Succulents have become popular among those who want to add a little green to their home. There are thousands of images showing amazing decorations that include this plant in space. But this popularization is not without reason. In addition to drawing attention for its plump leaves and delicate appearance, this plant is easy to maintain, an excellent feature for those who are not very experienced with gardens. But do you know how to take care of succulents?
To answer this question and help you get to know this plant better, we have prepared this article full of practical tips, as well as an important step-by-step guide, to teach you how to care for succulents and keep them looking healthy.
How to Care for Succulents: Characteristics of this plant
Before knowing how to care for succulents, it is important to know their characteristics, as this will help you understand why these plants need specific care. First of all you need to remember that succulents originate from arid places such as cacti.
Therefore, the plant needed to develop strategies to develop and survive in a place with little water. One of these strategies was the accumulation of water in its leaves, promoting that chubby look, very characteristic of succulent species. In fact, it is precisely because of their water-filled daughters that these plants received the popular name of “succulents”.
It is noteworthy that, as it comes from an arid place, this plant also likes the sun a lot, in addition to being very resistant to bad weather, which makes it resistant and, therefore, easier to care for.
Thus, you realize that to know how to care for succulents properly, it is necessary to take into account that this plant needs a lot of direct light to be able to develop properly.
How to Care for Succulents: Main Types
To know how to care for succulents, you also need to know the specifics of each species. You can find numerous varieties of succulents available on the market, as there are species with foliage of different colors, shapes and textures. Remember that it is possible to use different species to compose the same space, be it a garden or a terrarium.
To introduce you to the succulent’s species, we have separated the most commercialized varieties and we will introduce you in the next topics.
The Paraguayans Graptopelatum, popularly called the ghost plant, draws attention for its appearance that resembles a rose. It has a loose powder that stays on its leaves, leaving a ghostly aspect, which gave rise to its popular name. This succulent is small, can reach up to 20 cm in height, and makes the decoration even more beautiful if installed in a suspended vase, as it is a hanging plant.
Image 1: The ghost plant has an eye-catching color.
Casual ovate, also known as the jade plant, looks very similar to bonsai, even in aspects related to cultivation. This succulent is native to South Africa and Mozambique, and can reach up to 2 meters in height. If properly cared for, it can last for generations, just like bonsai. In addition, when ripe, it has white and pink flowers that stand out for their beauty and star shape.
It is noteworthy that the jade plant is well known for being a symbol of Feng Shun, and adherents of this traditional practice believe that this succulent can balance the energies of an environment and the individuals who live in it. Therefore, many people choose to add this type of succulent in their decor.
Image 2: See how the jade plant, when adult, has a similar shape to bonsai.
How to Care for Succulents: Rambo-de-burro
The Sedum morganianum, popularly known as donkey-tail is one of the most succulent indicated to have in the house, since it features easier maintenance. This plant has a great potential for growth, being able to grow and extend its branches, creating a shape that resembles a donkey’s tail. However, you must be careful not to leave your soil soaked, as it does not grow well in moist soil. Therefore, it is necessary to invest in soil with good drainage.
Image 3: The donkey’s tail has a delicate look.
Escheveria elegans, also known as stone rose or Mexican snowball, is one of the succulents best known by Brazilians, being widely used in apartments. After all, with an appearance that resembles the blooming of a rose, this plant draws a lot of attention and can have a beautiful effect in your living room, for example. In addition, this succulent can also be found in a variety of colors, which can be green or grayish.
Image 4: The stone rose can be used as a decorative element to make your room even more beautiful.
The Sedum craigii is a native of Mexico and succulent that has become popular due to its beauty. Early in development, this succulent has a long stem, which then becomes overhanging. This plant also has longer leaves, chubby and slightly rounded at the tips.
In addition, this succulent is covered with a thick layer of pollinosity (wax), which gives the plant a slightly bluish/grey hue, and when exposed to direct light, its leaves take on a lilac hue. Remember that Sedum graigii needs at least 4 to 6 hours of natural light per day.
