There is a vast variety of succulents and cacti in terms of their sizes, colors, textures, and shapes. We can readily find a wide range of different sorts and species from all over the world today because of their appeal.
These plants are cherished for their distinctive traits, in addition to their beauty and carefree nature. Are cacti and succulents the same thing? How should these plants be cared for? Are they worthwhile to collect? Can I cultivate them inside? These issues, along with many others, will be covered.
What are succulents?
A group of plants known as succulents or succulent plants have tissues that can store water. Succulent plants can withstand droughts. They have evolved to withstand the extreme aridity. Typically, the leaves, stems, or roots of these plants serve as water reservoirs.
The Latin word sucus, which means juice or sap, is where the word succulent first appeared. Their leaves typically have a meaty, plump, and thick texture to assist them conserve water and reduce water loss.
Are cacti succulents?
There can be some confusion because cacti and succulents are sometimes classed together and other times they are not. A distinct subset of the succulent genus is the cactus or cacti. One of the largest families of succulents in the world is the cactus family, or Cactaceae.
The Greek word kaktos, which means spiky plant, is where the term “cactus” originates. Cacti belong to the succulent family because they are fleshy plants that can store water. This class of plants is notable for its fleshy stems that act as water reservoirs, prickly or hairy coating, and scant, if any, leaves.
These distinguishing features make cacti nearly instantly recognizable solely by their outward appearance. In general, all succulents are termed succulents, however not all cacti are called succulents. However, depending on your information source, meanings and terminologies may change.
Cacti are frequently left out of the succulent category by horticulturists. However, for the vast majority of us who enjoy succulents or cultivate them as a hobby, these distinctions in definitions and classifications are not particularly significant.
Where are they from?
Succulents can be found in their natural environments all over the world. They have a diverse and extensive range of habitats, and they frequently live where no one else would. From Africa to North and South America, the majority originate in arid regions, deserts, and semi-deserts. Other species are found in mountainous areas and rain forests.
These plants have become exceptionally resilient and adaptive to environmental conditions that are typically too harsh for other plants to survive, such as high temperatures and low precipitation. Natural habitats for some succulents include arid lakes and seashores, which, because to their high concentrations of dissolved minerals, can be harmful to other plant species.
How do you care for a succulent plant?
I adore succulents, and they require little maintenance. Succulent plants require less maintenance than other types of plants. Your succulent will flourish as long as you take care of the three fundamental factors.
Generally speaking, to properly care for your succulent plant. You want adequate sunlight, not long stretches of intense sunlight. Succulents require soil that drains properly, or soil that doesn’t retain water. And enough fertilizer for your plant to develop new leaves and roots.
Are succulents indoor plants?
Both inside and outside, I have succulents. There are succulents almost everywhere. There are a few things you should watch out for when keeping succulents indoors in order to ensure their success.
As long as they are placed close to a window, succulents can flourish indoors. By the window, succulents do not require direct sunshine. For optimal lighting, place them on a south-facing window. If grown indoors, succulents require far less water, so make sure the soil you use drains effectively.
Do succulents need sun?
Almost all plants require sunlight to survive. Succulents are no exception. But it’s crucial to comprehend how much sunlight a succulent requires to not just survive, but also develop.
The majority of succulents can withstand modest sun exposure—roughly 6 hours per day. Before exposing your succulent to the entire six hours of sunlight, you typically need to gradually adapt them to the sun.
How often do you water succulents?
All plants will die without water, but sometimes it’s difficult to remember to water your plants each day to ensure their survival. Fortunately, succulents don’t require a lot of water, but you still need to take care not to overwater them.
As a general rule, water your succulents when the soil feels dry and wait until the soil is totally dry before watering again. You can avoid root rot by using a soil that drains efficiently so that your succulent doesn’t spend the entire day sitting in moist soil.
Where can you find succulents the most?
People tell me about great plants that they recall from years ago far too frequently. They would like to know what it is so they can get another. It is immediately clear from their description of the plant that they are referring to a succulent.
The variety among succulent plants is astounding. Because of this, they aren’t always recognized or recalled as succulents, but it’s also one of the things that makes these plants so appealing. Succulents haven’t always had a lot of popularity. However, because of their low maintenance needs, odd plant forms, broad variety, and striking colors, they have gained increased notoriety in recent years.
Succulents are simply plants that conserve water in their leaves and stems in order to survive in arid environments. The majority have thick stems and leaves that serve as water storage tanks. Many also show other techniques for minimizing water loss through transpiration, such as waxy leaves or hairy coverings. Succulent plants are native to every continent and are frequently taxonomically unrelated. However, many of them resemble identical due to their adaption to arid environments.
