How do I care for my succulents?

by Amber Miner

Succulents are amazing plants that can bring color and joy to your home and landscape. In addition to a wide variety of types and colors, succulents are relatively easy-care plants, making them ideal plants for beginners and enthusiasts alike. Since succulents hold so much water in their leaves, they need a lot less water than other plants.

 

Speaking of water - water is the most dangerous thing to your succulent plant (and most common cause of succulent deaths).

 

TIPS ON RAISING SUCCULENTS

So how do you keep succulents happy and healthy? Here are a couple of tips to help you determine when to water your succulent:

  • The chubbier the leaves, the less water it will need (chubbier leaves hold more water).
  • Succulents can rebound from under-watering much easier than over-watering.
  • Always make sure you use a well-draining potting soil and a pot with at least one drainage hole.
  • Always make sure the soil is dry to the touch before watering.

Light Needs: 

Most succulents like full sun. But ' full sun' does not mean from the crack of dawn until nightfall. It means 4-6 hours of direct sunlight and for the happiest succulents, this is early morning or late afternoon direct sun. This will provide sufficient light to keep your succulents colorful and growing in the right pattern. 

What to watch for as you go through the seasons with your new plant:

*Disclaimer: these are general tips, you do need to get to know your plants and acclimate them to your own environment.

  • Wrinkled and/or deflated leaves = plant needs water
  • Mushy, yellowing or black leaves = plant needs less water (if leaves are really mushy, remove from pot and place in good ventilation to expedite drying out)
  • Little fuzzy web-like white balls = mealy bugs
  • Little round flat scab-like brown patches that wipe off easily = scale bugs

**If you see bugs you can start to control them by spraying with diluted isopropyl rubbing alcohol. First remove your succulent from direct sun and do not spray too close (recommend 6" away), saturate the base of the leaves and stem and leave in good air circulation to allow alcohol to evaporate. Retreat 24 hours later.

 

Air circulation and adequate light are important for your succulents to thrive.


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