7 Key Points To Perfect Your Succulent Care By Succulent City

succulent care guide

So, is it a succulent guide for dummies or what? That thing popped up in my head when I first started this post. Let’s say it’s super helpful for beginners and a good list to check for the experienced ones. Are succulents easy to care for? Both yes, and no. Succulents require less effort, but we can’t be ignorant. This compact guide summarizes my experience growing succulents over the years, including all the important notes and relevant resources to create perfect growing conditions for succulents. Grasp these 7 key points to take care of any succulent properly!

First and foremost …

1. Pick A Healthy Succulent (Also The One You Like)

Pick a healthy succulent plant

What makes a healthy succulent? A healthy one has chubby, strong leaves that are evenly one color, without any yellow or brown spots. The succulent stands tall with a robust stem and doesn’t look too spread out. The roots should be firm and not soft. Becoming a succulent parent should not be a daunting task. You can choose from hundreds of species with various shapes and hues, and be sure the chosen one is among the strongest candidates.

When you are at a succulent store, here are things to look for: Does the succulent look pale or fresh? Is any damage seen on the succulent (from insects, pests, or human interactions)? A healthy succulent should be well-formed. Reduce the risk of having a weak plant by going through this list of trusted vendors by Succulent City.

Talking about finding your favorite succulent, below are a few notes for you to narrow down the list:

  • Your favors: Do you like succulents with fleshy rosettes? Or those with small, thin leaves? What is your favorite color? Which succulent genus is one you love? It’s up to you to decide, considering a few factors below. Me? I own a succulent garden, not a big one, but enough to be the home for many succulents. I don’t pick my favorite, but Peperomia Obtusifolia is my go-to if I have to. Understanding succulent’s physical characteristics will easily help you find your taste.
  • The climate: Think about where you will grow your succor. Is there natural sunlight? How is the weather at your place? Some succulents prefer bright direct light, while some shy away from the sun, favoring indirect light.
  • The space: Do you have the space for a gigantic succulent, or would you desire a tiny one to fit in any nook or cranny? Would you instead plant it straight in the ground or in a fancy pot to move around? Once you focus on this, you are better positioned to pick up a succulent.

2. Choose The Right Planters or Pots

Succulents appear even more beautiful when planted in suitable pots/planters. However, if your container is jeopardizing the growth of your plants, you’ll soon end up with an empty planter. Succulents are prone to root rot. This happens when they sit in wet soil for too long. The soil in containers without a drainage hole takes much longer to dry out, increasing the chances of root rot.

Choosing the right planter

Similarly, partially closed containers lead to higher humidity levels around your succulents. This is risky as it promotes rot, especially in the leaves and stems. You can never go wrong with Terracotta, wood, or hypertufa containers.

More Interesting reads:

3. A Proper Succulent Soil Mix

Succulents like to be dry from tip to root, prospering when they grow in free-draining, aerated soil. A cactus or succulent potting mix works well, but if this is unavailable, you can create your own by mixing potting soil with coarse sand and crushed gravel to create drainage.

make a good soil mix

The importance of soil mix is undeniable. A poor soil mix is deadly to your succulents. What makes a good soil mix, then? First, you need all the proper compositions for the succulent soil mix. Next, we need to make sure the soil is well-draining and breathable. You will need the correct ratio to do that. Then, place the soil mix nicely in the container before potting the plant.

For an in-depth read: Making The Perfect Succulent Soil With Succulent City.

4. Fair Use Of Fertilizers

Use the right amount of succulent fertilizer

Several succulent gardeners believe that succulents don’t need fertilizers. While most succulents can do perfectly without fertilizers, they can be a good addition in some cases. Fertilizing succulents requires specific knowledge. We need to know precisely how much fertilizer, the time to use it, the frequency, or whether homemade or store-bought fertilizer is better, … The keynote is not to overfeed your plant! By doing that, there is a high chance that your succulent will be fine. Talking about succulent fertilizers, we have written a comprehensive guide. See below!

