Here’s the deal on How to Water Succulents.
Many people think it’s best when growing succulent plants to give them a small amount of water occasionally.
Some even try watering succulents using a spray bottle.
These are both bad ideas.
Although succulents and cacti can survive on tiny amounts of water occasionally, this is not optimal.
If you want your succulents to thrive, you should water them thoroughly and rarely.
In this article, we explain the right way to water succulents and provide smart tips to ensure your success.
What Damage Does Improper Watering Cause?
Cactus and succulents are generally very trouble-free plants, but overwatering is a sure way to cause and attract problems.
Overwatered succulents are subject to root rot and are more attractive to pests.
These plants are extremely susceptible to stem and root rot and any excess water left standing at the base of a saucer can increase the chances of rot.
You are far more likely to kill your succulents with too much water than with too little.
Even so, every living being needs water, and it is possible for a succulent to die of thirst.
Hitting the right balance between drought and flood is important.
What Are The Best Succulent Watering Practices?
Throughout your succulent’s normal growing season, provide regular watering as well as fertilizing.
For most succulents, the growth period lasts from early spring and into the autumn. In the wintertime, succulents typically rest.
Generally speaking, you should check the moisture condition of your succulents every two or three weeks.
This is easy to do. Poke your finger into the top inch of the soil.
If no soil clings to your finger when you pull it out, you know that the soil is dry.
Another way to check on the water condition of succulents is to be familiar with how much the pot weighs when the soil is dry as opposed to how much it weighs when the soil is wet.
During the growing season, you can’t go wrong by allowing the soil to dry out completely between waterings and then watering thoroughly.
During the plant‘s rest period, water less often and sparingly.
Throughout the plant’s growing season, provide succulents with very diluted (1/4 strength) balanced liquid fertilizer at every watering.
Balanced fertilizers contain equal proportions of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
The best choice in fertilizer for succulents is a 10 – 10 – 10 combination that has been diluted to 1/4 the recommended strength.
How Often Should You Water Succulents?
The watering schedule will vary depending on the season and how much sun your plants get.
Plants kept in full sun will dry out quicker than those growing in filtered sunlight.
Generally speaking, succulents and all cacti must be watered more often during the growing season, which is spring and summer for most.
In the wintertime when the weather is cool and the days are shorter, most succulents will rest.
They’ll remain alive, but they won’t grow at all.
During this time, water no more often than once a month.
If you overwater you’re sure to cause root rot.
Of course, if you’re keeping your succulents indoors as houseplants in a heated room, they will need to be watered more often than if you’re overwintering them outside or in an unheated garage.
No matter how or where you overwinter your succulents, don’t give them any fertilizer during the winter months.
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How To Water Succulents In Planters With Drainage Holes?
During the growing season, check your succulent’s water condition about once a week.
If you find the soil is completely dry, soak it thoroughly. Allow water to run through the pots’ drainage hole, but don’t allow the pot to sit in water.
How Do You Water Succulents In Planters Without Drainage Holes?
If your planter does not have drainage holes, be sure to familiarize yourself with the dry vs. the wet weight of the planter and substrate.
Water when it reaches its dry weight, but don’t overdo it. The substrate should be moist, not soggy.
What’s The Best Water For Succulents?
Be careful about the type of water you give your succulent plants.
If your tap water is very hard or alkaline, it will introduce a lot of minerals to your plants’ soil.
With time, the minerals will build up, and this can harm your plants.
Repotting annually with all fresh substrate can help prevent a dangerous build-up of minerals.
You may also wish to water your succulents with filtered, bottled or rainwater. If it snows where you live, melt some snow in the wintertime.