How Not To Kill Succulents

Succulents require good drainage. Sand and rock are not conducive to their survival, while some other soils retain too much moisture. Cactus potting soil is available at your neighborhood garden store. Continue doing that.

Expose it to reasonable sun, shade, and temperatures.

All plants require sunlight, only in different amounts (remember photosynthesis?). Succulents are adaptable, although neither intense direct sunlight nor total darkness are good for them. The succulent will flourish if you move it into and out of areas with appropriate degrees of sunshine.

Don’t over-water.

Too much TLC was undoubtedly one of my beginner mistakes. The issue is that nobody can truly advise you on how frequently to water your succulent; you have to keep track of it on your own. The rate at which the soil dries out will vary depending on your climate. Only water once the earth has totally dried out following the previous irrigation. Succulents need water, but they won’t immediately perish if they don’t get it. The easiest technique to prevent root rot is to allow water entirely drain through the soil. If not, a misting bottle can be useful for controlling water intake.

“Plant food is not a joke.

I once believed that “plant food” was merely a marketing gimmick. It isn’t. These plants can’t absorb the essential elements (such calcium) since they aren’t developing in their natural environments. You just need one drop of cactus or succulent food for every gallon of water, so it is affordable and lasts for a very long time.

They need room to grow.

Small succulents are adorable and affordable, but unless you occasionally repot them, they will remain that small. While some succulents can reach heights of over ten feet, most can only reach one or two feet. Repotting them occasionally could require you to recreate a lovely arrangement, but it will extend the life of the plants.

Water before potting.

Water the succulents before repotting unless the soil is already wet. The additional water will disperse since the new potting soil will be quite dry.

Why are succulents so difficult to maintain?

Succulents may not need much attention, but they do need a few essentials to survive:

  • 1. Provide plenty sunlight. Succulents require adequate light—at least six hours each day of direct sunlight. Maintaining succulents outside can be quite simple. However, if you have a succulent indoors, you must keep it in direct sunlight near a window. A plant that is slanting toward the light is not receiving enough sunlight, yet a plant with burnt areas on its leaves is receiving too much direct sunshine.
  • 2. Use proper water. Depending on the season, succulents might have different water needs. Succulents should be irrigated if their soil dries completely during the growing season, but excess water should be avoided. When a succulent’s roots have time to dry out in between waterings, its lifespan is increased. In the chilly winter months, succulent plants go dormant and require less water. Only water your succulent as often as necessary because overwatering the soil is one of the main reasons of most development problems.
  • 3. Use the proper soil and pot combination. The appropriate container and potting soil can make all the difference, whether you’re growing your own succulents or purchasing one from a nursery. Your succulent planter needs to include a drainage hole if it is going to be an outdoor succulent. Proper drainage allows moisture to escape, allowing the soil and root systems to dry and prevent rot. Use well-draining soil instead of standard dirt if you have an indoor succulent. It is coarser than regular soil, enabling more air to pass through and encouraging evaporation rather than requiring to be drained. To increase aeration, perlite and pumice can be added to some potting mixtures.
  • 4.Remember to fertilize. The periodic fertilizing is beneficial for even low maintenance desert plants. To give your succulents a boost, use a diluted, water-soluble all-purpose fertilizer a couple times a year. Although it’s not entirely required, if you notice that your soil needs some help, add a little fertilizer.
  • 5. Examine your plant life. Pest hazards are more likely to affect a succulent indoors than outside. Make sure your plants are periodically checked for gnats or mealy pests. These insects are a sign that your plants are receiving too much water or fertilizer. Mealy bugs can lay hundreds of eggs and consume the plant juices that serve as their host, gradually harming your plant. Rubbish alcohol can be sprayed on your succulent’s leaves or soil to effectively kill mealy bugs and their eggs. Check the leaves and soil of the succulent before bringing it home from the nursery to make sure no bugs are present.

Is it simple to destroy a succulent?

A sizable genus of succulents is called agave. Their pointed leaves and rosette formations serve as identifying characteristics. There are many different agave species; some are small plants that don’t reach heights of more than 10 feet, while others are enormous. They can be grown in the ground or in pots and other containers. They don’t need much maintenance and can survive in a variety of environments, including full hot sun and mild shade. Some species are cold-hardy as well. These plants are excellent for anyone searching for a low-maintenance, simple plant. They are resilient and challenging to kill.

A big and well-known genus called Aloe contains small dwarf species and giant tree-like species that can reach heights of up to 30 feet (10m). They feature large, fleshy leaves that range in color from green to bluish green. On the stem surfaces of some kinds, there are white flecks. The dwarf species are excellent choices for potted or containerized indoor plants. The majority of larger aloe species can be grown outdoors as landscaping plants or in sizable containers and thrive in full light. Some large species may withstand light frost with minimal or no plant harm. These plants require very little care and attention and are low maintenance.

