Question: bed of succulent plants
Good evening, I would like to create a flowerbed with succulent plants in my garden, I would like some advice (drainage, soil, choice of plants, winter precautions, etc.) consider that I live in Sicily. Thanks for your advice
Answer: bed of succulent plants
since many succulents and all cacti are native to southern America, we tend to weigh that they are plants that need a warm climate throughout the year, given that we think of South America as a continent with homogeneous climate, of tropical type; in reality, the climate of the South American continent is decidedly heterogeneous, even if it is considered state by state; Mexico, for example, has mountainous areas, with mountains that exceed 3000 meters in height, which act as an obstacle to rain, and cause arid areas, but sometimes with a temperate climate; the Perщ is lapped on the coasts by the Humboldt current, which brings dry and cold air from the Antarctic; Argentina has many areas with a very cold climate, which recall, in numbers, more Alaska, than Brazil, but characterized by a very strong wind, which causes less rainfall and a drier climate. In addition to this, the arid areas of the entire globe are characterized by very high daily temperature ranges, and rainy periods are often intense and sudden, with the presence of ephemeral rivers and streams, which can exist even for only a few hours. For this reason, many succulent and cacti plants can withstand frosts, even intense ones, without suffering any damage; even temperatures below -10 ° C may not cause any concern to many species and varieties of cacti. Then you are lucky enough to live in Sicily, where the winter climate is decidedly pleasant, with only episodic frosts, which often do not occur. Among the most widespread succulents in cultivation, the only ones that hardly stand the winter cold and prefer instead to be placed in the apartment during the cold months, are the euphorbies (although a couple of species could find a place in the garden). Then the pachypodium, are hot climate plants; and the tylecodon, the jatropha, some species of ferocactus and gymnocalycium. Most cacti, on the other hand, can easily be grown in the garden, even in winter, and especially agave, aloe, echinopsis, echinocactus, most ferocactus and gymnocalycium, lobiivie, opuntie. Online you will surely find long tables that show you species by species, with the minimum supported. The fundamental problem lies in the fact that most of these plants bear temperatures close to -10 ° C, but only if the soil in which they are positioned is perfectly dry; for this reason already in October we stop watering, and if necessary, in case of heavy rain, we cover the flowerbed with plastic material, so that it is not excessively watered by the weather. To favor this type of climate, dry and cold, place the plants in a very well drained soil, consisting of a small part of soil, mixed with washed river sand and other granular material, such as pumice stone, pozzolana, lapillus : it depends on which material is easiest to find in the area where you live.