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Garden Photo of the Day

An Instagram Challenge

By Kim Charles

Here are some of my baby succulent cuttings from some of my older plants.

Beth Bennett of Columbus, Ohio has used Instragram to challenge herself gardening indoors….all with a focus on succulents.

"About a year ago, I challenged myself to post one photo a day on Instagram @bruckborder as a way to document and share my gardening story. I created little rules for my Instagram feed to give it a cohesive feel. For example, all photos must be of my garden, my home, and the plants that I grow. I also wanted my gallery to be relevant to the current season. It was fairly easy to develop content during the growing months but I knew I would hit a lull in the winter. In my experience, gardening outside is like cooking and nurturing houseplants is like baking. Outside is flexible, forgiving and organic while inside is precise, rigid and not intuitive for me at all. But after being a successful outdoor gardener for twenty years my little Instagram challenge has given me the motivation to become a proficient indoor gardener. I challenge all of you to share your gardening journeys on Instagram, as I have found the community very supportive and you all do such lovely work."

Have a garden you'd like to share? Email 5-10 photos and a brief story about your garden to GPOD@taunton.com. Please include where you are located!

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My outdoor containers are all large, but I have found I prefer small containers for my indoor plants, as I tend to move them around.

This is my oldest living houseplant container–I've managed to keep it going for four years now. During the summer it is the centerpiece on my outdoor table.

Succulent cuttings make thoughtful gifts. My stepmom gave me these for my birthday a few years ago and they're still alive!

This container is a good example of the diversity both in texture and color of succulents.

This is my winter spot. It's the sunniest seat in the house and it's where I dream about and plan my upcoming growing season and read my "Fine Gardening."

View Comments


  1. Foxglove12 02/27/2017

    Each shot is so artistic! Love looking at all the colors and textures.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thank you, Lori!

  2. tennisluv 02/27/2017

    Beth, your succulent containers are all very pretty. I especially like your long lived combination in the sea blue/green bowl (love that stained glass window) and the oleo of colors and textures in the lime green bowl. I am not a fan of succulents, but they are beginning to grow on me. Living in GA, I can garden outside most of the year, so my inside planting is limited to ferns and orchids.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thanks, Sonya. It took me a while to enjoy succulents as well. As far as plants go, they are so "trendy."

  3. User avater
    meander1 (Michaele ) 02/27/2017

    Your succulent combinations all look very happy to be snuggled up indoors with you for their winter vacation. The compatibility of the "occupants" of your lime colored bowl are especially appealing. I really liked your way of describing the difference between indoor and outdoor gardening...made me smile. You mentioned having large containers for outdoors...do they stay in place all year long or do you have a garage location you lug them to? For the past couple of years, I have been transitioning to containers that I feel will survive freeze/thaw cycles and so far so good...it does make life easier

    1. Sheila_Schultz 02/27/2017

      Michaele...have you tried any of the Campania pots? Most of their containers are freeze/frost proof, so no need to haul them inside for the winter which is good because when filled with soil they are darn heavy! They have all different styles ranging from contemporary to ornate, but I'm particularly fond of their glazed ceramic pieces, they can make a major statement! We've used them a lot for our clients and if they can hold up to CO winters for years and years they can hold up anywhere!

      1. User avater
        meander1 (Michaele ) 02/27/2017

        I think it was thanks to you, Sheila, over the past two years here on gpod that the Campania line of pots got on my radar screen. I have treated myself to several and it is so nice not to have strategize about bringing them in to the garage for winter protection. And, trust me, Darwin so appreciates not being called on to act as my muscle!

        1. Sheila_Schultz 02/27/2017

          Jim feels the same way!!! Have I ever told you about the 'tool' we use when the larger pots do need to be moved? It's called a Pot-Lifter and it's awesome. It has adjustable straps that go around the pot and has a handle on either side. It's a 2 person lifter, and it works like a dream! It can carry a pot that is no more than 36" in dia. and 200 lbs. I think. It's about $30 and worth every penny!

    2. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      I lug the bigger pots upstairs to the sunniest room in the house. I think the garage would get too cold, and they wouldn't have enough light. Usually I just try to keep them alive in the winter but this year they are holding there own.

  4. User avater
    treasuresmom 02/27/2017

    What a neat idea!

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017


  5. User avater
    HelloFromMD 02/27/2017

    Hi Beth, love the unusual oblong container on your table. You are very neat. I plan at my desk for upcoming season and i have multiple piles! Your dream spot is spare and lovely with the container. Is your house really sunny? I thought succulents were sun loving.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thank you. My spot gets the most sun and most of the succulents live in that room in the winter. I'll move them to different spots when I'm entertaining or on the weekends so I can enjoy them in other rooms.

