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The X-Succulents

Intergeneric hybrids: all crossed up and completely beautiful

Succulent fanatics enjoy more choices than ever before, with new plants popping up seemingly every day. Amazingly, there are nearly 20,000 varieties of succulents on this planet. Many of our fleshy friends available in nurseries and garden centers were introduced into the marketplace during the last few decades.

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Agaves rule!

 Here are fifteen images that prove our point

We’re fans of virtually all succulents, and are loathe to pick favorites, but there are agaves, those New World swordsmen, that tempt us to pick sides. We’re also fortunate here at Altman in that we at least get to lay eyes, if not always hands, on some non-garden-variety specimens…species that we enthusiasts cannot reliably find at our favorite nurseries or garden centers any and every weekend. That said …

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Chroma crazy: Variegated plants like catnip for succulent fanatics

We succulent geeks are absolute suckers for color, color combos, and colorful oddities.

Leaves with streaks, splotches, mottled patterns of various hues. Whether it’s naturally occurring, encouraged through cultivation, or brought about by seasonal or environmental influences, variegated foliage is like catnip for collectors and gardeners alike.

Consider the eye candy below a tease to a deeper exploration to come at a later date.

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Introducing fresh (made up) references for cultivar names…

…as well as reviewing (and riffing on) some genuine inspirations

One of the neatest parts about becoming a parent is getting to name another human being. You can pretty much seal your child’s fate with a shrewdly befitting (or not especially beneficial) name. We might be overselling that power a bit, true, but plant breeders bear a similar responsibility when naming the cultivated varieties they create.

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Aloes: striking exteriors, soothing interiors

Aloe vera. In one moment, this treasured, toothed succulent can claim a piece of your skin. In the next, after suffering something far greater, even if it’s “just a flesh wound” (in Monty Python terms), the aloe can be used to soothe your little owie. How many other plants can do that? (We’ll wait here for an answer before continuing. Or not.)

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