This striking plant is so useful in flower-gardening for various purposes, that there are few places now where more or less of it is not seen. Strictly speaking, it belongs to the class of fine or characteristic leaved plants. Its leaves are more valuable for ornament than its flowers; and to permit it to flower is equivalent to wasting its beauty, for the foliage quickly falls off in vigour and hue as the flower-stem elongates, and the whole plant becomes ungainly, and unfit for any ornamental position. Large plants on one stem, with finely-developed leaves, are beautiful objects in vases so placed as to be a little under the eye; and in higher positions they are striking in appearance when contrasted side by side with softer and more graceful objects. They are like bold castings in bronze, in their rigid symmetry and metallic hue. They are invaluable subjects wherever beds have to be filled that are overrun with roots of trees and shrubs, and probably overhung also by their arms. I know no plant that delights more than this in such circumstances. It picks up materials for luxuriant growth where the soil is almost dust-dry to the depth of a foot or more; and its leaves acquire the deepest bronze and the finest form and size where the roots appear to have the least encouragement.

This, in my opinion, constitutes its chief value for open-air gardening. It is hopeless to attempt flowering-plants in such circumstances, and yet it frequently happens that beds have to be filled in which flowering-plants cannot be expected to succeed. This and other succulent subjects should be employed in cases of this kind. The ground may be carpeted with the beautiful little annuals, Sedum caeruleum, S. dasyphyllum, and others easy to obtain and easy to keep, of similar dwarf close habit; and the Echeveria, if planted at free distances over the surface which these will form, will have a pleasing and interesting effect, a combination of soft colouring and striking form. I have observed, as doubtless many have, that the plants vary in character considerably from seed. They vary in the size and shape of the leaves, some being narrower, some broader, some crisped or wavy, and others quite smooth on the margin; and the depth of metallic tinge varies as much as anything. Whatever value these qualities may have, it can only be secured and perpetuated by means of cuttings. This mode of propagation is not often resorted to. It appears to be almost the uniform practice of all to rear what stock is wanted from seed.

It is much less troublesome to increase it by means of cuttings - no kind of plant is more easily struck. The treatment is simple, and the necessary appliances are common to the worst-appointed gardens. Leaves make the best cuttings - those formed of flowering-shoots are apt to spindle too much, and be leggy. The leaves of flower-shoots just begun to push are the best; they are quite large enough, and can generally be got in sufficient quantity without injury to the stock plants. The leaves should be pulled, not cut off, and no trimming of the base will be found either necessary or desirable. If any cut or wound is made on the leaf in any way, it had better be laid aside to dry for some time before being put in the soil - a few hours will do. Any good sandy soil will do for striking them in - they will root in anything. A cold frame to which air is continually admitted is the best place to strike them in, and they may be put in either pots or boxes; they receive less check, however, in being potted on from the former if they are small thumbs or sixties. Whether pots or boxes be used, it will be best to plunge them so as to do away with the necessity of watering till the roots are struck, after which they may be given water sparingly as they require.

Much water and a close atmosphere are conditions to be avoided by all means.

W. S.