Tips for Cactus and Succulents

Cactus and succulents are often made to seem like the easiest plants by the internet.

So new plant parents get one or two and give them so much love (too much water and not enough light) that they end up dying. This is a problem for our plant community, people instantly think that they do not have a “green thumb” because they killed their “super easy” succulent. Let me be one of the first to tell you that cacti and succulents are not easy plants to start with! Cactus and succulents come from dry-desert-like places, so if you are going to get one you need to keep this in mind. 

Tip 1) What is in the soil matters 

At most plant stores, and the big box stores, you will more than likely see different types of soil. The type of soil that you use 100% matters for your plants. For example, all-purpose is good for most interior plants like monstera, philodendron, and fiddle leaf figs. But it holds onto too much water for plants like cacti and succulents. They need better-draining soil, like the one specifically for them. Most stores will have cactus and succulent soil, and that will allow the roots to dry out and not hold onto water so much. 

Tip 2) Watering

Watering will be one of the trickiest parts for cacti and succulents because it depends on where you have the plant. Cactus and succulents love bright light, but they can survive if they are somewhere with medium light. Keeping this in mind, if you have a plant next to a bright window, it will need to be watered more frequently than a plant that is in less light. The time of year also will make a difference, most people who keep cacti will not water them all winter long. That is their dormant stage, so they will not be using the water you give them, instead, they will use the water they have in their storage. A good way to see if your succulents need water is by looking at the leaves, if they are starting to shrivel up it means that it’s time to water. 

Tip 3) Let’s Talk About Pots

Not all pots are made the same, and sometimes you have to pick the one you do not like as much for the plant's sake. Drainage holes are your best friend. Read that again. The holes in the bottom of your pot are what will help keep your plant alive. If your pretty decorative pot doesn’t have drainage holes, that is okay! Keep the plant in the nursery pot (the plastic pot that you got it in) and then take it out when you water. If your pots do not have drainage, water will sit at the bottom and this will keep the soil too wet and kill the plant. 

Cactus and succulents are not crazy difficult, but they are not unkillable plants either. They have specialized care and needs that must be taken into consideration if you want your plants to live long and healthy. These plants will do amazing if you put them in a bright spot, and water them only when they need it. The best mentality for these plants is to set it and forget it.

If you have any questions or want help, DM us! We love helping you guys and look forward to hearing from you.

Hey I’m Andrew

I am the Brand Manager here at Thriving Botanicals. I got into house plants back in 2020, and have never looked back. I love helping people understand their plants better, so please reach out if you have any questions or just want some advice about what is going on.


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