The Art of Repotting Succulents— the Right Way

Repotting Succulents the Right Way

Whether you’ve been a succulent guru for the past ten years or you just purchased your very first succulent plant, knowing how to repot succulents correctly is crucial for long life. Below you will find a step-by-step process on how exactly to repot your succulent, so you can do it successfully. (And have some fun with it).

When Should You Be Repotting Succulents

repotting succulents
Repotting Succulents@succulent.yinn

Here are a few reasons when you should repot your beautiful succulent plants. 

You bought a new succulent plant to add your collection.

When you purchase a beautiful succulent plant at your local store, they usually come in those small, cheap black plastic containers. (You know what i’m talking about). Not only do these plastic containers look hideous in your home, they also obstruct the growth of your succulent plant.

Make sure you repot your succulent after you purchase it with soil and potting mix that is nourishing for your succulent. You don’t want to wait too long before you repot it, I would safely say no more than 2 weeks. (1 week to be certain). We highly recommend using a terra-cotta planter  as they greatly help with moisture. Though, any planter with drainage holes should do.

You have a gut feeling that when watering your succulent, it feels “weird” or “different”.

If your treasured succulent plant seems to dry out quickly shortly after watering it, thus requiring more frequency in watering, it can be a sign that you may need to repot your succulent. Sometimes the planter or pot you utilize may not allow for a good flow for the water to travel around the plant completely.

Also, if your succulent isn’t absorbing the water, this can be another sign that your pot is too small. If it’s too tight and cramped, your succulent won’t be able to fully use it’s roots stress free. Consider a larger pot.

repotting succulents
gorgeous succulent arrangement @succycrazy

Your succulent looks like it’s outgrowing its pot.

If you succulent plant looks like it’s outgrowing the current pot that it’s in, do it a tremendous favor and repot it. (Succulents need room to grow just like you and I). If you see the roots growing out of the bottom of the planter or pot repot it.

Sometimes the plant looks squished within the current pot and this is another sign that you should repot your succulent plant so that it continues to grow healthy. It’s begging for a new home!

You don’t want to upset your succulent plant do you?

Plain and simple, you can’t remember the last time you repotted your flourishing succulent.

If it’s been days, weeks and then years since the last time you repotted (or remembered), this can be a telling sign that it’s time to switch things up.

It’s important to know that when considering repotting, it may not be necessary to actually make a change in the pot or planter itself. You may need to switch things up with the soil and placement rather than the pot or planter.

How Often Should I Repot Succulents

repotting succulents
Succulents @growingwithsucculents

All plants have a different time frames for when they mature out of their current pot, but most plants should be repotted in between 12 and 18 months. Though it’s ideal to repot your succulent plants every 12 to 18 months in order to keep it healthy, there are exceptions.

Some succulent plants can spend a few years in their planters or pots before it requires another change.

PRO TIP— Even if it’s technically not time to repot, make sure you regularly change out the soil. This is SUPER beneficial for the plant. Why? New soil has a bunch of crucial nutrients that the succulents need to survive and thrive! If the soil looks old, change things up a bit. (Change is good).

Spring is growing season for your indoor succulents. Fuel them up with a little more water and new soil. Watch them grow like the beautiful succulents you see on pinterest.

What Supplies Do I Need to Repot Succulents

A New Pot: Make sure it’s larger than the pot you’re transferring the succulent from and has a drainage hole at the bottom (very important). Spice things up a bit and get a fun new funky pot that your succulent and home will love.

New Soil: The nutrients from the new soil will make your plant thrive. Just like us, your succulent plants need rich soil (or food) to grow healthy and go about their daily lives.

A trowel: Don’t know what a trowel is? It’s that little baby shovel! Use it when removing the plant from it’s existing pot. If you’re repotting smaller succulents or propagating buds and seeds, be sure to use metal tweezers to help you plant them effectively and carefully. 

Coffee Filters : Use this to cover the drainage hole, it’s a great inexpensive solution aside from newspaper or the other materials you might use as a filter.

Riseuvo 5 Inch Terra Cotta Pots with Saucer - 6 Pack Clay Flower...
Hoffman 10404 Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix, 4 Quarts,...
Radius Garden 16011 Root Slayer, Trowel, Red
8-12 Cup Basket Coffee Filters (Natural Unbleached, 500)
Riseuvo 5 Inch Terra Cotta Pots with Saucer - 6 Pack Clay Flower...
Hoffman 10404 Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix, 4 Quarts,...
Radius Garden 16011 Root Slayer, Trowel, Red
8-12 Cup Basket Coffee Filters (Natural Unbleached, 500)
-
Riseuvo 5 Inch Terra Cotta Pots with Saucer - 6 Pack Clay Flower...
Riseuvo 5 Inch Terra Cotta Pots with Saucer - 6 Pack Clay Flower...
Hoffman 10404 Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix, 4 Quarts,...
Hoffman 10404 Organic Cactus and Succulent Soil Mix, 4 Quarts,...
Radius Garden 16011 Root Slayer, Trowel, Red
Radius Garden 16011 Root Slayer, Trowel, Red
-
8-12 Cup Basket Coffee Filters (Natural Unbleached, 500)
8-12 Cup Basket Coffee Filters (Natural Unbleached, 500)

Last update on 2021-04-20 / Amazon

repotting succulents
repotting and propagating @succulentsuz

How to Repot Succulents

It’s time for the fun and action of this whole thing… I’m excited, are you?

