Succulents are a beautiful addition to any garden. They are low-maintenance, easy to care for and come in various shapes and sizes. However, these plants are also notoriously slow growing, which can be a bit of a bummer. In fact, some of them can take several years to reach their full potential! Fortunately, there are a few tips and tricks you can use to make your succulents grow faster.
So, how can you make succulents grow faster? The first and most important thing you need to do is know your plant. Different succulents will have different needs, and it’s essential to meet those needs to help them thrive and grow fast. Give your succulent adequate sunlight and ensure the temperature is suitable for the type of succulent you have. Your soil must be well-drained and aerated and adhere to a strict watering schedule. You can also repot your succulent to give it some fresh soil and more space. Succulents do best in containers slightly larger than their current pot size.
This blog post discusses tips and tricks to help your succulents grow faster. Read on to find out everything you need to know.
Understanding General Succulent Growth Rate
While there are wide varieties of succulents, all succulents generally have a slow growth rate. This is because most of them are adapted to living in areas with limited water and nutrients available in the soil. As a result, they typically take several years to reach their maximum potential size.
Some of the fastest-growing succulents, such as Echeveria, can grow up to 8 inches in a year, while some slow-growing succulents, such as Sempervivum, take up to 5 years to reach a maximum size of 4 inches.
Generally speaking, small-rosette-forming species tend to grow faster than large-rosette-forming species.
Most growth occurs during spring and summer when plenty of sunlight and overall weather conditions favor active growth. During the winter, most succulents slide into a state of dormancy and significantly slow their growth.
Tips to Make Your Succulents Grow Faster
To help your succulents reach their maximum potential size faster, you need to provide them with the right growing conditions and ensure they have access to all the necessary resources required for healthy growth. Here are some tips that can help:
1. Get to Know Your Succulent
The first step is to get to know your plant. Different succulents have different needs, so you need to make sure that the environment you provide is suitable for the type of succulent you have.
If you know the exact name of your succulent, Google it for maximum size and growing conditions, and then provide the same.
If you don’t know the exact name of your succulent, don’t worry. You can still provide the right conditions based on their general needs that apply to all succulents. Alternatively, take your succulent to your local plant nursery for identification.
Feel free to join Facebook groups and other communities of succulent enthusiasts to get more tips and advice.
Be active and ask questions when you come across something you need help understanding. That way, you learn more about your succulent and its specific requirements.
The amount of water the succulent needs depends on your succulent type, size, temperature, and humidity in your growing environment.
However, it’s generally best to stick with a strict watering schedule and not overwater your plant. Too much water can cause root rot, damaging your succulent and hindering its growth.
The type of water you use can also affect your succulent’s growth rate. Use rainwater or distilled water for better results. Avoid tap water because it contains chlorine, which can harm your plant.
If you must use tap water, let it sit overnight in an open container to allow the chlorine to evaporate.
3. Give Your Succulent Enough Sunlight and the Right Temperature
Most succulents need at least six hours of direct sunlight daily to thrive, although some species may require less or more depending on the type and size. Ensure your succulent is getting enough light and its leaves aren’t turning yellow or weakening.
If you are growing it indoors, position it near a south-facing window for better results. Consider using artificial grow lights if you live in an area with a harsh climate or short days. When using artificial lights, make sure to use only high-quality lights that are specifically designed for succulents.
Additionally, ensure your succulent is in an area with the right temperature for its growth. Most succulents need daytime temperatures between 65-75 F (18-24 C) and nighttime temperatures between 50-65 F (10-18 C).
Finally, keep an eye on your plant for signs of sunburn or dehydration, and adjust its lighting accordingly. Some common signs of sunburn include discolored patches on the leaves, shriveled leaves, and weak stems.
4. Succulents Love the Crowd, But Not Too Much Crowd
It is no secret that succulents can thrive in crowded pots. In fact, some species may even prefer living with their siblings. However, don’t overcrowd your succulent’s pot, as it can prevent the roots from getting enough air and nutrients, stunting its growth rate.
If you want to repot your succulent into a larger container without overcrowding, ensure enough space for the roots to spread and grow.
5. Use the Right Soil
Succulents thrive in well-drained, slightly acidic soil. Make sure to use a potting mix specifically designed for cacti and succulents, as this will help ensure proper drainage and air circulation.
Add a layer of sand to the top of the soil to help improve drainage, and don’t forget to add a few teaspoonfuls of slow-release fertilizer as well.
Some gardeners prefer making their soil mix, as it allows them to adjust the ingredients and create a mix tailored to their specific succulent.
Fortunately, it is relatively easy to make your soil mix. Here is a simple method you can follow:
- Two parts perlite or coarse sand
- 1 part peat moss
- 1 part potting soil
- ½ part compost
Carefully mix these ingredients, and you have potting soil perfect for your succulent.
6. Monitor Your Succulent’s Soil Regularly
Your succulent’s soil should be slightly acidic with a pH of 6.0-7.5, depending on the type of succulent you have. The best way to check your soil’s pH is to use a digital soil tester or a store-bought soil test kit.
The soil should be kept dry between waterings and should never be saturated with too much water.
If it is, your succulent may suffer from root rot caused by too much moisture in the soil. Also, ensure the pot has enough drainage holes to allow any excess water to escape.
7. Fertilize and Prune Your Succulent
Just like any other plant, regular fertilizing is vital for healthy growth. The type of fertilizer you use depends on your succulent’s needs; always use a slow-release fertilizer designed explicitly for succulents.
Remember to prune your succulent regularly to help control its size and shape. Regular pruning can even encourage a lusher growth habit.
Trim off any dead leaves or stems with a pair of sharp scissors, but never cut away more than a third of the plant at any time.
The best time to trim your succulents is after the flowering season, just before the dormancy sets in.
Avoid pruning before or during the flowering season, as pruning may reduce the number of flowers produced.
8. Regularly Separate Offsets from the Mother Plant
Most succulents produce many offsets as they grow. These offsets are also known as “pups” and can be separated from the mother plant to create new plants.
Removing offsets helps keep your succulent healthy, encourages more flowering, and allows you to share or sell your extra plants.
Make sure each offset has roots and shoots before separating it from the mother plant.
The best time to separate offsets is during the growing season when the pups are big enough to be removed without damaging the mother plant. Cut away the pup with a sharp knife and pot it into a container.
The offset will develop roots after a few weeks and should be ready to repot into its permanent home.
9. Be Patient with Your Succulent
If you have followed all the tips above, then all that is left to do is wait for your succulent to grow and mature. Growing succulents can take a while, as they prefer slow-paced growth over rapid growth.
Sometimes, you may find that your succulent grows a lot more slowly than you expected.
Don’t worry; this is normal! Just sit back and enjoy the process; soon enough, you will have a beautiful mature succulent.
With these five tips, you’ll be able to get your succulent collection growing faster than ever before!
Remember – quality soil, adequate light exposure (but not too much!), proper watering habits, regular fertilization, and occasional pruning will help keep your plants happy and healthy while encouraging rapid growth. After a few months of following these guidelines, you should start seeing results – happy planting!
Last update on 2023-06-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API