Succulent Care

Water will always be a precious commodity in the garden.  Today, more and more succulent and similar drought tolerant plants are being grown as ornamentals, both indoors and outdoors.  They require little attention and seem to thrive, despite neglect.  The converse to this arises when abundant rain falls.  Succulents can literally “drown” through too much water.  In local gardens, it’s important to select succulent plants that come from wetter, summer rainfall areas.  True desert plants often disappoint when high summer rainfall, along with humidity prevails.  Choose wisely – and feel free to chat to our team about which succulents will best suit your needs.

5 Reasons why Succulents may not Thrive:

The most common cause of succulents dying succulents is over-watering. Succulents thrive in dry climates due to their remarkable adaptation of storing water in their stems, leaves or roots.  Excess water in the soil leads to the plant’s storage cells becoming overfilled, making the leaves look discoloured and sometimes a little translucent. Unless action is taken quickly, the succulent will rot and die.  To avoid overwatering, ensure that you always plant succulents in a porous, sandy potting soil.  Look for succulent potting mix, or ensure that you add course sand to your soil which will allow good drainage of water. Ensure that you water succulents only when the soil is dry.

Blackwood's Succulent care - overwatering


While overwatering is one of the most common causes of succulents dying, take care not to underwater them.  The clearest sign that your succulents need more water is that their leaves become wrinkled.  If you have a succulent with wrinkled leaves, give it a good, thorough drink.

Blackwood's succulent care - underwatering


The correct soil for your succulents is absolutely critical for their health. Succulents require sandy, nutritionally poor, fast-draining soil. Dark, nutrient rich soil is not a treat for succulents.  It holds too much water and too little air, which will result in your succulent roots struggling to breathe.


Blackwood's Succulent Care - soil


Succulents need great drainage. It’s vital that you plant them in pots with sufficient drainage holes at the bottom of your pot.  These will allow for excess water to drain through.

Blackwood's succulent care - drainage


Sunlight is critical to the health and well-being of succulents. When succulents are starving for sunlight, they grow very tall, as they stretch to reach the light. Most succulents need at least 3 hours of direct sun every day.  However, succulents can be damaged by too much direct sun and become “sunburned,” with scars on their leaves. In the summer, in hot climates when the sun is harshest, the shade offered by bigger plants, rocks, in mixed habitats providing filtered sunlight is best for succulents.

Blackwood's succulent gardens