Succulents are quickly becoming popular additions to many homes. Their cute and unique look is hard to resist for many people who love greenery in their house. Luckily, succulents are very easy to care for and to keep alive which makes them the ideal plant for even the worst plant keeper. However, no matter how easy they are to care for, before you bring a succulent home you may want to brush up on some simple, basic care methods for them.
1. Choose the Best Container
The best pot for a succulent is a terra cotta pot, which also happens to be an ideal container for beginning gardeners to work with. Terra cotta planters have a hole on the bottom for drainage. If you use a different style of pot, make sure it has a hole for drainage. Because succulents are so dainty and cute, you can have some added fun if you find the perfect planter to compliment it. Once you become comfortable with watering your succulents, it’s possible to replant them in a pot without drainage. However, having a hole is recommended for successful results.
2. Select the Best Soil
The soil used to plant your succulent should be succulent-friendly soil which contains quarter-inch particles that allow for drainage. The best soil for your succulents is that which allows for absorption of water as well as one that dries out fast to prevent rotting. Before buying any soil, consider where you live (climate) and the location in which you will be placing your succulents. When watering, you may want to invest in a tool that can transfer water directly to the soil, like a pipette. Gadgets like these can be found at a local nursery or hardware store.
3. Dose of Sunshine
Succulents need at least six hours of good sunshine daily. While you do not want to overheat your succulent, you want to make sure that it receives a lot of light. If you are planting solid green or pale succulents, then be sure to watch for sun burning, as this style of succulent is prone to it. Always do some research on the type of succulent you have before deciding what spot is best to place it in. Placing the succulent in a south-facing position will reap the most natural sunlight.
4. Feed It
Succulents need annual feeding, which makes them a low-maintenance plant. Select a high-quality, organic fertilizer and begin the process of adding it at the start of the plant’s growing season. If you are unsure of the best fertilizer for your succulent, always ask a professional, such as someone at a nursery so you can make sure your succulent is getting the best food. In addition to feeding it, watering it is just as important!
One way to know that your plant is not getting enough water is if the succulent’s leaves are sparse or very pale instead of bright. Always determine how healthy your succulent is by the leaves – soggy or moldy means overwater, and dead leaves mean underwater.
5. Give It Some Fresh Air
Even though your succulent has been kept indoors for winter, fall, and spring, that does not mean that it has to spend its entire summer indoors. In fact, succulents do well being outside in the summertime. If you choose to move your indoor succulents outside, then you must ensure they have a chance to acclimatize in the shade for a while. Between noon and four is the hottest time of the day during the summer. Therefore, keep your succulent in the shade during these hours. Also, remember that in the summer months succulents require a lot more water as their soil dries out faster.
Succulents are not hard to care for if you remember to tend to a few key basic things. Most often when a succulent plant dies, the root cause was unavoidable. Some common newbie mistakes are lack of sunlight, overly dense soil that does not allow for drainage, overwatering that leads to rotting, and sun burning. So, if you see your once-beautiful succulent looking shriveled, soggy, or sparse, then check that you are covering its basic needs without extreme. Whether you are a new succulent owner or a seasoned grower, track your succulent care on a calendar so you can easily know if you’re taking care of it as you should.