Well, this is succulents one-on-one, a quick primer. And secondly, care for beginners. Welcome. Now, classes and session. We’re going to talk about how your climate and location come into play and we’re going to talk about why water, soil requirements for secularists have the right kind of pots to put them in.
And I’ll go ahead and show you a few of my favorite easygoing succulents that are, you know, I always recommend for beginners even though I really still love them. They’re, you know, forgiving, they propagate easily. Yeah, I think everybody needs a feel good plant. A plant that does really well. It doesn’t need a lot and it makes you feel good about yourself because it seems happy. So, Hey, you must be doing something right. Right. yeah, I think it was a great, I guess we’ll just start now and we’ll start with light. Most of the times I’m looking at helping people figure out what’s going on with their plants, especially beginners that they usually need more light or less water and between the, or maybe a different container, maybe some, you know, better dirt that drains faster.
And once we get those corrections made and figuring out which one of those is there, they’re missing. They come back, you know, maybe a week later and they’re like, yo, look, it’s so happy now. And you know, it’s, it’s, again, most of the, most of the problems can be corrected with more light or less water. So just remember that. Okay. So, yeah, let’s talk about light really quick. A lot of you guys are growing in doors up North, so that means you don’t, maybe you don’t have like a bunch of great bright, natural light inside. And I’m just going to say it’s,
It’s probably a good idea for you to get a grill light, right? Because succulents really depend on that steady supply of bright but gentle light. And having a grow light in your home. I one on my porch because we get all these overcast days. I’m in Houston and you know, sometimes I use it to warm my plants up in the wintertime. Again, I don’t have a lot of good, bright and light inside. I really don’t have many plants inside. But if you, if you get a grow light and you have it inside your home, you get to garden throughout the winter, it can be snowing outside and you, and just like having fun potting up propagating babies. And the amount of second lands that you save. I think, I think the lights will pay for themselves before you, before you realize it.
I know mine have in ’em, I’m pointing over here and I’ll go ahead and I don’t know if he can see me. Oh, I’ll put some pictures up of it. We’ll get another shot of it later. So yeah, having a girl light is just some that, that extra guarantee insecurity and having a good steady supply of light year round. As far as natural light goes, which is what, you know, most of us are working with. You’ll want succulents like bright in direct light. And what that means is they’re getting a lot of bright light, but the, it’s not direct. So keyword, indirect sun coming down like directly bearing down on them or hours a day will freak them out, fry their leaves, maybe forced them into dormancy or kill them. So you definitely want, you’re gonna have to figure out what that light means.
What’s that bright, indirect light means based on, you know, your situation, where you live, whether you’re keeping indoors or out. And it’s just so important that that’s kinda what I really want to start out with. Secondments really need a lot of light and I do have some examples of what I can show you. I’m talking about what you can tell is when a second light needs more light it will start what’s called old lading stretching. And here’s a good example right here, thinking it’s a focus. You could see how the leaves have become stacked the stack. So the leaves, there’s more space in between. It should be a nice tight little rosettes. Like I have someone to show you really quick. [inaudible]
Should be growing closer together. It’s not the best example to show. You should just maybe put up another picture. Okay, here we go. Looking at this angle, it’s a little bit hard to tell, but if you see it like this, it’s very obvious that the spacing between the leaves there’s, you know, they’re getting more space in between the leaves rather than growing all compact together and even the head is starting to point towards the sun. So there’s a couple of things you can do and that is without cutting it you can start to get to look normal again and then chop it. But yeah, you have the sun coming from this way and the best thing I, what I’ve been doing for this guy, it’s just a turn the pot. So the head is facing away from the sun and then, you know, it’ll naturally is a Helio tropes do. It’ll start tilting back towards the sun again and it’ll start correcting itself. And so if you don’t have really good indirect bright light, the best solution to keeping your plants looking in, keeping their natural form is to give the pot a little turn every few days or so.
One of my tricks to keeping rosettes in good form. And you know, they’re not perfect that they, that you might not be able to get them back to perfect with it. At that point you can what’s called top them and then propagate the leaves and reroute them. And I already have a video on that and that’s a little bit, you know, a little bit down the road. You’ll get there. You’ll probably be wanting to know how to do that pretty soon. So I will be sure to link to the video in the description below for that. And I have a whole playlist of secular repair demos and those will definitely come in handy too.
