Taking care of plants especially as a beginner is all about trial and error. Plants can be as individual as a person with their needs.
Sunlight, water, and a good pot to grow in are the basics but you can over water. Or underwater. Too much or too little sun happens more often than you think.
Sometimes it’s clear when a plant is suffering. Their leaves droop or they begin to brown. When caring for succulents, though, they do some odd things that may or may not be related to being unhealthy.
However, it is good to know the signs your succulent is sending out when it needs something or needs less of something.
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How Much Water do Succulents Need?
Succulents don’t need as much water as your average plant.
One of the best ways to ensure you’re not overwatering your succulents is by paying attention to the soil. Don’t water until the soil is nearly completely dry.
When potting soil loses moisture it lightens in color. If you notice your soil becoming a lighter brown that is the signal that you should water it.
Succulents are easily overwatered and that damage can run rampant through a plant rather quickly.
Indoor vs Outdoor Succulents
A great thing about succulents is that they can be grown indoors or outdoors. It truly depends on where you want them or if you have the ability to have pots outside.
Outdoor succulents tend to have more color and look much healthier due to getting way more sunlight than indoor plants.
If you’re going to plant succulents indoors make sure to keep them by a window six to eight hours a day or leave them outside for a few hours if possible.
Winter months may be a bit harder and you’ll have to watch the plants to make sure the cold doesn’t affect their health.
How Do I Know If My Succulent is Dying?
As with most plants the status of leaves is a good indicator of plant health.
Succulents tend to have dry leaves on the bottom but if you start to notice the leaves on the top browning or crumpling you’re in trouble.
Yellow, soggy leaves typically mean your plant is getting overwater versus dry and crumpling leaves that can usually signal underwatering.
If the soil is dry and flakey this can be another sign that your plant is suffering from being severely underwatered.
How Do I Help a Dying Succulent?
Don’t worry if your succulent is looking a little worse for ware! In order to save a dying succulent, you need to remove it from the pot and trim off any dark or dying roots.
Clean off the old dirt too. Set the plant gently on something that will help strain out the excess dirt and dirty water until the plant is completely dry.
After a few days repot the plant in fresh soil.
Trim off any dead leaves or growth before replanting. Then try again! Sometimes it takes a while to get the watering schedule down just right.
What does an Overwatered Succulent Look Like?
Sometimes it can be hard to spot an overwatered succulent.
Not all succulents react the same way. Succulents that have large fanning leaves or leaves that stick high enough to drop are the easiest to spot because the leaves are bigger and the yellow spots will be much more apparent.
Leaves scattered around a pot are common when they’re dead but if your plant is shedding new leaves too that is another big red flag that you’re overwatering your succulent.
Overwatered plants don’t always have yellow patches, though.
They can have browning yellow circles that look like big polka dots all over the leaves instead.
What Does an Underwatered Succulent Look Like?
Succulents with smaller leaves can hide their thirst easier than larger plants. If you suspect your little friend needs more water touch the leaves.
Are they rubbery and easily bent? That’s a telltale sign they need more water.
Shriveled wrinkles on the leaves are another way to tell they need some more water. If you start to notice white translucent roots growing out of the soil that’s a cry for help!
They’re pushing roots out to try and collect moisture from the air which can happen in humid climates. This may mean you’ll need to water your plant more frequently.
My Succulent Is Turning Blue – What To Do?
Plants are living things, we know they need ‘food’ and water but did you know that plants can get stressed out? Not in the way that humans do but succulents and other plants send off signals via pigments on their leaves to signal an issue to environmental problems.
Blue, red or purple leaves mean the pigments have been released to protect the plant and leaves from too much sunlight or UV rays that are harsher than usual. That doesn’t mean they have to be removed quickly! The colors do look pretty and it is natural protection plants have.
You just want to be careful and lookout for signs of sun damage or too much stress which can cause your plant to get sick.
If your succulent is turning blue but doesn’t show any signs of sun damage or underwatering then you can leave your little plant friend where they are for now.
If the temperature continues to rise, though, it might be a good idea to reposition the plant after a few hours to get a break from the sun. All plants are different and changing colors don’t necessarily mean they’re in trouble!
Caring for Succulents
Succulents are a low maintenance plant but they still need to be watered regularly and have time in the sun. Repotting succulents is a great way to save one that is sick or suffering from overwatering.
Your plants will show signs they need something you just have to look into the details and see what your plants are trying to tell you.
It may take time but your succulents will thank you for all your hard work by brightening up the room!