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How to Grow and Care for Container Succulents


Succulents thrive in the simplest of containers, and their distinctive shapes and colors provide endless opportunities for creativity.

Go with Compatible Plants

They either grow in the cold or warm seasons. Some grow in fall until spring when they go dormant. Warm-season plants go dormant in fall.

Choose the Right Container

Plants with shallow roots or that tend to rot faster do best in low or unglazed containers. Plants with leggy roots or those that require more water thrive in deep containers made of glazed, ceramic, fiberglass, or plaster. You can put succulents in wood frames and boxes, logs and metal vessels, glass cylinders, and handmade pottery.

Soil Aeration and Drainage

You can buy any number of potting mixes designed expressly for succulent container gardening. You can also easily make your own soil mix. Ordinary potting soil is usually a bit too fluffy and not gritty enough for a succulent container. Instead, blend equal parts potting soil, coarse sand, and perlite or pumice for an ideal mix.

Grow and Care Container Succulents

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Top Covering is not Just for Looks

Finishing the surface off with rocks can help control weeds and moisture and regulate soil temperature. Lining the inside of the pot with bubble wrap helps insulate the plant from excessive heat, which can cause root dieback.

A Break from Mid-Day Sun

In nature, succulents often escape the elements by hiding in the shade of larger plants or rock crevices. So offer your succulent afternoon shade.

Watering Schedule will Vary

Water only during the growing season. Let the surface dry out a little bit before you water again. Conversely, you do not want it to get bone dry, or you will stress the plant. When a plant is water-stressed, it is going to be dull-looking, soft, and malleable. When it is well-watered, it is going to be plump, shiny, and firm.



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