Monday, September 24, 2012

Succulent Cutting Gardens

Succulents are trendy and popular with designers and consumers.  Their an extraordinary material that is contemporary and interesting.  The design possibilities are endless whether it be in a floral arrangement or landscape design.  Oddly as it sounds, the latest trend in the floral design world is to spray paint the succulents. It's fascinating  to see this new technique being used in design. I gravitate toward environmentally friendly specimens, but I'm always on the look out for whats new and different.  Vertical and hanging plantings of succulents are popular in garden design.

The succulent garden above has been a four year project.  This labor of love is used as a decorative cutting garden.  I've used these succulents from garden to arrangement to garden again (reusing, recycling).  The garden is propagated by stem cuttings and some of the species include Echeveria, Crassula, and Aeonium.  The garden is 90% Echeveria which is known to have 150 species. Succulent and cacti mix was added to the soil.  The garden is watered once a week in the summer and much less in fall, winter and spring.  Watering depends on climate temperate and rainfall.  These succulents like sun/part shade.

The garden is great for my demonstration designs or large event designing.  It's an ongoing wonderful process that is green, organic and local.  I highly recommend designers to have their own succulent cutting garden.  If your limited on space, container gardens could work just fine. I have a few small container gardens included in my garden. Pillows and Demijohn bottles are incorporated into my design. These decorations add the element of surprise to the garden and give restful breaks between all the wonderful succulent textures.  The bath is a fabulous way to bring native species of birds into your garden.

The succulent garden is between two outside lounging areas.  The placement of the garden makes a great focal area and does not disrupt the flow of conversation or views between the two areas. The Demijohn jugs in the garden were left over from wine brewing. The glass is a beautiful accent that enhances the garden.

Demijohn is a glass vessel with a large body and small neck sometimes enclosed in wickerwork. 


The concrete pillows are from Cottage Garden of Petaluma, California.  This is one of my favorite places for design inspiration.  I highly recommend everyone to visit this location.  These stepping stones are sold under the name Tuffits.  They come in different colors and styles.  Fabulous garden art that's so realistic everyone will want to touch them.


Small wire fencing is placed around the garden for protection from animals.  Athena has been known to lay, roll and even dig up the succulents.  The succulents were easily replanted because of their hardness.  I hope you experiment with your own succulent cutting garden.  It's great to have that extra special specimen at your finger tips through out the year.  Have fun with this Eco-Friendly Garden.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

CCSF Student "Seray Diep" New Owner of West Portal Floral Company

 Seray Diep award winning floral designer

Seray Diep alumni of City College of San Francisco in the Environmental Horticulture and Floristry Department and Daniel Yee of San Francisco are the new owners of West Portal Floral Company located in San Francisco, CA.  Diep with his expertise in flower shop operations and floral design has joined forces with Yee who excels in business and marketing.  This is Dieps' second floral business and location.  He also owns an operates Lady Bug Flowers in Sausalito, CA.  They are excited, passionate and enthusiastic about this new venture and welcome all to the new location at 51 West Portal Avenue in San Francisco, CA.   We wish them much happiness and success! 

West Portal Floral Company is a full service flower shop with High Style European floral design, fresh cut flowers, orchids, weddings, business accounts, funerals, all occasions and delivery in the Bay Area.  Contact information:  415-661-7277 and

Seray Diep and Daniel Yee new owners of West Portal Floral Company

Jenny Tabarracci AIFD and Seray Diep at West Portal Floral Company