You will love growing succulents, I promise. Do you love flowers, plants, trees, vegetables, or whatever grows on the earth outside? I love my tiny front porch with a basket of flowers sitting on a table. It says “welcome” to me and puts a smile on my face. My daughter, Allison, took a class on how to make a wreath with succulents. She recently came to visit me and surprised me with a few plants shown below. Together, we’re going to learn how to grow succulents. I love my garden and once you know how to grow plants, you will too!
I’m reposting this article from 2016, my grandson just got married in California and my daughter placed a small planted succulent by each place setting for the rehearsal dinner. So, thank you for letting me share a little of my joy with you.
How to Grow Succulents
I found the galvanized container pictured below in my garage and decided to wash it and get it ready to plant these beautiful little succulent plants! I love rustic containers for plants, don’t you?
The first thing you need to do is drill a few holes in your container if your containers don’t have any drainage holes. I turned this container upside down and drilled a few holes about 1/4 inch in diameter. Now, you can plant your succulents in clay pots, ceramics, plastic, terra cotta, or just about any container, but I wanted this metal container since it has some personality. You can plant them in the ground as well. Today I am talking about growing them in pots.
Luckily I have a lot of rocks in my yard so I scooped some of these into my metal container to help with the water in a well-draining unit to help prevent overwatering and the resulting root rot. One great thing about succulents is that they are pretty hardy and don’t require much water. Too much water is a real challenge for them.
I used this potting soil because I had quite a bit of it left over from planting my garden seeds. This is my favorite soil mix: Miracle-Gro Moisture Control Potting Mix You can buy this product at your local garden stores as well. I found it worked great as a succulent soil.
My daughter Allison showed me her favorite ones to plant, so of course, I wanted those. If a “stem” or leaf falls off you can stick it in the soil and you’ll grow another plant. WooHoo! I love hearing this! This is known as succulent propagation and it makes growing new plants very easy. They are great plants to grow in arid climates since they are pretty drought tolerant, and they make beautiful and fun houseplants with different colors and a texture to match almost any decor.
The next step is to remove the succulents very carefully from the original containers and place them in your pot or pots. You’ll then add enough soil around them until you reach the base of the plant’s stems. Here’s the deal, you go choose the succulents YOU want and arrange them how YOU want them. I love this! No seeds, just plant the fabulous colored plants available at every nursery or store in your town!
Tips for Growing Succulents
- Choose your favorite pots, clay, plastic, or galvanized (personal preference).
- The pots must have good drainage (holes in the bottom of the containers).
- Choose sturdier pots for taller or top-heavy succulents because the lighter-weight ones won’t stay upright and will tip over.
- Many succulents have deep tuberous roots while others have shallow fibrous roots and remain closer to the surface.
- Succulents need to be repotted every year to a larger pot, yep they need fresh soil, just giving you the heads up here.
- Pests, like aphids, spider mites, and slugs can appear on these gems, so be prepared by using a good insecticide or natural type of pest control to take care of the infestation if bugs show up one day.
- Rainwater is better than household hard tap water because the minerals might affect the plants.
- Fertilizer is needed, yep they love Nitrogen, Phosphorous, and Potassium (A mixture called 10-10-10 fertilizer) diluted to 1/4 strength is the best.
- Light is critical to succulents, not intense direct sunlight with extremely high temperatures, but they do need light. If you can see the plants leaning towards the “light” then periodically turn the pot so it will grow evenly. Shade can work for them as long as there is some sunlight available. Full sun is not recommended. There are outdoor succulents that are grown to deal with outside conditions, so do your homework to see which variety is best for your planned plant location. Either way, they prove to be a low-maintenance plant.
What are some of the terms used when trying to propagate succulents?
There are four main ways to grow your own succulents rather than having to buy them from a store or nursery as follows:
- Growing them from the leaves of the plant is called leaf cuttings
- Propagating from the stem or succulent cuttings
- Using seeds to propagate the plants
- Trying to propagate from the offsets/offshoots
When growing your succulents from the offset or offshoots there are some fun terms used.
- The offsets or offshoots are often called pups. Not all succulents have pups, but those who do actually multiply on their own.
- Succulents called hens, chicks, aloe, haworthia, and cacti varieties do produce pups.
- The plant that has the pups is called the mother plant or parent plant.
More Tools to Use
- Prepare Your Family for Survival: How to Be Ready for Any Emergency or Disaster Situation
- Water Storage Containers – WaterBrick
- How to Use Diatomaceous Earth in Your Garden
Let me know if you have grown succulents, I would love to hear how your’s are doing. Have fun and remember to be prepared for the unexpected. May God Bless this World, Linda