The Prep Work: Make sure that a day or two before you plan on extracting the succulent from its existing pot, you water it frequently. Check the soil you will be using for the new pot and see if it seems a little dry. If it does, spray it a little bit with some water. Moisture is key in having a successful repotting process.

Step 1: Extract your succulent from the existing pot.

This step can sometimes be tricky, daunting even, but we promise it will be okay. Start by turning the plant sideways then grab the plant at the base of the stem. Tap the bottom of the container and shake it a little bit. If you have to, give the stem some nice and gentle pulls.

If your succulent plant is squished and there’s no way of safely removing the succulent plant out of the pot or planter, you might have to break it. Yes, you’d have to sacrifice the old planter for the new planter.

Gently hammer the planter not to hurt yourself in the process. Extract the beautiful and healthy succulent child you cared for deeply.

repotting succulents
adorable succulent set-up @cultivando_flores_plantas

Step 2: Root work.

Roots are obviously crucial to your succulent, so it’s important we take extra special care of them. If the plant’s roots look like they are tangled and knotted together in a bunch at the base of the plant, try to loosen them. Use your hands to loosen them! Feel free to give them a little trim too.  If you cut, tear, or even break some do not worry. This is not the end of the world. Just do your best to be careful and do this process cautiously, patiently, and calmly.

3. Removing & Replacing Potting Mix.

Remove about ⅓ of the existing old potting mix. Pour a layer of the new soil you bought, which is packed with nutrients that your succulents are going to love! Then place the plant on the new soil. Once you make sure that it’s centered, add more mix around the base of the plant until it sits straight up without you holding it. Make sure you do not put too much of the mix in the planter so that the roots can breathe!

You also do not want to put soil to the tippy top of the pot because when you try to water it, it will overflow and make a mess. (It happens to the best of us). 

4. Water your succulent.

Make sure you water your succulent well! This is a major problem if you don’t do it correctly. We wrote an article with over 2000 shares to help you understand how to water your succulents to be healthy and thriving.

Give it more water than usual, this is because it will drain through the entire pot and all of the soil.

ALSO READ:

repotting succulents
nautical succulent pots @curso_lembrancinhasplantas

There you have it! How to repot your succulent plants the right way. If you haven’t already be sure to check out our other articles, you’ll probably get a kick out of the 12 minimalistic succulent planters we have too. Or check out Air Plants vs Succulent Plants and Why is My Succulent Rotting to enhance your succulent knowledge!

Feeling inspired to own every succulent you can get your hands on?! (don’t feel bad, we do too) We have an awesome opportunity to fulfill your succulent dreams. Have you heard of Succulents Box? They offer more than 200 varieties of succulents, that are organically grown in California, along with monthly subscription boxes of fresh succulents and air plants! Starting at just $5/month, you could be on your way to creating a beautiful succulent garden, all from the comfort of shopping at home! Click this link to learn more about Succulents Box and start your subscription today!

Thanks for reading, be sure to share your re-potting photos in our exclusive Facebook group, Succulent City Plant Lounge, where thousands of succulent lovers would love to see!

Enjoyed learning about Repotting Succulents? If so, you’ll really enjoy the ebook about Replanting Practices to Keep Your Succulents Safe. With this ebook, you’ll find yourself more detailed answers that’ll help your succulent grow even better! With thousands of succulent lovers enjoying our ebooks, you don’t want to miss out on what works the best to grow your succulents.

Happy planting!

How to Propagate Succulents Successfully

How to Propagate Succulents

It’s a lot more cost-effective to grow your own succulents. Fortunately, succulents naturally come equipped with an amazing ability regrow from leaves or branches… and that means free plants!

There are three primary methods of succulent propagation, each of them easier than the last!

Leaf Propagation

If you’ve ever seen leaf propagation in action, you probably understand at least part of the fascination surrounding succulents. People love taking pictures of their leaf props – and for good reason! Nothing is more satisfying for a plant parent than seeing a whole new succulent grow from a mere leaf.

It may seem that you need a green thumb to pull off this amazing feat, but nothing could be further from the truth. Propagating succulents from leaves is very easy. All you have to do is pull the leaf off.

… And you’re done! No, seriously, that’s all there is to it. If you remove the leaf, nature will take care of the rest. For the sake of thoroughness, however, I’ll add some details.

