Wish list addition: Succulents. All of them.

I’ll be perfectly honest with you: I don’t have any succulents (pause while I think about that for a minute… no I think that’s about right. Nothing in houseplants anyway).

But the internet is an enabler (people on the internet anyway).


Sedum rubrotinctum
(photo by Noodle snacks used under CC license from here)

Since I started reading garden and plant blogs I’ve noticed posts about various Aloes and Agaves and have seen Echeveria and Haworthias in stores and in people’s posts and generally everything has been positive. Everyone who grows them likes them, I see them I like them, but I haven’t ended up with any.


Aloe mitriformis – love the colours and the yellow thorns really pop.
(Photo by Stan Shebs used under CC license from here)

Then I find Far Out Flora shortly before their Senecio rowleyanus post. I’ve seen these at work all the time in tiny 4″ hanging baskets and they were always interesting but I was never overly tempted by them. That’s changed. Not to mention this post, this post (that frog planter is perfect I love that orange/pink/blue… plant) and oh my God I need an Aloe polyphylla.


Agave angustifolia var. marginata – been a fan of it for a while. Not sure on houseplant suitability and it looks a little big but I like it.
(Photo used under CC license from here)

Then at Plant Zone there’s a link to Amazing Succulent & Cacti Photos and I’m done for. Again plants with that fantastic orange/blue/pink blend in muted tones like Lapidaria margeritae (Go here and do a search for “Lapidaria margeritae” – the first picture you’ll find is the one I mean, the colours just don’t pop as much in later pictures ) just get to me for some reason and i need one, or at least something with those colours.


Echeveria laui – there’s that same pink/blue I mentioned above, minus the orange. Doesn’t matter apparently, still love it.
(Photo by Fritz Geller-Grimm used under CC license from here)

Then as I was reading Life Among the Leaves I found a post on Aloes (mmm… Aloe brevifolia…) and another Haworthias


Aloe polyphylla – anything with that a spiral pattern that strongly pronounced scores huge points with me. Have I mentioned my love of the Gesneriad genus Petrocosmia?
(Photo by Stan Shebs used under CC license from here)

I have two problems with starting a succulent collection – first, no bright windows are free (especially during the winter) and second, what places I might be able to squeeze one are small.


Echeveria ‘Black Prince’
(Photo by Noodle snacks used under CC license from here)

But I’m going to get a few, just need a few suggestions of what is attractive &/or interesting (“&” is better, space is limited), fairly easy, and most importantly small (able to be kept in a 4 (to 6)” pot for a fairly significant amount of time. You should be able to get a good sense of what I like by the pictures & links above.

Thoughts? What are your top 3-5 favourite succulents that I should definitely look at?

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About Andrew

Plant lover living in Toronto, Canada where I grow a wide range of plants in a very small space.
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7 Responses to Wish list addition: Succulents. All of them.

  1. Plants I like in theory but have had bad experiences with: Echeveria, most of the Kalanchoes, Sedum rubrotinctum, Crassula muscosa and perforata, Adenium obesum, Senecio rowleyanus (though that situation may be improving lately), Portulacaria afra, Euphorbia enopla, Pachyphytum, Fenestraria (more than once). Most of those didn't actually die; I just couldn't get them enough light and they got tiny and weird. Also, WCW said Aeoniums never worked well for her, so I've never even tried one. And a lot of people have trouble with Lithops, so I haven't tried those either.The other problem is that a lot of the plants I like, succulent or not, I like partly for their ability to get big quickly. So I could recommend Aloe aristata, Furcraea foetida, and Euphorbia tirucalli, but I don't think they'd work for you in this situation.Which I think should rule out everything you could possibly find interesting or attractive. However, if you're not going to let that discourage you, and you shouldn't, consider:Haworthia limifolia var. limifolia has an odd color (metallic gray) and texture (ridged), and seems to be pretty tough, especially as compared to some of the other Haworthias. H. attenuata is also pretty tough and fairly striking-looking, though it's also more common. Aloe variegata is relatively small, as Aloes go, and has interesting shape and patterning. Mine is just green, because it doesn't get enough light to turn it gray, but it doesn't seem to be stretching for light, either, so that's a maybe. See also A. 'Walmsley's Blue,' 'Black Gem,' 'Crosby's Prolific.'Sedum morganianum is surprisingly capable of handling the less-than-perfect light in the plant room (waaaaaaaay more tolerant than S. rubrotinctum), at least so far, and has a nice blue-green color, and it's fairly slow-growing.Some of the succulent Peperomias (particularly P. obtusifolia) probably fit the requirements, but I don't think, from looking at what you're saying you like, that they'd appeal to you. The same probably goes for Pachypodium spp., though P. geayi at least has those nice silvery trunks.Sempervivums aren't usually kept indoors, but they stay smallish, they're rosette-formers, and they can handle at least occasional dark spells. Which is something.

  2. Aerelonian says:

    Great choices! Thanks for the mention. I think I might be turning into a succulent person…

  3. Andrew says:

    Thanks for the suggestions!Pachyphytum & Echeveria look nice and might be worth a try, though maybe only one and only a small/cheap one to see how it does.Aloe aristata looks nice (and not overly huge) but I think I could get a Haworthia attenuata (I think we had one at one point long ago and did well enough) and satisfy my need for a green/white spiky plant. I do have a 12" or so ceramic bowl shaped pot that would look nice with something like that aloe in it. Maybe one with a red tint to it even if that's only in summer.Sedum morganianum is nice. And they're available pretty much all the time here so that might be a good option. And they trail, so I can hang it and it wouldn't technically be taking up space…I have a P. obtusifolia and it's doing terribly. I think it's too wet. I do like it though and will continue to try to salvage mine.Sempervivums are nice but they're hardy (at least all the varieties I've come across) & I can keep them alive outside so I don't think I'll be keeping any inside

  4. I have an agave attenuata planted inside in a medium size pot… it's happy with being brought out side every so often for extra sun and wind, and with a bit of watering when I remember. Maybe try one of them?

  5. Andrew says:

    They're really nice but looking at some pictures and I can see they get big(/huge, though maybe not in pots). Maybe not big fast but still. If I get one of these I'll wait until I know I have a little more sunny space inside.

  6. faroutflora says:

    I feel we need to mail you some clippings to get you started. What is your temp zone?Matti

  7. Andrew says:

    A cold cold zone 5, and in Canada. So not sure how that would work but it would likely be more complicated than would it would be worth. I appreciate the thought though!

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