For an in-depth read: The Only Succulent Fertilizer Guidebook You Need.

5. Master Essential Gardening Skills

What are the essential gardening skills you need when caring for succulents?

  • Propagating: This is a crucial gardening skill to care for plants, not only succulents. There are several methods to propagate succulents successfully. Each has its pros and cons. As succulent growers, we need to know which way is the best for a succulent and when to apply it. For an in-depth read >>
  • Trimming/ Pruning: Knowing when and how to perform this action is necessary for succulent care. As you know, succulents might grow in length after a long time. Trimming/ pruning correctly will support better growth for your succulent. For an in-depth read >>
  • Beheading: Why do I split this guide from the trimming/ pruning guide? Beheading an outgrowing succulent is performing the trimming/ pruning action at the very top of your plant. Unlike pruning/ trimming, which takes a careful inspection of your succulent in general, beheading supports propagation to create a new healthy plant. For an in-depth read >>
  • Potting/ Repotting: Whether you are potting a succulent from an outdoor environment or repotting it from an old pot, it’s the same skill. However, the timing is different for several reasons. For an in-depth read >>
  • Watering: Watering is as simple as pouring water into thirsty soil. The real question is when, how often, and how much. There isn’t a unique method of watering succulents. For example, misting is a terrible way to water succulents. It promotes leaf rot, which is extremely dangerous for succulents like Kalanchoe tomentosa. All you need is to water succulents when they are dry. For an in-depth read >>
  • Light: Most succulents are natives of dry and hot climates; no wonder they are great sun worshipers. 4 – 6 hours of direct light from the sun on a kitchen windowsill or the patio is suitable for your plant. If your succulent grows outdoors in an area with high temperatures, try to create shades for your plant during the hotter hours of the day. Remember to rotate your plants regularly if you place them in partially shaded areas. For an in-depth read >>

Follow Succulent City on Facebook, Pinterest & Instagram for more informative & interesting content about succulents & cacti 🙂 Join the discussions at our Facebook Group, “Succulent City Plant Lounge.” Happy planting, and live the moment!

6. Plants’ Positions

Different plant arrangements are just gorgeous. Will succulents look good when paired with some ferns or moss varieties? Unfortunately, that can only be done temporarily. Succulents have very different growing conditions as compared with other home plants. Basil needs water every six hours, or else it’ll begin to wilt. Similarly, a moss plant will thrive in a moist environment. Succulents can’t stand being wet on the other side of the ring. It’s impossible to have cohesion without one of the plants dying. This is also true for some succulent groups. While a few succulents can go on without water for weeks, some must be watered weekly. Therefore, knowing what succulents can be planted together is important.

planting postions for succulents

Growing different succulents in one place presents a spectacular aesthetic. However, squeezing many into a single space gives a few problems. Competition for nutrients becomes fierce, which may lead to malnourishment. Additionally, excessive crowding of succulents may encourage pest infestations and even the spread of mold. Such a combination of succulent killers is deadly and may wipe out your entire collection.

7. Prepare For Any Succulent Problems

Succulents plants are xerophytes, adapting naturally to minimal rainfall by storing water in the leaves and stem. Your best bet is to wait until the topsoil is completely dry (roughly every two weeks). Then, you can water the plant till it completely drains through to prevent overwatering succulents. Another succulent faux pax is that they can survive without any water. Though succulents store water to survive dryness, don’t completely forget to water them.

There are many common problems when growing succulents.

Overwatering and underwatering a succulent are only 2 of the many problems you can have when growing succulents. Those include pest problems, physical symptoms of a dying succulent, etiolation, pathogens, & more. Here are all the problems when planting/caring for succulents I cover on Succulent City:

I only mention some key topics above. All common succulent problems & solutions will be found in this category >>

Follow Succulent City on Facebook, Pinterest & Instagram for more informative & interesting content about succulents & cacti 🙂 Join the discussions at our Facebook Group, “Succulent City Plant Lounge.” Happy planting, and live the moment!

