If you want to buy a succulent, we advise you to read the rules for watering these plants because they have a special relationship with water. We all have this very succulent that was recklessly killed because of overwatering (even though we thought these plants were easy to care for). Most often, the plant police attribute overmuch of love and water as the cause of death.
Succulents are really easy to keep alive if you don't try to give them more care than they want (they are introverts, in a sense). We'll tell you all the details about how to water succulents and answer common questions about succus’ water needs.
How Often Should You Water Succulents?
Although succulents can live long without water, they need it to be healthy. Dehydrated, they do not look cute with their soft succulent leaves. So it would be wise to have a watering schedule or set some reminders. But don't focus only on it because water needs depend on the amount of sun and heat in your home and the seasons.
Consider the distance of 10-21 days between waterings, but monitor your plant and adjust this distance as needed. As a rule, large or thick succulent leaves have more space to store water, so they tolerate prolonged droughts. On the other hand, thin or small leaves have less space and need more frequent watering.
When to Water Succulents to Keep Your Plant Alive?
Brief information about succulents: almost all of them have liquid-filled stems and leaves. And they look like that because of the natural environment of succulents and cacti - the deserts and arid locations. The plants absorb the moisture in anticipation of the next rain because it is difficult to get water in the desert climate.
So imitate a desert way of watering for your plants, make it similar to a prolonged drought and then heavy rain, which will allow them to drink and absorb the necessary amount of water. Do not be afraid that the land is dry for some time, succulents are accustomed to this. So as an ideal, these plants need a lot of water, but rarely. In fact, the amount depends on the size of the plant.
How Much Water Do Succulents Need?
It is better to collect water in a watering can so that it is infused and reaches room temperature, or use a filtered one. It's essential to water the succulents abundantly so that water flows out of the drainage holes. However, succulents usually grow in small pots alone or together in one large pot.
Light watering with drips or spoons sometimes causes the roots to stretch upwards for water. This will harm the plant. So focus on the size of the pot and fill it completely, try not to fall on the leaves, and pour it into the soil. Ensure that the ground absorbs moisture quickly enough – choose potting mixes for cacti.
How to Water Succulents Step-by-Step?
Based on the principles we mentioned above, we offer the following step-by-step instructions for watering succulents.
- Remember the main rule; you should water the soil, not the leaves.
- Prepare water as it has to be clean and at room temperature.
- Choose a watering tool that will purify the water. For example, a watering can or syringe, a bottle with a narrow neck.
- Fill the plant with water until the water drains through the drainage hole.
- Remove the water from the pot saucer.
- Alternatively, place the pot in a tray of water and wait until the top layer of the substrate is moist.
List of Succulent Watering Tips
You can keep these tips and return to them until you remember the basic rules of watering:
- Accurately check for moisture by sticking your finger an inch deep into the ground. Alternatively, use a toothpick to check the soil. If it turns out dirty, the soil is still moist.
- Drainage holes are required. Without them, root rot is inevitable. Often empty the drainage tray under your pot.
- Tap water can cause minerals to build up in the soil. If you use it, transplant the succulent into a new potting mix every year.
- If you group different succulents together, keep in mind that they may have different watering needs. Focus on each plant.
- Do not use a sprayer unless you like water stains on the leaves.
What Are Pitfalls When Watering succulents?
- In fact, the substrate is as important as watering. Even if you water your plant correctly and the potting mix will hold water for a long time, root rot can start to damage the plant.
- Succulents may seem to like spraying, but this is not the case. They want to absorb water only through the roots.
- Water the succulent if you plan to leave the plant for a certain time. Water the plant twice is better than leaving it dry.
- Try to water succulents in the evening. These plants use a form of photosynthesis called CAM (Crassulacean Acid Metabolism) and halt their water uptake during periods of intense sunlight and heat.
What are the signs of overwatering succulents?
It's easier to save an underwatered succulent than to keep alive an overflowed one. The main signs of succulent overwatering:
- The leaves begin to fall off and may crumble from touch.
- Brown or yellow spots appear on the tips of leaves or stems.
- The leaves appear swollen, become soft, and lose elasticity.
- Root rot begins.
The primary signs of overwatering can be observed in the bottom leaves sooner than at the top of the stem.
Do succulents need drainage?
Yes, they love it! Use some drainage in a pot for your succu. It's critical for succulent plants to get rid of excess water. Hence, a pot with drainage holes is significant. Growing succulents in pots without drainage holes makes watering harder.
How long can succulents go without water?
They can survive without water for as long as 1-3 months. However, if kept indoors, the plant might stand even longer. If you plan to leave the plant for some time home alone, water it right before departure.
How to save an overwatered succulent?
Remove the plant from the substrate; pay attention to the roots. Remove all the rotten leaves and check the stem for signs of rot.
If root rot is already present, change the potting mix and cut off the roots. Use healthy leaves and parts of the stem for propagation.
How to water succulents without drainage?
Try spraying the soil so as not to wet the leaves. Do not allow water to stagnate. If you notice that you have overwatered succulents, observe their state and transplant them to new substrate. If you want to have a plant in a pot without a drainage hole, pour stones into the ⅓ of the pot so that water will be stored there.
Should you mist succulents?
If the plants still do not have fully formed roots or when the air becomes dry from batteries or heat, they can be sprayed. In other circumstances, succulents shouldn’t be misted since they have a special wax layer on their leaves, and it might be damaged by the water.