How much water do succulents need per week?
On the average, you need to water your succulents about once a week. However, there are times when you need to water them more frequently. For example, succulents have been noted to have an increase in growth rate during the summer season. What this means is that they are most active then—growing out more shoots, stems, roots, and leaves.
The consequence of this increase in activity is a slight increase in water consumption. So, you can go ahead to increase your watering rate to thrice (3 times) a week.
However, during seasons like winter, you’d have to water them less than once a week. The reason is that succulents are least active at such periods.
Another factor that you need to consider when determining the amount of water your succulents need is the type of container you grow them in. Small vases, for example can only accommodate a little quantity of soil.
That means the water gets exhausted faster than it would in a larger vase with more soil. So, for the small vase, you might need to water the succulents about twice (2 times) a week.
For the large vase, you can reduce the watering rate.
Lastly, you should consider how much light your succulent is getting. When a succulent is constantly exposed to light, water is lost from the soils from which they grow fast.
The consequence of this is that you water more than you usually would. However, if your succulents are growing in a place with little light, you don’t have to worry about increasing your watering rate.
Succulents are plants that are adapted to life in very dry areas. These areas have little water, i.e., deserts. As a result, they store their minerals and water within their leaves, giving them this spongy feel.
Asides from that adaptation, the leaves also have a leathery skin that works to reduce the rate at which water is lost from the plant.
The reason you have to understand these details is this—your succulent will die if watered too frequently. They are used to life without water. So, watering them frequently will lead to the roots rotting.
And once the roots are bad, the plants die. If you have flower pots in your house, you may have the habit of watering every day, in a bid to see the soil dark and moist. The story changes with succulents.
You should only water them when the soil is bone-dry and crumbly.
How much water does a succulent need a day?
You don’t have to water your succulents daily. In fact, you shouldn’t ever do that, even when they are in their active seasons. Watering your succulents should be a periodic activity. If you don’t stick to that, your succulents may end up having yellow leaves.
How do you know when to water though? When you notice that the soil from which your succulent is growing has become very dry, drench them with a lot of water.
You don’t have to worry about the roots rotting if you already erected a good drainage system. Erecting a good drainage system comes during the preparation of the planting vessels and the soil.
For example, the vessel should have holes that help with drainage. Working with breathable vessels like ceramic would also do your succulents a lot of good.
For the soil factor, you have to ensure that you create a special soil mix out of the regular potting soil, white volcanic rocks, sand, coconut husks, and other matter that help with drainage.
Simply ensure that the bulk of the materials you work with are organic matter. Consider these;
- Peat Moss: This ingredient is mostly the major constituent of potting soils. It doesn’t absorb water quickly, but then, when it does, it is quick to lose it.
- Bark: The barks of trees when finely crushed would improve the structure of soil. That way, water added to the potting vessel drains out quickly.
- Inorganic Matter: These ones work to improve soil aeration, soil drainage, and compaction. They include crushed granite rocks, pumice, chicken grit, clay, etc.
One difference between inorganic matter and the other organic matter listed above is that they do not decompose or break down over time.
To make your potting mix yourself, you’d need a trowel and a large tray. Start by mixing half of the volume of the intended organic materials with half of the intended inorganic materials.
The ingredients that you use to integrate drainage to your soil mix should be more for small succulents like Aloe Vera, Sedum, etc. However, for larger succulents like cacti, you’d need more of the draining ingredients.
Another topic for discussion is the watering of young succulent plants. If you are familiar with the means by which they are propagated, you’d know that one leaf off the parent plant can yield another succulent.
Before these leaves are planted though, they are left to dry out. The reason is that after they’ve been planted within soil mediums, they absorb moisture.
If the moisture is too much, the leaves could end up rotting over time.
For these growing succulents, you should make sure you water sparingly. You could work with spray bottles even. Remember, you don’t want the propagated leaf rotting. If that happens, the succulent would die.
So, it’s only when you see the young succulent growing out of the soil that you should increase the water you add to the soil. Succulents consume the most water when they are growing.
How do I know if my succulent needs water?
When the soil your succulent is growing in is dry coarse and crumby soil, it’s time to water the plant. Watering of succulents should only be done once in a while. The reason is that succulents are adapted to growing in arid conditions. As a result, you need not water them as frequently or religiously as you do other normal plants.