Now sometimes you can get too much light in it, certain times of the year, especially spring and moving into summer. I actually need to open up, these panels are just cheap white curtain panels I put up last year to help protect some of the porch plants from too much sun. So you know, I don’t want them getting burnt on the porch. That would not be cool. And it’s a very easy preventative fix. It helps keep me cooler too. You can burn your plants, having them indoors on the window sill. If that sun is too bright, you can also burn them with borough lights. And I have done that before. So just, you know, watch your plants, especially when you’re moving them into new light. So if you think your second lights need more light, what you need to do is instead of just giving them a ton of like a ton of full sun or you know, ton of bright light all day, right at once.
You want to acclimate them to getting more sun. And by to do that, you want to take up, take your pot move it from wherever you have it, find your new bright location. Okay. Keep it there for a few hours a day, maybe less to start on the first couple of days. And then watch your plant, look at the leaves, make sure not showing any signs of either drying out or spotting like dark spots. I actually unfortunately very recently left a pot of plants out in the sun and I think it might’ve even rains a little bit on them. And you know, I have a picture of what happened and I’m just kicking myself for it cause such a pretty plant. And it’ll be fine. I was just going to look kind of funky for a while until the old leaves get replaced by the new growth. And as long as I don’t mess it up again. So again, you know, things happen and you just keep going, do some research, make some corrections and try again.
It’s all we can do.
Okay. Now I want to talk about dirt and having the right soil and your second succulent pods is just so important. You’ll hear me talk about that a lot and it’s kind of one of the things like if somebody sends me a photo of their plant asking me what’s wrong with it, I’m looking at the dirt in the picture. I say like, Ooh, that looks pretty Brown and it looks a little bit too organic. You’re going to need to add some drainage materials, such as some examples here and we got comments is a good one. Pumice is like perlite but it’s not puff. I have some more information on that on my website, [inaudible] dot com under the care guide and my soil recipe on there where I get all of my ingredients from. So be sure to check that out. Again, it’s going to be linked at the bottom for you.
It’s all, it’s in the bottom of all my videos. The care guide we have expanded shell shale, S H E L,L , U. It’s really pretty, I think for using as a top dressing and we’ll talk about that in a second. And then we have this is terrific. [inaudible] Fill it. Poorest ceramic soil conditioner. What turf, this is a brand name and I ordered my pumice online. I have found a couple of places where I can start getting it locally. Thank think goodness. I really love this company. It’s from general premise products and it’s just, it’s beautiful stuff and you can get different sizes. I get the three-sixteenths fines. There you go. In Queens, they’re about three sixteenths of an inch on average in size and gets smaller. They make some promise. It’s really tiny too, like this and bigger. So I do like the middle one soil. So we were still, so if I was to use this in a pot and I’d say I had a pot about this big, I would add maybe two small handfuls of dirt. So you can’t really see, I’m going to just pour it to your small handfuls of dirt to this.
Okay. And then we’ll mix it up
And then the end will be something like this which is not very Brown and there’s a lot more of the drainage materials in there than dirt. Sorry. It likes getting crazy. Yeah. So if you send me pictures of your secular lights, please understand that I am gonna look at that dirt and other people are too. I’ve seen other people jump in on comments. I don’t, when people post about it and you know, asking questions on Facebook groups or whatnot. Like what what’s wrong with my plant? And like some people just be like, Oh, your dirt is way too Brown, you know, and they’re just trying to help and but it’s true and I’m just like, well, I’m glad somebody said it. So again, there’s a recipe on my website, how I make my soil. It’s a lot cheaper in the end.
Did you, to make it my way then to go out and keep buying those bags of miracle grow, whoever else is selling it. Second light and cactus mix that you’re just gonna have to like add a bunch of stuff to anyways to be able to use it. So, yeah. And I guess real quick, I’ll tell you why. Second light roots take in water by kind of absorbing water from the moisture in the air around the roots. They don’t suck it up like a straw or like some other plants. You know, when you take a cutting of Ivy and you can propagate them in there. And that’s why you can’t do that with succulents because any water that actually gets in the plants can cause the cells to rupture. And then you start getting a bacteria in there and root rot and STEM rot and all kinds of stuff.
So the more air you can provide around the roots, the better. Cause when you water all that oxygen rich water is going to bypass the roots and go through your pot and out the bottom because all of your pots are moving on. Now all of your plots have to have drainage holes. I may sound like a, a stickler on that and I am because I’ve, sorry, but it’s so rare that you hear of anyone who has a good experience with potting in a container that doesn’t have any holes in it. So porous red. Yeah, that was bad. This guy unglazed terracottaK big old drainage holes in the bottom. And if you have need to cover the hole, which you probably will, you can use something like screen. That one has a in it.
