So you brought home a classic, Jurassic Plant Nite terrarium, and you’ve found the ideal spot in your home for it. What’s next? Well, it’s time to talk water so you can keep your succulents alive and healthy. You’ve got this!
Here are the big questions: How much water do succulents need? How do you water your delightfully adorable succulent container garden?
How to water succulents
Succulents store water in their roots, stems, and leaves. This is why their leaves often look swollen and have wonderfully aesthetic shapes. They require very little soil to grow and don’t do well in freezing temperatures.
Most importantly, while succulents need water, they require less water than a tropical plant or annual plant. This makes them particularly great as houseplants.
Watering succulents must be purposeful because with too little water, they turn brown and die. With too much water, their roots rot in a swimming pool of moisture. Roots need a quick taste of water, then time to dry out in between waterings.
Succulents don’t need to be sprayed with a spritzing bottle, nor do they need daily watering. They prefer a quick drink, good drainage, and time to dry out in between waterings.
Don’t forget drainage
Drainage is critically important for succulents. Containers for Plant Nite events vary—you could have a glass bowl or jar, a bucket, a traditional garden container, or even a happy dinosaur like you see in these photos. However, almost all the containers used at the events lack a drainage hole.
No worries, it’s still possible to have healthy succulents without a drainage hole, but you must be thoughtful about your technique. Using a small watering can and cup, gently water each plant by sprinkling in between the plants and around the root structure (not on the leaves). Make sure you moisten the soil without drenching it, then wait for the soil to completely dry out in between waterings.
Where you live matters
Humidity makes a difference for how you water. If you live in a wet climate you’ll need to water more often. If you live in a dry climate, you may need to water less often. This is largely experimental and dependent upon your region, yet watering once per week or every other week seems to be the average for succulent houseplants. Thin-leaved plants need to be watered less than thick-leaved plants, so pay attention to your watering schedule and your specific plant type and see how they do between waterings to determine watering frequency.
To remember when it’s best to water, choose a day of the week and let that day be your watering day. For example, water every Monday, or every other Monday—before you dash off to work for the day works well. Consistent, even watering can make a difference for keeping your succulent plants happy.
Come plant with us!
Inspired by this delightful dinosaur planter and how easy it is to grow succulent plants? You’ll have even more fun planting a fun planter at a Plant Nite with your friends. Find an event in your neighborhood. Happy planting!
About the author
Shawna Coronado is a successful author, blogger, photographer, and media host who focuses on wellness by teaching green lifestyle living, organic gardening, and anti-inflammatory culinary. Most recently Shawna has written the books, “Grow a Living Wall” and “101 Organic Gardening Hacks”. Shawna campaigns for social and community good – her garden, food, and eco-adventures have been featured in many media venues including television news programming, radio broadcasting, and PBS television. You can learn more about Shawna at www.shawnacoronado.com.