APRIL BOTANICAL PICK ME UP – SUCCULENT MANDALAS

Make a Succulent mandalaThe weeks are running away with me, but at last, I have found time to post my April ‘Botanical pick me up’ post! Today I have a joyful green project and some botanical-packed tea to keep you hydrated while you work. Instagram faves #botanicalpickmeupOver on Instagram I have been overwhelmed with all the leafy and floral happiness that everyone has tagged with #botanicalpickmeup thank you! Below are four of my favourites so far – clockwise from top left by – @fieldandnest, @lisaridgelyphotography, @haarkon_ and @still_______.Kusmi fruit tea infusion aqua rosaRight, on to this month’s botanical project – I saw this beautiful shallow porcelain bowl over at Rose and Grey and knew it would be perfect for a planty propagation project – succulent mandalas!! I have seen these popping up in my feed over on Pinterest and thought they were a beautiful way to arrange all my succulent leaves while I wait for some tiny roots to appear! Make a Succulent mandalaBefore you start – make some tea! I have been gulping down this beautiful Aqua Rosa fruit tea from Kusmi Tea all week. I have been known to go on a tea spree in their Paris store’s when I visit – mesmerised by all the beautiful tins, I always want every blend. So when they offered to send me their first pure fruit to try – I said er – yes please! Just opening up the tin I was engulfed by all its fruity joy – I will be making some spiked summer punch with it later in the year for sure. Hang on a minute – does it seem like I am always wanting to add alcohol to things to improve them? I hope not! Anyway, keep your eyes peeled for that recipe post sometime soon :)Make a Succulent mandalaNext – pluck some lower leaves from your favourite succulent plants, a couple of mine are leggy little mites so I can easily nip off the bottom leaves to make new plants. Gently wiggle a leaf back and forth and it should snap off in your fingers. Make sure you remove the whole leaf – if any remains on the stem it won’t make roots. Now is the time to stay calm and not get too excited, as we need to leave them in a bright but shaded spot on plate, tray or sheet of thick paper for 3-5 days to seal the open ends. Sigh. Make a Succulent mandalaOnce you can see the open ends have sealed over (to stop infection), they are ready to move. I filled my bowl with a base layer of grit as it has no drainage (but a seed tray won’t require that) and then topped with soil, I used a cactus and succulent mix as I always have a bag kicking around in the kitchen. Once that’s all smoothed over and even lay your sealed leaves on the top in any design you like.Kusmi fruit tea infusion aqua rosaDon’t forget to drink your tea – I always end up drinking mine cold. I keep thinking that once it is empty – that Kusmi tin will be perfect for keeping my gardening string and labels safe.Make a Succulent mandalaI have some Jade plant leaves in here too which will be placed in soil later with the widest part poking upwards – (I laid them down here to add to my pattern but once the ends are sealed I will poke them in soil filled pots).Make a Succulent mandalaI also kept the middle rosette from a damaged plant for the centre – as that will also grow new roots in a few weeks too! Your leaves will need to be watched and watered regularly. Just give them a good spritz with a mister and make sure you don’t soak the soil. Only water once the soil has completely dried from the last watering. In a few weeks you should hopefully have some roots and then some tiny rosettes appearing too!Make a Succulent mandalaIf any of your leaves dry out turn transparent or feel mushy – just pick them out and throw them away. Casualties are always sad but they probably won’t all survive. I already see a squishy one here that will need removing!Make a Succulent mandalaStand your bowl, plate or tray in a bright spot – out of direct sunlight and enjoy! I should be back with more green joy tomorrow (famous last words) as it is Urban Jungle Bloggers Day – new theme and new plants wahoo!! xMake a Succulent mandalaBoth the tea and Bowl shared here were very happily received gifts from my online friends at Kusmi Tea and Rose & Grey.

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