By Shannon McGloin
Succulents have gained a crazy amount of popularity over the last few years, and for good reason! If you’ve refrained from believing the hype, it’s time to overcome your prejudice and hop on the succulent train! Here are my top 5 reasons to love succulents.
1. Lots of Variety!
There’s a ton of variety as far as colour, leaf shape, and plant structure go, so there’s a lot to choose from. One of the most popular succulents, Jade plants (Crassula ovata), which are often grown as houseplants, have bright green, rounded, fleshy leaves. ‘Flapjack’ Kalanchoes have huge, flat leaves, which are minty green edged with red. Sedums come in endless colours – bright yellow, blues, pinky red, shades of green, rusty brown – and so many forms. Echeveria can have purpley-pink leaves arranged in a rosette, or fuzzy, green-grey, arrow-shaped leaves. Rounded, pointy, juicy, skinny, fuzzy – these are just a few examples of the extensive variety in the wonderful world of succulents.
2. Excellent Drought Tolerance
Probably the most attractive (and most widely touted) feature of succulents is their excellent drought tolerance. Their fleshy leaves hold in most of the plant’s moisture, so their watering requirements are much more seldom than that of the majority of flowering annuals. They’re the perfect choice for a hot, sunny spot where other things may not grow, and you don’t have to worry about them if you hop over to camp for the long weekend.
3. They’re Low Maintenance
In addition to being drought tolerant, most succulents are also really easy they are to take care of, making them the perfect choice for not so green-thumbed individuals, or those just starting out in the plant game. The worst mistake you can make with succulents is over-watering them, which means they can handle a bit of neglect. Generally, they prefer a looser, sandier soil, and a sunny area, and that’s about it!. As with any potted plant, make sure your pot has drainage so they don’t drown in an August storm.
4. Propagation is Easy-Peasy
Most succulents will happily provide you with more plants easily with leaf cuttings. Oftentimes you’ll notice leaves forming brand new plants just from falling off the plant! To produce new plants, simply snap off leaves and place them on top of the soil, or stick them into the soil. After a bit of time, you’ll notice roots forming, and bam – new plants for you! Alternatively, with jade plants for example, you can prune them back to your desired height, just above a leaf node. Remove the bottom leaves from your cutting and stick the whole thing in your soil. This will provide you with a much larger plant to begin with! Bonus: your original jade plant will branch out where you made your cut, making for a bushier, rounded plant!
Because of their low maintenance attitude, succulents can be used in a wide array of uses. A quick Google search reveals any vessel is the perfect vessel for a succulent – tea pots, mason jars, bird baths, wine corks, cinder blocks, not to mention clay pots and dish planters. They’ve been seen in pallet planters, rock gardens, wreaths, as wedding favours, and so much more. In summary, there’s a spot for a succulent in every situation if you have the creativity. Did I mention most succulents will live happily indoors? After a lovely Sudbury summer, bring them inside, place in a sunny spot, and treat them as a regular houseplant.
Come check out the large selection of succulents we have at Southview Greenhouse Growers this year before they sell out! And make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for daily photos of plants, dogs, and new products!