While cleaning up and replanting the area in front of our backyard fountain a couple of weeks ago, I decided to try using one of the seashells scattered there as a plant container for succulents. The seashells were here when we moved in over ten years ago and I left most of them where they were, mainly because I had no idea what to do with them.
|This is a giant clam shell, and the largest of the shells left by the prior owner. When I turned it open side up, it was obvious it was meant to serve as a container for something.|
I'd planned to go to my local garden center to select new succulent plants but subsequently decided to use what I had on hand.
|I did a mock-up before filling the shell with a cactus mix and planting|
When I got around to the actual planting, I added more Oscularia deltoides and several rosettes of Graptopetalum 'California Sunset'.
|I filled in the remaining visible crevices with tiny blue decorative stones I had on hand from a previous project|
I tried out a few different areas before placing the shell.
|I didn't think the scale was right for it in some spots and in other cases I was concerned that the shell's contents might be harmed by critters or careless humans|
|So the shell ended up on the little cafe table on our south-side patio, out of the way of intense sun, critters, and the gardeners with their leaf blowers|
That project led me to rehab two other small planters, both of which had lost their appeal in the two or more years since I'd originally planted them. I didn't take any before shots but here are the completed containers:
|The circle planter was filled with a small noID Aloe and cuttings of Crassula pubescens|
|I replanted this shallow ceramic container with cuttings of Aeonium 'Jack Catlin' (center), Aeonium haworthii 'Kiwi', noID orange-colored Aloe rosettes, and more Graptopetalum 'California Sunset'|
Little projects like these can be so satisfying! I'm already thinking about which of the other seashells I inherited with the garden might be transformed into succulent planters.
All material © 2012-2022 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party
Well done! Have you been to Lotusland? Ganna Walska loved those giant clam shells.ReplyDelete
I've been to Lotusland (although not recently) and I remember those clam shells. In my mind at least, they were bigger than this one.Delete
Beautiful Giant Clamshell. I fell in love with them years ago & always wanted one but would not pay $1000 for a large one. My husband finally found one on Craig’s list for $300 & I planted it up with succulents too. Hang on to that shell- it’s worth a lot of $$ReplyDelete
$1000! I can't imagine that. In the above comment Loree of danger garden mentions those at Lotusland, a Southern California botanic garden, which I remember as being significantly larger than the one the prior owner left behind here.Delete
Your updated arrangements look great. I did see you decided to use the partridge aloe in the seashell though. I saw this plant at the Seattle garden show many years ago but wasn't allowed to bring home across the border so found some seeds and now have a collection of nice little plants. Find as they get bigger they flop so I prune the big ones out and let the pups continue.ReplyDelete
I expect the shell planter's contents will have to be revised on a periodic basis as the current plants either grow, or die out in the confined space I've given them. That'll be true of the other 2 containers as well - they're just not deep enough to support what I planted in them for a long haul.Delete
You did a nice job on those. A balanced mix of colors and textures.ReplyDelete
I put every succulent possible into the ground instead of containers because they seem so much happier in the ground. Just tiny plants unexpectedly tough plants like Fenestraria rhopalophylla seem to handle my appalling neglect.
I think just about everything I included in these 3 containers, with the possible exception of the Graptopetalum, would be happier in the ground, HB. Even the Graptopetalum probably prefers an in-ground placement but, given how leggy it gets, it needs cutting back regularly even there. Still, I'm surprised that you've had success planting Fenestraria in the ground. I've never gotten either Curio rowleyanus or Senecio peregrinus to grow anywhere except a container.Delete
Lucky you inheriting such treasure with your house. The creature who called that shell home must have made quite a meal! I like your selections - the subtle colouring of the succulents work well with the white background of the shell. Nice work.ReplyDelete
Thanks Horticat. I had no idea that some of the seashells that came with the house might actually have value in the general marketplace.Delete
Oh, what a great idea! Those are some massive seashells - what a gift to have those laying around. Your new planters look great, Kris!ReplyDelete
Thanks Anna. What may be the most remarkable aspect of this project is that it took me so long to stumble into it ;)Delete
That shell planting is perfect; you could have used for an IAVOM presentation.ReplyDelete
That would have been a good idea, Chavli! Oh well, I have other (smaller) shells I may try stuffing with succulents in the future ;)Delete
You are so talented! I was going to try to pick a favorite one, but I just can't; they're all awesome. :)ReplyDelete
Thanks Beth, although I think the containers deserve more of the credit than I do in making an impact.Delete
You have a good eye for combinations in these planters, Kris. They are lovely! ElizaReplyDelete