Image 5: This succulent also draws attention for its delicacy and coloration.
Echeveria pulvinata “Ruby”
The pulvinata Echeveria “Ruby” stands out for presenting by a thin layer on its surface, leaving her with a look slightly silvery. Also, when exposed to the sun, its leaves have reddish edges. This type of succulent likes shaded environments and can be planted directly on the ground, meaning this plant can be a good choice for your rock garden.
Image 6: With reddish ends, this succulent will draw attention in your garden.
The Cotyledon orbiculata, known popularly as-ear pig, is an exotic plant originated in South Africa. It is remarkable for its thick leaves oval shape and its reddish edges. This plant develops in late summer and can reach three meters in height, being very suitable for dry regions, especially with rocky soil and on the edge of cliffs.
The succulent pig’s ear also stands out for its different flowers and for being one of the rarest and largest species of this genus. Therefore, this plant is also much sought after by collectors.
Image 7: This rare species can stand out in your home.
The Aeonium arboreum ‘Atropurpureum’ , popularly known as black rose, draws attention for its fine leaves and greenish-purple color, and, when exposed to enough natural light, the leaves become darker, leaving the plant with a beautiful visual and flashy. This plant likes sunny places.
Image 8: The black rose draws attention for its striking look.
How to Care for Succulents: Jelly Beans
The Sedum pachyphyllum, popularly known as bean-to-jelly, is native to Mexico and is distinguished by very presentar stem branch. It can reach up to 30cm in height, and at the beginning of development it grows straight and then begins to hang. This succulent has light green and cylindrical leaves that, if exposed to the sun, have reddish or pinkish tips. Jelly beans like a lot of light and spreads easily, forming small clumps.
Image 9: This species is ideal for those who want a plant with a delicate look to decorate their living room or bedroom.
Did you know that aloe is also a succulent? The Aloe arborescence also known as aloe or aloe Vera, has become well known for its use in the food industry, therapeutic and cosmetic products and are widely used in homemade recipes for hair and skin hydration.
But this plant can also be used in your home decor. This succulent has a shrubby size and can reach three meters in height. In addition, aloe draws attention for having thick, triangular, long, bluish-green, succulent leaves with thorns on the sides.
Image 10: In addition to having several features, aloe can make your garden more beautiful due to its exotic appearance.
Step by step on how to care for succulents
Now that you know the characteristics and varieties of this plant, the time has come to understand how to care for succulents. After all, due to their peculiarities, they need specific care, so that they develop in a healthy way. It is worth remembering that, in general, all species listed above lack the same types of care. That’s why we’ve prepared an essential step by step so that your succulent lasts longer.
- Choose a pot with holes – In order to have a healthy and long-lasting succulent, it is essential to choose a pot for your planting that allows the water to drain, as excess water can kill the plant.
- Water once a week – Water once a week in summer and once or twice a month in winter, as succulents usually don’t need much watering. However, check the soil before watering. If it is wet, it is not necessary to add more water. Also, avoid splashing water on the leaves so they don’t rot.
- Leave the pot in a light place – Each species has its specificity, but in general, succulents need direct lighting and prefer the morning sun. For those who live in an apartment, the ideal is to leave the vases in windows, balconies or another place where they can receive the greatest possible light.
- Alternate lighting – If you want to use your succulent in the decoration, but in a place that is not very light, it is important to alternate the permanence of the vase to a bright place. Therefore, every 15 days, expose your succulent to the sun for 7 days. That way, your plants will regain their shine and vitality.
- Fertilize every 3 months – To provide the nutrients needed for the development of your succulent, the ideal is to fertilize the soil every 3 months. For this, you can use specific fertilizers for succulent, earthworm humus, crushed eggshell or other organic compound.
- Remove dead leaves – Succulents do not need to be pruned, but it is necessary to remove dead, dry or diseased leaves so that the plant can grow strong and healthy.
- Change the pot once a year – It is necessary to change the pot soil at least once a year. In addition, when necessary, change to a larger pot that follows the succulent growth.