How I Spent my Winter Vacation
Bird Feeder and House Finch

During the recent rains here in Southern CA, I discovered that wild birds will find feeders I take down, even if it means hopping along my kitchen window sill. I figured, if they’re THAT eager and come that close, why not shoot them (with a camera, of course)? But birds eating seed from conventional feeders is a snore. Voila: My new hobby of creating feeders from visually appealing repurposed items, and making short videos of birds discovering them. Amazingly, one video (“Bra Bird Feeder”) went viral, with over 12 MILLION views on Facebook! (@Succulent Container Gardens) Enjoy them all on my Debra Lee Baldwin YouTube Channel, playlist “Debra’s Bird Feeders.”

My Garden in Midwinter

My garden is looking its best thanks to the rain, plus pops of seasonal color from aloe and cotyledon flowers. In this new video, “Debra Lee Baldwin’s Succulent Garden in Midwinter,” I take you on a tour of an area I’ve been perfecting for several years. If you’re familiar with it already, you’ll notice significant changes. Btw, if you enjoy this release and would like to see more, please leave a comment on its YouTube page. Now, c’mon down! 
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Debra Lee Baldwin at Succulent Gardens Nursery

Debra Lee Baldwin

Welcome! This site, as well as my three books on succulents, are dedicated to helping you grow and enjoy a wide variety of “plants that drink responsibly” in landscapes, gardens, containers and design projects. Jump right into information on succulents, check out the most frequently asked questions about succulents, or continue down the homepage. Enjoy, and thanks for visiting!


Which of my books is best for you?


Designing With Succulents by Debra Lee Baldwin

Designing With Succulents

“Baldwin hit the mark…Her easy to understand writing style is user friendly to the backyard gardener, yet the breadth of information is just as appealing to the expert. Baldwin should be commended for what might be the best succulent landscaping book written to date.” – Scripps Howard News Service

Succulent Container Gardens by Debra Lee Baldwin

Succulent Container Gardens

“…wows you with images and descriptions of creative designs and displays. Every aspect of cultivation from sun exposure to watering, repotting, soil choices, and selecting containers is presented in a writing style that is not only informative, but bubbles up from the page.” – Fine Gardening Magazine

Succulents Simplified by Debra Lee Baldwin

Succulents Simplified

“Whether you’re just starting out with succulents or looking to grow your collection, this book contains everything you need to know to grow them successfully — design ideas, seasonal care tips, quick projects, and a list of the top 100 easiest kinds, from bizarre to beautiful.” – Sunset Magazine

“The growing interest in succulents on the part of the gardening public can be attributed primarily to one person: Debra Lee Baldwin.”

– Australian nurseryman and author Attila Kaptitany, in his address to the biennial convention of the Cactus & Succulent Society of America.

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Why succulents? It’s as easy as 1 – 2 – 3!


Succulent Plants are for Everyone

Succulents are for Everyone!


1. The current drought in the state of California is at nothing short of an emergency level. Most succulents have very low water needs– some needing no water at all. An additional benefit, especially considering just how dry the general landscape of arid regions in California have become, many succulents are fire-resistant and fire-retardant.


2. Succulents are simple to cultivate, propagate, acquire, and maintain. One of my favorite concepts in working with succulents is that of benign neglect— often times the best strategy to keep your succulents looking beautiful is to remember to forget about tending to them. Overwatering is one of the easiest ways to prematurely end the life of your succulents!


3. The leaves and stems of succulents come in colors from the entire spectrum of the color wheel. They range in size from ground covers to trees and many have beautiful, geometric shapes. These attributes allow both garden enthusiasts and landscape design professionals to create dynamic, compelling and attractive arrangements in all shapes and sizes.


My goal is to share the beauty of waterwise, easy-care succulents in gardens, containers and landscapes via blog posts, newsletters, public speaking and workshops, photos, videos, merchandise, and social media. I am happy to champion the growing love of succulents.
Debra Lee Baldwin- Garden Photojournalist and Author