  1. It’s vital that you get a clean break when separating the leaf from the succulent. That means there should be no extra plant matter left on the leaf or stem. This isn’t difficult to achieve since succulent leaves don’t really need to be persuaded to fall off (looking at you, Ghost Plant).
  2. To ensure you get that clean break, grab the leaf close to the base and wiggle it gently side to side. There shouldn’t be much “pulling” involved.
  3. Now that they’re separated, both the mother plant and the leaf have an open wound. You have to let it “callus” over (that’s the plant version of scabbing). Just set the leaf in a dry place and wait a week, a dish on the windowsill works great. (we highly recommend these propagation trays by Yield Lab). Don’t expose it to water during this period – that will slow or impair the callus formation and could allow bacteria or fungi to infect the succulent.
  4. Once the mother plant is callused, resume watering and treat it like normal. The leaf doesn’t need any special attention at the moment. Don’t water the leaf propagation until roots appear. It’s pointless since they can’t drink water without roots anyway. You may want to refer to our article about when you should water succulents if you need more information.
  5. You can put the leaf on dirt at any point, but don’t try burying it (or its roots). The succulent will take care of it.
  6. Once the roots show up, endeavor to keep them moist. Use a spray bottle to mist the leaf every couple of days. (Enter the quintessential, super affordable succulent tool kit). Keep the propagation in bright light so that the new growth doesn’t become etiolated (stretched out).
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Yield Lab 10 x 20 Inch Black Plastic Propagation Tray (5 Pack)...
Yield Lab 10 x 20 Inch Black Plastic Propagation Tray (5 Pack)...
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$18.00
LepoHome 15 Pieces Succulent Transplanting Mini Garden Hand Tool...
LepoHome 15 Pieces Succulent Transplanting Mini Garden Hand Tool...
$11.99

Last update on 2021-04-20 / Amazon

That’s pretty much it! It really is as simple as pulling the leaves and chucking them on some dirt. All of the nutrients, and most of the water, that they need is inside the leaf itself. After a few months, that leaf will shrivel up and fall off. Now you’ve got a whole new succulent for the cost of one leaf!

Be aware that this only works on succulents that have distinct stems and distinct leaves. Succulents like Echeveria, Sedum, Senecio, and Graptopetalum all make great candidates. If you try this with an Aloe or a Haworthia, for example, you’ll end up with a dead leaf and disappointment. Only do it if the leaf comes off easily!

Image by:@misucculents

 

Cutting Propagation

Anyone with a modicum of gardening experience will have used this technique before. It’s a trick as old as plants themselves. You cut off a part of a succulent and stick it back into the dirt and it just starts growing again.

Crazy, right?

Succulents have an even easier time of this than other plants. With herbs and veggies, you sometimes have to coax out new roots by putting the cutting in water for a while first, but that is not so with succulents.

Here’s how you propagate succulents via cuttings:

  1. Choose where to make the cut. It needs to be near the end of the branch or stem, usually 3 to 6 inches away is appropriate. You’ll also want to make sure that the plant is growing and healthy here – propagating a weak or dying plant is a recipe for failure.
  2. Clear the stem above the intended cut. Remove leaves one to two inches above the place you want to cut for two reasons: you’re going to put that part underground and also it makes it easier to get a good cut. Bonus tip – depending on the plant, you might be able to propagate succulents leaves!
  3. Make a clean cut perpendicular to the stem (the stem should be flat on top, not diagonal at all). Be sure to use really sharp, really sterile scissors. That part is important because dull scissors will crush the plant while cutting it, which makes it less likely to recover. Dirty scissors transfer germs directly into the wound – that’s no good. I highly recommend using gardening scissors or shears for this process. These gardening pruning shears by Vivoson are really really good!
  4. Allow the mother plant and the cutting to callus just as we did for leaves in the above technique. It should take between 3-10 days. Don’t let them get wet but keep them in direct light.
  5. Stick the bottom of the cutting into the dirt up to the place where the leaves start. Depending on the species of succulent, roots should start growing within a month and you can begin to water. There will be enough water in the plant already to sustain it until then.

 

We also recommend making sure you are using quality succulent soil. We highly recommend this soil mix by Bonsai Jack. It is one of the best soil mixes on the market. It doesn’t need to be mixed with any other soil, it helps fight root rot, perfectly pH Balanced & is pathogen-free (ie: won’t kill your plants). This soil is the go-to for our office plants. 

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Bonsai Jack Succulent and Cactus Soil - Jacks Gritty Mix #111-1...
VIVOSUN 6.5 Inch Gardening Hand Pruner Pruning Shear with...
Bonsai Jack Succulent and Cactus Soil - Jacks Gritty Mix #111-1...
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$6.99
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VIVOSUN 6.5 Inch Gardening Hand Pruner Pruning Shear with...
VIVOSUN 6.5 Inch Gardening Hand Pruner Pruning Shear with...
$6.99
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Bonsai Jack Succulent and Cactus Soil - Jacks Gritty Mix #111-1...
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$21.95

Last update on 2021-04-20 / Amazon

In summary, snip off a bit of the succulent and stick it in the ground. It couldn’t be easier. This method only works with plants that have a pronounced stem, however. Sorry Aloe and Haworthia, that means you’re not eligible. Many of the plants we suggested for leaf propagation are also great choices here: Echeveria, Sedum, Graptosedum, Graptopetalum, etc.

