Are banana peels good for succulents (as a natural fertilizer)? is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates.

Succulents do not need a lot of attention in general, but they need a good soil mix to thrive. Since they are known to grow in a harsh semi-desert condition, the key is to give them a similar soil mix, and place them somewhere where they can get at least some sunlight daily.

Most succulents, especially those we grow outdoors, will grow in soil without even fertilizing them in any way. They can survive in a place lacking nutrients. But they will reap benefits if you fertilize the soil, and such succulents do flower more often than succulents that live in a rigid land. And who would not want to see their plants flowering, at least once in a few years? The questions is though whether we can use banana peels as a fertilizer.

And a quick answer is yes, you can use peels from the bananas you eat to fertilize your succulent plants. Banana peels contain essential minerals that will help both succulents and other plants to thrive and flower. Let me explain it in more detail.


Benefits of banana peels as a fertilizer

Everyone knows bananas are rich in potassium, which is an important mineral for a healthy diet. It works the same way with human beings and plants. As a matter of fact, banana peels not just contain high amounts of potassium and phosphorus. It is also a decent source of additional nutrients such as calcium, manganese, sodium, and sulfur.

Potassium in banana peels reinforces stems and shield plants from diseases and helps them in the production of flowers. Another common nutrients in banana peels is phosphorus, and it is one of the nutrients plants simply needs to grow. Phosphorus helps in establishing the roots, and it also accelerates the flowering process.

For faster and better result, you should add the banana peels should into the soil, since they will break down easily once in the soil (compared to just lying on the top of it). Banana peels do not contain nitrogen, the essential nutrient required for foliage development though. But they contain significant levels of certain micro-nutrients like calcium that improves the breakdown of organic materials in the potting mix that creates other nutrients in the soil.

Manganese in banana peels helps in photosynthesis and the arrangement of certain enzymes and pigmentation of the plant. Sodium is associated with the activity of water and ions between cells–again a very important function to keep the plants healthy. The banana peels likewise contain magnesium and sulfur, both significant in the development of chlorophyll.

Quick dissolution is one of the main advantages of fertilizing with banana peels

One of the advantages of fertilizing with banana peels is that they break down rapidly in the soil, which means that those nutrients are accessible to plants sooner than the nutrients from other organic materials you may consider introducing as a fertlizer.

In creating recipe for a healthy succulent, you need a good combination of potting mix and fertilizers. Cactus and succulents have a recommended amount of soil mix ratio that will promote better drainage and will loosen the density of the soil. Creating a potting mix, you should prioritize the soil rather than the fertilizer since succulents can get enough nutrients from the soil alone.

Fertilizing succulents will be just an option if you want your plants to receive extra nutrients. Since we are talking about putting banana peels in potting mix for succulents, there are several ways to use it as fertilizers:

  • First, you can just lay it on top of the soil but take it off after a couple of days before it starts rotting.
  • Second, you can mix it together with the soil in the pot and just let the nature do its work.
  • Third, you can put the peels into your compost for a better overall result

A major downside of utilizing banana peels is that bugs love them. You’re probably going to draw in gnats, flies, and ants when you have banana peels laying on the top of your soil. Well, that’s another reason of mixing them with the soil instead of keeping them on the top of it :). By the way,  roses, tomatoes, corn trees, and other houseplants will also benefit from banana peels in the ground.


Recommended fertilizer for succulents–when you do not use banana peels

Before anything else, it should be organic. An organic fertilizer with a good quality will last longer, and nourish the plants for a long period of time. Another requirement is that it should be low in NPK which stands for (N) nitrogen that promotes more growth, (P) phosphorus that promotes better flowering, (K) potassium that will promote better disease resistance.

Commercial brand fertilizers are frequently marked with numbers 10-10-10. Each number signifies the level of the ingredient. The orders of the numbers represent nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. These numbers adhere to a national standard. Some commercial brands have an NPK of 2-4-2 which will create better results than 10-10-10 in succulents, since succulents prefer milder fertilizers, considering their native lands and the fact they simply aren’t used to growing in soil with high nutrient content.


Final thoughts

You need to be careful when it comes to putting something in the soil of your succulents. Some potting mix works well with regular plants, but it doesn’t mean that it will have the same impact on succulents.

Applying an excessive amount of fertilizer or doing it over and over again may kill the succulents. Numerous chemical fertilizers are simply too strong for succulents. If you can, go with the organic fertilizers to keep your succulents safe and healthy, such as an occasional banana plant in the soil (ideally from organic farming, of course)…

May also interest you: 10 interesting facts about succulents.