Succulents respond best to the “soak and dry approach” of watering. Fully soak the soil, then let it dry completely before watering it once more. Additionally, make sure the succulents are in a container with a drainage hole and well-draining soil (more on that in a minute).
Pretty basic, yes? Watch this technique in action:
In general, it is better if water doesn’t reach the leaves of indoor succulents. It can decay if left on a leaf for an extended period of time.
Use a squeeze bottle or a tiny watering can with a nozzle (this one is great) (like the one in this super handy tool kit).
For outdoor succulents, where there is more breeze and the water will dry off more quickly, this is less of a problem.
If at all feasible, simply saturate the soil around your succulents with water. UNTIL the dirt has completely dried from the top of the pot to the bottom, DO NOT water your succulents again.
How frequently should I water my cacti and succulents?
Succulents and cacti are drought-tolerant, low-maintenance plants. The fleshy tissues of their stems, roots, or leaves, which come in a variety of hues and patterns, are where they retain water. With these professional tips, you may learn to grow succulents and cacti yourself or give them as gifts:
- Succulents and cacti do well in containers. They don’t require frequent repotting because they grow slowly.
- If your plants are not a cold-hardy kind, bring them indoors during the winter.
- To allow moisture to evaporate, containers must include drainage holes.
- For proper drainage, always use cactus soil or mix sand into your potting soil.
- Succulents generally prefer somewhat acidic soil (5.5-6.5).
- Overwatering is the most typical killer of cactus and succulents.
- To determine how damp or dry the soil is, a moisture meter is a useful instrument. When in doubt, avoid watering!
- When they are actively growing in the spring and summer, succulents require more water.
- Depending on the temperature, water once or twice a week. Reduce watering to every two weeks when the temperature rises to 90 degrees or higher.
- When the temperature is too hot, plants go dormant so they can survive on the water they have stored.
- Reduce watering to once every 3–4 weeks in the late fall and winter.
- In the spring, summer, and early fall while they are actively growing, plants are hungry.
- Use fertilizers designed for cacti and succulents.
- Your plants need nitrogen fertilizer if they are starting to look a little stunted.
Growing a jade plant is quite simple. Between waterings, allow the soil to totally dry out. prune to maintain symmetry.
Aloe Vera: For generations, burns have been treated with the soothing fluid of this succulent plant. Avoid letting the plant sit in water and let the soil dry out between waterings.
Ponytail Palm: This plant belongs to the succulent family and is not at all a palm tree. This plant is ideal for careless gardeners because of how much water it can store in its bulbous stem.
The ideal choice for an experienced gardener is a Christmas cactus. Buds can fall out from even the smallest amount of under or overwatering. Place to promote the production of buds and flowers in a chilly environment (about 55 degrees).
Hens & Chicks: These two plants also go by the names echeveria and sempervirum, respectively. Allow plants to gradually dry out in between waterings.
Crown of Thorns: To preserve the leaves and blooms during flowering, simply allow the top inch of soil to become dry.
A very resilient succulent plant that can withstand a lot of abuse is the snake plant. Once a year, fertilize, and let the plant dry out in between waterings.
How do I water my succulent properly?
Here is how to water succulents now that you are aware of the variables that influence how frequently you should water them. Yes, there are right and incorrect ways to do things. Native to the desert, succulents receive little rain in their natural settings, but when it does, it pours. Desert downpours resemble monsoons because sheets of water fall from the sky. When you water your succulent, soak it completely to simulate desert rain. Slowly pour water over it, continuing to do so until the drain hole at the bottom is completely filled. Succulents benefit more from irregular, cautious waterings that only moisten the top inch or two of the soil in the pot than they do from periodic, long, deep drinks that soak the soil to the bottom of the pot.
So when the earth around your succulent plants is completely dry, water it. Re-saturate the soil after allowing it to totally dry out. Dried up. Drench. Dried up. Drench. You can have succulents that are perfectly watered if you follow that pattern.
What kind of cactus should I buy that is succulent?
Unsure of how frequently to water succulents? Succulents like thorough, infrequent watering as opposed to little, frequent sips. If you water from the top, thoroughly soak the plant until the drainage hole is dry. Even so, keep filling the pot with water a few times more to ensure that the soil’s bottom also absorbs water.
Make sure the dirt is completely dry before giving the succulent another good watering. Using a mister to water your succulents is not advised. Misting prevents thorough hydration, which can result in shriveled leaves and dead roots. Additionally, it may cause the surface of the leaf to decay or develop water stains.