This method is particularly useful because it addresses two problems:

  • It “fixes” etiolated plants. When plants have insufficient light and grow leggy, that can’t be undone. You can, however, snip out the leggy part and plant the top part again to have two plants – the base of the original (which will resume growth) and a cutting. Just make sure they get enough light this time!
  • It’s the fastest way to get new plants. Growing new succulents from leaves is easy and efficient, but slow. It could take up to a year to get a decent sized plant. Cuttings root and grow more quickly than leaf propagations (plus they start out bigger).
Image by: @growingwithsucculents

Budding Propagation

It’s finally time for Aloe to shine!

Ever notice how some plants just grow more of themselves? Sempervivum are famous for it – that’s why they’re commonly called Hens and Chicks. Haworthia do it too, as do Sansevieria. It’s a very common kind of propagation and not at all unique to succulents. It’s how grass gets around, too.

The baby plants are called “buds” or “pups” or “offshoots”. They usually grow out of the base of the mother plant and share a connected root system.

Propagating plants that reproduce through budding is a double-edged sword – on one hand, you literally don’t have to do anything at all, but on the other hand you have to wait for the plant to propagate on its own.

Being at the whim of your plants isn’t so bad, though. Keep them happy and healthy and buds should grow constantly throughout their growing season. Removing and replanting them is very similar to the process of take a cutting:

  1. First, you have to wait until they’re big enough to remove. It varies from species to species, but once they’re at least an inch or two in diameter (or several inches tall for the vertical variety of succulents).
  2. Find where the pup connects to the parent. It is probably either at the base of the primary stem or connected through a thick root called a “runner”. It’s okay to unpot the plant while you’re propagating it.
  3. Using the same technique we used for cutting propagations, make a clean cut where the bud meets the mother plant. If they share roots, give a generous portion to the baby when separating them. The mother plant can make more easily.
  4. Move the bud directly into a new pot, no need to wait for callusing this time. Still, you shouldn’t water it for a few days while it heals over.

Budding is also the way to propagate succulents like cacti, so you can use this method on them too!

Inevitably, you’ll have way too many plants – especially if you are rehoming every bud that comes along. These cute little succulents make great gifts and have the added bonus of subtly converting friends to hobby. You can get some gift ideas by looking at this article about succulent planters. You can find a style your friends or family are sure to love.

ALSO READ:

 


 

 We hope you got some pointers on how to keep your plant family healthy! If you did, please take a moment to SHARE on Facebook or PIN US on Pinterest with the social buttons below!

Enjoyed learning about Propagating Succulents? If so, you’ll really enjoy our ebook titled The Right Way to Propagating Succulents Successfully! With this ebook, you’ll find yourself more detailed answers that’ll you have greater success with propagating! With thousands of succulent lovers enjoying our ebooks, you don’t want to miss out on what works the best to grow your succulents.

Do you have any propagation tips or tricks? Share them with us in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

If you enjoyed reading our blog about succulent propagation check out our other articles! Enhance your succulent knowledge with 6 Best Indoor Succulents, 6 Edible Succulents to Excite Your Taste Buds, or Household Items You Can use as Succulent Planters.

Your Ultimate Guide on How to Care for Air Plants

The Ultimate Guide on How to Care for Air Plants

Racking your brains trying to come up with the best ways to care for air plants? Or just want to learn how to care for air plants before committing to buying some?

Make no mistake about it –air plants are not your ordinary kind of house plants. Although caring for air plants can’t get any easier, there are specific conditions that ensure tillandsia plants grow healthy.

Air plants are generally hard to kill and this makes even the most inexperienced gardeners seem like a gardening connoisseur when growing these plants. And that’s not all. Air plants have ridiculously few requirements not to mention the endless, creative ways to display them.

If you’ve been looking for something unusual to grace your living room décor, then you might find lots of luck with air plants. Terrariums, aeriums, bowls, seashells and even wire crafts are some of the many display ideas to show off your air plants.

So whether you’re a busy gardener or a recent house plant convert, caring for tillandsia plants is quite a snap. Let’s learn how!

But first…

What exactly are air plants?

Ultimate guide how to take care of air plants
air plant on driftwood @airplantartisan

What are Air Plants?

Air plants are naughty rule breakers. They don’t give a succulent about soil and pots with drainage holes!

These weirdos can grow anywhere as long as there is air, water and light. They’re epiphytes –a cool name to refer to plants that grow on hosts but don’t obtain nutrients from them. Air plants just use these plants for anchorage and support using their roots. Talk about clingy plants!

Yes, they got roots but they don’t use that to absorb water and nutrients. The roots are simply to attach to the host plants. So how the heck do these plants get their water and nutrients?

Leaves.

Wait, those thin, spiky tendrils? That’s right. These leaves possess fine hairs on the surface known as trichomes which actively absorb water and nutrients from the air.

Cool, right?

Also known as tillandsia, air plants hail from the tropical forests of Mexico where they grow on other plants as epiphytes. These have now been tamed and are popular living room aesthetics due to their fascinating looks. And since they don’t need dirt, they can be displayed in a myriad of ways.

