Here's a quick botany lesson for you Dallas gardeners; nearly all cacti are succulents but not all succulents are cacti. What's the difference between the two? Succulents are plants with parts that are thickened, fleshy and can appear engorged, usually to retain water in dry climates and soil conditions which is what makes them perfect for our sunny, hot and dry north Texas summers!
There are about 60 different plant families within the group of succulents, including aloe, haworthia, sedum, sempervivum, and of course, cacti. Cacti are fleshy plants that store water, making them part of this group. Cacti must have areoles. Areoles are small, round, cushion-like mounds of flesh where spines, hair, leaves, flowers, and more grow from the cactus. Areoles are only present on cacti, not all succulents.
Why the lesson on succulents? Because they're perfect for filling small spaces and adding texture in a bed or container. The aesthetics and low maintenance needs of succulents make them the perfect choice to incorporate into xeriscaping designs as was done in the image below.
The picture below shows ‘Angelina Sedum’ which has been planted in between the stones of a path. This is a wonderful way to add some more color and character to an area.
Succulents thrive in an environment that has both sun and shade and are very easy to maintain. Their distinct and diverse shapes add character to spaces and are a wonderful addition to any landscape.
Below are two examples of some of the succulents we most frequently use. We love the versatility of Hens and Chicks and the spiky texture of the Ice Plant, both can help bring a lackluster area some life as well as a modern feel.
Succulents and cacti are the perfect choice for xeriscape installations. Xeriscaping is the process of landscaping or gardening that reduces or eliminates the need for supplemental water from irrigation. Echeveria look great in geosteel containers as we installed at this complete xeriscape makeover in Las Colinas, along with various cacti and succulents to create a landscapecomposition in surrounding beds.
Splendid Gardens provides professional landscape services to Dallas and surrounding cities in North Texas. We take great pride in delivering customized services to each client such as xeriscapes. Our experienced teams provide a variety of services including landscape design, installation, scheduled maintenance services, custom flagstone and redesign of existing landscapes. We actively give back to the community by volunteering our services to local projects in need.