Ruth has some tips for you, i.e. They Get Questions
Ruth Bancroft is very good at answering questions.
But first they publish a photo from the gardens.
Prickly pear, Opuntia ficus-indica, is tree-like. Becky Rice/Ruth Bancroft Garden
Q: I have an assortment of planters on my deck, mostly planted with succulents. Their interesting forms and delightful colors have long been a source of pleasure for me and my visitors. In the last year or two, I have noticed that many of them seem to be in decline, with shrinking heads of leaves and less flowering. What might the problem be?
A: First off, people often plant Aeoniums… and are alarmed when the leaf-heads become markedly smaller and stop growing in summer. Since this is a winter-growing plant, summer shrinkage is normal…
Aside from this, it is not uncommon for planter boxes and dish planters to decline over time if the planting medium is not renewed.