As I write this, I am vacationing in Sante Fe. While I drove across Texas and Oklahoma yesterday, I was reminded that a large portion of the country is in the grips of a drought. (one tends to lose sight of this when the local lake is above flood stage from the torrential spring rains we’ve experienced where I live.)
In rain-scarce areas like the desert, plants have special adaptations to cope with infrequent rains. Succulent plants have thick, waxy leaves that do not loose moisture through transpiration and deep tap roots that they use to reach deep down into the dirt and absorb water.
Plants like these are good choices for low maintenance, low container gardens.
You should place your plants in a potting soil that has a high aggregate content and good drainage. Desert plants that are put into poor drainage soil will develop root rot.
A word about succulents: these types of plants can come from many types of areas from desert to savannah. Because of this, their care can vary. Not all types of succulent plants will grow well under intense light. if your plant appears yellowed and drawn, this may be a sign that it is receiving too much sun. Plants that receive too little light may grow toward the light source.
Succulents also may need more water than you think. Many succulents have an active growing season that coincides with a desert’s rainy season. during a succulent’s active grwing season, you will need to give the plant regular water and a balanced fertilizer.
After purchasing a succulent, learn everything that you can about the care of that plant. In addition to books and Internet resources, your local succulent club can tell you a lot about your plant.