Do you know of or have as your own, a child so independent that their first sentence may have been, “I’ll do it myself?” Those little ones can grow up to be great leaders, self starters and half of your parenting responsibilities are already done.
Succulents are the little independent cusses of the garden. Some are so unusual, they can make you laugh. There’s one called Othonna, a type of ice plant that is nicknamed “little pickles” that produces cheery yellow daisy-like flowers, whose leaves look just like little pickles. Others grow in spiky crowns, sending out “pups” and crowding together like community finches on a telephone wire.
Succulents can be flat ground covers, tall palm tree-like ornamentals or low growing colorful clusters. Some are smooth, others are fuzzy; there’s one that looks like it’s held together with cobwebs. The color range is diverse; you can have many shades of gray, blue, lavender, greens aplenty, brown, red orange or yellow. Most bloom if given the right light.
They provide texture and architectural interest and because they are slow-growing, they are welcome in containers. Speaking of containers, go wild! Succulents will grow in anything that will hold planting medium. They don’t need or like a lot of water; their biggest enemy is overwatering and getting their “crowns” damp for a extended time.
Not enough sun is another mistake we can make with them. You can almost hear them insisting on being left alone, oblivious to the fact that they are part of a bigger garden and have someone who cares about them and looks after them. As an illustration of how tenacious they are, my aunt and uncle made a wreath of succulents, sprayed them gold and threw them out on the compost heap after Christmas, expecting them to die. Not to worry! Every one of them survived and could be replanted the next spring.
Does this begin to sound familiar? How many times do we insist on our own way and not ask Our Father’s will for us? He gives us so much more than a teensy bit of soil and droplets of water. Are we not members of the body of Christ, a much larger garden? Jeremiah 29:11,
“For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
If we get our own way in life, our imagination is so limited, we eliminate the element of surprise. Allow Him to take the reins, buckle up and get ready to go places you would never expect and receive more blessing than you can contain.
While easy care and independent, our succulents can remind us that we are tended by our on-the-job Master who put us where we will thrive best.
Your gardening friend,