well, which is why I have left it alone for a while.

(*Note:  Add 2 or more hooks, if you are intending to turn the basket around to encourage even growth)

Lesson learnt

Succulent topiary © Evelyn Howard 2010

This works better than my last topiary (shown on the left), when I had used only sphagnum moss and no soil at all. The topiary dried up too quickly with the moss alone on my balcony, and I had to water it daily. It may also be due to the shape of the topiary that had a lot of exposed surface area.

On the other hand, the topiary in the basket above, with soil and sphagnum moss only requires watering once a week. I am much happier with this one.

Visit Teri’s Painted Daisies for more Cactus Monday links.


Darla said...

Great black and white photo and I love your succulent arrangements!

Anonymous said...

Great idea! I'm glad you didn't change anything around in the basket. It looks wonderful. Love the black and white pic too :)


Julie said...

My DIL has been taking B & W photos and I can see how striking it is in cactus photography. It makes the spines look silver and the lighting and shodows make it so dramatic! Yours is lovely!!!

Margaret Ann said...

I really enjoy B/W photography...Your shot is awesome...great tonal values... I love your hanging succulent garden also! Happy Autumn and Happy Cactus Monday! :)

marianne said...

fascinating cactus!
And your baskets/ containers are always fun!


Melanie said...

That is beautiful! A neighbour of mine had a succulent wreath she hung on her door. I'm inspired all over again to make something like this, one day. :)

Noelle said...

I love the idea of taking cacti photos in black and white. Yours is beautiful.

Teri C said...

I love the shading on the B&W cactus.
You always have the neatest ideas!!! Thanks for sharing them.


danger garden said...

WOW! Beautiful succulent basket garden...and you share great tips too!

BGgarden said...

Cactus Monday... this is fabulous! I can't wait to stop back again soon.

I moved from blogger... you can find me at :
Bren at the BGgarden

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

The cactus in Black and white is really pretty, you can see so much detail in it.
I love your hanging succulent basket! Great instructions, maybe I'll try one this year.

Succuland said...

Beautiful composition and very nice idea. I love it.

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