The plant families that are categorized as succulents number over 50. They are most frequently found in semi-desert areas. Compared to real deserts, these are dry locations that get a little bit more rain. High alpine slopes (where hardy succulents are endemic), temperate coastal environments, and the dry tropics are often used to categorize them. There are exceptions, which is why I say “most frequently” and “usually.” Succulent species can also be found in humid, tropical environments. Cactus plants are among the most popular succulents. In their stems, cacti store water.
Throughout their growing season, all succulent plants prefer continuous hydration. During the dry season, they then use their water reserves. Succulents may be a successful addition to any garden since they thrive in locations with poor soil and conditions where other plants will struggle.
Sempervivums and sedums are two lovely succulent kinds. Both cultivars produce bright, eye-catching groundcovers that are resistant to both summer neglect and below-freezing winter cold. Succulent plants come in a variety of forms, dimensions, and hues, so your yard will be the ideal place for them. For fantastic succulent species, check out Young’s or your neighborhood nursery.
Where do succulent plants thrive?
Exotic succulents, which are grown for their striking colors and distinctive shapes, require slightly different maintenance than our hardy succulents. They thrive best in strong indirect light and make excellent houseplants. They need well-draining soil and watering roughly once per week. They want a bright environment for growing outside, but hot climates should avoid afternoon sun that is too powerful. Before the first fall frost, move inside. Succulent cuttings, bare-root succulents, and 2.5 potted succulents are all available.
Succulents thrive best where?
Succulents thrive in hot, arid conditions and don’t mind a little neglect due to their unique capacity to store water. They are therefore ideally suited to growing indoors and are the perfect choice for anyone looking for low-maintenance houseplants. Follow these instructions for successful plant care if you’re choosing succulents for the first time.
Select a succulent that will thrive in your indoor environment.
The majority of succulents need direct sunshine, however if your home only has a shady area, choose low light-tolerant plants like mother-in-tongue. law’s A trailing variety, like string of bananas, is an excellent option if you intend to grow your succulent in a hanging planter. To learn about your succulents’ requirements for sunlight, size, and spread, always read the plant labels.
Give the plants a good draining potting material.
You should repot your succulent as soon as you get it home since nurseries always plant their succulents in soil that is overly rich and holds too much moisture. A coarse potting mix with sufficient drainage and aeration is a good place to start. You can use an African violet mix or unique cactus and succulent mixtures that you can purchase at the nursery. Add perlite or pumice to the cactus or African violet mix (up to 50% of the total potting mix, depending on your particular succulent’s moisture requirements) to further increase drainage and prevent compaction. To make sure the mixture is moist throughout, always moisten it before using.
Decide on a container.
When repotting, use a container that is at least 1 to 2 inches bigger than the nursery container and has a drainage hole. Avoid using glass containers (such mason jars or terrariums) for long-term potting since they prevent roots from breathing and over time may result in root rot. Place your plant inside the container and backfill with extra pre-moistened potting mix after filling the bottom one-third of the container with pre-moistened potting mix.
Put the succulent plant in a pot somewhere sunny.
Try to arrange your succulents close to a south or east-facing window because most succulents need at least six hours of sun each day. Insufficient sunlight may cause your succulents to become spindly or to extend toward the light.
Between waterings, allow the potting mix to dry out.
Overwatering succulents is the most common error people make with them. Watering more deeply but less frequently is preferable. Before the next watering, completely saturate the potting mix (while making sure the water drains out of the drainage hole properly). The plant can finally perish if the potting soil is left moist every day.
Succulents should be fertilized at least once a year.
Fertilizer works best for plants in the spring (when the days lengthen and new growth starts) and again in the late summer. Use a water-soluble, balanced fertilizer (such as 8-8-8 or 10-10-10) that has been diluted to half the strength indicated on the container. Since succulents are semi-dormant in the winter, there is no need to nourish them. Because they are not actively growing, they do not require the nutrient boost.
Succulents: Do they naturally grow?
You would be greatly misled if you assumed that all succulents come from Southern California and are naturally cultivated.
As the self-described “Succulent Mecca,” San Diego, I can understand how it is a widespread misconception.
Around the world, succulents are naturally grown. Their origins determine their distinctive hues, forms, and textures.
Hybrid succulents will not be discussed in this article because they are artificial crossbreeds manufactured by experts.
We will just explain the varieties we carry because we are only discussing straight species here. Therefore, without further ado, let’s begin.
Do succulents thrive in arid climates?
