Succulents require less water because plants thrive in hot, dry environments. If the plant is watered once a week in hot, dry weather, the roots will be healthy and not a rotten mess. To keep the roots healthy and free from clogging, succulent pots typically contain multiple drainage holes.
Because of their robust, healthy roots, these hardy plants thrive, and you can make sure of this by watering the roots through the drain hole rather than just misting the top with a spray bottle.
How do you determine the health of a succulent?
Succulents are fashionable and trendy plants to have about your house or place of business, but they can be difficult to maintain. We are here to assist you in maintaining the health and vitality of your planted bundles of delight. This blog post will teach you how to correctly water your succulents, where to keep them, and how to recognize the telltale indications of a succulent in trouble.
Starting Off On The Right Foot
You must begin with a succulent that is in good shape if you want to give your plants the best chance of surviving. Fortunately, this shouldn’t be a concern if you get your succulents from Succulent Bar! We purchase our succulents from nearby plant nurseries, and we carefully choose each succulent we offer to our clients. Our succulents are handled with the utmost care and are guaranteed to be in excellent condition when received, whether they are shipped or purchased in person.
Succulents with brilliant colors, firm leaves, and sluggish growth are healthy. Succulents are not designed to expand rapidly. So, despite the fact that this would appear to be a bad indication, it actually is. Additionally, you could occasionally discover dried leaves at the base of your succulent, but this is also a positive sign. Succulents actually grow by losing their old leaves. Dried leaves indicate healthy growth in your succulent.
In general, succulents need a lot of indirect light, and the majority of species will burn in hot light. Sunlight that filters through objects like window coverings, tree leaves, or bounces off of walls is referred to as indirect sunlight (think a covered patio). Usually, 6 to 8 hours of sunlight per day are ideal. The optimum location for a succulent indoors is on a sunny window sill that faces south or west.
Compared to most plants, succulents need far less water and less frequent irrigation. The majority of succulents usually die from overwatering. Check the soil of your succulent as a general rule. Every time you water, your soil should be completely dry. After that, feel free to water with 1-2 tablespoons of water and adjust from there. A little water goes a long way because the majority of succulents have very shallow root systems. Succulents dislike having their roots wet for an extended period of time, or having “wet feet.”
How to Water
If water remains on the leaves of succulents for too long, they are prone to easy decay. It is advisable to lift your succulent’s leaves and water the plant’s base as opposed to sprinkling or drenching the top of the plant because these plants absorb water through their roots. Tools like a spoon, straw, watering can, or mister can be used for this. Native to regions that receive a lot of water before going through a drought, succulents (think desserts). What does that imply then? It implies that they favor the soak-and-dry approach. After giving them a nice sip of water, wait until they are COMPLETELY dry before watering them once more. Water your succulents on average once every two to three weeks, and avoid letting their soil remain wet for more than a few days at a time.
In pots with adequate drainage, plants grow the best. Therefore, the best choice is to use pots with holes in the bottom. You can buy containers with holes already drilled into them or you can drill or poke holes yourself into your container. However, just because the majority of containers—especially the really adorable ones—don’t have drainage holes doesn’t mean you can’t use them. It DOES mean, however, that you should water your succulents properly, taking care to avoid soaking the soil for extended periods of time. See the How to Water section above.
Cactus soil that has been aerated is ideal for succulent growth. After watering, cactus soil tends to dry out quickly, protecting your succulent against root rot and too much water. Most plant nurseries and department shops with garden centers, such Lowe’s, Home Depot, and Walmart, carry this kind of soil. Your soil must be formed of substances like sand, moss, perlite, bark, and pumice and have a grittier texture.
Soggy or yellowed leaves
Typically, mushy, yellow leaves indicate that you have overwatered your succulent. Transferring your succulent to completely dry cactus soil is the best approach to preserve one that has been overwatered. After that, consider reducing the amount of water you give your succulent by only watering it with 1-2 tablespoons when the soil is fully dry. Depending on the habitat, this normally occurs every two to four weeks.
Your succulent may be rotting if you overwatered it or provided it with insufficient drainage. Without drainage, excess water will build up inside your container and cannot leave, rotting your succulent. Make sure your container has the right drainage holes by checking. If not, make holes in your container with a drill or a pin or transfer to a different container. See the information under “Containers” above if your container does not have a drainage hole.
A plant that has underwatered will have wilted, rubbery leaves. Water your succulent with 1-2 tablespoons of water to start fixing this issue. After then, don’t water again until the earth is completely dry. If this occurs more quickly than 3–4 weeks, it might be time to increase your water intake. Over the coming weeks and months, test the watering frequency once more to determine the ideal amount for your succulent.
Your succulent requires more light if you notice that it is getting taller and has wider spaces between its leaves. Although it can look fantastic that your succulent is expanding, succulents actually grow very slowly. Your succulent is enlarging as a result of its search for more light. If you experience this issue, relocate your succulent as soon as possible to a sunny window sill. Sadly, stretching cannot be undone. After that, your succulent will continue to grow and prosper, but its stem will still be stretched.
The presence of dark patches on your succulent’s leaves indicates overexposure to sunshine and burnt foliage. These “burns” won’t go away, but as your succulent grows, it will ultimately slough off these leaves. Simply move your succulent to a less bright area to solve this problem.
How do you know if your succulent is on its last legs?
A succulent should be simple to care for. But there are a few things to know in order to maintain it healthy. How can you tell whether your succulent is prospering or dying, first?
Generally speaking, the following are typical signs that a succulent is perishing:
- The roots are rotting if the leaves are brown and mushy.
- Pale, yellow leaves are a sign of illness or rot that has spread.
- Dehydrated, wrinkled leaves indicate that the roots are drying up.
- Rot or infection was indicated by brown roots.
