Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Pumpkin Deconstruction & Wednesday Vignette

With Halloween already a distant memory and Thanksgiving now passed, it was time to deconstruct the succulent-topped pumpkin I created in late October.  The pumpkin was still in good shape, although some of the succulents had lost their luster.

Pumpkin immediately before deconstruction this past weekend


Although the succulents remained firmly in place for 5 weeks, the cuttings were easily removed.

The succulents were removed, exposing the pumpkin's moss toupee


I threw away the berries I'd used but most of the succulent cuttings were in fine shape for replanting.  They found a new home in the new succulent border I created in November when a dying hedge was removed.

Many of the succulent cuttings had already developed roots.  Clockwise from the left: Aeonium haworthii 'Kiwi' cuttings were added to those planted earlier; Graptosedum 'Darley Sunshine' cuttings were added above the rock; noID Rhipsalis were inserted above another rock; and miscellaneous noID succulents were used to edge the area below an Agave attenuata cutting planted earlier.


I passed the pumpkin off to the squirrels.  Have they touched it?  No.  Yet they consumed all the pumpkins I used as decorations out by the front door in short order.

My gift to the squirrels remains untouched.  Maybe the moss toupee is putting them off?


Maybe they're just tired of pumpkin - they've eaten a lot of it already.

In addition to the mid-sized pumpkin shown here, they - or possibly their raccoon friends - carried off 3 mini pumpkins, including one that had been placed in a hanging basket


I hope the pumpkin gets eaten before it starts to mold in place.  My garden isn't short of fungus this season.

This fungus is growing on the inside of a half wine barrel used as a planter.  Trametes versicolor is my best guess.


I'll close this post with another succulent, offered as my Wednesday Vignette.

This noID Gasteria produced a pup, which is held suspended above the parent plant, making me think of Simba's introduction to the pride in "The Lion King"


For more Wednesday Vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.


All material © 2012-2016 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

18 comments:

  1. Wow, that was a beautiful pumpkin wreath, Kris. Anxious to see what kind of loveliness you are going to create for Christmas! What an interesting way of creating offshoots... Do all Gasterias do it that way?

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    1. I don't know much about Gasterias, Anna, and I'm frankly even uncertain about the classification of this one. I believe it came to me labeled as a Gasteria but it looks like some I've seen on-line labeled as Gasteria-Aloe aristata hybrids. To complicate matters further Aloe aristata is now classified as Aristaloe aristata. In any case, I've searched on-line under all these classifications for photos and information on pupping behavior and haven't found anything like this lion king pup.

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  2. 1. I'm jealous you're out there planting succulents while I'm stashing things in the shade pavilion greenhouse and making sure the heater works. 2. That Gasteria and its pup -- so cute!

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    1. While I REALLY wish we could have just a little of your rain, Loree, I have to say I'm happy not to have your freezes. That Gasteria (or Gasteraloe) pup has been hanging in the air above the parent plant for a couple of months now, growing slowly but steadily larger. I haven't had the heart to cut it off to plant elsewhere - I suppose I'll have to once it gets larger.

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  3. Your succulents are great, but Simba the Gasteria pup is the star of this post! :)

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    1. I have to laugh every time I see that plant with the pup waving in the air. I can't bring myself to cut it for replanting.

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  4. I adore the Gasteria and its Lion King pup. I'm intrigued by the squeamishness of your squirrels' tums.

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    1. What is with these squirrels?! Actually, the squirrels and raccoons avoided the pumpkins I had by the front door this year as long as I had skeleton mice sitting on top of them but, they tunneled right on through almost the minute those mice were put away. I think the moss toupee may be an issue for them.

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  5. Your posts about the squirrels always make me grateful we don't have them here. There are brown European squirrels but not in our area. The succulents did a sterling job and now have a good home in the new border.

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    1. If I got to choose, I'd take the squirrels over the raccoons any day, Christina. The raccoons are much more destructive.

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  6. The pumpkin arrangement still looks so good, it seems a pity to take it apart. But now you have all these babies to plant, I wish I could grow them outside. Do they seed about and do they come true from seed?

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    1. Not a lot of my succulents bloom much - the Aeoniums do occasionally and then, like agaves, die. I haven't noticed any coming up as an obvious product of self-seeding but then I can be an overly tidy gardener too and may not be giving the seeds adequate time to ripen. I propagate almost all my succulents from cuttings or pups. Most cuttings can be planted immediately (although experts generally recommend letting the cut stems harden off before planting).

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  7. Put off by skeleton mice and a bit of moss... It must be hard to second-guess your squirrels - much like my rabbits... I'm always impressed with how happily the succulents grow for you, Kris. I'm sure it's partly the climate, but, looking at that Gasteria, I definitely think they're extra happy in your garden!

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    1. The birds seem to have no problem with the moss - they seem to be knocking or carrying it off so perhaps the squirrels will show up when the pumpkin is bald.

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  8. That pup-presenting Gasteria is a kick!

    You just put a moss-toupee on the pumpkin instead of opening the top? That seems like it would last longer. Some garden club members made pumpkin/succulent planters last year and a few of the planters are still going!

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    1. It seems that most, if not all, of the recent on-line demos on succulent-topped pumpkins don't involve cutting into the pumpkin. Less mess was the principal selling point for me.

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  9. It's always amazing to me that you just throw succulent cuttings into the ground just about any time of year and they continue growing. One of the joys of living where you do.

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    1. If the drought continues indefinitely, succulents and cactus may be just about all we'll be able to grow.

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