Inspiring Colorful California Succulent Garden

See some stunning photos of a colorful succulent garden in California. Water efficient gardens can be really beautiful!

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One of my favorite things about being a succulent addict, is meeting other succulent lovers and seeing their gardens and arrangements. It’s so interesting to see how everyone arranges the same plants, or what succulents they choose to work with.

I’ve had the privilege to visit the garden of Jeanne Meadow twice since I discovered the world of succulents. You can see images from my first trip to her garden here and here. She has a incredible collection of succulents in all shapes, sizes, colors and textures. It’s really succulent heaven.

Stunning images of Jeanne Meadow's garden filled with thousands of succulents
Agave ‘Joe Hoaks’, Portulacaria afra variegata, Sedum burrito, Sedum adolphi, Crassula rupestris, Aeonium ‘Zwartkop’

On this most recent visit, I was surprised and delighted to see that quite a bit had changed. Just as before, everything was vibrant and full of color and very well maintained.

While walking through her garden I realized how many different color schemes were used to create interest and contrast. Some of the same plants were used in various places throughout the garden which helped unify the scene, but each little vignette had character of it’s own.

The poolside arrangements really caught my attention this time. I love the height of this urn with the Senecio radicans spilling over the edge down to the ground. The Madagascar Palm was so striking and provided great height and texture. The Panda Plants mimicked the top of the palm and helped finish off the arrangement.

Striking poolside succulent arrangement
Madagascar Palm, Kalanchoe tomentosa, Senecio radicans

I also loved this Agave ‘Joe Hoaks’. The pale green and yellow look lovely with the pool and surrounding succulents.

Incredible Agave attenuata variegata with tender Sedums and Portulacaria afra in a poolside succulent arrangement
Agave ‘Joe Hoaks’, Portulacaria afra variegata, Sedum burrito, Sedum adolphi, Crassula rupestris, Aeonium ‘Zwartkop’

This combination of Sedum adolphii, Sedum burrito, Portulacatia afra variegata and Crassula rupestris has such subtle changes in color, but the various shapes of the leaves make it so intriguing. I also love the tinges of orange that help your eye focus on the Sedum adolphii.

Sedum adolphii, Sedum burrito, portulacaria afra arrangement
Portulacaria afra variegata, Sedum burrito, Sedum adolphi, Crassula rupestris
Sedum adolphii, Sedum burrito, Crassula rupestris and Portulacaria afra in a brown pot
Portulacaria afra variegata, Sedum burrito, Sedum adolphi, Crassula rupestris

Another great arrangement was this combination of Aeonium ‘Zwartkop’ and Portulacaria afra. The yellows and greens really make the Zwartkop stand out. The contrast of the rosettes and the Portulacaria branches also strengthens the aesthetic of the arrangement.

Aeonium Zwartkop and Portulacaria afra variegata
Aeonium ‘Zwartkop’, Portulacaria afra variegata

I’m always a fan of contrasting colors when arranging with succulents, and this  Agave, Sedum burrito, and Kalanchoe luciae might just be my new favorite. I can’t believe how red the Flapjacks are and the way the light was hitting them while I was there blew me away.

Agave, Kalanchoe and Sedum burrito in a high contrast succulent arrangement
Sedum burrito, Kalanchoe luciae, Agave

This under the sea arrangement was also impressive! Look at the shape of that Cererus repandus monstrose! So unusual, and doesn’t it look like coral? The Aloes and Cotelydon in there also add to the underwater feel.

Under the sea arrangement featuring succulents
Cererus repandus monstrose, Aloes, Cotelydon

Color is everywhere and very vibrant in Jeanne’s garden. This Graptosedum ‘California Sunset’ was beautifully red-orange. I love how it stands out in front of the Stapelia and hints of Portulacaria afra.

This Graptosedum 'Alpen Glow' succulent has beautiful color and a striking contrast with the purple and green
Graptosedum ‘California Sunset’, Stapelia, Portulacaria afra

Colorful tender Sedums and Echeverias also line the walkways. It’s like an ocean of vibrant succulents everywhere you turn!

