Over the years, I have considered myself a stone cold plant killer. I’m a chronic over or under waterer and I never paid enough attention to keep my plants from dying an early death. Lately, this has changed for the better as I’ve embraced my hidden green thumb. I credit this change to a succulent planter I made last year. Here are some of the best indoor succulents that even stone-cold plant killers can keep alive.
What are Succulents?
Wikipedia says “Succulents are plants that have some parts that are more than normally thickened and fleshy, usually to retain water in arid climates or soil conditions.” Also, all cacti are succulents but not all succulents are cacti.
The habitats of these water preserving plants are often in areas with high temperatures and low rainfall. Succulents have the ability to thrive on limited water sources, such as mist and dew, which makes them equipped to survive in an ecosystem which contains scarce water sources.
Indoor Succulent Care
- Succulents love a sunny place so make sure they get enough light.
- Don’t overwater. They will die for sure.
- Water when the soil is dry until it is completely soaked and water is coming from the drain holes. Then leave it until it is completely dry before you water it again.
- Make sure the container you use drains well. If you are upcycling a container, add a good layer of rocks/gravel in the bottom of your container before you add soil for drainage.
- Succulents like soil that is a bit sandier than your general potting mix. Add a bit of sand in or look for a succulent/cacti mix.
- Repot your succulents. The teeny plastic pots they come in at the store aren’t good for long term living. Most also need to be repotted once per year.
Best Indoor Succulents
Generally, succulents with bright green leaves grow better indoors than “grey” succulents.
Jade Plant – Jade plants need to be watered when their soil is just dry to the touch. Losing leaves or have leaves with spots? You may not be watering often enough. Jade plants also enjoy lots of sunlight.
A jade plant is part of my very first succulent planter and it is growing like gangbusters. The bright, waxy leaves are a beautiful addition to any windowsill.
String of Pearls – I am in love with this succulent that looks like a big bowl full of peas. I’m adding them as a great indoor succulent even though they can be a bit finicky.
If you keep your String of Pearls in a bright area (but not direct sunlight) and don’t water it too much, it can grow happily indoors. They store water in their leaves/peas so if you see them shrivel, they likely need water!
If you want to make your plant grow wider, snip off a runner, pull off 3 or 4 of the peas (leaves) and plant that back into your pot. Roots will start from where the leaves were on the stem.
Hen and Chicks – These grow well indoors and outdoors in almost any climate. They prefer sandy, rocky soil and do best when they are not overwatered. Overwatering will cause the outer leaves to rot. Their name comes from the offshoots (chicks) that surround the middle plant (hen). You can easily snip off the chicks and plant them in new containers.
Christmas Cactus – Christmas cacti are easy to find and they grow well indoors. Make sure you don’t over water though if it is flowering make sure it gets enough water or its blooms will fall off.
Caucasian Stonecrop – A little sun, a little fertilizer and a little water make for a very happy stonecrop. Plus the leaves have a touch of pink that make them a pretty addition to your succulent garden.
Key Lime Pie (aka Crinkle Leaf Plant) – These plump little plants grow well in well-draining soil that dries out between waterings. Perfect for small pots on a sunny windowsill.
Spanish Stonecrop – Place your Spanish Stonecrop within a few feet of a south-, west-, or east-facing window. They thrive when they receive at least six hours of light each day.
Where to Buy the Best Indoor Succulents
Succulents are really popular and can be find in tons of stores these days. I really enjoy buying succulents at my local greenhouse but I’ve also bought them at specialty plant stores and big box home improvement stores.
Things to consider when purchasing is how the succulents look when you purchase them. I was in a small store recently and their poor succulents looked half dead. No sun and too much water will do that. Buy succulents that look bright and plump.
Also, it has become the “cool” thing to do for stores to glue fake flowers on succulents to make them sell faster. Have a peek at any flowers you see. If there is a big drop of hot glue…it’s fake. You can still buy the succulent but pull off that fake flower!
Love your succulent and want more? Snip a piece off or take a fallen leaf, set it in the sun until it starts growing roots. Plant that in soil and VOILA, a new plant. Crazy, right?
Another Reason Succulents Rock
Even if you murder them? Succulents are generally super cheap to buy. If they die? Just get another one. I know, I know, that isn’t your usual gardening advice but it’s true. This also means you can try out lots of different succulents to figure out what will work at your house. So basically any succulents you love can be the best indoor succulents for you.
Plus you can have a cute, owl succulent garden! Aren’t these owl planters adorable?