Succulents are very tiny and beautiful plants they take very long time to grow but yes they do grow at a point where you will need to trim a succulent. It might sound intimidating for most of us to chop of the beautiful succulent that you have grown from the seeds. But what actually happens when you trim a succulent is that it will get a good growth and will benefit from the little trim. Just like what you do with your hair. Trimming your succulents will give them a good shape and will make them look cute and compact.
Many people think that trimming a succulent can be a tough job to do, well that’s not true if you know the process well then it’s a very easy job. But you should know that if trimming done incorrectly might end up damaging your succulent. In this article, I’ll walk you through the process of how to trim a succulent at home.
When to prune succulents (trim a succulent)
Spring and fall are the best time to prune a succulent that’s the season when they can promote good growth. When you trim a succulent it promotes new growth. So you should understand that when is the best time of the year for succulents to grow beautifully. Almost many of the succulents grow during the spring so accordingly, that is when you should consider trimming a succulent.
Just before the spring, you should start to prune all of the succulents that need maintenance. Many succulents stress and start growing tall due to lack of sunlight. When they don’t get enough sun that’s when they start to lean and stretch towards the light. This type of succulents also needs some care and maintenance as they loose their compact size and shape.
Maintenance of succulents
Succulent leaves usually get dried up and fall down and that’s not a sign to worry about. That is a natural process of the plant to throw off the dead leaves to promote the new growth of the succulent. This is the life cycle of the succulent leaves. So check the plant regularly and look if you find any dried leaves at the bottom and then with the help of your fingers slightly pull off the leaves from the bottom of the steam. It is good to remove the dead leaves time to time to get the healthy growth. When the leaves are left on the stem for a long time that will not let the soil to dry and will make the plant to rot.
If your plant is living outside you will also have to remove the debris between your plants. By removing the debris you will also protect the plant from those nasty bugs. If you are suffering from the mealybugs visit How to get rid of mealybugs on succulents.
tools required to trim a succulent?
Pruning a succulent don’t require lot of equipment’s it’s an simple process with very few tools. It can also be done with any cutting instrument. I prefer a scissors for trimming a succulent as they are very light weight and are easy to cut the plant. You can buy a good scissors from any online store just like amazon just make sure that it will cut well and should be light weight. Make sure to clean the scissors before you start trimming as it might rot your succulents in future.
As the scissor is the only thing you will need but you can also have these following equipment’s for your convenience.
- A tooth pick or a stick just like a chop stick to loosen the soil.
- A towel to clean the surrounding space and your hands.
- Tweezers for plucking out the leaves from the place where it’s tough for hand to reach.
- A tray for keeping a dead part of the succulent separately so that it won’t rot the other’s.
Beheading Succulents (to trim a succulent)
The first step you will want to do before beheading a succulent is to decide which plant needs to be trimmed and which needs to be left as it is. As soon as you decide take the plant which needs their head to be chopped off and notice the extra part which has grown long and leggy.
Then start by chopping the long and leggy head of the succulent. When you are trimming the succulent (or an Echeveria) always remember that cut the plant just by leaving the tiny part of the stem attached to the plant so that it can promote the new growth.
Now that you have chopped off all the succulents and made them compact in size and beautiful again ( not that they weren’t beautiful ) it’s time to take the chopped part and to let the cuttings dry for some time maybe for a day (minimum) or so before you start to replant them, what this will do is prevent the rot. You can replant the cuttings as they will putt off the new growth from the base.
Replanting the trimmed parts or cuttings
Replanting is something which can be done when you have a succulent arrangement or you want to make one. This will help you to grow many plants from a single succulent ( who doesn’t love freebies ). Take the cuttings which have dried at least for a day and replant them in your arrangement. You can fill the holes of removed plants from the succulents. Always keep the arrangement tight as it will slow the growth and keep them tidy to help them promote a good healthy growth.
If any of your cuttings have curved endings make sure to cut them and make the endings straight so that when you replant the cuttings it gets into the soil properly and will promote the growth. Make sure to dry the cuttings for a day this is an important factor to consider.
As soon as you finish the replanting of the plant in check for the gaps in the arrangement. If you find to many gaps between the plants you can fill those by planting from your existing succulents. There is no rule that you can’t do this, as this will tighten the arrangement and slow the growth.
top dressing for Succulent arrangement
If you aren’t familiar with the top dressing visit here, to narrow it down to the basics top dressing means to have decorative rocks all over the soil to give them a clean and professional look. If your arrangement has the magic touch of the top dressing it will add a beautiful overall look to the succulents.
For creating a top dressing you will need a few rocks of small size and large size. Then add those on the top of the soil of your arrangement. Then decorate those rocks according to you to give the magic of a clean and professional look. I prefer to put this kind of arrangement in layered sand succulent planter if you want to know this visit DIY Layered sand succulent planter.
Now that your arrangement is ready, don’t water it for at least a day to help your plants and the roots to heal and adjust in a new conditions. Then always water the arrangement once a week, remember to consider that there is good drainage and direct sunlight for your succulents. By taking care of all these basic things you will keep your plant safe and healthy.
I hope you found all the answers you were looking for. If you have any suggestions or any doubt don’t hesitate to leave a comment. Our goal is to provide the best information regarding these beautiful plants and help others to contribute to green living by growing them in your garden. As plants are the best thing earth can have!