It’s crucial to add sand to your potting soil since succulents thrive in permeable sandy potting soil.
You may use any kind of sand, but I suggest going with coarse rather than super fine sand to ensure quick drainage for succulents.
Just avoid using sand from the beach, the garden, or the sandbox (you never know what nasties will be in there).
Turface or poultry grit could be used in place of it if you’d prefer. Both of those would work well in place of the sand in this recipe.
Perlite or Pumice
A extremely light organic soil supplement is perlite. You can find the white, Styrofoam-like bits in many commercial potting mixtures.
Perlite has a very low water retention capacity, avoids soil compaction, and aids in improving drainage for succulent plants. In other words, it facilitates faster soil drainage, which is ideal for succulent potting soil.
Perlite and pumice are typically available at any garden shop or home improvement store. But occasionally it’s difficult to find, so I typically order it online.
Succulents can you use any sand for them?
While succulents can live in sand, only coarse sand will actually work. In fine sand, succulents won’t grow well, if at all, as it holds on to too much water, making it difficult for the roots to breathe.
Sand-grown succulents won’t receive as many nutrients as those raised in potting soil. So it makes sense to think about fertilizing the succulent by incorporating diluted fertilizer with its watering schedule. This guarantees that the plant continues to receive the nutrients required for growth.
Making a sand and soil mix is the greatest alternative to growing your succulent in sand. The succulent benefits from having the best of both worlds since the sand ensures adequate water drainage and the soil supplies the plant with nutrients for growth.
What is succulent gritty mix?
A soilless potting medium called grit mix is made to drain quickly. It is perfect for plants that naturally flourish in arid areas, including succulents and cacti, and is primarily composed of non-organic components.
For plants, what does coarse sand serve?
A variety of materials, including quartz, crushed sandstone, or crushed granite, can be included in horticulture sand, also known as coarse sand or horticultural grit. Due to its composition, which excludes lime, it won’t have a negative impact on the pH balance of the soil but may even enhance it. Due to its sharp edges, horticultural sand does not clump together like regular sand and does not cover soil spaces. Because of this, it may be helpful for enhancing drainage and maintaining good aeration (airflow) around the roots of your indoor or outdoor plants.
The best results are achieved when horticultural sand is mixed with clay soils, other heavy soils that may not drain as well, and loamy, nutrient-rich soils. Use mulch or peat moss as a top dressing to decrease the rate of water drainage. This will hold back some of the water until it has passed through your mixture of horticulture sand and soil.
When compared to play sand, silica sand, or fine sand, pre-mixed horticulture sand might be difficult to locate and expensive.
Can I grow succulents in fine sand?
Despite the fact that I said succulents can live in the sand, this is only true for coarse sand. Fine sand is not at all favorable for the survival of succulents. Overly wet fine sand compacts and prevents the roots of succulent plants from breathing. If you want to conduct any repotting instead, you may also get the best soil for succulents in pots.
On comparison to succulents grown in soil, those planted in sand will not receive enough nutrients. As a result, think about fertilizing the plants by mixing diluted fertilizer (between 1/4 and 1/2 strength) into the water you’ll be using to water them. By doing this, you are giving the succulents some of the nutrients they require to grow.
Is beach sand suitable for use as succulent soil?
It is true that creating your own succulent soil requires a little more work. However, it’s an excellent approach to achieve the ideal soil mix for your specific variety and growing circumstances while also saving money. Consider this to be an all-purpose, universal recipe. It may be modified depending on your environment and the materials available and will function both inside and outside, in containers or in the ground.
Mix one part organic ingredients from the left column with two parts mineral components from the right to create a balanced succulent soil. You can choose from either side, or you can combine other elements. Make sure the volume is made up of 2/3 mineral materials and 1/3 organic matter.
Observations regarding a few of the stated soil options:
On the market, potting soil comes in what seems like countless variations. Check the components to ensure that you are getting exactly what you ordered and to determine whether it aids in drainage or moisture retention. Do not use peat-based potting mixtures (more on that below).
Look for particles with a diameter of between 1/8″ and 1/4″. Fine dust particles that might clog soil pores and hinder drainage are removed by rinsing. Instead of layering gravel at the bottom of a non-draining pot where it can cause rot, you should incorporate it into your soil.
Other Mineral Possibilities
You can use equal amounts of diotamaceous earth, chicken grit, decomposed granite, non-soluble cat litter, and oil dry (both of which are made of calcined molasses clay).
Can you grow succulents in beach sand?
You must be sure to utilize the right kind of sand if you do intend to grow certain succulents in sand for a brief length of time.
The sand needs to be wide and gritty. As a result, air pockets might develop between the grains. For healthy roots, air is also essential. The plants will die from lack of air if the sand is too dense.
Additionally, avoid using beach sand unless you’re cultivating saltbush or other salt-tolerant succulents. Because of the excessive salt content, your plants will eventually perish.
What type of soil mixture is ideal for succulents?