  6. Chris N 02/27/2017

    Your succulents look very happy and your understated decor really sets them off.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thank you, Chris!

  7. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/27/2017

    Good morning, Beth. Those are great indoor succulents, containers and your home looks so warm and inviting. Being in Columbus myself, I wind up populating my new-ish IG account with the few indoor plants I have and also plants that overwinter in various parts of the house. This year is quite freakish, though, and there are plenty of things green, growing -and even blooming - outdoors now. Like MIchaela, I've been experimenting with Campania frost-resistant containers outdoors. My earliest container fared fine during the brutal winter we had a couple of years ago.
    Now you'll need to share your outdoor garden. I can't remember if you've done that before.

    1. Sheila_Schultz 02/27/2017

      Hey Tim... I see more Campania containers in your future. Some of mine have weathered CO winters for 11 years and are still without a crack or crackle! They are well worth the bucks.

      1. User avater
        Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/27/2017

        I just scored an enormous Campania frost-resistant container for 75% off, from our local nursery selling off last year's stock!

        1. User avater
          meander1 (Michaele ) 02/27/2017

          Oh, huge hubba hubba response...what a great looking container. My absolute favorite colors. I think I have a slightly wider but shorter one of this Campania line and it counted as a anniversary gift last year...because it wasn't on sale. What an awesome score for you, Tim!

        2. Sheila_Schultz 02/27/2017

          Awesome, it's a great color to work with! I have a taller one in a similar color...I love it with dichondra and/or Seafoam Artemesia! You're going to have fun with that big boy!!!

        3. Schatzi 02/27/2017

          Tim, I am so jealous! What a beautiful pot and great price! You did good!

          1. User avater
            Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/27/2017

            i owe it all to a friend who alerted me to the sale and, being completely irresponsible, I got there as fast as I could! :)

    2. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Hi Tim! I did share my garden a few summers ago when it was new. I will share again later this summer. This weather has been very confusing!

      1. User avater
        Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 02/27/2017

        I had an inkling you had shared. Brick home; round grassy lawn with lovely perennial beds? Here's to an early spring with no late super-freeze!

        1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

          Great memory!

  8. VikkiVA 02/27/2017

    Oh Beth, love, love your succulents! I grow many in containers outside and have only recently tried a few transplants indoors. Thanks for the Instagram challenge idea and thanks for sharing your in home garden. Vikki in VA

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Glad you enjoyed it, Vikki!

  9. Sheila_Schultz 02/27/2017

    Beth, don't you just love the sea green colored containers with your succulents? Like you, my outdoor container gardens are large, but inside the smaller pieces are so much fun and way more flexible. I'm loving the amazing selection of unique, little pots available these days, they are so much fun! Like Tim, I'm eager to see your outdoor container gardens... hint, hint!

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thanks, Sheila. I'll share again this summer.

  10. GrannyCC 02/27/2017

    I love the soft colours of the succulents and their containers. I tend to overwinter mine in my greenhouse here on the West Coast. Maybe next year I will try some in the house. Do you keep your house cool or can they survive in the warmer environment?

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      My house is 115 year old so it can be pretty drafty. I just keep a spray bottle near and mist them every once in a while.

  11. User avater
    meander1 (Michaele ) 02/27/2017

    Hi, Beth, popping back on here to say that I just spent some time scrolling your pics on Instagram. You put together beautiful bouquets...very inspiring.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thank you! I can't wait to make bouquets again. I follow a few gardeners in Australia and I'm so jealous of their current blooms.

  12. Annek 02/27/2017

    Your post did a good job of encouraging me to sign up for instagram. Your photos are lovely, intriguing, charming bursts of color and design. I particularly like that your scenes look fresh and inviting, not staged.

    I had similar feelings about succulents a few years ago and then the succulent aficionados of GPOD turned my mind around (thanks Mikey, Cherry, Jeff and others). Now they are some of my favorites and fill shelves in my small greenhouse.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      That's great, Annek. I like that you can make friends on Instragram with gardeners all over the world.

  13. Schatzi 02/27/2017

    Beautiful, Beth. I too love succulents and there are so many to choose from! Love your light blue walls - so calming and a great background for plants and everything else. Thanks for sharing.

    1. user-7008377 02/27/2017

      Thanks, Shirley. This is my second house where every wall is painted "Cay" by Sherwin Williams. Stick with what you love.

  14. user-7008377 02/27/2017

    Thanks, Diane.

  15. swindiana 02/28/2017

    Great idea, hones your camera and gardening skills!

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