Make the Most of Your Succulents with These Quick & Easy Tips
Below I’m going to walk you through, step by step, everything you need to know about growing succulents – from starting new succulent containers to treating mealybugs to duplicating succulents and more. Check out the video below for extra details and to see examples of the steps below. Let’s get started!
1. Quick & Easy Succulent Containers
For these super easy succulent containers, you need 4” plastic pots, succulent soil, water, and succulent cuttings. First, fill the pots up with soil. Wet down the soil. Take the succulent cuttings (I just snip tips right off of my larger succulents) and stick them into the soil. That’s it! In the video, you’ll see just how quick this process was and how well the succulents have rooted.
2. Checking for Mealy Bugs
A lot of mealy bugs like to hang out underneath succulents where they can hide. Start your inspection at the base. You should also look in between the succulents, along the stems, and around the leaves.
The spray treatment we mix ourselves is a combination of Trifecta Crop Control and Neem Oil & Soap. We alternate between this mixture and Monterey. Both are safe to use in organic gardening.
When you find mealybugs, you want to really wet them until you see some of the whiteness move a little bit. This is important because you want to get the spray underneath the mealybugs not just on top. If you find mealybugs in one spot of your succulent, they are likely hiding elsewhere as well. In this case, you can spray in the hidden crevices between and underneath the succulents as a precaution. You should also remove any dead leaves that have fallen because they are another spot mealybugs like to hide. Take an extra hard look at succulents with long stems. Mealybugs can start going into the stem of your plant and will need to be thoroughly sprayed down.
3. Duplicating Succulents
When you’re checking and treating your succulents for mealybugs, leaves are bound to fall off. Those leaves can be used to grow new succulents! Simply rinse them and lay them out in the bright sun. They will start growing a root from the bottom of the leaf. Alternatively, you can lay the leaves right on top of the soil, where they will root right into the soil and create a whole new succulent.
Another way to multiple your succulents is to cut off a small head from the top of your plant and place it in a new pot of soil. If you have a large succulent that is dying from mealy bugs, you can cut off all of the good parts, clean them up (really spray them down with some Neem Oil), and place them in new pots.
4. The Big Aloe
The aloe plant featured in our video is quite interesting. It lasted two years in our basement without being watered. When we rescued this plant, it had so many babies. More than it has even now. To remove the babies, I removed the big aloe plant from its pot and took a large, sharp kitchen knife and cut the babies off of the mama’s roots. After separating them, I planted the baby aloe plants into 3 ½” pots. I used the Professional Grower’s Mix by Jolly Gardener and that’s it.
Something to note: the more room an aloe plant has to grow, the larger it will get.
5. Bumping Up Succulents
When you’re ready to grow bigger succulents, its time to replant them in a larger pot. Prepare a new pot by filling it halfway up with soil. Remove your small succulent from its pot and check it for leaves that have fallen off (some may begin to take root in the soil). Those leaves can all become new succulents if planted.
Before planting the succulent in your new pot, I like to add a little extra Perlite. We’re going to mix that into the bottom real nice until it lightens up the soil a little bit more for these succulents. We do this because succulent roots are a lot finer. Place your succulent in the new pot and fill the soil to the top, mixing in a little extra Perlite as you go. If leaves fall off, keep them to grow new succulents.
6. The Miracle of Succulent Leaves
For starting succulents, I like to use a 72 cell plug flat. I make sure the soil is nice and wet. Then, when they’re just leaves, you simply place them on top of the soil and give them a little push to nudge them into the soil just a little bit. If the leaves are really small, you can put two leaves together in one plug. It’s that easy!
I have so much fun playing with succulents and hope you’ve gotten good tips and good ideas from this post and our video. Now you’re ready to get succulents started on your own!
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