“Every gardener fantasizes about the perfect plant—one with an intriguing structure, lovely flowers, the ability to flourish in adversity, neighbors who gasp in amazement, and enough variety to keep you fascinated for a lifetime. Simply put, they are dreaming of a succulent. By Alice Quiros and Barbara Young, THE WORLD OF CACTUS & SUCCULENTS AND OTHER WATER-THRIFTY PLANTS
Any plant that stores water in juicy leaves, stems, or roots to resist recurring droughts is considered a succulent, strictly speaking. Succulents have smaller leaves, which reduces transpiration, the loss of water vapor through the tiny pores on the leaf known as stomata. Other water-efficient succulents, like jatrophas and dioscoreas, respond to a scarce water source by having a short growing season, extending their period of leafless dormancy, and storing very occasional rainwater in their bulbous base. Practically speaking, cultivators of succulents avoid fleshy species like epiphytic orchids and include numerous non-fleshy desert plants (yuccas, puyas) in their garden collections.
The majority of succulents are native to warmer, semi-arid or desert regions of the planet. South Africa and Mexico are two relatively significant providers. Some succulents are native to cooler regions, where they thrive on sunny ledges and rocky slopes. Some succulents make wonderful ground covers, while others can be used to build patterns in small gardens or to be planted in between stepping stones. A lot of succulents feature colorful flowers. Large-growing succulents are frequently employed in landscape design as significant focus pieces.
What distinguishes a succulent from a cactus? The word “cactus” refers to a vast family of succulent plants. The characteristics that separate a succulent from a cactus are small patches on the epidermis carrying clusters of spines or hairs, known as areoles. All cacti are indigenous to the Americas, from Canada to Argentina, where they can be found in deserts, wet jungles, high mountains, or even at sea level. Many originate from the arid regions of the American West. Euphorbia are cacti-like succulents that contain spines in place of areoles in pairs on the angles of their ribs. Our knowledge is further clouded by THE WORLD OF CACTUS & SUCCULENTS AND OTHER WATER-THRIFTY PLANTS: “Although it is occasionally asserted, spines are not what set cacti and succulents apart from other plants. There are prickly succulents that are not cacti as well as non-prickly cacti. Other succulents, despite having spines, lack the areoles (spine cushions) found in cacti. Plants are grouped into families according to their reproductive systems rather than exterior traits like leaf shape, flower color, habitat, or even degree of prickliness.
Cactus family members can have stems in the form of joints, pads, or cylinders that can store water during dry spells. The majority of species have spines to defend plants from animals that browse on them, and their thick skin decreases evaporation. In order to draw pollinators, flowers are typically large and colorful; fruit can also be colorful and occasionally edible to both humans and many desert animals. Cacti can grow as tall as 50 feet, or as short as a few inches. Larger species are used by gardeners to design desert landscapes. Smaller cacti have interesting shapes and vivid flowers that are ideal for flower pot or rock garden development. Smaller species are raised in containers or, if they are hardy enough, in rock gardens. Numerous low-maintenance succulents make beautiful indoor or greenhouse plants.
The amount of sunlight that succulents need depends on the growing circumstances in their native environments. Succulents typically need bright light, however some prefer direct sunlight. However, a lot of well-known succulents are indigenous to regions with less harsh weather and sunlight than the Sonoran Desert. Large specimens for landscaping need full sunlight and well-drained soil to flourish. Plant succulents that cannot tolerate full sun in areas that benefit from the filtered sunlight offered by nearby native trees or shrubs. Some of the native cacti of the Southwest thrive in the open space beneath a shrub or desert tree. A succulent plant’s surface tissue will turn yellow if it gets too much sun. If you don’t give shade or relocate the plant to a better area, the tissue will become brown, signifying that there has been lasting harm. For the optimum temperature control and sunlight exposure, many gardeners maintain their succulents in pots that can be moved around the house throughout the year.
Leaf cuttings are an easy way to multiply the majority of succulents. The idea is that as the tiny cuttings grow at different rates and become less attractive as a group, they will be separated and replanted. This practice is known as mass planting of succulent cuttings. Although you can mix a variety of succulents, you must carefully examine how well they get along. The needs for mature size, water, and temperature might differ substantially.
Use a soil mixture that dries quickly, such as two to three parts pumice and one part potting soil. Cacti that have just been planted need to be watered carefully since the roots could rot before they start to grow. When new roots begin to grow, water the soil well. After the earth has dried, water once more. Fall is the time to cut back on watering so that plants can go dormant. For a good display, feed and water these plants well in the summer; cut down the fertilizer in the fall to promote winter dormancy.