{GROW} Simple tips for keeping succulents alive

{GROW} Succulents ©hello harriet 2014

I thought I'd keep things simple today as I'm still getting over yesterday's excitement! I probably should have made this the first post in my {GROW} series, but never mind! If you are new to growing succulents or you have some that are looking a little sad, hopefully this will give you some helpful pointers. 

~ Sunshine : The best place to grow happy succulents {bar a few exceptions} is the sunniest place in your home. Try to place them somewhere where bright sunshine will fall on them for the majority of the day {this is sometimes hard in the UK, but you catch my drift}. 

~ Air : If you do have a particularly hot sunny spot for your babies, it's always best to make sure there is a bit of ventilation so they don't cook, especially on long Summer days. Crack open a window.

~ Water : Always err on the side of caution and water less, rather than more. As a rough guide I usually water once a week in Summer and once a month {or even less} in Winter. The amount of water directly relates to the amount of bright/direct sunlight your succulents get; more sunshine means more water can be given. The leaves are a good indicator of whether your succulent is thirsty; if they feel plump, do nothing. If they are soft & pliable but not mushy you may water. Always wait til the soil has dried out before watering again.

~ Pots & Drainage : If you can, always try to use pots with drainage holes, like these cheap, ugly plastic ones {you can disguise them in prettier pots, don't worry}. If you must plant your succulents in pots without drainage, line the bottom of the pot with a layer of pebbles before planting to prevent the roots sitting in water {they will rot}.

~ Soil : Succulents love well draining soil. You can buy specially made bags from most garden centres, but I like to use John Innes no.2 mixed with horticultural grit

~ Space : Succulents like their roots to be cosy. If the pot you are wanting to use is very large, {much larger than the babe you are wanting to use it for} you will either need to fill said pot with lots of succulents {which FYI, looks super pretty} or fill most of the pot with gravel/stones so the plant isn't drowning in masses of soil ... Or use the pot for a bigger succulent! 

~ Emergency : If the leaves are over plump and fall off at the slightest touch, or if they have gone mushy it's likely you've over watered. It's a good idea to remove the succulent from its pot completely and dry out the soil before repotting. If you notice any blackening on leaves or stems you're probably too late. Your best bet is to remove any healthy leaves / behead the top half of your succulent {if it's healthy} & propagate. 

Enjoyed this post or have a question? Don't be shy, say hello!