This year has been difficult for gardeners, and I’ve experienced that firsthand.
I’ve just arrived back from a couple of weeks away, and my garden is scorched. It’s almost as if somebody has lit a match. I have brown and yellow leaves in every direction, and there’s more than a tinge of autumn. My summer bedding is long gone, a shadow of its former self.
I can’t just sit here with a garden that looks so, dare I say it… ugly… but, it’s still too early to think about planting bulbs, and it’s probably still too warm to plant pansies and autumn bedding. So what on earth can I do??
Well, this is where a brand-new idea comes in, with a plant that you may recognise, but not in the way that I’m going to show you…
The ”Garden Kalanchoe” series is here to save our scorched summer season. Not only is this a resilient, succulent plant that has the potential to flower for 100 days, but it is perfect for plugging those gaps in your garden RIGHT NOW!
I actually planted a few into pots before I went away, and they are among the few plants that are looking identical to how they looked when I left. This is because it’s a succulent, so it stores most of its own water, meaning you can certainly leave it unattended!
By replacing my faded and burnt out plants in borders and pots with Garden Kalanchoe, I can get that full-on summer vibe, and make sure September is full of colour, rather than crispy!!
These plants are officially billed as giving 100 days of flowers too, so just imagine what they could achieve in place of your usual Petunias with a usual June planting… what fantastic value! They may flower the same amount of time as the Petunias, BUT they won’t need a fraction of the water that Petunias do! With their watering needs almost minimal, they fit in very well with our previous theme of waterless plants, see that article here.
I see the Garden Kalanchoe series as the gardener’s best hack to extending the summer, and you heard it here first. Look out for them in garden centres, and find more information at kalanchoe.nl
Remember, these are also traditional houseplants, so you could even lift them afterwards and bring them indoors to extend that flowering season. They are not frost hardy, so make sure you get to them before Mr Frost does!
Michael has been involved with gardening and plants since he was just five years old. He is a self-professed Plant Geek, and was listed in the Sunday Times top 20 most influential people in the gardening world, thanks to his plant hunter role at Thompson & Morgan.
Michael was responsible for new plant introductions such as the Egg and Chips plant and the FuchsiaBerry and keeps busy travelling the world in search of new plants as well as lecturing worldwide, including stints in Japan. He is very active on social media – so why not give him a follow at @mr_plantgeek or Facebook – and writes a plant-focused Substack called Grow This, Not That.