I’ll address some of the most prevalent queries concerning succulent soil in this section. Ask your question in the comments section below if you can’t find it here.
Can you use regular potting soil for succulents?
For succulents, you could probably use ordinary potting soil. It might work quite well, especially if you frequently forget to water your plants or if they are small. However, make sure the soil thoroughly dries out in between waterings to prevent them from rotting.
What happens if you plant succulents in regular potting soil?
Succulents planted in normal potting soil run the danger of being overwatered. Your succulents may quickly decay if the soil absorbs too much moisture.
What is the difference between potting soil and succulent soil?
The components and consistency of succulent soil and regular potting soil are different. Succulent dirt is permeable and created to drain very rapidly, unlike regular potting soil, which is composed of organic ingredients that hold onto moisture.
Making my own potting soil helps me save a ton of money, plus my succulents thrive in it. Your succulents will flourish now that you are aware of the ideal soil to use and have my formula for creating your own.
Can I plant succulents in general-purpose potting soil?
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.
Do succulents require special soil?
Regular potting soil from your yard won’t work for succulents since they need soil that drains. Select cactus soil or potting soil that has been mixed with sand, pumice, or perlite. Be gentle when repotting because succulent roots are extremely brittle.
Succulents can be grown on ordinary garden soil, right?
Some succulents that are grown in soil usually die because they are placed incorrectly. Planting succulents in full sun can kill them on a really hot day or if they’re still relatively little as many succulents prefer filtered light or a shady setting to grow happily.
Another explanation could be that the succulent you recently purchased was grown in a greenhouse and is not accustomed to direct sunlight. The fact that they are in ordinary garden soil has nothing to do with this, which occurs rather frequently.
The majority of these succulents grown in greenhouses will have burn marks on their leaves, but some may not recover and may even perish.
All of the sun-loving plants that we grow outdoors are highly hardy and have no trouble growing in the ground in direct sunshine, even during summer heat waves.
When succulents are not given enough water during summer heat waves and droughts, they may also perish. Large, mature plants should survive, but smaller succulent plants require watering when the soil is extremely dry.
Long-term dry spells can cause your soil to become hydrophobic, which means that watering won’t completely saturate the soil and the soil will lose its ability to hydrate. If you scratch the surface, the soil will be dust-dry and your plants won’t be receiving any water at all. The surface will look to be wet.
You can remedy this by rehydrating the dried-out soil and mulching the tops of your gardens. Succulents won’t be harmed by mulching.
If a succulent suddenly and mysteriously vanishes from its location, you might have a pest issue. Small succulents can be completely eaten away over night by large snails, slugs, and caterpillars. Succulents are also consumed by deer, possums, kangaroos, mice, and some birds (including chickens and ducks).
Succulents planted in pots with nothing but garden soil are unlikely to thrive and even risk dying, as was previously noted. Even while types with extreme hardiness, such Graptopetalum Paraguayense, can survive, we advise purchasing at least a basic potting mix. Succulent potting mix or high-quality, all-purpose well-draining mix ought to work if you want very beautiful plants in containers.
In conclusion, the vast majority of succulents will thrive when planted in regular garden soil, albeit if the soil is of low quality, they might not grow as quickly or fully. Succulents shouldn’t be grown in pots with nothing but garden soil, in our opinion.
For succulents, what should you add to standard potting soil?
The proportion needed to make top-notch potting soil for succulents. A mixture of two parts sand, two parts gardening soil, and one part perlite or pumice yields the best results when mixing the three components. This translates to 3 cups of sand, 3 cups of soil, and 1.5 cups of perlite or pumice when expressed in cups.
Cactus can thrive in ordinary potting soil, right?
Yes, you can give your cactus plants either regular potting soil or African violet soil. However, once more, avoid using these on their own as they contain an excessive amount of organic matter that retains moisture and can contain fertilizer additives that are not designed for slow-growing cacti. Instead, incorporate them as one component of your homemade cactus potting soil.
What distinguishes succulent soil from potting soil?
Succulents need well-draining soil to be healthy. A succulent stores moisture in its leaves instead than the traditional potting soil, which is designed to hold water. In actuality, the cactus or succulent will develop root rot if the soil is excessively wet. So even though I’ve said it before, it bears reiterating that drainage holes must be safeguarded from clogging in succulent plant containers with holes in the bottom (see the full post on how to pot succulents here for more details). Of course, the following step is to select the kind of soil that will allow the water to drain.
I’ve bought and used this palm and cactus mix, which is also priced a little higher on Amazon, and it does appear to work well for succulents—but 8 qts can go rather quickly! I’ve started making my own succulent potting mix as a consequence using just three basic materials (get the printable version at the bottom of the post). What you’ll need to prepare the ideal soil for succulents in pots is listed below:
Can succulents grow well in Miracle Gro potting soil?
It’s vital to have the right growing medium or soil mixture for your succulents! This helps prevent extra sogginess, which could result in overwatering your plants, which is the main cause of plant death, as well as greater ventilation for simple root growth.
A cactus and succulent soil mix, which is easily accessible for purchase at a nearby garden center, is a good place for beginners to start. The Miracle-Gro potting mix or Black Gold cactus mix are the most secure and well-liked options for succulents, especially for beginners. Simply add a soil conditioner to the mixture (such perlite or pumice) to reduce its density, making the soil more porous and allowing for greater drainage.
Additionally, you have the choice to create your own succulent potting by combining an organic material with an inorganic one.
