With the sun shining and the Easter bank holiday coming up, we thought it was time to get our fingers green! This lovely little display uses simple enamel ladles planted with pretty succulents to create a really charming result and is a perfect project no matter how big or small your garden is! Choose ladles with a large cup so that the roots of the plants will have enough room to grow and spread. Break off pieces from the larger succulents—these are generally quite tough plants and can take a bit of rough handling—and firm them into the potting mix well so they can take root and thrive.
Planted Enamel Ladles
YOU WILL NEED
Handful of gravel
Left ladle: Moss (available from garden centers and florists)
Middle ladle: Echeveria ‘Perle von Nürnberg,’ Sedum album (white stonecrop), S. burrito (burro’s tail), S. ✕ rubrotinctum (banana cactus), and Sempervivum ‘Ohio Burgundy’ (houseleek)
Right ladle: Anacampseros telephiastrum, Crassula ovate (friendship tree), and Sedum spathulifolium ‘Cape Blanco’ (stonecrop)
1. Soak the rootballs of the plants for 10 minutes or so until the potting mix is wet. Put a handful of potting mix in the bottom of the ladle and add a little gravel to improve drainage.
2. Carefully take one of the larger succulents from its pot and remove some of the excess potting mix to reduce the size of the rootball. Plant it on one side of the ladle.
3. Take another of the larger succulents from its pot and again remove some of the potting mix. Plant at the back of the ladle, firming it in place.
4. Add the smaller succulents to the ladle, breaking smaller bits off the larger plants if necessary, and plant them around the larger ones. Press down the potting mix.
5. Fill in any holes with more potting mix and firm it in place so that the plants will not move.
6. Add a sprinkling of gravel to the surface of the potting mix, pushing it around the plants with your fingers. This will help keep moisture in and looks nice, too. Plant up the other ladles and then water carefully, allowing excess water to drain off.
Succulents can withstand dry conditions, but remember to check the potting mix regularly and water the ladles when they are very dry.
This project is from Tiny Tabletop Gardens by Emma Hardy, available here.
Photography by Debbie Patterson © CICO Books