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If you’ve looked at a home décor magazine or walked into a garden shop, you’ll know that succulents are all the rage. And while the little plants may look easy enough to care for there are a few things you need to know before bringing one home. With that in mind, we asked succulent designer Gillian Taylor to share a few tips.

PICK THE RIGHT SUCCULENT FOR YOUR HOME AND COMMITMENT LEVEL

Haworthias
These are dark green and spikey and are typically one of the easiest of succulents to care for. They don’t require a great deal of light and they are more resilient to being both over and under watered. Haworthias are definitely for the succulent rookie, but also good for people that are looking for a succulent for their bathroom.

Crassula
This succulent is another typically easy plant to care for. Although they do thrive in bright light conditions, they are not as picky as some other types of succulents. They are also not as volatile to being under or overwatered.

Sedum (Stonecrop)
This plant does require a fair amount of sunshine to remain compact and full. They require a little more water than other succulents.

Echeverias
These succulents are flower shaped and come in all colours. To retain their initial appearance (bright colours and compact leaves) the plant requires bright light conditions. These plants do not like being over watered and are ideal for the more experienced succulent lover.

DON’T FORGET TO WATER

The majority of succulents originate in hot climates where there is an abundance of sunshine and little rain. This is something you want to think about when caring for your succulents…you want to replicate desert-like conditions which means letting your soil completely dry out before substantially watering again. The mantra is “more water, less often”. Also, the more humid your house is, the less you water.

Keep in mind:

  • If your plant is under-watered, the leaves will start to appear pruny or wrinkly.
  • If your plant is under-watered, the leaves will start to discolour and become transparent. If you’ve over-watered your succulent, remove the damaged leaves, leave it alone, and hope the moisture hasn’t gotten into the stem.
  • To figure out if your plant needs to be watered, use a plain wooden chopstick to test the soil. Take a chopstick and push it all the way to the bottom of the plant, leave for a few seconds and pull out. If the chopstick feels damp in anyway, wait to water until you repeat this and it feels completely dry—just like baking a cake!

TRANSPLANT YOUR SUCCULENT

If you’re successful at growing your succulent eventually you will need to transplant it. Watch the video clip above to learn how to properly transplant!