Familiar to all succulent plants living on many window sills, many believe exclusively tropical heat lovers, unable to tolerate significant cold. However, this opinion is correct: most familiar succulents moved to homes and greenhouses of domestic florists from hot Africa or arid Mexico.
However, there are other representatives of the flora, capable of storing moisture in the leaves or stems, for which a comfortable environment for development – low temperatures with low humidity. They are successfully cultivated on flowerbeds and alpine hills, even left to winter, covered with stubble or dry leaves.
Types of garden succulents
The variety of herbaceous perennials adapted to grow in conditions of lack of moisture of moderate climate is much poorer than their tropical relatives. But among them there are also many species that are decorated with crown and inflorescences. They enjoy well-deserved popularity among their admirers-flower growers.
Molodilo, or Semptrvivum – the genus has about 30-50 species, common in Eastern Europe, Asia Minor, the Caucasus. They grow mainly in mountainous areas on poor stony or sandy soils in fairly cool climatic conditions.
They are multileaf rosettes up to 15 cm in circumference, developing numerous stolons with miniature children. Taking root, daughter rosettes very soon together with the mother plant form dense green mats.
Color-bearing stems are erect, densely pubescent, unbranched, complex thyroid-bleached inflorescences are formed on their top. Flowers are obese, with fleshy sepals and star-shaped open lanceolate petals of yellow, white, salad, scarlet, tender pink or purple hue. Fruits are oblong pubescent leaflets with numerous seeds.
Sedum, or purification (Sedum) – a genus consisting of almost 400 species of perennial or two-year-old herbs, less often – semi-shrubs or shrubs growing in Eurasia, America – South and North, Africa. Leaves of succulent species are fleshy, usually sitting tightly on the stem, taking turns. Flowers are small, star-shaped, creamy white or with a light pink, grouped in dense thyroid, umbrella or inflorescence-brush.Milk, or Euphorbia, is one of the most numerous genera in the family of the same name, according to some sources – there are up to 800 species, according to others – twice as many. Most of them are annual and perennial grasses, small shrubs, often succulent or cactus-shaped, very rarely small trees. All of them are characterized by the presence of milk juice, usually poisonous.
Externally, they are very diverse: some have simple stems with or without thorns, foliated or without leaves, others have fleshy stems, often colon-shaped, faceted, covered with small thorns, resembling cactus. Flowers are opaque, bell-shaped, collected in cyanosis inflorescences, fruits – three-blade boxes with nut seeds.
Lewisia – a genus of herbaceous perennials from North America. It has about 20 species that prefer to grow on lawns, open mountain slopes, in desert areas. Its roots are thickened, its succulent stems are very shortened or absent at all. Leaves are collected in a root socket. Flowers are open, multi-petal, white, pale pink, orange-yellow colored.
Delosperma is a numerous genus of stocky semi-shrubby flowers from Southern and Eastern Africa with thin woody stems and fleshy leaves. Flowers are bright, with long thin petals of different colors – white, yellow, purple, purple-pink, coral. Requires for winter moving to a cool room with a small plus temperature. The most famous species among domestic florists – black sperm (D. echinatum).
Dorotheanthus (Dorotheanthus) – miniature succulents native to South Africa, which are grown in the middle band as annuals. They grow no more than 30 cm in height. The roots are lopsided, deepened in the soil by 20-25 cm. Pagons creeping, fleshy, covered with thick petiole leaves, on the surface of which under a magnifying glass can easily be seen capsules with stored moisture.
Rhodioia is a genus of bushy perennials, common throughout the northern hemisphere and inhabiting spurs of rocks or meadows. They have thickened roots and numerous erect pagons from 20 to 50 cm high. Leaves are fleshy, oval triangular or lanceolate in shape. Flowers are small, bright yellow, crimson or burgundy colored, forming thyroid inflorescences. The most famous species are Rhodiola pink (R. Rosea) and linearifolia.
Rosularia, or Rosularia, is a genus of monocarpical succulents originating in the Caucasus, Central and Asia Minor and inhabiting mainly mountains. They grow as dense rosettes of fleshy leaves. Flowers are star-shaped, on low pedicels form inflorescences.
Aptenia (Aptenia) – a genus of evergreen flowing succulents with fleshy heart-shaped leaves native to South Africa. In temperate latitudes it is grown in the open air during the warm season, and in winter it is transplanted into containers and winters in a cool room. Flowers are small, about 10-13 mm in a circle, but very bright, with purple-red long petals.
Mesembryanthemum – a genus that contains more than 70 species of perennial or annual grasses and semi-shrubs with straight, thick, fleshy stems, very ramified, often lying down. Leaves are large, spindle-shaped. Blossoms are abundant, corollas 3-12 mm in diameter consist of elongated petals of bright pink, white, saturated red, lemon and lilac shade.
Orostachys, or mountain grate (Orostachys) – a genus of 20 species of rosette succulents, in nature growing from the South Urals to Japan and the extreme south of the Chukchi Peninsula. Juicy pointy leaves form spectacular dense rosettes, thanks to the extreme row of bent outward leaf plates resembling a sunflower.
Practically sitting on the pedicels of flowers wallpaper, form a dense apical brushes or brooms of inflorescences. Sepals fleshy, green or grey tint. The petals are slightly fused at the base, pointed, painted white, pink, light salad or pale yellow.
Cineraria is a genus of perennial herbaceous plants or semi-shrubs from the Astrovye family, originating in Madagascar and tropical Africa. Inflorescences-brushes consist of small flowers, leaves are different depending on the species. There are also succulent varieties, which are grown as annuals, in the open air of a temperate climate.
Kalanchoe – a genus of succulents in the wild, living mainly in southern Africa, Asia and tropical regions of South America. There are more than 200 species of perennials, capable of withstanding rather arid conditions of deserts and savannahs, able to tolerate both heat and relative coolness. Some species of kalanhoe in the temperate climate of the middle belt are successfully grown in the open air, planting in spring on a flowerbed, and in autumn, with the arrival of the cold again moved back to the premises.
From all the variety of garden succulents, each florist will be able to choose your favorite species to grow on their own plot of land. Someone would prefer plants unpretentious, living in nature on poor soils of rocky mountains and therefore do not require much attention in care. Winter such perennials, as a rule, without special shelter and firmly tolerate frosty winters of temperate climate. And someone likes their more warm-loving fellows come from warm Africa or South America, resistant to droughts, but need to move for the winter to a cool veranda or a glassed loggia, where a low plus temperature is maintained. Any of the selected species is capable of charming with the ornamentality of lush emerald leaves and a bright friendly burst of colorful inflorescences.