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 do succulent plants prefer to reside?
The optimum soil for succulents is highly well-drained sunlight. Because of the ability of their thick leaves to store water, they can survive times of drought. The majority favor a very mildly acidic soil.
Succulents will have a difficult time growing in heavy, poorly drained soils. Many people frequently die during a chilly, wet winter. They are perfectly suited to containers because of this. Winter waterlogging is considerably less likely to occur with these, and in exceptionally rainy places, they can be brought indoors until spring.
Although agaves are beautiful, it is recommended to place the larger varieties, such as Agave americana, away from paths since their spiky leaves are particularly dangerous to youngsters because they are frequently then at eye level. Succulents thrive on a ledge with a south or south-east exposure when grown indoors.
How to plant succulents
Improve the drainage of the soil before adding succulents by adding horticultural grit. As fleshy leaves will perish if they come into contact with moist soil, avoid planting too deeply.
Choose unglazed clay pots with lots of drainage holes on the bottom when planting in containers, and add grit to the compost. Terracotta pots are porous, so the compost dries up quickly after watering, making them ideal for succulents that thrive in drought conditions. They also quickly warm up in the sun. Most succulents may be planted in relatively shallow pots since they have fibrous roots.
When planting huge succulents like agaves, choose a compost that is based on earth because these plants require a heavier compost to attach their roots. When handling spiked agaves, wear gloves because the leaves are quite pointy. Observe your eyes.
Monty Don from Gardeners’ World demonstrates how to plant succulents in the following clip:
To grow alpine succulents, do you? Here, Monty shows how to assemble an alpine succulent stone pot:
Caring for succulents
Succulents in containers should only need weekly waterings during the summer. A decent watering less frequently is better than a little-and-often approach. Reduce watering significantly in the fall and winter and place sensitive plants growing in containers in a bright, frost-free area. If it’s not possible to do this, bring them beneath the house’s eaves and cover them with a garden fleece for protection.
Once a year in the spring, repotted specimens. It won’t always be necessary to pot them into a bigger container, but new compost will be helpful. Although succulents are not gregarious plants, growing large specimens often benefits from a sparing application of fish, blood, and bone during the potting process.
Pruning is not required for succulents. Carefully remove any damaged or dead leaves from the plant or trim it off with secateurs.
How to propagate succulents
Alpine sedums and sempervivums are two examples of the smaller, rosette-forming succulents that rapidly generate tiny offspring (offsets). Simply cut them from the plant and pot them on.
Growing succulents: problem solving
Succulents grown in containers frequently experience issues with vine weevils. Growing in a compost that is based on soil rather than peat is thought to lessen the issue. Additionally, mulching the compost with gravel or stones can cut down on infestation. Repot in the fall and take out as much soil as you can to fix the problem. If you find the grubs, quarantine or remove severely affected plants. Use a biological control in the fall, such as nemotode applications. If necessary, repeat treatment in the spring.
Aloe vera’s healing properties
For its ability to heal, aloe vera is highly appreciated. A gel found inside the leaves is used to treat sunburn. This succulent indoor plant is used to make a variety of pharmaceutical items. In order to have it on hand to heal minor burns, it is frequently planted on the kitchen windowsill.
Where are succulents native to?
To say that succulents are now popular would be an understatement. However, we believe their popularity is long overdue given how adorable they are, how simple they are to care for, and how many different colors there are. Here’s what you need to know before buying your next stonecrop or agave plant:
Due of their ability to store water in their leaves, succulents first appeared in regions that had extended dry spells (like Africa).
Sucus, which meaning juice or sap in Latin, is the root of the English word succulent. It also honors the nutritious leaves that enable these plants to endure in the sweltering heat (aka you only have to water yours once a week, since they thrive in sunlight and dry air).
Green hues are a certainty.
However, you can also find blue, purple, pink, orange, and red succulents!
Another benefit of these plants’ ease of maintenance. (If your succulent is outside and you do suffer problems, you might be dealing with scale or aphids. If it’s indoors, the issue can be caused by mealybugs, woolly aphids, spider mites, or fungus gnats.
“Propagating” is the term for it. Cut off a succulent leaf, allow it to dry in the sun, then put it in soil with water to accomplish this.
Although not all succulents are cacti, cacti are succulents. What distinguishes a cactus as such: Its thorns, which are essentially its leaves.
They have a very festive name because they bloom right before Christmas.
You may flaunt your green thumb on your wrist, ears, or fingers for weeks at a time because these plants require such little care.
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Do succulents require sunlight?
Succulents love light and need about six hours of sun per day, depending on the type of succulent. 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.
Succulents—do they reside indoors or outdoors?
Succulents, however, are hardy plants that may thrive in a variety of conditions, including neglect, little access to water, fast-draining soil, and a steady source of sunshine.
It’s excellent if you live somewhere where the weather is just right for them to thrive outside.
But if you don’t, you’ll need to make some alterations and adjustments.
These bizarre plants have evolved to survive in the worst conditions, including the wettest climates, little to no soil, and the steepest slopes.
A variety of surprises, including vibrant edges, tips, or complete shifts in foliage color, can be found in the sunlight or the chilly outdoors.
When succulents are grown outside, the weather will determine and set off when the plants are dormant or active, depending on the species. On the other hand, when it warms up, that can cause new births, color changes, or blooming.
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.
Succulents are they touchable?
The leaves of a succulent are its most delicate component. Avoid touching them if you can. On a fleshy leaf, a scratch will last forever. Some plants have a powdery layer that won’t regrow, leaving permanent fingerprints. Although the roots are quite resilient, succulents can grow for weeks without them before needing to be replanted.
About the unique world of succulents, there is still a lot to discover. We suggest reading “Succulents Simplified Growing, Designing, and Crafting with 100 Easy-Care Varieties by Debra Lee Baldwin if you’re interested in learning more.
Succulents—can they survive indoors?
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.