Leo Chance sent in these photos of some of his incredible work with cold-hardy succulents. These beautiful plants look like nothing else in the garden, and they have become incredibly popular in recent years. However, many people think you have to live in a warm climate to enjoy succulent plants. Not so! Leo gardens in chilly Colorado, yet these beautiful plants are thriving. In dry climates, plantings like these are a no-brainer. They can be a little more difficult to establish in wetter climates in the East, but many of these plants will thrive in a wide range of places as long as they are given excellent drainage.
Here’s what Leo had to say about these photos:
The photos that I sent were partly taken in my garden in Colorado Springs and in gardens that I designed and planted in Pueblo, Colorado. The ruschia and the titanopsis were in my garden.
I have been creating gardens for about 10 years for others, and the gardens in Pueblo were for clients. I started my own garden in 1976, mostly as a challenge. It was considered foolish to try to establish a succulent garden in this climate at the time. I have worked with Mesa Garden in New Mexico and the Denver Botanic Gardens for years to find new species that are cold hardy. I have tested hundreds of species for hardiness in the last 25 years.
Echinocereus triglochidiatus (claret cup cactus, Zones 5–9) flowering.
Agave parryi (Parry’s agave, Zones 5–10), with cacti and Yucca thompsoniana (Thompson’s yucca, Zones 5–10).
Ruschia pulvinaris (shrubby ice plant, Zones 6–10) in bloom.
Titanopsis calcarea (Zones 6–10) in bloom.
An Echinocereus hybrid with wildflowers. Read more about cold-hardy succulents here.
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