So, without drainage holes, how do you water succulent plants? You should err on the side of underwatering because this is a risky undertaking. A decent rule of thumb is to water your planter by about half the capacity in order to prevent drowning it. Keep your succulent in a container with thin, quick-draining soil as well. Leaving your plant in its nursery pot and using the ornamental pot as a cachepot is your best chance. A terracotta container is more forgiving than a plastic one if you need to repot your succulent because it soaks up extra water.
How frequently should succulents be watered?
During the months that are not winter, when the temperature is above 40 degrees, you should water your succulents every other week. You should only water your succulent once a month in the winter (when the temperature falls below 40 degrees), as it goes dormant at this period.
A few situations constitute an exception to this rule. Because their tiny leaves can’t hold as much water as other varieties with larger leaves, some varieties of succulents need to be watered more frequently. In the non-winter months, feel free to give these small leaf succulents a water if they appear to be thirsty. When they are thirsty, succulents generally exhibit a wrinkled appearance. But always keep in mind that being underwater is preferable to being overwater.
Should cactus be misted or watered?
The watering needs of cacti and succulents varies slightly from those of other plants.
Succulents and cacti don’t need as much water to survive as other types of houseplants because they resemble desert plants.
That does not imply that you should skip watering dried-out succulents. But many individuals question if misting succulent and cactus plants occasionally is appropriate.
Succulents and cacti shouldn’t be misted when being watered because it can weaken the roots and promote fungus. Do not shower succulents and cacti with a spray bottle. Spray misting is not only insufficient in terms of water supply; it also runs the risk of making the plants rot.
While it is not advised to spray these plants, there are a few circumstances in which you should sprinkle cacti and succulents.
How do I determine whether my cactus needs water?
Fair enough, it can be challenging to make the appropriate decision. Everyone will give you different recommendations because there is so much conflicting information available. Additionally, many plants have various preferences. How do you even begin?
But the story doesn’t end there. You know, a number of things might impact how frequently you should water. To name a few:
- composition of the soil
- Light intensity
- Outdoors versus Indoors
There are other others, but we won’t go into them now. The most crucial thing to keep in mind is that, even though 10 days is a solid guideline, you should constantly be aware of the shifting circumstances. You should adjust your watering schedule to account for them.
For instance, it’s well known that throughout the summer, you should water your plants more frequently. It is, after all, much hotter. Water evaporates more quickly, and your plants do too!
Arizona experiences intensely hot and arid summers. Your succulents will need water as frequently as possible if they are in a climate like that. You should water them every day or every other day in those conditions, believe it or not.
The East Coast, including Virginia, can have extremely hot summers. The humidity, nevertheless, is also quite high. Evaporation proceeds far more slowly here than it would in Arizona since the air is already so heavily laden with water. In this situation, we advise watering every five to six days.
Naturally, winters are the opposite. Days get shorter, the sun shines less, and the temperature drops. Some of your plants enter a dormant state (much like a bear hibernating).
You water significantly less regularly throughout the winter (especially for outdoor plants). Depending on how often I remember, I water my indoor plants once every two to three weeks. Sedum and Sempervivum are examples of outdoor, cold-tolerant plants that may never need watering since the odd snow or sleet is more than enough.
The risk of root rot is the primary reason we lay such a strong focus on watering regularly.
The quiet killer that kills the majority of succulents and cacti is root rot. Because it takes place underneath the soil’s surface, you won’t even notice anything is amiss until the plant topples over due to a rotting core.
Why does root rot occur? In a nutshell, roots will begin to decay if they are left in water for an extended period of time. This is due to the fact that plants actually breathe through their roots and that air does not travel well through water.
The succulent essentially drowns. It also doesn’t need to be a lot of water. Root rot can develop only from being damp or moist for an extended period of time.
Because of this, frequency of watering is more crucial than quantity. Giving the succulent adequate time to dry out in between waterings is essential.
How to Know if the Soil is Dry
The first step in keeping your plant dry is to have a fast-draining soil that is primarily formed of inorganic components. Step two involves watering only when the plant has completely dried.
It is simple to determine whether the soil is dry. The simplest method is to just insert your finger into the saucepan. A minimum depth of two inches is required since sometimes the surface may be dry but the ground beneath may not be. Don’t water if it feels damp, wet, or even a touch colder than the surface. Allow a few days.