These are a few warning indications that your succulent may not be prospering. If you have one or more succulents and are worried that your plant is dying, continue reading to learn how to identify when your plant needs care.
What should the texture of healthy succulent leaves be?
Water is stored in the stems, tissues, and leaves of succulents. These plants are able to resist prolonged droughts or extremely dry, arid circumstances because they have evolved to be highly adaptable to very dry growing conditions. But this does not negate their need for water.
Succulents actually enjoy a good sip of water. When they run out of water, they will exhibit symptoms that indicate they need more.
Here’s what to look for to know that your succulent is underwatered:
- wilted leaves As the amount of water in a plant’s reservoir continues to diminish, the plant’s leaves will begin to wrinkle and shrivel. The more severe the water shortage, the more wilted and droopy the plant will appear.
- brown, lifeless, and dried-up leaves
- From the plant’s base, you will see a lot of dead, dried-up leaves. The lower leaves begin to dry out first as the plant begins to lose its ability to store water. In an effort to preserve water and energy for survival, certain plants will also begin to discard their dried leaves.
- The leaves are supple and flat.
- The leaves are soft and flat to the touch. The hardness and plumpness of the leaves will deteriorate. A succulent that has been submerged will feel as though its leaves have deflated.
How can I tell whether my succulent needs more sunlight?
Succulents quickly begin to display signs of stress from excessive heat or intense sunlight.
Succulents frequently “blush” or change color when they are receiving enough sunlight. What a lovely transformation to witness!
However, if they begin to receive excessive sunlight, the leaves will actually burn. The succulent leaves may start to show white or pale areas. This harm cannot be undone.
As an alternative, make an effort to relocate your plant to a location with less intense sunlight and wait for new leaves to emerge. It is optional to remove damaged leaves if there are just one or two of them.
The leaves may truly turn dry and black in rare circumstances. The margins of the leaves will first turn black, and it will be dry and crispy (in contrast to blackening from rot which starts in the middle of the plant and is wet and mushy).
Once more, this injury won’t go away until the leaf totally withers and new leaves emerge.
A succulent in the shade may start to turn a golden or yellow tint if it is still quite hot outside. Instead of turning entirely white, as would happen with sunburn, the succulent instead appears warmer or more yellow than usual.
If the succulent is transferred to a colder setting, this usually disappears or the succulent returns to its normal hue.
I can keep succulents alive very well sometimes, but not always.
I recently relocated to Arizona from Utah. Growing succulents can be challenging for a variety of reasons, including relocation. You must pay close attention to how much heat and sunlight each area of your garden receives.
Although it’s a little humiliating, I’m going to show you what my garden looked like when it received excessive sunlight and heat in the video below.
Hopefully, this example will show you what to watch out for so that your garden doesn’t turn out like mine did.
What does a succulent look like when it is overwatered?
How can you tell if your succulent is getting too much water? You can usually determine if a succulent is being overwatered or underwatered by looking for telltale indications. A plant that has received too much water will have soft, mushy leaves.
The leaves would either turn translucent in color or appear lighter than they would on a healthy plant. A succulent that had received too much water would frequently lose leaves readily, even when only lightly handled. Usually, the lowest leaves are the ones to suffer first.
The plant will look to be unhealthy overall. When this occurs, the plant is either being overwatered, sitting in the incorrect soil that does not dry out quickly enough, or both.
Your plants are being overwatered if you have been giving them regular waterings or if you have been following a watering schedule regardless of how the plant appears.
On the other hand, a succulent that has been submerged will have withered, wrinkled, and deflated-looking leaves. The leaves will appear thin and flat. The entire plant will appear withered and dry.
The leaves of a good succulent plant should be thick and solid, not mushy or desiccated.
To learn more about this subject, visit my post titled “How To Tell If Your Succulent is Over or Under Watered,” in which I go into great length about how you may determine whether your succulent plant is being over or under watered.
This String of Pearls ‘Senecio Rowleyanus’ plant leaf is one that has been overwatered. If a succulent’s water storage capacity has been exceeded, it may physically burst from overwatering.
How can I restore the health of my succulents?
Yes, I am aware that it seems illogical to remove extra water from the soil, but bear with me. This is the justification. Too much water has already put the succulent under stress, and exposure to sunlight makes matters worse. Direct sunlight is a big no because most succulents require brilliant indirect light.
Place the succulent that has been overwatered somewhere dry and bright, but out of direct sunshine.
2. Permit the roots to breathe.
Cut off any brown or black roots as they are already rotting. Dig the succulent out of the ground and remove any excess soil that has become stuck to the roots. Place the plant on a mesh or other strainer until the roots have had two to three days to air dry. Replant the roots in the pot once they have dried completely.
Remove the entire root system and any puckered, spotty, black, or brown stems if the roots are entirely rotted. The succulent stem can be buried in the ground for propagation.
Keep the overwatered succulent on a mesh screen or other strainer until the roots have had two to three days to air dry.
3. Modify the ground
You might not need to entirely alter your succulent if it is already rooted in homemade or commercial succulent soil. Algae (green living matter) typically grows on soil that is too wet. If so, it is your responsibility to remove all of the top soil from the area around your plants and replace it with new succulent soil.
If my succulent lacks water, how can I tell?
Succulents are better off dry than wet, but that doesn’t mean you can ignore the need to water them. In fact, the plant needs water to survive, and much like people, it will exhibit dehydration symptoms. Your succulent clearly needs extra water if its leaves are wrinkled and shriveled.
The cells attempt to bring in more water to make up for the water that has been lost as they release their stored moisture to the rest of the plant. The cells shrink as they run out of water and the plant is forced to rely on its limited reserves, which causes the once-firm and full leaves to collapse and shrivel.