What To Know About Succulent Flowers

succulent flowers featured image

Succulents come in all shapes and sizes. They have diverse care needs and morphologies, and nowhere do these differences play out like in their flowers. Some succulents bloom while others don’t, some flowers grow to maturity, and others fall off easily. Some succulent flowers are small and lowly, adding nothing to the plant’s appearance. There are still succulents that develop showy flowers that are the main attraction to the succulent. Blooming times also vary from plant to plant, and the conditions that facilitate blooming are different in various plants.

Morphology of Succulent Flowers

Let’s talk about the physical parts of a succulent flower, which includes succulent flower stalks, sepal, petal, and pistils/stamen. Normally, I only see a succulent flower as a whole. Now, we separate them into detailed visible parts:

Succulent Stalks: Or you can call them ‘stems’. They’re like the plant’s backbone. They’re often thick and hold water for the flowers to survive in dry places.

Succulent Sepals: Sepals are like the flower’s guards. They’re usually green and protect the baby flower before it opens. In some succulents, these guards can be chubby and store water, which helps the plant when it’s dry.

Succulent Petals: Succulent petals are the showstoppers of the flower. They can be thick and juicy and come in many colors and shapes. These petals are like the flower’s invitation to bugs and butterflies for a party.

Succulent Pistils/ Stamens: This part decides if your succulent is male or female (in human terms, haha). The pistil is the girl part of the flower, consisting of three parts: stigma (the sticky part on top), style (a little tube), and ovary (baby seeds). On the other hand, stamens are the boy parts of the flower with anther (pollen holder) and filament. When the pollen lands on the pistil, a new plant is created.

These parts make new succulent plants and bring in the beauty overall.

Succulent flowers infographic

However, different succulents have different flower morphological characteristics. Graptopetalums, for example, produce star-shaped flowers that grow on woody stalks. The succulent flower stalk grows from the center of the rosette and matures in time for the flower to bloom. The stalk dries up when the flower finally dries up, and they remain standing. Removing the dried-up stalk in readiness for the next flowering season is advisable. Other succulents, such as euphorbias, flower directly from the stalk. It is advisable to find information on the type of flowers the succulents you are interested in will produce.

Monocarpic vs Polycarpic Succulents

There are two types of succulents as far as flowering is concerned, monocarpic and polycarpic succulents. Monocarpic succulents are the ones that flower only once before dying. On the other hand, their polycarpic counterparts are perennial plants that bloom every season.

The cute little succulents, such as Sempervivum and the Aeonium species, are some of the best-known monocarpic succulents. Every monocarpic plant produces offsets before flowering to continue with the lineage after they die.

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How To Encourage Succulents To Bloom With These Caring Conditions

Flowering a succulent is one of the most energy-intensive processes. For your plant to produce flowers as expected, follow these conditions:

Sunlight: Succulents that flower in summer usually need five to six hours of sunlight (either direct or indirect). If you expose a succulent to excessive/ inadequate sunlight, there will not be flowers. Having enough light is essential.

Soil: Succulents from different families may vary in soil needs, but they all prefer well-draining soil. Providing your succulent with previous soil protects it from root rot – the leading cause for succulents not blooming.

Water: Water is critical in nurturing succulent flowers. You should ensure they get sufficient water in their flowering season. However, overwatering is unsuitable. Don’t water until the top three inches of the substrate are dry. Keep watering in this cycle until the flowers dry up.

Fertilizer: Flowering requires a lot of minerals. You will need to apply fertilizer monthly in the flowering season. Diluting fertilizers to half-strength is helpful.

Encourage succulent flowers to bloom infographic.

Furthermore, it would help if you went for fertilizers with a high phosphorus content. Phosphorus is the second number of the three-part fertilizer ratio.

Pruning: Pruning may play an essential role in flowering. When a succulent has redundant suckers, they divert resources to other parts instead of flowering. Pruning the redundant suckers helps propagate new plants, allows focus resources and more air circulation into the foliage, facilitating blooming.

Pests and Diseases: Succulents aren’t very susceptible to diseases and pests. Using a well-draining substrate, you can easily manage it and water the plant accordingly. Pests such as mealybugs, scale insects, aphids, slugs, etc., can also attack your succulent. An infestation of pests and diseases reduces the plant’s ability to flower effectively.

Examples Of Succulents That Bloom

Like in all other plants, flowering is a reproductive process in succulents. The flowers mature, give way to fruits, and seed for propagation. The time of blooming differs from succulent to succulent. However, you find plants across a particular genus flowering simultaneously.

A few examples of common succulent and their flowering times are as follows.

  1. Echeverias: They bloom towards the end of spring and at the beginning of summer. Sometimes, they flower in the fall.
  2. Aloe vera: Most aloe varieties bloom in summer, but a few types bloom in winter and fall.
  3. Jade Plants, Hoya, Rhipsalis, and Kalanchoe: These flower in the fall and winter in most instances.
succulent flower 2

There is a time when most succulents in a genus bloom. However, species in a particular genus will likely be outliers and flower in entirely different seasons. This is especially true with prominent genera such as echeverias, which have hundreds of species. Smaller species are unlikely to have significant deviations. Some species of succulents can flower all year round if conditions are in place. Some Crassulas (Jade plants) fall under this category; Crassulas will flower any time of the year as long as there is enough warmth and sunlight.

For more information of succulent with flowers, the next section is for you!

My Lists Of Succulents With Colorful Flowers

Succulents can produce flowers in a variety of colors. Some succulents, like Echeverias and Kalanchoes, are known for their vibrant and diverse flower colors, including shades of red, pink, yellow, orange, and even purple. The specific flower color depends on the species and variety of the succulent. Succulent City has compiled lists of succulent flowers in different colors. See the list below:

Questions I Often Get Asked About Succulent Flowers

I thought this topic would not be having many questions. But I was wrong. Here are a few questions I often see people ask me through email or on Reddit:

1. Do all succulents bloom?

Most succulents have the potential to burst into bloom, but it’s not guaranteed. Some of my succulents, depending on their variety, have delighted me with flowers every year, while others keep me waiting. Maybe the plant is too young, or need a bit of fertilizer, or you keep it where there is not enough light, … It could be any reason that keeps your succulent bloom from growing. You should check my lists of succulents with colorful flowers above. They are succulents that can definitely bloom.

2. What to do with succulent flowers?

To be honest, I was quite surprised when I received this question. What to do? Just enjoy it. You can take pictures of it, touch it whenever you like. You may want to prune off the dead/ withered bloom to make the succulent look tidier. You can always make a keepsake out of a beautiful flower like a succulent flower.

3. What to do with a succulent flower stalk?

Congratulations! When your succulent starts producing stalks, you are raising it right. The plant must have enough nutrients to grow a stalk and have blooms. There is nothing to do there. Just sit there and wait for the bloom to come. Or if your stalk never blooms, it might be the sign of you giving up on it. Pay more attention!

4. Should you cut off succulent blooms?

I think when you have this question, you possibly do not expect a bloom from your succulents. It must be the first time you see that. One good day, your succulent starts having a long stalk, then comes a beautiful bloom. It is completely normal to have this succulent bloom and there is no need to remove it. However, if you want to cut them off, there will be no harm for your succulent.

Don’t Leave So Soon …

This article provides general succulent information, but understanding a specific plant’s nuances is helpful. For example, you will most likely find the succulent you love. While succulents are mainly grown for their foliage, flowers enhance their appearance and aid in propagation through seed production. Learning about your succulent’s blooming cycle and needs can help you effectively propagate them at home. Are you interested in reading more about succulent parts? Here are some more articles:

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!

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