Are you interested in joining in the trend that we are seeing a lot of these days for people growing succulents in their homes? Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are full of pages and pages and pages of pictures of cactus and other succulents. You probably want to have them in your house not only because you find them spellbindingly attractive, but because you feel they might be easier to care for than other indoor plants.
While this is mostly true, there are still things you need to bear in mind to ensure you get the best out of your succulents. In the following post, we outline some important tips and advice for keeping your succulents healthy.
Ensure They Are Exposed to a Sufficient Amount of Natural Light
If there is one thing that succulents love, it’s light. They need roughly 6 hours every day of direct sunlight, although this varies from one variety to another. You need to take care though because succulents that have only recently been planted can scorch easily in direct sunlight. So, it is best to introduce them gradually to the sun or at least give them some form of covering such as a sheer curtain or blind.
If you are interested in how big succulents get, providing them with adequate sunlight is one way to find out for yourself.
Water Them Appropriately In Line With Seasonal Changes
Succulents, similarly, to humans and animals, need a lot more energy when they are going through a growth period. Therefore, throughout spring and summer, succulents drink more water and thrive compared to when they are at rest from fall through to winter. However, you need to be careful to not overwater succulents as you could kill them, so you need to make sure the soil dries completely before watering them again.
When Watering, Do It Directly Into the Soil
If you are using containers with drainage holes, you must water succulents until the water starts to seep out of those holes. If you are not using containers with holes, you need to use a little less water. Importantly, you need to avoid using spray bottles when watering succulents, as misting can cause the leaves to go moldy and roots to get brittle and even break.
Make Sure They Are Kept Clean
Indoor plants collect dust across them, and not only does this look unattractive, but it can hinder their growth. Remove the dust by gently wiping it off spines and leaves using a damp cloth. For the harder to reach spots, you need to use a paintbrush to protect the sensitive leaves and other parts.
Use the Right Soil
You need to use the right soil when planting succulents. Most importantly, it needs soil that drains, which is why you need to avoid using just plain old dirt from your yard or potting soil. It is best to use special cactus soil or a mixture of potting soil with perlite, pumice, or sand. As the roots of succulents are fragile you need to be careful when you are repotting them.
Kill Off Bugs
Although pests are less of a problem for succulents grown indoors, from time to time you may need to take care of bugs. Succulents attract gnats that are planted in soil that does not have adequate moisture or enough drainage. You need to spray using a 70% isopropyl alcohol formula to eradicate the eggs and the larvae.
Another pest that loves succulents is mealybugs. The most common cause of mealybugs is overfertilizing and overwatering. Move plants that are infected away from others and then use the same 70% Isopropyl alcohol solution to spray the mealybugs.
Fertilize Them in Summertime
You don’t need to use too much fertilizer when growing succulents but it is okay to provide them with light feedings through spring and summer growing seasons. You need to be careful about over-fertilizing, as this can cause succulents to grow far too quickly and weaken up.