From a nerdy plant pot display with a 70s vibe to an internet sensation…
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when succulents became all the rage. But succulents now feature in many aesthetic Insta snapshots. Also in wedding bouquets, clothing embroidery, and even on sunglasses.
And more than ever before millennials are trying their spot at gardening succulents… Yes, in 2019, succulents certainly don’t “suck”!
If you add a succulent garden to your backyard, it’ll look sharp all year round. But how can you make succulent gardening a success? Read on for the best hacks for your succulent garden.
Are you ready? Grab your gardening gloves, let’s dig!
8 Tips for Succulent Gardening
What is a succulent garden? Basically, it’s a garden, rockery, or pot display which includes plants of the succulent variety. For instance, a cactus or aloe vera plant.
Succulents have fleshy, thick leaves that suck up and store water. Their roots are generally shallow. Because of the amount of water they can store in their leaves, they can even survive for a few weeks if they are uprooted.
That’s why they still look luscious when attached to accessories, such as bouquets or sunglasses.
Despite being hardy, when gardening with succulents you need to keep some vital things in mind. Read these 8 tips on how to garden with succulents for the ultimate know-how.
1. Know Your Succulents
When researching how to garden with succulents, it’s important to do your homework. Know the different types and their individual needs.
Here are some popular kinds:
- Aloe Vera (Burn Plant)
- Jade Plant (Crassula Ovata)
- Hens and Chickens (Sempervivum Tectorum)
For a newbie, these long names may feel intimidating. But don’t give up!
Many succulent plant pots come with care instructions on the label. Follow them religiously and your little plant will surely survive.
2. Food and Water
When watering your succulents, keep in mind that they can store a lot in their leaves. But, if you leave it too long, their roots may dehydrate and stop growing. Some succulents can regrow their roots, whereas some cannot.
So, don’t let the soil dry out completely. But if you overwater, their roots may become soggy and start to rot. Balance is key.
A common rule to follow is to water them once a week in summer. Then in fall and spring, twice a month. In winter, once a month is enough.
Of course, this may change depending on the type and depth of soil, the humidity, and the species of plant.
Try to periodically feed them with fertilizer. The best time of year is in spring and summer when they are actively growing. Use a liquid house-plant fertilizer once a month during this time.
3. Fun in the Sun
A general rule for your succulent garden is to give half a day of sun, and half a day in the shade. Obviously, this all depends on the weather and your location.
It also can vary according to the type of succulent. For instance, varieties from South Africa need more sun and won’t bloom without it.
If your area is prone to hard winters, try to bring your succulents inside for the worst of the winter.
4. Soil for Succulents
Fast-draining, coarse soil is the best soil when gardening with succulents. While “cactus mix” is available, you can also make your own. All you need is 1/3 garden soil, 1/3 pumice, and 1/3 compost.
If your succulent garden is full of desert succulents, add some large-grain sand to the soil.
5. Find the Best Succulents
You can probably find succulent seeds in your local gardening store. But finding plants that are already potted and growing is the easiest option.
One of the most amazing places in the world with beautiful succulent gardens is Ecuador. Especially the Galapagos Islands. They have so many varieties featuring a wide array of different hues of greens, purples, and pinks.
You may feel tempted to take a cutting and stow it away in your bag. But don’t give in to temptation!
Cutting plants and taking them back home with you on the plane is illegal. Take only memories, and leave only footprints!
Check out this useful travel guide for more tips and tricks for your trip to Ecuador.
6. Pots vs. In-Gound
An in-ground succulent garden or rockery will be a beautiful feature in your garden. Just be sure to pick the right location.
While they thrive in the heat, you don’t want them to become scorched. On the other hand, you don’t want them to become bogged down when it rains. Find the right location with enough sunshine, shade, and drainage for them to thrive.
Planting your succulents in pots is a win-win. Their roots are shallow, so you don’t need to worry about space. And when it gets too hot or too cold, they are easy to move around.
Just be sure to choose a pot that drains. This will prevent the roots from rotting in soggy soil.
7. Mix n match
Mix and match your succulents to create a diverse display. But keep in mind that different succulents sometimes require different levels of care.
The best way to mix and match is to plan a portable garden in a variety of broad bowls, planters, and pots. You can move these miniature gardens in and out of the sun accordingly. And you can give them the level of care each plant individually needs.
8. Pest Alert
Succulents, like all other plants, can become breeding places for nasty pests. You can prevent your succulent garden from becoming infested by making sure there is enough air circulation.
Spray bugs, such as aphids and thrips with rubbing alcohol diluted with 50% of water. If you notice scale is spreading over your plants, scrape it off. If it persists, use a horticultural soap to clean it off.
Is Your Green Thumb Ready?
It’s clear to see that succulent gardening is a whole lot easier than you might think. But even though they can survive without a lot of attention, if they are going to thrive, they need your TLC!
Now you’re green thumb ready, don’t forget to check out our blog for more lifestyle hacks.