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Overall, succulents are not very demanding in terms of water and light. They can thrive under indoor conditions with minimal efforts. But if you want your succulents to have the best conditions to grow, there are certain things you need to remember. And here's our indoor succulent care guide.
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Along with water, temperature, and soil, sunlight is another important factor for succulent growth. Most succulents need at least 3 hours of light exposure every day.
It is best to place your succulents near windows and in an angle where they can receive morning sunlight and less afternoon sunlight. Afternoon sunlight is not preferred as it is stronger and more likely to leave the plant sunburned, especially during summer in zone 9-11. Also, keep your eyes on your plants to monitor how plants adjust to their current positions in the house. Often, a sunny South-facing windowsill is ideal for your indoor succulents.
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succulents don't get enough sunlight, they will start stretching out to reach the light source. When you notice your plants growing taller while the leaves start to become further apart, it is a sign of stretching. It is not growing, it’s etiolation, and you need to reposition the plants. Also, they will lose their vivid colors and turn back to green.
And if your succulents are getting too much sunlight or harmful sunlight, you might start seeing leaves drying up and getting withered. They will turn yellow, look dull and in some cases, sunburn scars will appear.
Remember to rotate the succulents once every few days. With an indoor setting, the light source often comes from one direction only. Hence, rotating your plants will help distribute the sunlight evenly, preventing stretching succulents or disproportional growth.
We have just talked about light and where to place succulent to get enough sunlight. Now the other three considerations are temperature, soil, and water.
As succulents thrive well under arid environments, they do not need too much water. Only water your succulents when the soil is at least 1.5" dry. Normally, you can water them once a week or every two weeks in the summer and once a month in the winter. How often you water your succulent also depends on the humidity of your area. And during growth season, when you see the soil is completely dry, it is the right time for watering. One tip to check for moisture level is to stick your finger down to the second knuckle in the soil. If it feels wet, it’s not time to water your plant yet.
Water directly on the soil, not the leaves. Sitting water can cause moldy or rotten leaves so avoid using spray watering bottle. Soak the soil completely till you see water come out from the drainage hole.
Succulents can live in a wide range of temperatures. It's important to check your USDA zone and your succulent USDA zone to make sure your plant is in the best zones for them to thrive. Generally, extreme weather doesn't do the plant any good.
Extremely hot weather will make the plants drooping when soil is too dry. And below zero weather will freeze the water stored inside the plant, causing damages to the plant’s tissues. You need to make sure your indoor temperature stays within a reasonable range then your plants should be fine. Ideally, most succulents would prefer temperatures about 60-80F.
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Well-drained soil is very important for indoor succulents. Succulents grown outdoors often have better airflow than indoor ones so they are less prone to rot. Hence, you need to make sure the soil for indoor succulents is lightweight to ensure the plants will not suffocate and the roots will not get rot when you water them. If you feel like your soil is holding too much moisture, add pumice or perlite to increase its drainage.
A porous pot with drainage hold is also recommended to aid water evaporation. Succulents don’t like to sit in waterlogged soil, so good drainage is important to prevent rot. Your pots should be made of breathable material and have a drainage hole to allow excess water to escape. Terra-cotta or clay pots are the best options for succulent beginners.
In general, indoor succulents don’t need much fertilizer but you could add some weak fertilizer during growth season in the soil so they can grow better.
And if you decide to repot your succulents for indoor use, give them 2-3 weeks before moving them indoor so that the roots can get used to the new soil or heal from any root damage when repotting.
Hopefully, this indoor succulent care guide will make you feel more confident about moving and growing your succulents inside.
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