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The art of growing art: succulents in frames are making a comeback. here's how to make your own.

Plant a living picture

Build the frame assembly yourself or purchase one. We got ours from Robin Stockwell's Succulent Gardens in Castroville, California (sgplants.com or 831/632-0482).

Cost from $35 for a 6- by 12-inch frame

GATHER CUTTINGS from succulents you already have growing in your garden by breaking the small "pups" from the mother plants (the stems should be at least 1/4 inch long). Set the cuttings aside in a cool area for a few days to allow their stem ends to dry and callus over. (You'll want about 60 for a 6-by 12-inch frame.)

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SET THE FRAME mesh side up on a flat surface; fill it with moist cactus mix, working the mix through the mesh with your fingers.

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POKE THE CUTTINGS'

stem ends through the mesh and into the soil. Leave the frame lying flat in a cool, bright location while plants take root, about 7 to 10 days after planting, then begin watering. Once plants are securely rooted--this takes between 4 and 12 weeks--display the frames upright in an area that gets morning or filtered sun; water every 7 to 10 days.

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Shot-cut

Don't have any succulents growing in your garden?

Buy a kit that includes a frame assembly, cactus mix, and succulent cuttings (from $65 for 6 by 12 inches; sgplants.com or 831/632-0482). Completed succulent "paintings" are also available (from $95 for 6 by 12 inches).

PHOTOGRAPHS BY THOMAS J. STORY

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Title Annotation:How to
Author:Chai, Julie
Publication:Sunset
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2010
Words:246
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