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.

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.

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

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!



  1. Marcia Bunnell August 13, 2016 at 10:55 am

    I love your garden, absolutely gorgeous. Thank you for sharing. I also love that you are so knowledgeable on succulents and share it with all of us. Thank you again.

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 3:43 pm

      Thank you! I just wish it were my own. I’m so lucky to get to visit a lot of amazing gardens though!

  2. Maria Legg August 13, 2016 at 11:12 pm

    Totally awesome, thank you for all your information,guidance and hard work –

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 3:47 pm

      Thank you!

  3. Patty August 14, 2016 at 3:09 pm

    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.

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 3:48 pm

      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!

  4. Jon August 15, 2016 at 6:46 am

    Stating to be succulent addict soon

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 3:49 pm

      It doesn’t take much to start the addiction :)

  5. Renee August 17, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    Beautiful! How does she keep mealy bugs away. I have a growing succulent garden and Im seeing these little buggers a lot.

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 4:06 pm

      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.

  6. Carianne Kulwicki August 18, 2016 at 6:39 am

    Oh my goodness, it’s absolutely stunning. There’s some serious garden envy, right now.

    • Cassidy Tuttle August 18, 2016 at 4:19 pm

      Isn’t it amazing? Some day…

  7. Jeanne Reid March 20, 2017 at 12:43 am

    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.

    • Cassidy Tuttle March 20, 2017 at 12:53 pm

      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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