It’s easy to understand why succulents have become a very popular plant choice. They’re available in a wide range of styles and colours, look good all year round and are very low maintenance, says Judith Sleijpen.
Growing to a height of about 30 centimetres and spreading up to 70 centimetres wide, Blue Waves (Cotyledon orbiculata ‘Blue Waves’) is a hardy succulent prized for its ornamental foliage of large, silver-blue leaves with wavy margins.
Blue Waves prefers a sunny spot in most soil types that are free draining. It is drought tolerant once established, requiring little watering other than during extended periods of heat. No pruning is necessary other than a general tidy, if required.
Mass planted, Blue Waves makes a stunning groundcover especially suited for coastal gardens. It blends well with any other colour scheme and creates a bold contrast growing with the deep rich burgundy rosettes of Du Rozzen (Aeonium ‘Du Rozzen’), another hardy succulent.
Sitting on a courtyard or balcony, in a large, decorative container full of free-draining, premium-grade potting mix, Blue Waves is a definite eye-catcher!
Top gardening tips for September
- Feed spring-flowering bulbs as soon as the flowers have faded. To help the bulbs produce blooms next year, regularly apply a water-soluble fertiliser over the foliage.
- Top up the mulch on all garden beds to a depth of at least five centimetres, keeping it slightly away from plant stems to avoid fungal infections.
- Spray citrus trees fortnightly with EcoOil to control citrus leaf miner. These insects prefer the new spring growth and create squiggly lines on the leaves as they ‘mine’.
- Group sun-loving herbs together. Thyme, oregano, marjoram and rosemary prefer to be kept on the dry side. Basil, parsley, chives and dill require more water and fertiliser, and mint is best kept by itself in a damp, semi-shaded spot.
- Repot indoor plants. Use a premium-grade potting mix marked with the Australian Standards guarantee. Fertilise all pot plants and hanging baskets, including those indoors, with some slow release plant food. .
- Plant warm-season vegetables such as tomatoes, beans, zucchinis, pumpkin and eggplant.
- Prune winter-flowering shrubs and ornamental fruit trees as soon as they finish flowering. Deadhead annuals and perennials regularly to promote repeat flowering.
What’s on in September?
Bonsai for Beginners Course: Remove the mystery – create and enjoy your own bonsai! Discover its history and how easy it is to grow. Comprehensive notes are provided, and places are limited. $125. 10am to 4pm, Sunday 20 September, Northern Beaches Community College (9970 1000).
Garden Design for Large and Small Spaces Course: Whether you’re starting from scratch or revamping an existing area, you’ll enjoy learning how to transform an open space into a haven for relaxed living. Comprehensive notes are provided and bookings are essential. $125. 10am to 4pm, Sunday 27 September, Northern Beaches Community College (9970 1000).
Judith Sleijpen is an experienced horticulturist, columnist and garden designer, advising clients on all aspects of their gardens. For more information, phone 9907 6460.