Arboretum holds Dried Flower and Succulent Wreath Sale on November 20 and 21

Wonderful holiday decorations and gifts will be available from the UCSC Arboretum at the annual Dried Flower and Succulent Wreath Sale on Saturday and Sunday, November 20 and 21. Exotic dried flower arrangements, living succulent wreaths, rare and unusual succulent plants, and materials for making your own gifts are among the offerings at this popular annual sale.

Sale hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday. The sale will be held at the Horticulture Building in the Arboretum, located on High Street (Empire Grade) between the two entrances to the UCSC campus.

Beautiful dish gardens planted in individually crafted hypertufa pots are the newest items in this year's sale. Volunteers made and decorated the unique, lightweight, well-drained pots with shells and designs and then planted them up with colorful succulents. The spiral aloe will return to the sale this year, as well as some tillandsias (bromeliads sometimes called "airplants") and sarracenias (pitcher plants).

As usual, there will be dried flower wreaths with exotic or traditional materials to suit different tastes. Living wreaths planted with succulents tend to last for three years if kept away from the brightest sun, and some wreaths last much longer than that. Placing a dry or succulent wreath near a doorway is a welcoming sign for a Thanksgiving celebration. Other dried arrangements make lovely indoor decorations for the harvest season and beyond.

The Aloe polyphylla are cold-hardy members of the aloe group that survive just fine in the snow on Mt. Hamilton. They are native to the Drakensberg area of southern Africa in areas where there is often some moisture flowing over the edges of cliffs where they live.

The sale is almost entirely a volunteer effort to help the Arboretum's education, conservation, research, and horticulture programs. Most of the profits go directly to fund students working their way through college while learning about horticulture at the Arboretum. Funds also pay for training UCSC interns.

Plants at the gift shop will be 25 percent off for the weekend, and visitors can get a jump on other holiday shopping at Norrie's Gift Shop at the Arboretum.

The UCSC Arboretum is open to visitors from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. Norrie's Gifts is open every day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Jean and Bill Lane Horticultural Library is open Wednesday through Sunday from 12 to 3 p.m. For more information, call (831) 427-2998. For more calendar items visit