Although mostly green in color, they usually come in different shades including silver which are believed to be more drought resistant. If all go well, they produce showy, teensy flowers during spring or summer.

air plant guide
pink & green air plant @tillandsia_bangkok

5 Reasons Why You Need a Tillandsia Plant

  • Your living room or office décor will love it! They’re quite unlike any plant. The spiky tendrils set them apart and makes them look just so awesome! And beautiful.
  • You don’t have to worry about what type of soil or potting mix is required. Air plants are dirt independent! Air plants can be displayed almost anywhere! Tillandsia plants are not bound by anything.
  • They’re extremely low maintenance. Any forgetful farmer can have a whale of a time growing air plants. It’s super simple!
  • Air plants take up very little space. These dainty plants economize on space and one can have many of them without worrying about where to place them.
  • Air plants pair up gorgeously with succulents and other house plants.

Caring for air plants is a breeze if you ask me. Take note of the following pointers to have outstanding tillandsia plants all around your home, office, or room.

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Ultimate guide on how to take care of air plants
hanging air plant @airplantartisan

Is Airflow Important for Air Plants?

Yes.

Air plants are created in such a way that they thrive in environments with a free flow of air. This is simply because they absorb nutrients and water from the air in their native environment.

Side note: Air plants in glass terrariums look absolutely fabulous, just take a look at our favorite golden terrarium for air plants.

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However, ensure the mouth is wide enough to ensure the plants are not suffocating inside. You definitely don’t want to end up with an empty terrarium.

Stuffing tillandsia plants in an air-deprived environment is only preparing them for failure. And hey, we’re not saying you buy a blower or a fan just for your air plants. That would be outrageous!

Just ensure they’re getting adequate airflow wherever you display them. In other words, they shouldn’t feel as if they’re claustrophobic. They’re called air plants for a reason, right?

air plant guide
garden of air plants @airplanthub

How to Water Air Plants

A common air plant faux pax is that these plants absorb all the water and nutrients from the air and so they don’t need to be watered. That’s a big fat lie.

Don’t fall for it!

Living room and office environments are nothing compared to the forests where these plants are native. The former has dry air while the latter is humid and a perfect environment for air plants to thrive in.

Watering air plants doesn’t have to be college algebra, who remembers those days? However, doing it the wrong way may kill your tillandsia plants. It’s much harder to kill these plants by under watering rather than overwatering. 

Ultimate guide to taking care of air plants
tiny air plant @reipy_s

What type of water is good for air plants?

Since tillandsia plants get most of their nutrients from water, it’s paramount to feed them with nutritious water. Of course, the best bet is rainwater as it contains a lot of nutrients and minerals. Take a look at this highly-rated rainwater collection system from Oatey if you want to give this a shot.

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Unfortunately, this might not be readily available in many households. An awesome alternative may be spring water as it contains numerous nutrients. If that seems far-reaching as well, you can go for well water, creek water, pond water or lake water. Tap water is a good option too.

Avoid distilled water because it is deprived of all minerals and nutrients, your air plant definitely doesn’t want this.

air plant guide
colorful air plant @airplanthub

Misting your air plants

Air plants growing in a dry climatic environment will benefit greatly from regular spritzing using a normal spray bottle. If you’re not normal, check out this really cool vintage glass spray bottle, it could be a great decoration item too! Keep in mind though, spritzing your air plant occasionally can’t be used as a sole watering method, there’s a better way.

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It must be complemented with other watering methods as trichomes can’t absorb adequate water from misting alone. Think about it, on hot summer days a good misting will cool us down normally but not until we get a refreshing bottle of cold water will it help dramatically.

Same thing with air plants, misting will help alleviate dehydration for only a few, use more adequate watering techniques below to compliment misting.

air plant guide
flourishing air plant @sgfloraandfauna

Dunking your air plants in water

The Perfect on-the-go watering method for busy times.

If you don’t have enough time to give your plant a soak, then this is the best way to water your plants until you get time to properly water them. Simply dunk your plants several times in a pool of water for about 20 minutes and you’re done. Using bright colored buckets like these might make the watering process more fun!

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Ultimate guide on taking care of air plants at home
air plant sprouting @ryokumouzoku

Soaking your air plant for an hour

The most recommended watering method to end up with healthy plants.

Submerge your plants in a bowl or sink full of water and let them sit for an hour. Don’t submerge blooms as they can get destroyed. After the bath, pull them out and set them upside down so that all water can dry out before returning them to their displays.

Placing them on a drying rack of some sort will make it easier to achieve full dryness, don’t let your air plant sit on a counter in its own water bath, it won’t dry properly.

Also in terms of frequency, give them a soak once a week.

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air plant guide
flowering air plant @fruitfulnmultiply

How Much Light do Air Plants Need?

Tillandsia plants prefer bright, indirect light for a few hours every day. In the jungle, these plants grow on rocks, woods and other trees away from direct sunlight. Although you can subject them to the morning or evening sun for a few hours, avoid hot direct sun as this will lead to sunburn.

Any window in your house can get the job done in regard to lighting especially west or south-facing windows. Poorly lit spaces will lead to deformed and ugly looking plants. In case natural lighting may not be sufficient, then go for artificial grow lights. We prefer these lights.

