Yee-haw! Turn a container into a desert landscape by filling it with prickly cacti and other succulent plants.
Because they store water in their fleshy leaves, stems or roots, succulents, like cacti, can survive in harsh conditions such as deserts, scrublands and mountains. This project takes one hour to complete.
Sprinkle a thin layer of gravel into a seed tray. Most cacti have shallow roots, since they store water in their stems. Add 1–2 in (2–5 cm) of cactus potting mix, and make holes for the plants. Cover your cacti with clear plastic bottles or containers to keep them warm.
Beginning with the largest cactus, ease each plant gently out of its old container. Wear gloves and use tongs or wrap the cactus in newspaper, paper towels, or light cardboard.
Place the first cactus into its hole. Use the back of a spoon to press the soil down around its base. Transplant the rest of the plants in the same way.
Mist the soil or sprinkle it lightly with lukewarm water. Repeat after the potting mix has looked very dry for a few days.
Add details to give your landscape some Wild West flair. Create a track using sand or gravel, for example, and add model cowboys and Native Americans. Place the arrangement in a warm, partly shaded site.
Excerpted from Ready, Set, Grow! by DK Books