How to Create a Succulent Tide Pool Garden

– Posted in: Garden Adventures

An article I scouted and wrote for  is in all regional editions of the September issue. (Most Southern CA garden articles appear in the Southern CA edition only.) One reason is Brett Gum’s gorgeous photography. These are my own photos here.

The location is a bluff-top home in the Orange County community of Corona del Mar. The designer is Joe Stead, a horticulture teacher at Orange Coast College. The amazing colors in the tide pool-themed garden resulted from a phenomenon called “stressing.” To learn more, see my YouTube video, “.

To celebrate the Sunset article, I’ve released a new 3-minute YouTube video:

All you need is a wide, shallow pot, coarse potting mix, rocks and perhaps some shells, succulents that look like undersea flora and fauna. A surprising number do, like Euphorbia flanaganii above.

This photo, which is labeled in the video, shows possible materials. Plants include tiger jaws (Faucaria tigrina), stacked crassulas, mosaic aloe, Euphorbia obesa, crested Euphorbia lactea and ‘Gollum’ jade.

If you make an undersea succulent garden, please let us know. Thanks for snorkeling by!

My goal is to share the beauty of waterwise, easy-care succulents in gardens, containers and landscapes via , , , , , , and social media ( and ). My books: , and .   


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Debra Lee Baldwin

Award-winning garden photojournalist Debra Lee Baldwin authored Designing with Succulents, Succulent Container Gardens, and Succulents Simplified, all Timber Press bestsellers. Her goal is to enhance others' enjoyment and awareness of waterwise plants and gardens by showcasing the beauty and design potential of succulents via books, articles, newsletters, photos, videos, social media and more. Debra and husband Jeff live in the foothills north of San Diego. She grew up in Southern California on an avocado ranch, speaks conversational Spanish, and at age 18 graduated magna cum laude from USIU with a degree in English Literature. Her hobbies include thrifting, birding and watercolor painting. Debra's YouTube channel has had over 3,000,000 views.
Debra Lee Baldwin
Debra Lee Baldwin
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