Every soil mixture contains both organic and mineral components. Mineral matter, such as clay, silt, and sand, support soil drainage, whereas organic matter, such as humus and decomposing plant tissue, serves to retain moisture in the soil and give nutrients to the plant.
Because succulents can withstand drought and don’t require constant watering, their potting soil should be permeable, well-draining, and contain less organic matter than typical indoor soil mixtures. Ideal soil is a loose, granular mixture with a good amount of sand and perlite or pumice.
Can I plant succulents in chicken grit?
The quick response is YES! Succulents are distinct from typical plants. They require great drainage because they are members of the cactus family. Because of this, the perlite and gritty sand are crucial components of this mixture.
How frequently should succulents in grit be watered?
To thrive indoors, succulents require lots of light that isn’t from the scorching, direct sun. Some thrive indoors more than others. In light of this, how frequently you water them depends on how much light they receive and how warm your home is.
During the summer, I give my indoor succulent plants around every two weeks of watering. Every three to four weeks during the colder, darker winter months. They receive less watering than my outdoor succulent plants, and that is fair.
My epiphytes, including the Christmas Cactus, Dancing Bones, and Epiphyllums, receive weekly watering during the summer and biweekly throughout the winter. Because they are indigenous to the tropics and subtropics, these are sprayed down in the kitchen sink. I don’t mist or spray any of my other succulents.
It’s important to remember that less is more when it comes to watering indoor succulents. As a general rule, it will be every 7–14 days during the summer and every 3–4 weeks during the winter. You should thoroughly water them and wait for the soil to dry up before watering them again.
Things to Consider When Watering Succulents
Sunlight is more frequent the more (just know that fleshy succulents will burn in hot, direct sun).
Less frequently if there isn’t a drain hole. water with caution. Here’s how to grow succulents in pots without drain holes and how to water them. Succulents are frequently grown in terrariums or small glass containers. Once more, be mindful of the frequency and amount of watering.
Think about the pot design. Terra cotta and unglazed clay are porous, allowing the roots to breathe. It can dry out more frequently. Succulents in plastic and glazed pots that aren’t porous (like ceramics) could need watering less frequently.
I’ve discovered that succulents like String of Pearls, String of Bananas, and Ruby Necklace require more frequent watering than succulents like Echvererias, Paddle Plants, Aloe Vera, and the like, which can go longer between waterings.
More frequent watering is required for succulents growing on driftwood, like as those at Roger’s Gardens.
Good Things to Know About Watering Succulents
Succulents don’t require any unique watering procedures. I would only recommend watering the soil and not the foliage.
Never have I irrigated my succulent plants with distilled water. Other plants are prone to the salts and are capable of tipping, but I haven’t discovered that to be the case with fleshies.
Don’t “Splat and run. Succulents prefer to receive thorough watering less frequently than spotty watering.
Avoid overwatering your succulents since root rot is quite likely to occur. Their succulent leaves, stems, and roots serve as water reservoirs.
Together with the aforementioned, lower them into a saucer of water and allow them to sit. The soil mixture will remain far too wet.
You might need to grow your succulents under cover, like a veranda, if you live in a rainy region. They “mush out quickly!
Succulents will do considerably better if you set your irrigation system to drip rather than spray, if you have one.
Pay attention to the weather and the water. For instance, two years ago, the winter was warm and sunny here in Tucson, so I watered more frequently. Since it was much colder last winter, I watered less frequently.
A heavy or dense soil mixture is not ideal for succulents. To avoid overwatering, it is advisable to grow succulents in a light mix. If you want to make your own succulent and cactus mix, check out my favorite recipe below.
Or, here are a few internet retailers where you can buy succulent and cactus mix: Hoffman’s (more affordable if you have a lot of succulents, but you might need to add pumice or perlite), Bonsai Jack (extremely gritty; perfect for those prone to overwatering! ), or Superfly Bonsai (another fast draining 1 like Bonsai Jack which is great for indoor succulents).
There is a difference between too much and too little water for all plants, especially houseplants. Your succulent is not getting enough water if the leaves and stems are yellow, withered, and appear dried out. It’s overwatered if the leaves and stems are mushy and brown. Succulents occasionally have lower leaves that dry out, but this is typical because it’s how they grow.
How can I make compost that is grit?
The ideal mixture is 50/50 sharp sand and multifunctional compost. Vermiculite could be used in place of the sharp sand, but it will cost more.
Can I use beach sand to grow plants?
Make sure you are receiving the proper soil if you want your plants to flourish vigorously. The good news is that beach sand is widely accessible, which might persuade some gardeners to use it. But how would the soil on the beach affect plants?
Because beach sand includes salt, which may kill your plant, it is bad for plants. Beach sand will soak up a lot of water, preventing it from reaching the plant. Additionally, it doesn’t have a lot of nutrients for your plant.
Sand can be used for plants, but it doesn’t mean you should. Learn more about this sort of soil and how it might affect your garden by reading on.