Watering succulents at the right time is essential to keep them healthy. But many succulent growers, especially the newbies ,wonder whether or not a watering can be done at a certain time of the day. Some growers believe that watering succulents at night is better than during the day. However, because this is not a common practice, many have found it unconventional. Let me put things straight now:
It is perfectly OK to water succulents at night. In fact, it is a better time to do it than during the day. This is because succulents use Crassulacean Acid Metabolism or CAM, a photosynthesis process. In other words, they get more benefit from watering at night than they do during the day. Another reason such a schedule makes sense is that succulent leaves and stems can be damaged when hit by those droplets. The heat from the sun makes the droplets hot which could in turn damage the wet parts of the plant.
But of course, watering succulents in the morning seems to have some advantages as well. During the day, when the temperature is high, the water or moisture in the soil will quickly evaporate. This means that your plants will be safe from over-watering, which is actually the no. 1 reason why succulents die.
Proper way of watering your succulents
Now that you already know the best time to water succulents, you should learn how to actually do it 🙂 Keep in mind that succulents differ to other plants. They cannot survive if you apply the same watering strategies you often apply with hardy plants in your garden.
The most important thing is that succulents don’t like to get their leaves and stem soaked in water. When watering, make sure you direct the stream of water directly to the soil, avoiding watering the leaves. I know what I am talking about there, because I made exactly the same mistake when I started my career of a succulent grower. Most of my succulent plants died as a result.
But times have changes, I have learned from my mistakes, and blogs like this one exist, so you can learn everything about excellent care for your succulents. Yes, there are many factors that determine the health and longevity of your succulent plants. In this post, however, I want to focus on the right watering technique. And as far as watering succulent plants goes, it is important to understand that indoor and outdoor succulents have different needs.
Watering succulents indoors
The indoor environment has less airflow and light so it takes time for the water and moisture to evaporate. Logically indoor succulents require less frequent watering. The best watering method is in my experience the soak and dry method. It consists in soaking the soil and letting the excess water to drain. And never water the soil again until the soil becomes completely dry. But you can only use this method if you are using a pot with a drainage hole. Avoid soaking the soil if the pot has no draining hole. It will only cause rot of the roots, and your plant will eventually die.
Related Article: How Often to Water Succulents Indoors?
Watering succulents outdoors
Watering outdoors is easier than watering indoors. The reason is simple: the outdoor environment has better airflow and high temperature. So the moisture will quickly dry. And moisture is an enemy no. 1 to your succulent plants.
You can use any watering tools to water your succulents. Just make sure to soak the soil and not the plant. Then water again as the soil gets dried. Remember that succulent plants do not like to sit in wet soil for a couple of days. You can apply these techniques when watering succulents at night. The next question obviously is: how often should you water succulents?
Ideal watering frequency for your succulent plants
The watering frequency for succulents differs in various climates. What works in one location may not yield the desired results in another one. In most cases though, a 10-14-day watering interval will do the trick. Remember though that it depends on the location and the season.
However, the best watering schedule that works well in all areas is the soak and dry method. With this technique, there is no exact timeline to follow. The frequency is dependent on the moisture of the soil. Logically during summer when the environment is so much hotter than during fall or winter, you will water your succulents more frequently. On the other hand, during winter, when the environment is a lot colder, the moisture tends to last longer, and you may need to water the plants just occasionally.
By soaking the soil, all succulent roots will have access to water. This will in turn help the plant develop a larger and more stable root system. This will help succulents to become more resilient to drought.
There’s no good watering without appropriate soil
You can try what you want. As long as you use a soil that isn’t fitting for succulents, you will suffer problems with their growth–regardless of your watering schedule. Make sure that you use the well-draining soil. Compact soil like garden soil is harmful to succulents because it retains more water and moisture.
A perfect succulent soil mix contains a good combination of organic materials (such as pine bark, and coconut coir, etc.) and inorganic matters such as rock. The soil is usually gritty, and does a very good job of providing aeration and drainage to the plants. Click here to view my recommend succulent soil mix on Amazon.
Importance of drainage hole in your pots
To make things even a bit more complicated, besides right soil mix you will also need a right pot. A good pot with a drainage hole helps to reduce the moist and the water in the pot. This prevents the roots from rotting.
What’s more, the drainage hole of the pot will help with aeration for the plants. Airflow is very important for the succulents to keep them healthy.
Watering succulents at the correct time is crucial for their health. Although succulents can be watered at any time of the day (if you wish to), the best time is at night. This is because succulents use the CAM photosynthesis process. It means that they benefit the most from the water at night. I hope that it helps you come up with the right watering decisions for your succulent plants. Thank you for reading, and do not forget to check my complete guide on succulent growing.