A sizable genus of succulent plants is called Crassula. Crassula ovata, popularly known as the jade plant, is one of the most popular (also known as money tree, lucky plant, or friendship tree). They are indigenous to Mozambique and South Africa. There are evergreen jade plants. These plants are distinguished by their opposite-pair, thick, meaty, shiny, smooth leaves. Dark jade green in the shade to scarlet on the edges when exposed to direct or full sunshine, are the colors of the leaves. Some variants (known as Crassula Ovata or Hummel’s Sunset) have leaves with a bright yellow-green tint. With time, their branches become thicker.

Jade plants are adaptable and require little upkeep. They can survive in a variety of lighting situations. Once adapted, they may thrive in direct sunlight. When exposed to direct sunlight, their leaves take on a scarlet hue, especially near the tips.

This little pine tree-like succulent, which is native to South Africa, has thin, elongated green leaves and brown stems and bark that can reach a height of three feet. They develop into shrubs and eventually resemble trees. At the tips of the shrub, they produce little white blooms. They should be shielded from the full sun’s glare since they are susceptible to sunburn. These are among the simplest plants to grow from stem cuttings and require very little upkeep. I have many of these plants in various planters that were grown from stem cuttings. My initial plant, which is a few years old, is still alive and well.

This resilient, low-maintenance plant is indigenous to South Africa and is very simple to grow. They can grow up to 20 feet tall and are a source of food for elephants in their natural habitat. They feature glossy green leaves and begin as tiny bushes before becoming tree-like in size. As the plant becomes older, the stem thickens.

I was initially drawn to this plant since I mistakenly believed I was purchasing a miniature jade plant. It has no connection to the actual jade plant, yet it is occasionally referred to as “Dwarf Jade” or “Miniature Jade.” These plants may survive in a variety of environments and are relatively simple to maintain. I have this plant thriving in many planters thanks to stem cuttings I utilized. This plant frequently serves as filler in many arrangements. My original plant is several years old and has endured situations such as neglect.

A hybrid aeonium called “Blushing Beauty” was created by mating two distinct aeoniums. I have discovered that this aeonium is incredibly simple to cultivate and spread. I have a few of these plants that are all stem cuttings that are growing quickly.

Aeoniums are tough, cold-tolerant plants. They thrive in either full sun or little shade. In extremely hot and dry weather, aeoniums go dormant. To reduce excessive water loss, their leaves will curl and fall. The winter or spring is when they experience their true growth. Both containers and the ground can be used to grow them.

These succulents, which are native to Madagascar, are very adaptable to many growth conditions. They can reach heights of up to two feet and are prized for the typically red, pink, or white flowers they produce. These plants have half-inch-long, vicious thorns all over them. The plant is known by the moniker “Crown of Thorns,” which is derived from the biblical account of Christ’s crucifixion and refers to the fake crown that was put on Jesus’ head during the crucifixion. They can be cultivated in either full sun or shade. These are hardy plants that are difficult to eradicate.

This plant, which is indigenous to South Africa, initially has an aloe plant appearance. In reality, they belong to the same subfamily. They have thick, pointy leaves with white stripes that resemble zebra stripes and look warty. They can endure various lighting conditions and can be cultivated indoors or outdoors.

At initially, they grow slowly, but once established, they can develop quickly and produce pups and offsets. I’ve been cultivating mine outside all year. It is one of the easiest plants to care for and has generated a lot of pups and offshoots. Variegated zebra plants have white ridges and horizontal bands of yellow and green hue on their leaves.

These fascinating and unusual-looking plants, also known as Bryophyllum Daigremontianum (also known as Mother of Thousands, Alligator Plant, and Mexican Hat Plant), have enormous green leaves that develop into baby plantlets along the edges. Because of their quick growth and propensity to spread wherever they land, these plantlets have earned the moniker “Mother of Thousands.” They can also be challenging to eradicate.

Once established, these plants are hardy and able to withstand extreme heat. This is the kind of plant to attempt if you’re seeking for one that spreads readily. They can easily spiral out of control, so use caution. Some people find these plants to be bothersome, and some places consider them to be invasive weeds. Grow them in pots or other containers and apart from other plants or the ground to restrict their development.

How often do cacti require sunlight?

