Water therapy seems to be a new trend in the world of succulent lovers lately. Many people on various different social networks have been sharing their experience with water therapy and discussing its advantages for succulents. However, there are a lot of concerns that this method will do more harm than good, especially when succulents particularly love a dry environment. This article will explore this water therapy method as well as its pros and cons.
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Water therapy is the practice of submerging the roots of your succulents directly in water to help “reduce their stress”. Plants that are extremely underwatered, sun damaged, or have seriously lacked sunlight after being in a shipping box for an extended amount of time might benefit from some water therapy. Take your succulents completely out of soil and put the roots in water for about 24-72 hours. Soil has organic matter in it and can result in rot if the root is fed with so much water, so it’s important that you clean all the soil off the roots before starting water therapy. Also, make sure that you place just the roots under water and not any other parts of the succulents. You may see the plants perk right up, become more revitalized, and new growth may start to appear.
BUT this is not a method that should be abused. Succulents do not need to receive water therapy too regularly, or at all. The roots become vulnerable to bruises or damages after being uprooted, drown in water, and later being planted again. We recommend that you let the roots completely dry out for a couple of days before replanting the succulents in soil so that you have a lower chance of breaking the roots during the process. And avoid watering your succulents immediately after replanting them to prevent root rot—wait until the roots have calloused over instead.
Due to the high likelihood of root damages, refrain from using water therapy if you don't have to. When you notice your succulents are dehydrated, try keeping them in soil and give them a good watering first. Check out our guide on the proper way to water your succulents. Only if all else fails should you consider water therapy. It’s not worth it to risk damaging your succulents to follow this trend.