Caitlin Fitch

“Some cycads are easy to grow, some are hard, but no matter what, they’re time-consuming,” said Paul Mills while repotting a rare hybrid cycad, which he’s grown from seed in Lotusland’s nursery. “It can take up to one and a half years for one leaf. That’s why there’s already folks lined up to pay over $1,000 for this plant!” A 20-year veteran of Montecito’s most amazing garden, Mills is assistant curator at Lotusland, where his job is to research and keep meticulous notes on all the plants in the collection.

This cycad will be one of many items at the annual Exceptional Plants: Lotusland Auction and Sale, happening this Saturday, September 19, 1:30-5:30 p.m. Other plants that will be auctioned or sold include giant euphorbias, rare aloes, and hybrid plants that are completely unique to Lotusland. There will also be food, drinks, and, of course, the magical atmosphere. “This is one of the best events we have here at the garden because it’s solely focused on the plants,” explained Mills.

Paul Mills
Caitlin Fitch

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