Peat moss, a light material that is difficult to decompose, is the principal component in the majority of soil mixtures. It can dry out quickly and is typically difficult to moisten. Peat moss can also be changed out for coconut coir, a natural fiber made from shredded coconut husks. While coir is slower to degrade, it is also easier to wet. Another excellent substitute for coir and peat moss is compost, though you should be aware of how quickly it decomposes. Additionally, incorporate some bark fines into your soil mixture to improve drainage by allowing water and air to permeate the soil more quickly.
Organic soil is a superior substrate produced by the breakdown of plant and animal waste. Additionally, compared to regular dirt, this type of soil is chemical-free and includes more nutrients and minerals, which will help your succulents develop healthily.
- Peat moss is a thin substance that doesn’t decompose easily because it is frequently difficult to moisten and might dry up quickly.
- Peat moss can be replaced with coconut coir, a natural fiber made from coconut husks that have been shred. They are simpler to wet yet won’t degrade right away.
- Mulch is an organic substance that enriches the soil, aids in moisture retention, and slowly releases nutrients into the soil as it decomposes. You may make this substance at home with scraps, tree detritus, and other plants. Mulch comes in a variety of textures, scents, and colors. It could be a rotting leaf, bark, wood chips, or a variety of other things.
- Similar to mulch, compost is made up of a variety of organic materials that are slowly decomposing, such as kitchen trash, grass clippings, and food scraps. Additionally, utilizing compost as a soil amendment is not only a great substitute for peat moss and coir but also a wonderful way to recycle and cut down on waste while improving the soil.
- Manure is a component that can be added to your compost to enhance texture while also supplying it with some nutrients. Additionally, it helps improve poor soil by facilitating adequate drainage and transforms sandy soil into enriched soil.
- Worm castings are another organic material that helps the soil retain water while also withstanding water erosion and compaction.
In order to maintain the soil dry, crumbly, and airy, our soil mixture need an inorganic material that allows water to soak into and then drain out of the soil fast. Perlite, pumice, calcined clay, chicken grit, crushed granite, aquarium or pea gravel, and non-soluble cat litter are just a few of the alternatives available.
You should think about including inorganic matter into your soil if you want to enhance your potting medium. It helps keep the soil dry, crumbly, and airy while allowing water to swiftly sink into and then drain out of it, maintaining enough drainage for your succulents.
- An inorganic mineral with a large surface area that can hold moisture, perlite is frequently used in horticulture. Additionally, this material has a pH of neutral and is non-toxic.
- Pumice, a naturally occurring, unprocessed organic component derived from mines, improves soil drainage while also preventing it from becoming soggy, protecting the succulents’ roots from easy rot.
- Calcined Clay is another fantastic inorganic ingredient to be used in your soil mix. Like perlite, it facilitates better drainage. The sole distinction is that calcine clay, due to its high cation-exchange capacity, holds and releases nutrients to plant roots. Additionally, the clay’s air gaps allow roots to acquire enough oxygen while preventing rotting.
- Chicken Grit is crushed granite that can be incorporated into your soil. It’s perfect for drainage because it’s coarse and allows water to run through.
- Another inorganic ingredient is pea gravel. If you have clay soil, it improves drainage by sinking into the ground rather than decomposing. Therefore, you might need to replace the gravel around every four years.
- Insoluble cat litter is excellent for succulent soil since it gives the plants everything they need to flourish. It has soil that drains properly and retains just enough moisture to prevent drying out as well as enough oxygen-rich air pockets.
- Sandy soil is nutrient-poor, light, warm, dry, and acidic. It has good drainage, allowing water to move through it quickly and warming up more quickly in the spring.
Soil mix ratio
Any novice who wants to grow succulents may find it difficult to choose the correct soil mix, therefore here is our suggestion for a basic succulent soil mix that encourages airflow, root growth, and drainage:
:2:1 potting soil + bark fines + perlite/pumice
Test your mixture after combining your organic and inorganic components:
To find the ideal soil mixture for your succulents, you can experiment with various ratios and components. However, you should be aware that the incorrect potting mix will probably store too much moisture, which could lead to the rot and eventual death of your plants’ roots. Therefore, it is still advised to stick to the fundamental strategy, especially for novice gardeners.
What kind of soil is ideal for growing succulents?
Succulent soil is the basis for a plant’s ability to thrive, whether you are planting succulents outside or indoors. Larger soil particles are necessary for succulents to have a well-draining soil that allows water to enter quickly and drain away from the roots without compacting the soil. Use a soil test kit to verify the ideal soil for succulents and adjust the soil to a pH range of 6.0 to 6.5 before planting.
- Succulents prefer well-draining soil and have short root systems.
- A loose, rocky soil that is nutrient-rich is optimal.
- Use a potting mix designed specifically for succulents and cacti when planting in containers, and place the plant in a pot with drainage holes at the bottom.
- Succulent plants could die off if their soil is too alkaline.
- Add soil amendments to the existing soil to make it more suitable for succulents’ needs.
Can succulents be grown in just rocks?
It should be obvious that succulents will thrive when planted in rocks given these circumstances. They drain very well and do not retain water, which eliminates the possibility of root rot. This does not include another component of soil, though, since all plants need nutrients.
Although succulents are not particularly hungry plants, they do need certain nutrients to grow. Other micronutrients like zinc or iron are needed in smaller levels, whereas macronutrients like nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium are essential. The plant won’t grow at all or last very long without these nutrients.
By their very nature, rocks don’t release nutrients quickly enough to keep the plants alive. They are composed of minerals, but since they decompose so slowly over time, they are not appropriate for growing on their own. Additionally, they often don’t retain enough moisture, allowing the roots to quickly dry out after draining practically instantly.
Sadly, this means that succulents cannot thrive permanently without soil in rocks. If not given regular care, they may survive for several weeks or even months on the nutrients found in the stems and leaves.