To check, you can also use a soil moisture meter. These tools are extremely helpful for inspecting numerous plants, however the less expensive models can be somewhat incorrect.
Finally, just watch for your succulent or cacti’s leaves to wrinkle. Though it seems frightening, the plant is not actually damaged. Instead of erring on the side of wet, choose dry.
- Water flowing downward till it exits the pot’s drainage hole from above: Succulents respond well to this kind of watering, which is the norm for most houseplants. Run a moderate, constant trickle of room-temperature water over the top layer of the soil in your succulent plant using a watering can or cup that has been filled. Your indication to quit is when water begins to flow from the pot’s drainage hole. Give the plant 15 minutes to absorb the last of the moisture. After that, empty any remaining liquid from the tray into the sink.
- If your succulent’s soil is tightly packed and not appearing to be uniformly absorbing your top watering, you can try the bottom-watering method. The horticulture and owner of the Planthood store in Amsterdam, Monai Nailah McCullough, says that watering succulents from the top can occasionally cause damage to the roots. Watering it from the bottom allows it to slowly and effectively consume enough water. Put your succulent(s) in a shallow dish, plastic container, or tray that is 2 to 3 inches deep with water to bottom water them. Allow them to soak in the water for five to fifteen minutes, or until the top of the soil feels just damp to the touch. Refill as necessary.
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- Mist its leaves: Succulents are not among the plant species that benefit from a good misting, although some do. Mirroring a plant’s natural surroundings is essential to ensuring its happiness in captivity. Additionally, because they are native to dry regions with low humidity, succulents are unaccustomed to having wet leaves. Thompson notes that “the water can get trapped and develop fungal concerns.” There is basically no point since they aren’t used to being sprayed.
- Put it in a container with no drainage opening: Drainage holes act as a pathway for water that your plant is unable to absorb. Succulents definitely need it because they are so sensitive to overwatering.
- Use ice cubes: Some plant owners use ice cubes to give their plants a more gentle and controlled soak because they disseminate a tiny amount of water very slowly. Again, though, if the goal is to simulate the succulent’s natural desert habitat, giving them something very cold makes little sense and might even startle them.
- Water it less frequently, but more often: You should give your succulent a deep soak rather than a light misting every few days.
Do my succulents need to be misted?
When I first learned about succulents, I was fascinated by the notion that they couldn’t die. They were frequently referred to as very low maintenance plants that adored being neglected. That sounds fairly simple, hmm.
To add to my bewilderment, I frequently heard the word “succulent” used in the same sentence as the word “cactus.” We won’t get into it here because there is a really fantastic essay on this site that explains the link between cacti and succulents, but a widespread misconception regarding cacti is that they never require water. Because I believed succulents required little to no water, I occasionally misted them rather than watering them. They love to be ignored, right? They require little upkeep, right? Well, I hate to ruin the surprise, but my succulents barely made it through this abuse.
The scoop about misting and watering is as follows:
*Water: After the dirt has dried, drown your succulents in water. Put them in water until the bottom of the pot is filled with water. If you have a catch pan, remove any water that has accumulated there. The best kind of pots are unglazed, porous ones with drainage holes (think terracotta pots). Your succulents will appreciate that they allow them to breathe.
*Low Maintenance: Succulents grow in nature with shallow roots that quickly absorb water and store it in their leaves, stems, and roots for periods of drought. Succulents are considered low maintenance because of this. They are designed to hold water for extended periods of time, so you don’t need to water them as frequently as some plants, like every other day. They won’t wither and die while you’re away, so you may travel with confidence. Just remember to give them a good drink when you do water them!
*Water Type: Rainwater or distilled water are the ideal water types to utilize. Numerous minerals in tap water can accumulate in the soil and even appear on plant leaves.
*Watering Frequency: A number of factors determine how frequently you water (climate, season, humidity, pot size, pot type, drainage etc). The best general rule is to wait until the soil has dried before watering it again. The roots may decay if the soil isn’t given a chance to dry up or if water is left in the catch pan. You can stick your finger into the ground and feel around to determine the amount of moisture in the soil, or you can use a moisture meter (commonly sold in gardening centers or online and relatively inexpensive).
Leave the misting to the babies, please! Actually, fully developed succulents dislike being misted. Because they prefer dry environments, misting them will alter the humidity in the area around the plant. Additionally, this might cause decay. To gently hydrate your propagation babies’ tiny, sensitive roots, spray them.