Nature walks along the coast are always a brilliant idea. Particularly when you are on Vancouver Island; an area roughly the size of the state of Hawaii, that is barely populated at all. Which means… soo much land to explore! And much like a young Gerald Durrell*, who delighted in exploring Corfu and learning about new animals…. I really enjoyed a recent day trip to East Sooke Park; where I discovered a beautiful species of succulent, the Broadleaf Stonecrop!
The Location – East Sooke Park:
This regional park is located past Metchosin, towards the SW of Victoria, B.C. and is roughly a 45 mins drive from the city.
The Coast Trail hugs the rugged cliffs, and offers beautiful views of the Straight of Juan de Fuca, and the majestic Olympic Peninsula (USA) across the straight. Quite spectacular!
What captivated me most however was this super cute succulent I kept seeing along the way. It was everywhere. Clinging to the coastal rocks and abundant in various cracks and crevices. So I took a sample and carefully gave it a new home in my SW facing, super-sunny corner of my living room.
The succulent is native to western North America (from BC to California) and I am besotted with it!
Honestly – this is probably the first time I have ever really seen and appreciated succulents that are native to British Columbia. I just don’t associate British Columbia with succulents, but rather with huge Douglas Fir, Sitka and Red Cedar trees.
Stonecrop Succulent – An Indoor Experiment:
So… inspired by the three-tiered succulent pots as seen in my in-laws garden, I’m attempting to start my own little succulent garden.
Phase 1 involved setting up my new Broadleaf Stonecrop in a shallow dish with some soil (that it was still clinging to) and some rocks.
Caring for it has been relatively easy so far. I’m adding a few drops of water everyone once in a while, always allowing the soil to look more on the dry side than damp. My Bougainvillea, featured top right, is also drought resistant so I’m going easy on watering that one as well.
Here’s hoping they both thrive in that SW corner. I’ve already moved a few ‘light sensitive’ plants away from that particular area in recent month. They (a Weeping Fig and a Pothos) got super stressed out and starting loosing a crazy amount of leaves… but are much happier in their new locations.
Caring for plants sure is a constant learning experience!
(*) One of my favourite books from High School was ‘My Family & Other Animals’ by Gerald Durrell.