Succulents call for an adequate amount of nutrients to look healthy and vigorous. They are plants that can rapidly adapt to any weather state or condition and are often left unnoticed by society. However, individuals need to understand that they need extra maintenance in some weather and environmental conditions. Precisely during the rainy season, succulents need more water-absorbent soils or an indoor environment to survive. If the water fails to make a way out of the pot, it leads to rotting and damage.
Sharp observation and close attention are the best aid to grasp more insights about your succulents and their health. The succulents have a renowned reputation of being easy-care houseplants that anybody can nurture. However, this does not mean that you can plant them in any region and completely disregard them. Apart from being hard-wearing and easy to grow plants, the succulents necessitate a little sum of care to look at their best.
If your succulents are not thriving, then you must give additional attention to what you’re nourishing them. The soil mix you are feeding your succulent with is perhaps not the best for them. It is not very grim to understand succulents; all you require is better observation and, there you go! The constituents of your mix determine the health of your plants. And they are solely responsible for their progress and well-being. People tend to give little attention to succulents as they seem to be indestructible, yet there are some surroundings in which these plants cannot endure. You can keep your succulents nourished and healthy by evading these shared mistakes.
1. What are the key essential ingredients needed in a soil mix for a succulent?
- Topsoil for Succulents.
The topsoil or the garden soil is the base of your soil mix and, they hold onto the other ingredients. It is effortlessly found in local stores and is best for your succulent as it does not hold moisture for long. Also, this soil has no added fertilizers and is not very expensive but reasonable. It is smelly but makes sure you select the topsoil by smelling and checking the quality before purchase.
- Is turface good for succulents?
The second essential component of your soil mix is turface. It is vital to add in turface into your soil mix because its primary function is to improve drainage. It will help in better water and air circulation for your succulent and prevent causing any external damage. Also, note that you should put topsoil and turface in equal amounts in your soil mix.
Both of them must acquire at least 30 – 40 per cent each in your soil mix. Likewise, make sure you do not use cocopeat for succulents that are in indoor environments.
- Expanded shale
Succulents as a whole require drainage to be their primary process as to maintaining health and avoiding damage. Expanded shale promotes an increase in water drainage and prevents the water from settling at the roots.
It helps in improving aeration and ventilation for the roots. All of these essential components come together to give your succulent the apt environment that it needs for better growth. Adding 10 per cent of pumice to the soil improves the soil quality and acts as a natural fertilizer.
The type of sand you add to your soil must either be river or construction sand. Roots of the succulent require a little time to suck up the moisture before it dries out. So, river or construction sand holds up the humidity till the roots do not absorb it.
2. Additional ingredients essential for an effective soil mix.
These ingredients are requisite and play a micro part in improving your succulent’s health. However, they are not necessary for huge quantities. But in small proportions can do marvels for the furtherance of your succulents.
- Gravel pebbles or chips
The gravel pebble works for succulents in indoor and outdoor environments. Succulents that are in outdoor environments need containers that have more amount of soil. They comprise mostly 10% of the soil mix and are placed at the bottom to enhance drainage ability and prevent the root from rotting.
The preferrable compost for your soil mix is the vermicompost, leaf, or cow dung powder. Natural products do a stunning effect on your succulents and suit them the greatest. It is recommended not to use any artificial products on your succulents as it may suppress health.
- Neem cake powder
Along with the compost, you can also add five to ten per cent of neem cake powder to your soil. It is highly beneficial and provides additional nutrition to the topsoil for flowering growth. However, this ingredient is voluntary and can be an add-on if you want the best results soon. Neem cake powder prevents roots from getting infested by fungus or harmful pathogens.
- Perlite or charcoal
Both the components are equally effective and help in retaining oxygen in the soil. They work as substitutes for one another to give the roots an adequate amount of oxygen. Also, it helps in keeping it loose and aerated all the time. However, it is highly preferable to add one of them as it is a crucial ingredient of your soil mix.
3. Physical factors affecting the selection of soil mix for succulents.
The soil-mix is not just essential for the growth and health of your succulent, but it helps to maintain them in adverse climatic conditions. The succulents are desert plants that bloom the best in dry conditions. However, they also require a satisfactory amount of humidity to sustain and not turn pale.
Understanding these plants is essential when you grow them so that they do not dry out or die. Succulents have various reactions to different surroundings and, so you need to make sure you study them well. The points mentioned below are areas that succulents need differentiated care and attention.
If the succulent is in an indoor environment, you might not need to give them plenty of care. Make it a point that your container drains the water well, and the soil-mix has components that have better aeration in these closed environments. I recommend that cocopeat is not put for indoor succulents.
When the succulent is growing in the outdoors, make sure they are in the apt surrounding. A lot of sunlight or rain is not very beneficial for your succulent’s health. If you have a newly planted succulent, avoid exposing it to direct sunlight, or it might get scorched. However, grown and some succulents enjoy it and need a minimum of five to six hours of sun every day.
The rainy season is not favourable for the succulents as they are dry plants. If the soil is moist and retains moisture, this will result in damaging the roots. So, make sure your plant is in warm regions when outdoor and has the right soil mix to bloom all season.
- Porous Pots
The most suitable pots for succulents are porous pots. Again, the container depends on each succulent, but this is a necessity. If the flowerpot retains water, then your succulents will not have a healthy growth even if you put the right soil mix. Containers that are porous aid in draining out all the excess moisture and keep the roots dry.
- Depth of the pot
Another factor that is overlooked and not noticed is the depth of the pot. Some succulents need deeper containers than others. The flowerpot must be at least four inches deep and must have holes in the bottom for drainage. Also, make sure it is wide enough for the roots to thrive. The best pots have ceramic as their material.
- Inorganic soil
Both organic and inorganic soils are best for your succulents but, they have to be segregated in proportionate quantities to work well. I suggest using inorganic soil for succulents as it gives healthy growth and makes them bloom.
With the help of this video, you will be able to make your soil mix at home. It will assist you in taking care of succulents and preventing them from any rotting or damage. It will help answer the queries in your mind and give tips that are beneficial for growing succulents. Now you are prepared with the confidence to plant your succulents and grow them in a healthy environment. Also, you have better insights into the ingredients that your succulent is going to need in its respective space. For a broader understanding, you can go to our other blogs to get in-depth knowledge about succulents. They will give you handy tips to make your garden bloom the way you want it.