What succulents are safe for Leopard Geckos? Top 10 Choices

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Let me start with facts: Healthy leopard geckos do not eat plants, including succulents. They may rarely take a bite of a plant only in two occasions: When they experience stomach discomfort–than they may instinctively take a bite of a plant, trying to fight parasites. But geckos rarely experience such discomfort. Second, when they are extremely hungry, and you have not fed them for more than 10 days. A healthy adult Leopard Gecko can survive without food for two weeks, but when hungry they may bite on things they would normally not even consider trying.

Having said that, you may get an impression that virtually all succulents are safe for your gecko, and you can place any in the tank. This isn’t completely true though. First of all, many succulents require strong light to thrive, something leopard geckos do not like (though can sustain). And secondly, while geckos do not eat plants they definitely explore them and climb over them. Hence it is a good idea avoiding succulents with spikes (maybe you didn’t know it, but each cactus is technically a succulent!) or plants that can easily irritate the skin of your animal.

Everything considered, I put together a list of 10 succulents that are not only safe for leopard geckos, but actually a good fit for living in one terrarium with your pets. If you find any of the plants on the list interesting, you can just google its name or look for it on Amazon or any other popular online store with plants to buy it. Let’s move to the list.


Snake Plant as a perfect plant for leopard geckos + 2 other great choices

Snake plant is a common favorite of succulent growers. It is beautiful, easy to grow, rarely faces any problems. It doesn’t have any spikes, and does not irritate the skin on touch. What’s more, it is a low light succulent, so you do not have to change anything in the tank of your gecko to make sure the snake plant will do well, and not merely survive.  Another plus is the shape of the plant–geckos may climb over the leaves, they may even hind under them if they feel like doing so. All in all, it s a great succulent for your terrarium.

Echeveria is another succulent on the list. Everybody knows this plant, it is characteristic by a shape resembling a rose flower, a green rose flower :). Echeverias do not grow too big and are a good fit for smaller tanks. They are completely safe for any reptiles, and in my opinion they make for a good color fit for leopard geckos. I saw this combination a few times, and I believe this plant and lizard go well together.

Zebra plant is the third one on my list. It shape and colors just shine out in every terrarium. In contrast to Aloe Vera (which looks similar), zebra plant does not include any toxic substances and is perfectly safe for leopard geckos or any other pets. It can thrive in low light and do not mind slightly humid conditions as one finds in many tanks with lizards, which makes from it a perfect choice for every pet and succulent lower.

Zebra plant in full beauty. Just imagine the spectacle of your leopard gecko standing next to it…


7 other succulents perfectly safe for Leopard Geckos

Without dwelling too much on details, I will now list seven other succulents that can do no harm to leopard geckos. They can all survive in a terrarium, though not all of them will necessarily thrive, which was the case with the three succulents (echeveria, snake plant, zebra plant) we had a closer look on before. Google their names and check how they look like, and decide accordingly which one you want to have with your gecko.

  • Schlumberga, or “Christmas Cactus” – Can even flower in a terrarium during winter.
  • Lithops, or “Living Stones” – A perfect fit (design wise) to almost any terrarium. They prefer more light though.
  • Sempervivum, or “Hens and Chicks” – Easy to grow and non-toxic to pets or humans, you can even find this succulent on rocky spots near to your home.
  • Sedum Morganium, or “Burro’s Tail” – One of the top 5 most commonly bought succulents in the world, and perfectly safe for pets.
  • Rhipsalis spp, or “Mistletoe cactus” – Great choice for interesting design combinations, and something I haven’t seen in a terrarium yet.
  • Hoyas – Defined as “semi-succulents”, all varieties of hoyas are completely safe for pets, and thrive in low light.
  • Ponytail palm – Ideal for big tanks and outdoors spaces with geckos. They prefer sun but will tolerate low light.
Burro’s tail, one of the most popular succulents, and a great plant to have in a terrarium with your leopard gecko.

Final thoughts

It is a shame having an empty terrarium. Plants and lizards have always lived together, and your leopard gecko will be happier in a terrarium with living plants than in an empty one. Succulents are a great choice, since they do not mind living in a tank, and many of them actually thrive in neglect. As a rule of a thumb your gecko won’t eat succulents, and you have no reason to worry about potential consequences. If you want to be 100% sure though, pick one of the ten succulents I outlined in this post, since they are all perfectly safe for geckos and other pets. Hope it helps, and I wish you good luck with both your pets and plants!

May also interest you: What succulents can a bearded dragon eat?