When I started growing succulents I thought that these are tiny beautiful plants that do not occupy much space. But I was unaware of the idea that these tiny plants can also grow big and stress out sometimes. And the main reason for this to happen is the lack of care and attention we give to succulents.
When I started growing succulents a few of my plants started growing long stems and I had no idea why are they growing long stems? I was unaware of the fact that this is due to a lack of care. Then after doing some experiments and research I got all the answers on how to fix succulents with a long stem. In this article, I will be sharing all the information regarding fixing this problem and also a few of my personal tips and experience. Before going into the details the quick answer to the question.
The main reason that succulents might get stretched and start to grow long stems is that they are lacking light and in search of the source of light they start to lean and stress towards the light. And this is one of the main signs that succulents give when they need some care and attention. Hence succulents tend to grow long stems.
Why do succulents grow long stem?
I have been growing succulents for many years and from my experience, I can say that succulents usually grow long stems due to the following causes. Let’s get to know the causes below:
1. In search of light
As we all know succulents love direct sunlight. And usually, they grow healthy and beautiful when they get a good amount of light on a daily basis. When succulents do not get enough light then they start to stretch and grow long stems towards the light source.
This happens mostly when succulents are kept indoors and they are not getting enough light so they start to lean towards the source of light. The best solution for this problem is to keep them near a window or at a place where they get direct light. What I personally prefer to do is to keep them near the window. By keeping them near a window allows plants to get enough light throughout the day. Also do not forget to rotate the plant frequently when they are kept near the window so that the overall plant can be exposed to the light.
This is one of the effective methods to avoid your succulents from getting leggy and stretched.
2. The natural growth of the plants
The next reason for this problem can be the natural growth of the succulents. I have noticed many succulents that tend to grow the long stems and the reason behind this is that it is their natural process.
Most of the time we mistake this natural growth of the succulents to a problem. WHereas they are just going through their natural process. If the long stems of the plants are bothering you then you might consider pruning the plants. If you want to learn about pruning the succulents make sure to visit How to prune succulents.
How to recognize the long stems?
Now that you know the causes of the succulents growing long stems. It is important to diagnose the long stem and fix it. Let’s understand how should we diagnose the long stem.
Succulents have a process of growing the stems while growing the stem they go through a few changes. It is essential to catch those changing signs to diagnose them and act upon it immediately to prevent it. Here are a few signs that succulents show
- The stem gets elongated much faster than usual and that increases the gap between the leaves. This is one of the sign we often fail to catch if you can notice this then you have great chances to prevent the long stem.
- The second signal is that the leaves of the plant start to point downwards. Also, they can become quite droopy as well. As soon as this happens to your plant it’s time to give them some attention and care.
While taking any action with the succulents make sure to have a gradual process be that of bringing them in light or watering the plant. Blasting them with a lot of light can harm them and can even burn the succulents. So consider having a slow and gradual process for fixing the plants.
How to fix the long stem?
If your succulents have already surpassed the above stages and you haven’t noticed the signals then you are left with only one option to fix them and that is pruning the long stems. To prune the succulents doesn’t mean to chop off each and every part of the stem but what you should do is to take the elongated stem and just chop them off. Remember do not throw away the stem you have chopped instead we will be replanting it to get a new plant from it.
Now as you are considering cutting the elongated stem take the clean scissors or anything which you can comfortably use for cutting the stem. Take the stem which you want to chop and then cut the stem just by leaving the little stem to the plant so that it can grow healthily next time. Chop all the required stems in such a manner and collect all the cuttings so that we can replant them.
Always use the clean pair of scissors so that plants will not get infected. I usually buy the scissors from amazon.
Replanting the stem
Now that you have collected all the cuttings it’s time to replant them for growing new baby succulents. Before you replant the cuttings make sure to cut them if needed so that they can be easily planted. It’s not appropriate to plant the bigger stems so make them smaller in size.
- The next thing you should do is wait until the cuttings are dried this will avoid any rot when you plant them in potting soil.
- Now that they are dried and are small in size it is time to plant them in potting soil. Remember to plant them in well-drained soil so that they can grow healthy.
- After planting the succulents it’s time to water the succulent cuttings. Water them appropriately and thoroughly. Do not water them immediately after planting, wait for sometime before you water.
- Water the replanted plants thoroughly once a week to make them grow beautifully. These are draught plants they do not need much water so don’t overwater the succulents.
Now that you have taken all these efforts it’s time that you have some patience. Newly planted succulents might take months to grow roots so do not uproot the cuttings at all. Wait until the grow and blossom beautifully.
How to avoid succulents from growing long stems?
Cutting off is not an option every time your beautiful plant grows long stem. So here are a few of the precautions for avoiding the long stems of the succulents.
1. Give them light.
Succulents love sunlight it’s their food so when they lack it they start to grow long stems and stretch out. It is important to give them a good amount of sunlight every day so that they can grow beautifully.
2. Rotate the pot.
When you start to give light to the succulent it is important to expose the plant to light from all the directions. For that, you should always keep rotating the pots so that the plants can get light from all the directions.
3. Plant them in a correct sized pot.
It is very important to plant the pots in a correct sized pot so that they can grow tall and healthy. A pot with good drainage and appropriate size can be a great combination to have healthy succulents. If you want to know how to choose the correct pot size for the succulent visit here.
Succulents are tiny beautiful plants they do not grow that tall and are very low maintenance plants. They do not need much of your attention and care therefore they are the type of plants we should consider having in our collection.
Finally, I hope you have got all the answers you were looking for, if you have any doubt make sure to leave a comment I will definitely get back to you.