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air plant guide
family of air plants @liezestockmans

What Temperature/Climate is Good for Air Plants?

Frost and freezing cold temperatures? No way.

Air plants just won’t survive in such conditions. Let temperatures be above 40 degrees Fahrenheit and that shouldn’t be a biggie if you’re growing your tillandsia plants indoors.

Bring those outdoor plants in when temperatures go below 32 degrees.

Conversely, subjecting your air plants to extremely high temperatures will make them dry and parched, yep even air plants need adequate hydration like us too!

Ultimate guide on taking care of air plants at home
air plant terrarium @planties_in_a_twist

Is Fertilizing Tillandsia Plants Okay?

Air plants do get hungry. The air that is supposed to be a source of nutrients for them is no doubt full of pollutants and toxins. Tillandsia plants will appreciate feeding once a month or four times a year.

Use air plant-specific fertilizer or bromeliad fertilizer. You can also use diluted regular houseplant fertilizer. Add the fertilizer to the water and soak your air plants in it. This is also applicable in misting or dunking.

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Your plants won’t die if you fail to fertilize them. But if you want vivacious and healthy plants, some feeding would go a long way. Don’t be excessive on the frequency though, a little here and there goes a long way!

How Do I Display or Mount Air Plants?

There are dozens of ways to display air plants. You can stick their roots on a wood or a stone using super glue. Popular air plant designs also feature glass baubles which give a stunning aesthetic. Additionally, you can set them on seashells and wire baskets.

When displaying your plants, ensure the display surfaces are free from chemicals, rust, or toxins which may be detrimental to your plants’ health.

air plant guide
pair of air plants @arbora.verd

Do Air Plants Bloom?

Yup.

Air plants can reward you with brilliant blooms if you treat them nicely. With lots of varieties to choose from, it can be a bit tricky to offer a generalized formula to follow for these blooms to occur. Several factors come into play but mainly it all boils down to the variety and the environment.

Tillandsia plants bloom only once in their lifetime. They do this at maturity. The mother produces pups that eventually grow and flower while the mother plant dies off, unfortunately.

To get your air plants to flower, look for plants with a couple of pups. This is because the plant in its maturity stage and will soon bloom.

Air Plants Don’t Have Pests Right?

False.

Fortunately, air plants are hardy and robust and are usually not susceptible to many pests. But, you may have to deal with a few mealybugs and scale insects from time to time. But that shouldn’t be a huge deal. Simply use 70% isopropyl alcohol or neem oil to knock them off their socks!

Ultimate guide in taking care of air plants at home
mounted air plants @planties_in_a_twist

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Think you can handle the air plants now? We think so. If you have any questions be sure to ask our exclusive group at Succulent Plant Lounge, our members here help each other almost daily!

Did this article help answer your succulent-care questions? We sure hope so! If not, no worries. Succulent City is devoted to aiding all succulent lovers, and that’s why we created a line of ebook guides! Check out our in-depth tips on The Most Common Issues Amongst Succulent Growers or even Succulent Drainage Requirements today!

Let us know here on Succulent City if you plan to buy some air plants and which one you want to buy. Thanks for reading with us and of course, happy air planting!

 

How to Water Air Plants

How to Water Air Plants

I know, I know—these cute little plants are just to die for! Don’t have soil? No worries! They don’t need it anyway. They absorb nutrients and water through trichomes which is just a fancy name for the fine hairs located on the leaves. (Kind of like our fine hairs on our arms).

This presents endless possibilities on creative ways to display them. From those adorable teensy terrariums to seashells, or anything really, air plants don’t mind at all.

With their attractive spiky tendrils, these epiphytes are no doubt a got-to-have in every living room. And if you’re a brown thumb looking for some bragging rights, air plants got you covered.

These trendy plants are low-maintenance and so you can get away with some little negligence. Less maintenance and easier to take care of than your traditional succulent plant, count me in!

Losing an air plant is a sad affair. Though hard to kill, these plants will collapse on you due to several reasons. The most common however, is in regard to watering. To have a healthy air plant, the following watering best practices are valuable.

Watering air plants
@ary_plants

What are Air Plants?

Air plants are part of the Tillandsia genus which consists of about 650 species. Native to Mexico and the Americas, air plants are epiphytes, which means they grow on other plants and emerge from stem crevices or tree branches. Their roots can also attach to rocks and other shrubs just for support as the roots can’t take in water or nutrients.

In their native tropical rainforest habitats, air plants survive by absorbing water in the humid environment through their leaves. Unlike other plants, these rule-breakers don’t require dirt to grow, just air.

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Do Air Plants Need Water?

A common myth associated with growing air plants is that since these plants grow in the air, they don’t need water. This is fueled by the fact that they absorb water from the atmosphere and so they can survive long periods with little or no water. If you follow such advice, you’ll soon end up with a withered plant.

While it’s true air plants absorb water from the atmosphere, the environment they’re grown in has a huge bearing on this. Their native tropical rainforest habitats are very humid and they get along pretty well.

