Large Succulents

coalcutJanuary 24, 2014

I've recently transformed my front yard from grass to gravel and succulents. I've planted the following succulents in the ground:
(2) Aloe Marlothii, (2) Aloe Thraskii, 1 Draceana Draco & (1) Agave Vilmoriana.

Just wanted to know the following:
How often should I water the above plants? I've heard everything from not much at all to once per month.

One of my Aloe Traskiies appears to be getting golden brown on a few of the leaves, however there is also new growth out of the center. Is this normal? Do I need to water more or not?

Is there any type of fertilizer that I need to place on these plants?

P.S. I'm in Los Angeles,CA (I think its Zone 10) These planted have been in the ground for aprox. one month.


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If you were getting your normal winter rains, you'd be as right as rain without additional watering, but you're not....

I'd water once every two weeks, on a sunny morning if you can, so the plants have all day to absorb and not get (potentially) cold, wet feet at night. That raised pot will likely need more water than those in the ground.

You could use some diluted general fertilizer for these plants, say 1/4 ratio of Miracle-Gro regular formula or the like. I'd use the fert when it's a little warmer, but some folks do it year-around.

Aloes, like many other plants, will shed leaves as they grow new ones.

It's Agave vilmoriniana, btw (btw#2 - Genus name is capitalized, species name isn't).

You've got some fine-looking plants - great to get a dragon tree in the ground.

If you're really wanting to fill your yard with succulents (and who wouldn't, considering the canvas you have available) there are a number of cactus and succulent societies in your area that will help you with that deligtful endeavour.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 11:32AM
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Thanks for the reply and advise:-).

P.S. None of these plants are in pots. All are in the ground.

This post was edited by coalcut on Sat, Jan 25, 14 at 12:37

    Bookmark   January 25, 2014 at 12:34PM
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Here's another pic of the garden.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 3:15PM
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rosemariero(Z9 SW SUNDiegoCA)

I'll be moving plants from back yard to front to PIG soon ~so timely info for me as well. Hoping Jeff (cactusmcharris) will be helping me transplant some next month! Nice plants you have!

Although, I think my style may be a bit different than yours. My motto may be: If you can see dirts/rocks, I don't have enough plants! Hee hee!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 3:24PM
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The perspective of the one photo led me to think it was in a raised bed - I see that that's just edging. Your large amount of rock around the plants will act as a heat reflector, so I'd guess you'd be watering those each week in the summer.


I'm with you there. I am even thinking about bringing the fallow deerskin gloves, but I won't be leading a parade, so I'd better stick with the regular leather ones. Looking forward to populating the garden!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2014 at 1:49PM
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When I lived in LA I watered my aloes weekly and sometimes more often if it was hot out and no rain. Some like all the water they can get... others are a bit picky about it. Sort of depends on your soil.. most of mine planted in clay needed watering less often, but the ones in planter boxes dried out in no time. This is the time of year these love water... they will be unhappy without it. You can rot a Dracaena in winter if it's roots are getting established and it's not hot out... but these too love water once established (never managed to overwater one of these that was acclimated and ready to go).

    Bookmark   January 27, 2014 at 6:05PM
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Thanks for the replies. Very useful info:-).

    Bookmark   January 31, 2014 at 11:59PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Aloe thraskii is a bit more difficult and a little more care than marlothii In nature it is found right on the beachfront, hence the common name Coast Aloe. Marlothii is from inland deserts--high heat, little water, low humidity. Thraskii though it doesn't need much water, likes moist, coastal air, so give it more water than marlothii. Thraskii also has a tendency to rot in the center after extended periods of rainy weather, so when the rain returns prepare to cover the rosette with a tarp or something to keep the center dry.

You have a great start. Now slowly and gradually add new Aloes and smaller Agaves that catch your eye, until you have a real wonderland. I would recommend Agave 'Blue Glow' and Agave victoria-reginae, Aloe dorothea, plicatilis, 'Cynthia Gitty', capitata, brevifolia to start, and avoid Agave americana and augustifolia as they spread aggressively. Aloes attract hummingbirds and one of their joys is to sit and watch the hummers zoom around the flowers.

Aloe marlothii in bloom:

    Bookmark   February 1, 2014 at 12:53PM
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