Succulents generally require at least 4-6 hours of sunshine each day to thrive. They enjoy being in places that are sunny and bright. Lack of sunshine will cause difficulties in succulents such elongation or etiolation, when the plants extend for more light. Weak stems and low growth are the results of this procedure. Lack of light causes succulents to lose their bright coloring and turn pale or back to a drab green tone. Plants that receive enough sunshine will display their whole spectrum of brilliant hues, showing their genuine beauty.

How can you tell if you’re watering your succulents too much?

Okay, so we’ve talked a lot about succulents that are dry, but what about those that have received too much water? Well, if you recall, overwatering essentially causes those particular balloon-like cells to overfill and burst, leading to damaged cell structures and rotting leaves and roots.

Discoloration and a change in the shape of the leaves are the first indications of overwatering to look out for. The leaves will turn transparent, floppy, and squishy, and unlike those that have been under-watered, they won’t be retrieved by the plant. It won’t be simple for succulents to recover from this state, but they can. Taking leaves and cuttings to root and grow new plants is an alternative to rescuing the overwatered succulent.

Do succulents need to be in the sun directly?

1. Ensure that your succulents receive adequate light. Depending on the type, succulents need six hours of sunlight each day because they are light-loving plants. You might need to gradually expose newly planted succulents to full sun exposure or give shade with a translucent screen because they can burn in direct sunshine.

Can succulents endure direct sunlight?

Due to their drought tolerance and water-storing properties, which enable them to tolerate high heat and very harsh sun exposure, succulents have become well-known. This is true for the majority of succulent plants, however some cannot survive direct sunlight without protection, and if exposed to excessive heat, they may suffer sun damage. &nbsp

The best 10 succulents and cacti that will thrive in full sun are listed below. Some of these plants can withstand full sun exposure better than others.


Can dead succulents regrow?

  • Symptoms. Succulents’ leaves can become soft and mushy and become brown or black, but the intensity of the cold damage will determine the exact symptoms.
  • Causes. Although some succulent plants may endure a light frost, this is uncommon because most succulents are native to hot climes and normally suffer in temperatures lower than 50F (10C).

The majority of succulent types are not cold tolerant and will perish if left in temps below 50F (10C) for an extended period of time.

The majority of succulent species thrive in a standard room temperature environment, with a range of 55F-80F (13C-27C) being ideal for aloe vera.

Succulents’ leaves and stems may become mushy in texture and appear dark or black if they are subjected to chilly weather or even frost.

How to Revive Cold Damaged Succulents

Place your succulent in a location in your home or garden where the temperature is consistently between 55F and 80F (13C and 27C). Make sure that none of the leaves are directly in contact with windows, as these areas of the house can get much colder than the rest of the house. Reduce watering for the time being.

The cold damage should not likely worsen once the succulent is in a more stable environment.

Wait a few days, if not weeks, and the succulent’s mushy, cold-damaged section should dry out and callus over if the leaves feel gooey.

Cut the leaf back to below the injured section once the mushy portion has dried out. Cold-damaged succulent areas normally do not recover, but the succulent plant as a whole can recover.

In order to avoid additional potential issues, you should only restart watering the succulent once the callus of the leaf cut has completely healed over. Cold damage increases the danger of root rot.

The succulent can ultimately sprout new leaves and begin to regain its usual appearance after being damaged by the cold, but it takes a lot of persistence.

Key Takeaways:

  • The most frequent cause of succulent death is root rot brought on by over watering and poorly draining soils. Plants that can withstand drought, succulents need the soil to dry out between waterings. A succulent that has mushy, brown, yellow, or black leaves is withering because the soil is excessively wet.
  • Overwatering or sunburn cause succulents to turn brown. Brown, mushy succulent leaves are a sign of excessive moisture around the roots. Due to a rapid rise in sunshine intensity, scorched-looking brown succulent leaves may be the result of sunburn.
  • Because of excessive moisture around the roots brought on by frequent watering, wet soils, or pots without drainage holes, succulent leaves turn yellow. The soil needs to dry out between waterings for succulents. Yellow and mushy succulent leaves may be a sign of root rot brought on by over watering.
  • If succulents are exposed to too much shade, they become tall and lanky. Succulent leaves grow tall in the direction of the strongest light since the majority of succulents need bright, indirect light or full sun. Tall succulent leaves can droop under their own weight and often have weaker, withering leaves at the base.
  • Due to inadequate or excessive watering, succulent plants experience drought stress, which causes their leaves to shrivel. As a means of survival, succulents store moisture in their leaves. Underwatering your succulent causes it to draw on the moisture reserves in the leaves, giving it a shriveled appearance.
  • Recreate the circumstances of the succulents’ natural environment by planting them in well-draining, rocky soil with the appropriate amount of sunshine, and watering them when the soil becomes dry. To preserve the succulent, take cuttings from healthy areas of the plant.