Are you in search of a fall centerpiece for the thanksgiving table, a unique gift, or simply just a fun project to make? Try a succulent topped pumpkin!
I absolutely love succulents and I look forward to every year when Fall comes around because that means pumpkins are for sale everywhere, which means time to make succulent topped pumpkins!
This year I am even growing my own pumpkins in my garden specifically for topping with succulents!
This past October, I had a booth at our local Fall Festival, where I sold all homemade succulent arrangements. And while I loved all of my arrangements, the succulent pumpkins were by far my biggest seller!
I was amazed with how many I sold, and I was so happy to see everybody’s interest in them!
So if you’ve never made your own pumpkin topped with succulents, read below to see how!
How to Make a Succulent Topped Pumpkin
Choose any size and colored pumpkin that you would like to use.
I prefer to use pumpkins with a flat top because they are easier to work with, but you can definitely add succulents to any size or shape of pumpkin that you desire.
Use a hot glue gun and glue moss right on top of the pumpkin. Don’t carve the pumpkin, just add moss right on top.
The only thing you will need to do to the pumpkin is cut off the stem if it is too long.
You can use any moss that you prefer, but I really like Super Moss Mountain Moss. I’ve used other types of moss, but this moss looks the most realistic to me. It is also easier to fluff, which makes it easier to work with.
As you hot glue on the moss, do it in sections because the hot glue dries fast.
So first, I get a portion of moss fluffed and ready to stick onto the pumpkin, then I drizzle hot glue onto a section of the pumpkin, then quickly stick on the moss and hold it down until the hot glue is dry.
Continue that process until the entire top of the pumpkin is covered with moss.
Pick out a variety of succulents that you want to add to the pumpkin.
For a large pumpkin I will usually use 1-2 large succulents, 3-4 medium/small succulents, and 5 small succulents or trailing succulents for filler.
For a small pumpkin, I use 1-2 large or medium succulents, and 2-3 small succulents.
Then use gardening shears or scissors to cut off all of the succulent stems, leaving only about 1/4 of an inch to be able to hot glue into the moss.
On a large pumpkin, begin in the center of the pumpkin with your largest succulent, placing a dab of hot glue onto the stem and then sticking it into the moss. Then hold it in place until the glue is dry.
Then continue gluing your largest succulents into the moss working your way from the center to the outside edges, using your larger succulents first and working your way down to the smaller or trailing succulents.
For a small pumpkin, I usually place my larger succulent just offset from the center as the focal point, then add my 2-3 smaller succulents to the side.
Check to see if there are any spots where the hot glue shows. If there is, take small portions of stretched out moss and place it over the glue to hide it.
Then your succulent pumpkin is complete!
Succulent Pumpkin Care
Place the succulent pumpkin anywhere you would like. Although, they will do best in a shady covered area that gets partial sun. Or inside where they can receive some filtered light and be out of the weather.
If you buy a healthy pumpkin, the entire arrangement should last at least 2-3 months. Typically the succulents will start growing roots into the moss and will need very little to no water at all.
Each week check the succulents and if one looks like it is beginning to wilt then lightly spritz the roots with water.
I have had succulent topped pumpkins last over 6 months! Although, it depends on the hardiness of the pumpkin, but you’ll likely have a long lasting arrangement!
What to Do When the Pumpkin Gets Soft
As the pumpkin begins to get soft it is time to take the succulents off and plant them.
This is one of the extra benefits of succulent topped pumpkins. For months you will have a beautiful pumpkin centerpiece, but then you get to plant the succulents and watch them grow!
There are a few ways to go about planting the succulents. You can carefully remove the succulents from the moss and place them in their own pot filled with a good quality succulent soil.
Or you can take off the entire piece of moss with all of the succulents attached and place the entire thing in a pot filled with succulent soil.
The succulents should all have grown roots into the moss of the pumpkin. This means they should continue to grow well in the pot when you plant them.
Every now and then a succulent will not root and may not grow. So after about a month or so, if the succulents have not rooted in the pot then just pull them out.
Once you plant the succulents, do not water them for at least a few days.
When succulents are transplanted their roots get disturbed and they need to callous over before getting water. This prevents the roots from rotting.
Also note that most succulents cannot tolerate frost, full sun, or too much water.
So be sure to keep them out of full sun and in a place where they won’t be damaged by frost. Then only water once every 1-2 weeks.
Have fun creating your succulent topped pumpkins! Remember there is no perfect way. It’s all about being creative and having fun!
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