How to Clean Succulent Roots? | 3 Easy Ways

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Succulents are one of the most popular plants. They are super easy to grow and need very little care. Though they are low-maintenance plants, they still need some care. 

bare root succulent

Many people ask me about the correct way of cleaning succulent roots. Let’s quickly get to know: How to clean succulent roots?

To clean succulent roots, gently remove the plant from the soil. Then carefully remove the excess soil and dirt by tapping the roots with the fingers. The other ways to clean are by using a soft brush (Paintbrush) or an air blower.  

Succulent roots usually do not need much cleaning as they already are inside the soil. A few years back my succulent was showing some signs that it needed my attention, their leaves started to turn black and blue. 

So I knew something was wrong, so I removed the plant from the soil and did some root cleaning, and removed the rotted roots. Then re-potted the plant back in it, and my plant was healthy again.

In this article, I will share with you some of the ways to clean the succulent roots and remove the root rot.

When Should You Clean Succulent roots?

Before diving into the details, let’s get to know when you should clean succulent roots? 

Succulent roots do not need to be cleaned regularly. The only time I prefer to clean the succulent roots is while repotting them. This is the most appropriate time for the cleaning of roots. 

Except this, you can consider cleaning them when succulent is showing signs of rotting or if you notice any dark spots on leaves. These are alarming signs that there can be root rot. Therefore, consider inspecting the roots and take action.

Ways To Clean Succulent Roots

how to clean succulent roots

Succulent root cleaning is a very delicate process. While cleaning the roots you must do it very carefully. Here are a few ways for cleaning the succulent roots.

1. Cleaning with Fingers

The first and the easiest way for cleaning the succulent root is with our hands. Gently hold the succulent and then take a look at the roots. Then try to detect any dark spot or dirt on the roots. If there are spots then cut off those roots.

Once you notice these things then gently remove the dirt with your finger just by tapping the roots. Make sure that you do not damage the roots, also sanitize the hands before touching the roots, or else use gloves for this process.

2. By using a Soft Brush

The second way to clean the roots is by using a brush. Most of the time, I use the paintbrush to clean my succulents. Paintbrushes are soft and have smooth bristles which will not harm the roots. 

To clean the roots hold the plant in one hand and then slowly move the brush all over the roots. Gently remove the dirt and excess soil from the roots and then look for any dark spots on the roots. 

You can also use the brush to remove the excess soil from the roots while repotting the succulents. Also, remember that once you spot the dark spots, make sure to cut those roots to avoid further rotting. 

3. By using an air blower

The third way to clean the succulent roots is to blow the air with minimum pressure. Hold the plant gently, and start blowing the air on the roots.

All the dirt and the soil from the roots will fall off by the air pressure and roots will get cleaned without even you touching them. This method can also be used to clean succulent leaves. 

Just blow the air on their leaves and under the stem to get rid of all the dust particles

For this make sure you are not using the electric blower as that damages the roots. I use the manual hand blower which you can get from amazon.  

Related Article

How To Clean Succulents Leaves? | Easy Tips!

Should you wash succulent roots?

Yes, you can wash the succulent roots. Washing them with water will not cause any damage. Roots thrive in the water, they tend to grow when they are moist. 

So washing the roots is in fact healthy for the plant. But the main question arises how and when should you wash the roots. The answer is pretty simple, wash them whenever you are repotting the succulents

While washing them make sure that you gently hold the plant and do not damage the roots. If you accidentally damage any root, do not worry they will grow back pretty normally. 

Once you have washed them, make sure to leave them for a day or so to dry. Do not pot them right after washing. That can cause root rot and your plant may start to die within a short span.

Should you water succulents after repotting?

No, you should not water the succulents right after repotting them. Give the plant a day to settle their roots in a new environment before watering them. Once the roots are settled in new soil you can water the succulents.

When repotting the succulents you should always consider the good quality soil that drains faster. Having good soil is just like having a good home for the roots. 

Roots do not like to sit in water for too long, they start to rot. Therefore, you must have fast-draining soil for your beautiful succulents.

The other thing is to have the correct size pot. By correct size, I mean, not too small nor too big pot. Correct size pots will enhance the good growth of the plant by holding the roots together. 

Also, make sure to have a pot that has drainage holes underneath. This will flush away all the excess water from the pot and will keep the soil dry. These are a few things to consider while repotting the succulents.

Caring Tips For Succulents

Succulents are low-maintenance plants that do not need a lot of attention. There are a few things to make sure for caring succulents.


Succulents are desert plants and they do well in bright light. These plants need light for their healthy growth. You can consider keeping them in partial sunlight throughout the day. Or else they need at least a few hours of direct sunlight during the day. 


When growing succulents you must water them correctly to avoid damaging the plant. Water the succulents once a week or use the soak and dry method for watering them. 

Soak and dry means you should only water the plant when the soil is completely dry. This will avoid any watering issues such as over or under watering and is the correct way to water the succulents.


As mentioned earlier, the soil is an essential part of a plant’s healthy growth. You must have fast-draining soil, this type of soil drains the way faster by flushing away all the excess water from the soil.

It just retains the moisture in the soil. Therefore, always make sure to have good quality fast-draining soil for your lovely succulents.

Final Thoughts

Finally, succulent roots cleaning can be done using different ways. It is up to your preference. These tiny plants are very easy to grow and need minimal attention. Consider applying the above tips to your succulents for caring for them.

I hope you find this information helpful. Do share with the needy ones.

Happy Planting!!

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