How deep should you plant your succulents for them to thrive? 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.

Growing succulents indoors or outdoors, simply close to your home, allows you to feel the desert ambiance regardless of whether you live in the tropes, moderate climate, or even somewhere close to Arctic region. However, although succulents are tolerant to their environmental conditions, and can survive almost everywhere, they have certain needs and you have to give them these needs to make sure they will thrive, and not merely survive.

One of their needs is the right amount of soil, the right depth of their planting. So, how deep should you plant them? Succulents thrive well in at least 4 inches deep soil. They also need a container with drainage hole(s), to avoid over-watering issues–the most common problem of the plants.

In fact, succulents can thrive well in a shallow and wide container. As long as the container has a drainage hole, and you choose a great fast-draining soil (check my recommended soil for succulents on Amazon), they will do extremely well in s shallow pot, planted just few inches deep. 

Related Article: Do Succulents Need Special Soil?

Choosing the right container and soil for your succulents

Choose a loose soil that does not hold too much moisture inside. Remember that succulent plants are accustomed to the soil in semi-desert areas, and you won’t find compact soil in the desert :). Regardless of how deep you plant them, the key is to plant them in a proper soil.

Succulent roots need soil that allows them to breathe. This is also the reason why garden soil is not good for them, since it lacks proper aeration. What I try to point out here is that sometimes asking the right questions is more important than getting some answers. Sure, it matters how deep you plant your succulent. But unless you have a good soil and pot with a drainage hole, you may experience issues regardless of how deep you plant it…

Related Article: Can You Plant Succulents In Pots Without Holes?


Does the placement affect the optimal depth for planting succulents?

As with everything else in life, individual approach is the key. I mean, every succulent variety is specific, and so is every plant (and every human being, every second we live, every ran drop, etc)…. Planting your succulents indoors, which isn’t natural for them, since plants are accustomed to live outside, it is more important that you pick the right soil, plant it in proper depth, etc. 

On the contrary, if you have a nice succulent garden outside, with many thriving plants and optimal conditions, such as soil similar to that in semi-desert areas and access to 4-6 hours of daily sunlight, details like how deep you plant the succulents do not play such a major role. In optimal conditions plants will find their way, and succulents are pretty resilient. In such conditions, even when you place them just on the top of the soil, they will simply do their thing, grow their rooting system as they need, and thrive…  

Related Article: Can Succulents Stay Outside in Winter?

Do succulents like to be crowded?

Although succulents can survive in a crowded setup, I don’t recommend crowding them. This is because crowded succulents will attract insects and mold. It is better if you give them enough space to breathe and grow freely, and this is something to keep on your mind when deciding how deep, and how wide you want to plant them.

Generally, you can plant succulents ½ to 1 inch apart. This is the best distance either in a pot or with other succulent plants. Also, save an inch or at least half of it between the edge of the pot and the base of the plants. Give your plants enough space, and they will thank you with their vibrant colors and inner peace…


Final thoughts

Succulents do not need deep soil. A 4-inch deep is enough for succulents to grow and thrive healthily. It is very important to remember that succulent plants also need appropriate soil and pot–which is actually even more important than the depth of planting.

Bear in mind that compact soil is not good for succulents. It holds too much water and moisture which will in turn cause root rot. And in this case you cannot save the plants with shallow planting, for example. At the end of the day, each situation is unique, and each plant has its own life. Consider the planting conditions, the environment, as well as what you try to achieve with your garden. The most important thing is to observe the plants and experiment. Eventually you will find what works the best… Good luck, and do not forget to check my complete guide on succulent growing. Thank you!