Succulents are a popular choice for houseplants due to their attractive appearance and low maintenance requirements. However, despite their reputation for being easy to care for, there are still several common mistakes that people make when caring for succulents that can lead to their demise.
In this article, we will discuss the Ultimate Guide – Top 10 Tips To Avoid Succulent Mistakes!
One of the biggest mistakes people make when caring for succulents is overwatering. Succulents are adapted to survive in dry environments and can store water in their leaves and stems, which means they don’t need to be watered frequently. Overwatering can cause root rot, which can be fatal for your succulent. As a general rule, only water your succulents when the soil is completely dry.
Using The Wrong Soil
Succulents need well-draining soil to prevent their roots from sitting in water. Using regular potting soil can lead to waterlogged roots and eventual death. Instead, use specialized succulent or cactus soil that is formulated to provide the drainage and aeration that succulents need.
Lack Of Sunlight
Succulents need plenty of sunlight to thrive. Without adequate light, they may become leggy and stretched out or lose their vibrant color. Place your succulents in a sunny location, ideally with at least six hours of direct sunlight per day.
Succulents are native to warm, arid regions, and they are not well suited to cold temperatures. Keeping your succulents in a cold, drafty room can cause them to suffer and even die. Keep your succulents in a room with a consistent temperature of at least 60°F (15°C).
Just like any other plant, succulents are susceptible to pests like spider mites, mealybugs, and scale insects. These pests can weaken your succulent and make it more susceptible to disease. Check your succulents regularly for signs of pests, such as webbing or small, white cotton-like spots, and treat them promptly with insecticidal soap or oil.
Not Enough Humidity
While succulents are adapted to dry environments, they still need some humidity to thrive. Low humidity can cause your succulent leaves to dry out and become brittle. You can increase humidity around your succulents by placing a tray of water near them or by using a humidifier.
Succulents prefer to have plenty of room to spread out their roots. If your succulent is in a crowded pot, its roots may become tangled and damaged, leading to poor growth and even death. Make sure to choose a pot that is at least one size larger than your succulent’s current pot and repot it every one to two years.
Fertilizing Too Often
While succulents do need some nutrients to grow, over-fertilizing can do more harm than good. Too much fertilizer can cause your succulent’s leaves to turn brown or black, or it can cause root burn. Only fertilize your succulent once every two to three months, using a specialized succulent or cactus fertilizer.
Succulents are delicate plants, and they don’t like to be handled too much. Handling your succulent too often can cause its leaves to become bruised or damaged, leading to poor growth and even death. Only handle your succulent when necessary, such as when repotting or checking for pests.
Lack Of Patience
Succulents are slow-growing plants, and they may not show visible growth for several weeks or even months. It’s important to be patient and not make any drastic changes to their care routine. For example, don’t fertilize or water your succulent more frequently just because you don’t see any growth. Give your succulent time to adjust to its environment and grow at its own pace.
Top 5 FAQ And Answers To Avoid When Caring For Succulents
Q: How often should I water my succulents?
A: Succulents do not require frequent watering as they can store water in their leaves and stems. Water your succulents only when the soil is completely dry, as a general rule. The frequency of watering may vary depending on factors such as the type of succulent, the pot size, and the environmental conditions.
Q: Can I use regular potting soil for my succulents?
A: No, regular potting soil is not suitable for succulents as it retains too much moisture and can lead to waterlogged roots. Instead, use specialized succulent or cactus soil that provides good drainage and aeration.
Q: How much sunlight do succulents need?
A: Succulents require plenty of sunlight to thrive. Place your succulent in a sunny location, ideally with at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. However, be careful not to expose your succulent to direct sunlight for extended periods as it may lead to sunburn.
Q: How do I know if my succulent has pests?
A: Check your succulent regularly for signs of pests such as webbing, small, white cotton-like spots, or discoloration of leaves. You can also inspect the soil for pests or their larvae. If you suspect that your succulent has pests, treat it promptly with insecticidal soap or oil.
Q: When should I repot my succulent?
A: Repot your succulent every one to two years or when you notice that its roots have outgrown the pot. Choose a pot that is at least one size larger than the current pot, and use fresh soil. Repotting can also be an opportunity to remove any dead or damaged leaves and give your succulent a fresh start.
In conclusion, caring for succulents can be easy and rewarding as long as you avoid these common mistakes. Remember to water your succulent only when the soil is dry, use well-draining soil, provide plenty of sunlight, maintain a consistent temperature, watch out for pests, increase humidity if necessary, give your succulent plenty of room to grow, fertilize sparingly, handle with care, and be patient. By following these tips, you can enjoy beautiful, healthy succulents in your home for years to come.