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We don’t get snow out here, but when our six-foot-tall jade plant — west-facing and located behind our garden pond — is in full flower, it happens to resemble an enormous snowball. We call her “mama jade” because her stem cuttings have been planted in...

Every weekend last summer, as we walked to and from the beach, we'd pass a south-facing succulent tour de force. But this hedge of Aloe arborescens (street name: torch aloe) didn't really get interesting until November. Welcome mats, schmelcome mats — by now you know that it's the welcome plants that...

Agave americana Common names: Century plant, maguey, American aloe Appearance: A jade crown in a dustbowl, hungry bats flitting past its teeth Occupation: Star of the long-running Wile E. Coyote Sculpture Hour Scent: A sugared buzzsaw with basenotes of musky sheriff. Zones: Throwing shade on your vegan pancakes outside Needles, CA History: Queen of the monocots,...