In home settings, however, the humidity is nothing close compared to the forests out there and so they have to be watered just like any house plant.

One way to water your air plants is to soak them in water. We recommended using a large bowl like this or something similar.

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Watering air plants
@ary_plants

What Type of Water is Used for Air Plants?

Since air plants don’t grow in soil, they solely depend on water to get their minerals and nutrients. Therefore, the best water for air plants would definitely be rainwater.

Here’s a neat little tool you can use to collect rainwater for your air plants when it rains.

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However, this may not be easily accessible and so you may opt for spring water. You may also use creek water, pond water, well water, or lake water.

If you can’t get a hold of any of these options, then tap water can be utilized. Your last option should be soft or distilled water. It has little nutrients and minerals—not suitable for air plants as they depend on these nutrients for growth.

Mistakes to Avoid when Watering Air Plants

Thanks to the current digital age, it doesn’t take long for misinformation to spread rapidly. And this has been true when it comes to watering air plants.

Hordes of air plant enthusiasts have lost their plants due to such misleading advice. Avoid the following like the plague…

Assuming there’s sufficient water in the air

Don’t let the name “air plant” fool you. Air plants won’t get all the water they need from the air especially when growing in the living room or office.

Sure, they may absorb itty bitty amounts of water through their trichomes but that is nowhere close to what they need to survive. Depending on the climate of your surroundings, you might need to water your air plants once a week.

 

How to water air plants the right way
@thetipsygardener

Excess humidity due to wet bed

Nothing spells disaster for air plants more quickly than a wet bed. They’ll be susceptible to rot. Planting air plants with plants that require constant moisture like moss plants is not recommended. Air plants flourish on dry medium. Avoid very enclosed containers as this may lead to increased moisture leading to rot.

Ways to Water Air Plants

Watering air plants doesn’t have to be a high-brow process. The following ways are ideal when it comes to watering air plants.

Misting

If you live in an arid area, your plants will appreciate periodic spritzing using a spray bottle similar to this.

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It’s important to note that this method can’t stand in as the only means to watering your plants. It should only complement other watering methods. The trichomes on the leaves are unable to absorb enough water through misting.

Dunking

If your plants are thirsty and you’re in a rush, you can give them a quick drink to last them the whole day by dunking them in water.

To do this, just submerge the plant in water once or a few more times and they’ll be good until you have enough time to give them a thorough drink. Like a short swim!

Tips for watering air plants
@zoiascreations

Soaking

Giving your plants a full bath is the best way to water your plants.

This ensures that trichomes have enough time to absorb water and nutrients. To properly soak your plants, fill a bowl with water and fully submerge your air plants.

For much bigger air plants and depending on their number too, you can opt for the bathtub or sink. Be extra gentle with air plants that have blooms and don’t submerge the buds. Let the plants stay soaked in the water for at least one hour, on a weekly basis on the minimum side.

To remove the plant from the water, hold it from the base and pull it upside down, shaking it gently to get rid of excess water. Use water at room temperature to avoid shocking your plant.

Drying Air Plants

Once you’ve figured out how to successfully water your plants, what follows is leaving them to dry out right after their bath time. Lay them on a colander, towel or a dish drying rack and set them in a brightly lit area for two to four hours.

Also, ensure the area has plenty of air circulation—they’re air plants, remember?

Only return your plants to their display after they’re fully dry to prevent water from accumulating inside the plant which will ultimately result in rotting.

How Frequently Should I Water my Air Plant?

Watering air plants at home
@airplantdesignstudio

This largely depends on the climate in your area.

While air plants grown in humid areas may do well with watering only once a week, those in drier areas may need frequent soaking. You can also look for dehydration evidence on your plants.

A parched air plant has curly leaves with a dull color while a hydrated plant has open and wide leaves.

But for those that want to, it’s actually not that hard to care for and water air plants. Let us know if you end up trying to care for some air plants, we’ll have more articles about this soon. In the meantime, happy planting!

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Think you’ll give air plants a try now? If not, here’s some rare succulents you can check out.

Has this helped you at all? Be sure to share with a fellow green thumb, i’m sure the info will help them too!

If you’d like this read you’re going to love our full in-depth ebooks! With so many of our succulent lovers asking for more, we listened and can’t wait to share it with you here! With our very detailed ebooks, you’ll get more information than these short articles, some ebooks are 30+ pages, perfect for a weekend read.

How to Trim Succulents Successfully (Guide)

How to Trim Succulents

Trimming your succulents sounds a little intimidating—who wants to take a sharp knife to their favorite plants? But your succulents can really benefit from a light trim every now and then, just like your hair!

Trimming down your succulents helps maintain their shape so that they don’t get too tall, leggy, or overgrown. If you want your succulents to look cute and compact, you’re going to have to get comfortable cutting into them!

But don’t worry—trimming your succulents is easier and less scary than you think, and we’re going to guide you through the whole process. Keep reading if you want to learn how to trim succulents!

How to trim your Succulent
Time for a trimming @concrete_gardens

When to Trim Your Succulents

The best time to trim your succulents is at the beginning of their growing season. Most succulents experience new growth in the spring, so ideally that’s when you should trim them.

