I’ve always wondered if I would ever be successful should I set my mind to creating a garden.
Needless to say, I never really had the time – and unfortunately, I still don’t. I initially tried to take care of a couple of household plants. It seemed easy enough at first; one has only to water a plant a few times a week and expose it to sunlight after all, right?
WRONG. Apparently it takes more than that, since my poor house plants all died, brown and withered, and with brittle leaves… The fact that I might have forgotten to water them a couple of times might have had something to do with it too.
In short, I had honestly lost all hope, since it was obvious that I didn’t have a green thumb after all. That is what I had believed, until I made the acquaintance of succulents!
Succulent plants are indoor/outdoor plants with fatty leaves which are able to retain water, since they originally grow and thrive in arid climates. These include most cacti, as well as more than 60 different plant families. The ability to store water makes succulents very hard to kill, since one only needs to water them once every week or two… or whenever it doesn’t slip your mind.
Succulents can be kept both outdoors or indoors, depending on their genre and your preferences, as they’re quite adaptable and need very little maintenance. This also means that you can leave them unattended whenever you go abroad or aren’t at home for extended periods of time.
Succulents seem to be the perfect plants for the forgetful gardener! Their fleshy and colourful leaves are also quite pleasant and a nice decoration for the kitchen or living room. Just make sure their pots have drainage holes, and when you do actually remember to water them, don’t leave them sitting in the water that comes out of their pot and into the under-tray for too long. Otherwise, you might risk over-watering. During winter, most succulents are dormant, so they need even less water.
Some succulents change colour according to the amount of sunlight they’re exposed to, sporting gorgeous red, orange or yellow edges to their leaves. Generally, if the succulent is a house plant, it’s beneficial to keep it near a balcony door or a window in order for it to receive at least six good hours of sunlight a day, depending on the direction the window faces.
Like many other plants, some succulents may be poisonous to humans or animals if eaten, so if you have small children or dogs which might find it interesting to chew on the plump colourful leaves, beware! I would recommend keeping the plants on high window sills or furniture, instead of leaving them on the floor.