Succulents are popular plants known for their ability to thrive in diverse environments, including indoor spaces. Growing them indoors can add a touch of green to your house, office, or other indoor space. However, indoor growing requires specific care and attention to ensure the plants thrive.
Following the simple steps outlined in this article, you can enjoy the beauty and benefits of growing succulents indoors. With their low-maintenance requirements and unique appearance, succulents are an excellent choice for any indoor gardener, regardless of experience level.
The Main Things To Remember When Growing Succulents Indoors
Start with the right soil and potting mix, as these plants require excellent drainage. Choose a pot with a drainage hole to prevent water from pooling, as this causes root rot.
Succulents need plenty of sunlight to grow properly, so place them in a bright, sunny spot in your home, such as a south-facing window. If natural light is unavailable, you can use grow lights to provide the necessary illumination.
Avoid overwatering your succulents, as they are adapted to survive in dry environments. Only water your succulents if the soil is dry; remember to allow excess water to escape.
What Are The Best Plants For Succulents Indoors?
There are more than 1,000 types of succulents that span 60 different plant families. We’ll look at four families: Sempervivum, Cactaceae (cacti), Sedum and Haworthia.
Cactaceae, commonly known as cacti, is a family of plants adapted to hot and dry environments, with most species found in the Americas. They are known for their unique appearance, with fleshy stems and sharp spines instead of leaves, which help to reduce water loss and protect the plant from predators.
Cacti store water in their stems and roots, allowing them to survive long periods of drought. Their ability to survive in harsh environments has made them popular for xeriscaping, which uses drought-resistant plants to conserve water.
Some examples of the cacti family are:
Opuntia microdasys (bunny ears cactus)
Schlumbergera bridgesii (Christmas cactus)
Gymnocalycium mihanovichii (moon cactus)
Haworthia is a genus of small succulent plants native to Southern Africa. They are known for their rosette-like appearance, with thick, fleshy leaves often patterned or textured. Many Haworthia species are also adapted to low-light conditions, making them popular houseplants.
Some examples of the Haworthia family are:
Haworthia fasciata (zebra haworthia)
Haworthia cooperi (pussy foot)
Haworthia limifolia (fairy washboard)
Sempervivum, also called hen and chicks, is a genus of succulent plants native to Europe and Asia. They have a distinctive rosette shape, with fleshy leaves often arranged in a circular pattern. Sempervivum plants are also highly adaptable and tolerate various growing conditions, making them popular for indoor use.
Examples of Sempervivum include:
Sempervivum arachnoideum (cobweb houseleek)
Sempervivum tectorum (common houseleek)
Sedum is a genus of flowering plants that belong to the Crassulaceae family. They are known for their fleshy leaves, often arranged in rosettes or clusters. Sedums are also highly adaptable and grow in different soil types and conditions.
Their attractive flowers range from white to pink to red, making them an excellent choice for gardeners looking to add variety and interest to their indoor or outdoor space. Sedums are also commonly used in rock gardens, green roofs, and as ground cover due to their ability to tolerate hot and dry conditions.
Examples of Sedum include:
Sedum spurium (creeping stonecrop)
Sedum’ Autumn Joy’
Sedum kamtschaticum (Russian stonecrop)
Do Succulents Grow Well Indoors?
Many succulents grow well indoors with sufficient light, water, and soil drainage. Indoor succulents can thrive in containers and make excellent houseplants due to their low maintenance and unique appearance.
What Is The Best Way To Water Succulents?
The recommended method for watering succulents is deep watering once the soil has completely dried. Soak the soil thoroughly, allowing the excess water to drain away and avoid letting the leaves stand in any water gathered in the container.
Do Succulents Need Soil Or Rocks?
Succulents need well-draining soil that allows excess water to flow away from their roots. Mixing perlite, sand, or pumice with regular potting soil can improve drainage. Some people add a layer of rocks or gravel in the pot bottom to improve drainage; this sometimes leads to waterlogging, though.
How Much Sunlight Do Succulents Need?
Most succulents need bright, direct sunlight to thrive and should receive at least six hours of sunlight per day. However, too much direct sunlight causes sunburn and scorching on the leaves.
Ensure they receive enough sunlight without overexposure, especially during the hottest part of the day. Some species of succulents can also tolerate partial shade, which can vary depending on the variety.
What Kind Of Pot Should You Grow Succulents In?
When growing succulents, choose a pot that provides proper drainage and is the appropriate size for the plant. Terracotta pots are popular, as they are porous and allow water to evaporate from the soil.
Plastic or glazed pots can also be used, but they must have drainage holes so excess water can flow away from the roots. Additionally, shallow pots are more suitable than deep ones, as they allow the soil to dry out faster and provide more stability for the plant.
Do Succulents Need Fertilizer?
Succulents don’t necessarily need fertilizer to survive, but it does promote new growth and flowering. These plants have unique nutrient requirements, so use a dedicated cacti and succulent fertilizer if you choose to use one.
Additionally, it’s essential not to overfertilize, as this burns the plant’s roots and leaves.
How To Care For Succulents In The Winter
During the winter, succulents generally enter a period of dormancy and require less water and sunlight. Ensure they are not exposed to freezing temperatures, which can damage or kill the plant.
If growing succulents indoors during the winter, place them in a south or west-facing sunny window to provide adequate light.
Do You Need To Repot Succulents?
If a succulent looks leggy or overgrown, repotting it in fresh soil and a larger pot can help it thrive. Keep succulent soil dry, as too much water causes root rot.
Many growers also recommend adding sand or perlite to their soil mix to improve drainage.
Get your weekly fix of interior design inspiration
Delivered to your inbox every Saturday morning