I also save all of the bulk. These are the sleeves that garlic comes in at the grocery store. So save those. And there’s other projects you can do with them. Maybe we’ll talk about this some time there. So you can use burlap. You don’t want to use anything that doesn’t have like, you know, good holes in it like this. You don’t want to use cloth, you don’t want to use paper. I would say burlap as the only fibrous material. Maybe you should use to cover the holes. And even then, sometimes they can get a little bit moldy mildew. So it’s just so important that your pots of drainage holes, I even have, we have a Facebook group and in the sidebar it’s like if your pots don’t have drainage holes, go and change that and then ask, ask about what’s wrong with your plan. Now maybe that’s not always the problem, but it’s, I mean, you’ve come in somewhere, you’ve got a knife in your back and you’re like, my head hurts. I don’t know why. It’s like, well, maybe the knife in the back isn’t why your head hurts, but let’s just go ahead and like take that out. That’s an extreme example. But [inaudible]
Yes, pro bowler. And I hope you will be too. No, I really recommend starting out with unglazed clay pots for your second lens because the glaze containers, even if they have, you know, a lot of drainage holes and fast draining material inside they do retain water more than not porous. Like these guys, you can even kind of see where the water is. Probably like calcium minerals with the pot is leaching out because it’s porous and that’s a good thing. So have fun, but make sure that if you do find a cute mug or something like that, you do want to make sure that there’s drainage holes in the bottom. So that’s something else you can put on the list. Grow lights and a power drill with a, you know, a ceramic bit carbide bit, things like that. It’s a lot of fun to, you know, make your own pots, so have fun with it.
Just be, be careful. Before we talk about watering, there’s one more thing I wanted to talk about as far as pots go and pottying them up. Do you want to use a top dressing to finish? Give it a really nice professional finish, look to your plants, go for it. But stick with the material that you use in your soil. Stick with the drainage amendments because they aren’t going to trap moisture down in the dirt, like aquarium gravel or a bunch of pretty, you know, glass pedals and stuff like that.
I’m just always, they, they know what’s up. They’re not going to give you a pot that doesn’t have drainage holes in it. Oh, you’re going to have to worry about it. This guy has some mega drainage hole look well good that this looks like [inaudible] chunk of something found in an ancient forest. I love it. So yeah, have fun potting them up, but really try to stick to the containers that are going to be more suitable homes for your second. Let’s just less for you to worry about. Really all this left to talk about in this video is watering and as far as the frequency goes that is determined by how fast your soil is drying. You show your soil should be drying out within a week. So if it’s not you’re going to be more at risk for root rot, STEM rot, bacteria, bad things happening to your succulents.
You really want the air to be the drying out around the roots within a week. So just keep that in mind. Now to modify your soil you can add more drainage materials, you can change your pot, you can add more drainage holes. All of those things will help your soil dry out more quickly. If it’s still not drawing out within that week you might want to try a smaller pot and watering a little bit less frequently and less deeply. So I’m going to show you what I mean by that. Okay. So here’s one of many containers I’ve used to water with. It’s just a little tequila bottle with a pour spout on it. And that’s good for doing less, doing more shallow waterings. It’s a big can like this. You’re just gonna like dump a lot of water on it at one time and you know, this way the water’s not gonna run all the way through or it’ll go through, but it’s not going to flood the plot.
Using a bigger can can cause the water to come out a little too fast and splash everything everywhere. So you use this can more to refill my smaller containers. Just so I have something handy, but I’m just going to show you, I’m gonna water this collage through UMLS. Try and pour it slowly on top in a way, and it should start coming out the bottom. If it doesn’t, it might give it a little bit more, but this is a glaze container so we definitely don’t want to overdo it. So I think that’s going to be it for now for that guy. One of the thing I like to use if I need more water than why a little tequila bottle has, is something like a old pesticide spray and whatnot. But I actually just put water in it and you can pump it up and walk around with it and spray everybody.
It’s great for provocations and seed liens and you know, anything, you just want a really precise amount of water coming out without flooding it or knocking, knock the babies up out of the ground with too much water. I do that all the time. So yeah, that’s how you water and again, to understand how often you water, make sure you reach your drawing out within a week and if not, change your part, change your soil water less deeply. Okay. Hope that makes sense because it’s really important. And if anybody has any questions about that, please let me know in the comments below. And last but not least, as promised, some of my favorite second lands for beginners, they’re just so easy going. And a lot of them propagate it really well.
Eventually you’re going to want to learn more about propagating. I’m repairing stretched out succulents. I’ve treating them for pests like mealy bugs.