Succulent care for beginners: 10 care tips to be an expert

Succulent care for beginners: 10 care tips to be an expert
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If you are a beginner in growing succulents or you failed couple of times in growing succulent, this is a must read article for you. There are few key factors which play a major role in succulent care for beginners. These are Choice of succulent plants, watering adjustments as per the temperature and climate, choosing right soil and most important understanding the succulent plants.

Common SucculentsBurro’s Tail, Jade Plant, Aloe Vera, Hens-and-Chicks, Haworthias, Echeveria, Sedum Plants, Snake Plant
TypeIndoor/Outdoor
MaintenanceMedium
FloweringNormally in summers for most of the succulents
LightBright Indirect Sunlight
WaterFrequency should be maintained as per the temperature and climate.
TemperatureGood Tolerance
SoilVery Well drainage soil
FertilizerBonemeal and Seaweed liquid solution
Common DiseasesRoot rot

Understanding Succulents

Succulents are plants that store water in some or the other part of the plant such as roots or leaves. Succulent plants are able to thrive on minimal water sources, such as mist and dew. This makes them capable to survive in an ecosystem which has minimal water sources such as deserts. Most common succulents which we found around us are Aloe Vera, Snake Plant, Jade Plant but the world of succulents does not end here. There are thousands of varieties of succulents are available. Below are the few things to remember about succulent plants:

  • As succulents are drought resistant plants, they can survive in less water but can not tolerate the standing water around roots.
  • Succulent require ample amount of bright indirect sunlight.
  • They store water so in case of water shortage they use stored water.

All kinds of cactus comes under succulents. These plants look very beautiful and attractive. Refer some of the images of succulents which can make you interested in growing succulents.

Succulent Care for Beginners

As a beginner we mostly try to grow succulents and most of us fail at the first time and quit growing succulent plants. But, actually growing succulents is very easy and rewarding just we need to take care of a few important aspects.

Generally caring method for most of the succulents are very common: 

1. Selection of Succulent Plants

This is the most common aspect of the succulent care for beginners. Normally we purchase any succulent which looks good and this is the fist mistake that we do as a beginner. As a beginner we can try our hands on some hardy succulents such as Snake Plant, Aloe Vera, Jade Plant, Haworthias, Echeveria etc. These are up to an extent little hardy and will provide confidence of managing succulents.

2. Survival key of Succulents are in Watering

  • Most of the people are not able to grow succulents properly just because of over watering.
  • As succulents can thrive on limited water so never over water these plants.
  • Provide water to these plants as per season and temperature. General thumb rule water these plants when at least the top portion of the soil got dry enough.
  • Never put water on the plant leaves or stem. Just put water directly in the soil or for best care if possible keep a succulent pot in a mug or bowl filled with water for 5 to 10 minutes whenever you want to water succulents.
  • These plants have very thin roots and if you provide more water, roots of the plant will get rotten and your plant will die.
  • Please remember these plants can survive in limited water but can not in more water.

3. Succulents should get enough light

  • Generally people keep succulents inside their home but they forget that these plants are desert plants which are used to have enough sunlight.
  • Yes, there are plants like snake plant which can grow very well inside the house with minimal light but most of the succulents like Aloe Vera, Burro’s Tail, Jade Plant, Hens-and-Chicks, Haworthias, Echeveria, Sedum Plants etc need sufficient sunlight of around 4-5 hours a day.
  • Keep these plants where there is some amount of direct sunlight available. If your plants are not getting proper sunlight, at least keep these plants in sunlight once in a week for 4-5 hours.

4. Use well drainage soil for Succulents

  • It is not recommended to use normal garden soil for succulents. In fact we should use soil less medium for growing succulents.
  • We can use the following mixture: 20% river sand, 20% small gravells, 20% perlite, 20% vermicompost, 10% activated charcoal, 10% rice husk. Include some fungicide and bone meal for best results.

5. Keep the Plant and leaves clean

  • It is important to clean your succulents regularly as they get dust particles on the top of leaves and stems.
  • You can clean your succulents with the help of cotton or you can use a soft paint brush. Paint brush normally reaches to all the corners of your plant which you may not be able to clean with your hands.
  • Cleaning succulents provide better looks and it saves you leaves from fungus and other diseases.

6. Use Organic or Inorganic Fungicide on soil regularly

  • Normally people keep succulents in their home and if proper sunlight is not available the top layer of soil gets infected by fungus.
  • You can use any fungicide either organic or inorganic to keep away fungus from your succulents.

7. Keep some gravels on the top of the Soil

  • Keeping gravells is a nice trick to keep soil fungus free for a long time.
  • Leaves get sometimes rotten if they come in direct contact with soil. Keeping gravells avoids direct contact of soil from leaves.
  • Your plant looks beautiful after getting new looks because of gravells. You can even use colorful gravells to make your plant look more beautiful.

8. Fertilize the plant at least 2 to 3 times a year

There are two kind of succulents: Succulents which are dormant in summers and succulents which are dormant in winters.

We should at least fertilize the plant 2 to 3 time a year but avoid the fertilization in dormant period.

We can use seaweed liquid solution as a fertilizer or Bone Meal.

9. Select right size of pot

Normally pot size for growing single succulent plant should not be larger than the plant size. Over size pot will hold more soil and give opportunity to root rotting.

10. Keep Propagating Succulent plants

This is very important aspect of the succulent care for beginners. Normally we are not able to care the plant for too long and get distracted, propagating the succulents keeps us busy and motivated.


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