2018 – Gateway to the Southwest

If St. Louis is the Gateway to the West, Don Krechel’s home in South County is the Gateway to the Southwest. Krechel, who constantly pursues the unusual or rare, has planted dozens of cold-hardy opuntias, agaves, echinocereus, ferocactus and gymnocalycium around his house. To fill in gaps and add color, he uses ground-hugging alyssum, sedums and sempervivums. And don’t forget the rocks themselves! Krechel prepared the beds with soil amendments and lots of digging to establish good drainage. The plants are covered by plastic sheets or tubs during cold, wet winters. Krechel also has a water garden and greenhouse holding still more plants.

Pictures by Pat Cosgrove