For more inspirations & ideas, here is our category that keeps you interested & delightful all the time!

Some Questions I Got Asked From Readers

Q1. Are succulents easy to take care of?

If anyone is asking this question, are you planning on taking up this new hobby? Growing succulents can be addictive (haha). Caring for succulents is not easy, but it’s not hard. When you first start something, there will be problems. Common problems when growing succulents are overwatering/underwatering, long root bound, sunlight shortage, and shriveled leaves, … And we have solutions for all of them. So it’s easy to take care of succulents if you follow us (smiley face).

Q2. Can succulents grow in shade?

Yes, of course. Even more, some succulents enjoy living in the shadows. A dedicated post on that topic is in the related section below.

Q3. Do succulents like humidity?

No, I do not think they love it. A 40-60% humidity is perfect for succulents.

Q4. How do succulents reproduce?

Succulents can reproduce naturally or by human impacts, known as different propagation methods. In nature, succulents will pollinate with the help of a 3rd party, such as bees or insects. Most of us who have a succulent garden don’t do it the same way. We can root new succulents by stem, leaves, and cuttings, then replant the tree into a new pot. There you have a new succulent thriving! For more on propagating succulents, see the related section below.

Related posts for additional reads:

Don’t Leave So Soon …

Caring for succulents is not sophisticated, but you should never ignore it. These slow growers somehow relieve the hustle speed of our daily lives with problems and responsibilities. They will help you feel refreshed daily, and then you give back that energy by caring for them and making them grow.

Other must-read succulent care instructions/ gardening skills on Succulent City:

Succulent City chief editor


Succulent City

Hey everyone! Welcome to Succulent City! We are all about succulents, cacti, and a bit about air plants. Ten years back, in 2013, we began the journey with succulents. It started as a simple hobby, crafting and selling charming succulent-themed pins and decorations. But as time passed, our fascination with these remarkable plants grew, and we gained extensive knowledge about them. Therefore, Succulent City is the blog as you see it is now. Enjoy your visit and happly planting!

6 thoughts on “7 Key Points To Perfect Your Succulent Care By Succulent City

  1. Richard…..this plant has invaded my flower gardens and is become a problem (I sent the image to your email). I have tried to kill it with Roundup but it keeps coming back! What type of herbicide should I use to get rid of it? I live in Sarasota, Florida.
    Robert Godau

  2. Hi there,

    Im stressed. I’ve lost about 15 plants. I buy 2-3″ starters.
    I think I underwater them…admittedly. see below images. Bad dirt mix or portions? I you tubed all that.
    Western WA.
    Great soil mix–I think

    Best big bright warm window.
    No drainage holes because these are vintage containers to be sold at my vintage trailer rallies. I have marble chips on the bottoms.

    I’m seeing white “frost bitten” look. Or fungus. I have a fan circulating air.
    Not possible. White spots or fuzz. Some growing tall. Did I not plant deep enough?

    Fan blows around too. Should I get a grow light? We don’t get a lot of heat here.
    Is it too bright?

    Could lack of watering be causing ALL of this? [Images were sent to your email richard.succulentcity@gmail.com]

  3. Your information is very helpful, especially the part about the plants soil should be dried out in 1.5 days after watering! Really good to know. I looked at my delosperma this morning and I thought it needed some water, but maybe not!
    I have found that plants ordered online often have a difficult time surviving. They may have been taken as a cutting months before my order was sent and so are compromised to start with. Then, the trip in the belly of an aircraft at 35,000 ft can get pretty chilly. It’s very disappointing to open a package of comparitively very expensive plants to find frozen leaves and very little if any roots. I have spent months nursing babies in their little pots only to have them destroyed by fungus knats. Last summer, I was surprised to find that the local garden centres have much healthier stock at 1/4 the cost! It’s tough though, to accept the unavailability of the more scarce plants on my wish list. It’s taking me a long time to build a collection of healthy specimens. Have propogated a lot of leaves without intending to. Thanks again for saving my succies leaves!

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Posted in Guides & Care Tips