Spring is the best time to prune your succulents, with a set of pruning shears like these, because they tend to get leggy and long during the winter. Succulents often start growing tall when they’re not getting enough sunlight. They reach and stretch towards the nearest light source to try to get closer. This causes them to lose their nice and compact shape. This tends to happen more frequently in the winter when the days are shorter and there’s not as much sunlight streaming through the windows.

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Ideal for cutting stems and light branches. An easy-open lock protects the blade during transport and storage.

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To fix this problem, you’ll actually have to behead your succulents! It sounds scary, but it’s super easy to do. Your succulent will be better off afterward! Here’s how to do it.

How to trim your Succulent
Sprouting succulent @iamursucculent

Beheading Succulents

Branching succulents like Echeveria, Crassula, Aeonium, or Graptopetalum tend to benefit the most from beheading. If you have an Echeveria that’s looking tall and overgrown, it’s time to break out the shears and cut off its head! Once you remove the top of your succulent, you can replant it in the soil and it won’t look so stretched out and leggy anymore.

Grab a sharp pair of shears or a gardening knife. You should also wear a pair of gloves—some succulents have thorns and others have milky sap that can be irritating to your skin. Better safe than sorry!

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Before you start, you should also have some rubbing alcohol on hand to sterilize your cutting tool. Rub your shears down with alcohol before you start cutting to prevent your plant from becoming infected. It’s advisable to also clean and sterilize your shears before using them on any of your other plants. If the first plant you cut is infected, you don’t want it to spread to the other plants in your collection!

We also found the rubbing alcohol helps with purging pesky mealybugs. Read our article, How to Get Rid of Mealybugs, to find out more.

How to Trim Succulents
Have you mastered trimming your succulents yet? @thesimplygoodlife

Now take a look at your plant and decide where you want to make your cut. The cut should be an inch or two below where the rosette or top growth of your succulent ends. You want to include a little bit of stem so your plant doesn’t topple over when you go to plant it, but not so much that your plant will stick too far out of the soil as it did before.

The cut on the stem should be straight across or at a slight angle. It’s been noted that cutting it at an angle decreases the chances of infection, but we’re not sure how scientifically accurate that is!

Keep the leftover stem instead of discarding it. If you replant it, it might just sprout some new growth!

Leave the stem and the top of your plant out to dry for a few days, and then plant them in some succulent soil. Use a spray bottle, like this one, to moist the dry soil near your plants with water. This will encourage them to root. Then after a few weeks when they take root, you can water them normally.

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To make sure that you develop promising water- scheduling to keep the soil with optimum moisture. You might want to refer to our article about watering succulents

Make sure you move them to a sunny spot once they’re rooted. You wouldn’t want them to start growing tall and stretching out again because you placed them somewhere without enough sunlight!

 

How to trim your Succulent
Helping them keep that compact shape @oursuccielife

Other Reasons to Trim Your Succulents

Another reason why you might want to trim your succulent is to redirect its new growth. You can train some succulents to grow the way you want just by trimming them. If you see a branch or bud that’s growing in the right direction, trim your succulent right above it and it should start growing that way. This technique is often used with woody succulents like jade plants to help shape them.

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You can also trim succulents, like jade plants, to keep them small. To do this, you should cut back the entire plant. You can remove up to a third of its size once a year in the spring. Cut all of its branches back to the size you want, making sure your cuts are near a leaf or lateral branch.

Another reason why you might need to often trim your succulents is to remove any dead, diseased, or damaged parts. Succulents are pretty good at compartmentalizing the damage from diseases and keeping them from spreading, but you should still cut off any infected parts. You don’t want to risk it!

Removing dead leaves and plant matter from your succulents will let them stay healthy and help promote new growth. So make sure you remove them every fall and spring! Get a pair of precise tweezers, like these, to ensure you’re grabbing only what you need. These tweezer came in handy so many times for us here in the office, we saved so many succulents this way.

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How to trim your Succulent
Variation of succulents @vibeyourway

That’s all you need to know to trim your succulents, give them new growth, and keep them looking compact, cute and healthy!

If you need to trim your succulents this spring, use our advice, and let us know how it goes!

If you’re in search of what additional tools can be used when tending to your succulent babies, we have an article about the best gardening tools for succulents. Stock up on all the necessities, we just recently did from Prime Day.

By the way, we know Prime Day is over now but we still want to mention… This post is sponsored by Amazon Audible! They are offering all of our Succulent City community an exclusive offer of 2 FREE Ebooks when signing up for a free trial! You can sign up for a free trial here! What could be more relaxing than listening to your favorite book while tending to your succulents?

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And if you have any more questions about trimming succulents, you can ask them in the Succulent City Plant Lounge. There are tons of other succulent lovers in there who can answer your questions and help you out!

If you liked this one, you’re going to love our full in-depth ebooks! With so many of our succulent lovers asking for more, we listened and can’t wait to share it with you here! With our very detailed ebooks, you’ll get more information than these short articles, some ebooks are 30+ pages, perfect for a weekend read.

Happy planting!

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