Ask the Horticulturist

Do You Have a Question About Plants? Ask Here!

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As a Certified Horticulturist and the owner of my own Sedum and Succulent Nursery, I have a lot of experience in growing plants, sometimes successfully, other times not so much.


Just because I have training, and many years of running nurseries it doesn't mean that I know everything about plants.

The field of horticulture is one that has endless opportunities to test your skills. The learning is never over...

With a lot of failures under my belt, I'm eminently qualified to attempt to steer your horticultural endeavors in the right direction.

Someone once told me, until you've killed off at least a couple of hundred plants, you'll never be a gardener.

I must be a master gardener by now; the death toll is huge and growing.

Luckily, even dead plants can still be useful; not only do they teach you how to deal with disappointment, they make good compost too.

Part of successfully growing plants is learning from your mistakes, and believe me, I've made plenty.

Yes, I am a Certified Horticulturist!

If you have burning questions like;

Why is my succulent dying?

How long will an Echeveria live?

or;

What's the best kind of fertilizer for my houseplants?

Check here to see if your question is covered below; use a descriptive phrase for your problem:

The Horticulturist is out of the office; use the handy dandy search box to try and find a similar question that I've already answered; best of luck with your plants!  If your question requires priority, I've also got a pay per question system...

To help me help you...

Please give me some background information, such as your planting zone (if you know it), your geographic location, and where you're growing your plant (indoors or outside).

More detail is better than not enough, to help with diagnosing a problem so I can give you the most relevant answer to your horticultural question.

Please don't ask me to identify your plant on this page, it's for questions about the care and growing of succulents.

For really detailed answers to your plant or garden question, click here to pay for my valuable advice.

See other Horticultural Questions Answered below

Check the questions from other visitors; yours may already be answered...

Repot or not? 
I bought a group of Lithops from a Dutch garden centre last week hoping to be able to transplant them into a large shallow pot along with various other …

Succulents not looking as good 
I got these succulents for my birthday from a friend and since December they have been doing very well. But recently they have started to not look …

Beheading successful...now what? 
Hi Jacki, I cut the head off my echeveria (I think that's what it is, had very long stems with lovely yellow blooms) which had bloomed nicely but turned …

Wrinkly leaves 
I am pretty sure I have a Aeonium kiwi. I had baby plants growing from the stem and gently pulled them off. I let them dry and then planted them. …

Help! Dying because i dont know how to save ! 
Brought at the local hard ware from the indoor plant section and have lost the i/d label and cannot remember name or care instructions hence the plant …

Mahic Bells plant 
I was given a cutting of a Magic Bells and was told it is soooo easy to grow. No instructions on how to root it came with it, it was in water and is …

European fan palm 
I've had this European fan Palm tree for over four years. Within the last 4-6 months the bottom leaves have been dying off. I still have new growth …

Egyptian Onions 
As you are into succulents, I have been growing some "pregnant onions" from an old plant my sister was given many years ago. I think they are beautiful. …

Grafting 
Does a grafted branch produce the fruit of the tree it is grafted into?

Large container garden getting drenched in Northern California 
Hi Jacki, Thanks for this great site. I live 30 miles south of San Francisco and have hundreds of succulents in containers on my patio. We are getting …

Odd white coloring 
Hello, I was wondering why my succulent has this odd white color on it. It didn't when I first got it. Normally it would sit in sunlight in my window, …

Falling over! 
Long, smooth leaves. Plant is falling over and I'm scared it's going to break. Already moved it to a bigger pot.

Graptoveria leaves bruising and empty of water!  
Hello! I'm very new to succulent care. I started growing my graptoveria last June. It was just a tiny thing , and now I think it might need its own pot! …

Flapjack plant about to bloom? 
Dear Jacki, Thank you very much for your super fast reply regarding the drooping of the lowest leaves of my flapjack. Hovewer, what I learned left …

Lower leaves of flapjack plant drooping 
Dear Jacki, I got a gorgeous Kalanchoe thyrsiflora plant from a friend of mine two weeks ago. I live in Budapest, Hungary, the plant lives in front …

Dwarf Alberta Spruce 
I live in Nebraska, Zone 5a and I am wondering if I plant a Darwf Alberta Spruce on the east side of my house, about 3.5 feet from the house with it being …

Unknown succulent with sunburn? 
This succulent has been in a bowl (with no drainage) with 3 other succulents. I've been modestly watering them when the soil gets dry, however, I was …

research 
Hi, I am a college student doing an assignment on horticulture. I was hoping you could answer a few questions. Thank you in advance. • What advice would …

Outdoor succulents 
I have a large bowl planted with various succulents…most have sent up long shoots over a foot in length - are you supposed the cut these shoots back? …

Mystery succulent growing quickly and dying at the same time 
Hi! I got this succulent for my birthday in early July and I really love it. It was from a small garden shop and didn't come with a label to identify …

Echeveria plant gone wild 
I have an echeveria plant (not sure specifically what kind) with a insanely tall flower or growth -not sure which. The growth is 14" tall! The flower …

Drying Succulents for Shipping 
I have a question about drying succulents for shipping. I understand the packaging, using a few layers of newspapers, and also using the heavy boxes …

Wondering what specific Echeverias these are. 
I've been searching through very many online databases to find specific names for each of these Echeverias but as a very un-educated "apartment horticulturist" …

Shedding Tree 
I have a tree that is shedding (not sure what kind of tree), it also has holes in its leaves as well as spiky-like balls hanging from it? Not sure if …

Splitting up a Jade Plant 
My friend recently gave me a little jade plant. It has 3-4 different stems and is about 4" or so tall, lots of leaves, and seems very crowded. I wanted …

How do you ship your succulents? 
I am thinking of starting a succulents business as I have been propagating them for years. How do you ship them? Do you ever ship arrangements in pots? …

Questions Concerning Grafting 
I would appreciate your expertise in answering some questions concerning grafting. I think that I erroneously believed that if you graft a branch from …

Pinching Evergreen Clematis 
Hello, I'm in the process of trying to grow back a few evergreen clematis vines after a hard pruning (it was top heavy & becoming a tangled mess). …

Ask the Horticulturist Archives 
I had a Maternity plant and tried to cover it because we were going to have a freeze. It was 5' tall and broke off to 4'. Is there any way to replant …

What is the difference between Sedum and Sempervivum? 
I've seen so much about sedum and sempervivum on blogs and everywhere lately - I'm very confused about the difference between them. Can you enlighten …


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