How to make an easy fall centerpiece with succulents and pumpkins
I have to admit, I have been on board the succulent obsession lately. Earlier this summer I got myself a starter batch of 5 or so succulent varieties and before I repotted them, I already got started on harvesting their plump little appendages to propagate new plants. It's incredibly fascinating how quickly each piece would sprout little roots and soon begin a whole new plant. I've been itching to put my toddler plants together into a new setting and when I ran into teeny tiny miniature pumpkins at the grocery store, how could I pass up the opportunity?!?!! The steps are super easy, after all... I did it, right?!
Step One: Remove the stem & insides of your pumpkin
Be careful when you do this, as these pumpkins and gourds have thick skin and you don't want an injury over it. At any rate, I managed to successfully remove the stem and I used a serrated grapefruit spoon to scoop out the insides. That was working pretty well, but there were some areas on each far side that I couldn't quite reach, so I then grabbed a fork and was able to scrape them out.
Side note: It does help to pick a pumpkin that seems to have a deeper dip where the stem goes in because that groove creates a perfect nest for your little succulent babies to be planted.
Step Two: Fill the pumpin or gourd with succulent and cacti potting soil
Use Succulent & Cactus Potting Mix to give the plants proper nutrition and balanced moisture retention.
I had to use this mini dessert spoon. I actually saved it just for these miniature planting scenarios with my succulent babies.
Step Three: Plant your succulent babies!
Now's the time to plant your little succulents! I ended up using 5 or 6 very small succulent infant/toddlers in this one small pumpkin. You could also just plant one larger succulent in here. I think it would be neat to have a series of fall gourds and have one succulent planted in each one. Maybe I will do that! ;-) We'll see.
Questions about planting succulents inside a pumpkin:
How long will it last? I have no idea :-p This is the first time I have done it!
Won't the pumpkin go bad and ruin the plants? The pumpkin will go bad, but I hope that it will not ruin the plants before it goes bad. Since this is my first try with this, I don't have any wisdom. But I imagine that it should be fine since I would only be keeping this for the fall season and then replanting the succulents after that. Granted, you could always take them out at any given time if you are concerned.
Can I try this in a large pumpkin? Sure, why not?! Actually, if the pumpkin is large enough and the stem creates a deep enough valley, you may be able to remove the stem without cutting into and hollowing the actual pumpkin! In this case you can put your soil in that valley on the top of the pumpkin and just plant the succulents on top instead of into the pumpkin! This may last longer? I have no idea!
How do I water it? Carefully. You're working with a small area and a small amount of soil, and succulents which don't need an abundance of water at one time. That means water very minimally. If the water pulls inside or on top of the pumpkin then the pumpkin will rot faster and the succulents can also rot. I personally am using a spray bottle for more controlled watering.
Any other questions, let me know below! *If* I have any insight I will let you know! :)
(PS Sorry for the excess dirt on the pumpkin. I was so excited to take the picture that I didn't brush it off. Clumsy..)