Colorful Sedums and Echeverias
A variety of tender Sedums and Echeverias

One of my favorite succulents (although, let’s be honest… I have a lot of favorites…) is Aloe brevifolia. Then if you pair it with a Ghost Plant… beautiful. I love the subtle pinks, peaches, purples and blues in these plants. Succulents really know how to show off!

Aloe brevifolia and Graptopetalum paraguayense succulents with stunning pinks and purples
Aloe brevifolia, Graptopetalum paraguayense

You can bet I saved the very best for last. Jeanne has a huge fountain in her backyard and it is overflowing with succulents. If you want to see the full fountain and what it looked like 3 years ago, check out my first post about her garden. My friend Katie Christensen is actually one of the people who helped revamp the fountain between then and now. I love the bright reds and oranges that were added in. So amazing!

This succulent fountain is so beautiful! I love all the colors and contrast!
Sedum nussbaumerianum, Sedum burrito, Graptosedum ‘California Sunset’, Graptosedum ‘Alpen Glow’, Crassula radicans, Echeveria
Such a gorgeous succulent filled fountain!
Sedum nussbaumerianum, Sedum burrito, Graptosedum ‘California Sunset’, Graptosedum ‘Alpen Glow’, Crassula radicans

If you don’t have serious succulent garden envy right now, you must have a pretty incredible garden yourself. We can always dream, right? I am so grateful Jeanne was kind enough to let me come back and photograph in her garden again! It was definitely a treat!

34 Responses to Inspiring Colorful California Succulent Garden

  1. Stunning!! I just purchased 5 plants to start a fairy garden. These plants fascinate me. It is hard to stay in budget choosing which plant I love each one and all.

    • So fun! I totally know what you mean about staying in budget… I have frequently gone a little crazy buying too many because I couldn’t say no!

    • Someone else had the same question! Mealybugs are obnoxious for sure. I’ve found that mealybugs tend to show up when my plants aren’t getting good airflow (either planted too close, growing indoors, etc.). If you can get rid of them before they spread too much that will help too. Check out this post for how to get rid of mealybugs. Regularly spraying a large garden with insecticidal soap will help too.

  2. I am in Perth Western Australia and desperately want to start a succulent garden. Problem I find is the varying change in temperatures, very hot, very humid, can get very cold too. If we are lucky we get rain too. Trouble is, as a beginner, I am not sure where to start my garden. I have purchased several plants as when I saw them I could not resist them. Can you advise me Cassidy please.

    • Changing weather is tricky for succulents, so I would suggest starting your succulent garden in your home. Take a look at this post and this post. These will give you great information on indoor succulents. I’m excited for you and you can do it. :)

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Wondering who I am?

Let me introduce myself... My name is Cassidy Tuttle and I’m a professional photographer turned succulent addict. These are my two sweet children and wonderful husband in the photo with me!

My adventure with succulents started with three small plants on the window sill of my basement apartment. Within a year I had propagated them and purchased more, totaling over 100 plants!

It’s been a fun adventure since then as I’ve drowned, burned, frozen, and starved my collection of succulents. This site is where I teach you how to avoid all those mistakes I made or help you recover from them.

While I’ve killed plenty of succulents in the last few years, I’ve also kept hundreds alive and thriving, and I know you can do the same!

Did I mention I wrote the book on succulents?

It’s true! I’m the author of Idiot’s Guides: Succulents which is designed to help those of us who love succulents (but are limited to growing on our window sills and porches) keep our succulents looking great.

You can purchase my book through my Amazon affiliate link here or pick it up at your local Barnes and Noble.

If printed books aren’t your thing, I’ve also written several ebooks about succulents on various topics including indoor growing, watering and propagating. You can check those out on this page.

My goal is to help you not just keep your succulents alive, but help them thrive no matter where you live.

Whew! That’s a lot of stuff!

I’m impressed you’ve made it this far down. You should probably be rewarded for that…

How about some bite sized succulent tips delivered daily to your inbox?

I’m sure you’ll love my 30 Days of Quick Succulent Tips email series. Each day I’ll send you a 2-3 sentence tip about growing succulents along with a photo and link to learn more.

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