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Few plant forms allow gardeners the freedom to produce indoor features as succulent plant arrangements do, a blend of plant knowledge and artistry.
The success of grouping different succulent plants in one container depends on a clear understanding of each plant’s needs regarding light, water, and dormancy cycles.
In a succulent arrangement, each unique succulent plant contributes to the effect of symmetry, color, and contrast, allowing true creative expression when you combine succulents.
Succulent Plant Care Requirements
While succulent plants are similar in their fleshy leaves and stem physiology, each genus and species have specific preferences.
Knowing these needs and combining plants with similar characteristics will make caring for them much more manageable.
Also, caring for succulent plants grouped by dormancy season, whether winter or summer, alleviates conflicting care routines and which succulents can be planted within the succulent arrangement.
Hardy succulents like cacti should be grouped. There’s sufficient variety in the genera to create something beautiful.
Some succulents require bright sunlight to flourish, while others require more water. Grouping plants with similar requirements will boost aesthetic synergy, ensuring vibrancy in the whole arrangement.
- Jade plants, for instance, grow best in the winter, while California Sunsets (Graptosedum) do best in the summer, so pairing them wouldn’t be a good idea.
- Sempervivum, Echeveria, and Agave, among other succulents that hibernate in the winter, can be combined.
- Graptopetalum, Aeonium, and Aloe are succulents that get along well.
Using Color and Texture of Succulent Leaves
There aren’t many plants that offer the diversity of colors, forms, and textures that succulents do. I use the term leaves loosely, as many succulents are leafless, using what can only be described as stems to photosynthesize – cacti are an example.
Color and Contrast
In addition to having a wide range of colors, succulents also change color in response to light and hot temperatures. They do this to store water better and optimize food production.
A succulent may already be attractive, but its beauty could be lost unless you plant it alongside different succulents in a succulent arrangement so care has to be taken when you combine succulents.
A basic understanding of which colors work together, complement each other, and provide focus areas is all part of color theory.
Knowing how to use color appropriately is a handy life skill for your wardrobe and plant collection.
Succulent colors complement each other well, including blue and orange, purple and yellow, and green and red.
Succulents offer a range of green, turquoise, and orange hues, making mixing and matching a breeze – and delightful fun.
You can also choose the three colors closest to one another on the color wheel to create an analogous color arrangement by combining succulents variations of yellow, yellow-green, green, yellow-green, and yellow these succulents can be planted within the succulent arrangement.
Another choice is to use a monochromatic arrangement or color scheme, where all succulents have the same color but subtle variations.
For instance, green succulents come in various hues and tones, so you can select from the vast array of green succulents to create complimenting succulent arrangements.
Monochromatic succulent arrangements make great contrast pieces. The ghost range of succulents offers an opportunity to create a striking feature, significantly if offset against a striking background, a burnt orange wall, for instance.
Examples of Using Texture and Form
When matching succulents, it’s also a good idea to pair succulents based on shape and texture. Like Aeonium and Sansevieria, succulents that grow tall and upward succulents can be planted.
Succulents that trail or cascade, like Senecio and Sedum, go well together.
Gasteria, Aloe, and Haworthiagive are some white-marked succulents with good texture. Additionally, you can choose from various textures thanks to the Euphorbia genus.
While many people know succulents’ leaves that store water and attractive stems, few know that some succulents can grow beautiful blooms.
Succulents that produce flowers can be planted and added to your paired arrangement, and you will be astounded when they bloom.
How to Combine Features, Fillers, and Fall Succulent Plants
I know the variations seem to be endless, but keep reading. Failing is learning, and there is no right or wrong design.
A practical starting point is to combine featured plants, filler plants, and cascading plants of similar growing habits.
Various types of succulents can feature in your arrangement. They are generally taller – cacti work well.
Filler plants commonly have small leaves. The taller plants mustn’t block the light to fillers.
Adding a waterfall of life off the edge of the container can be the third element. Adding fleshy hanging-basket-type succulents allows you to create a masterpiece.
Choice of Featured Plants
Featured plants are elegant-looking, tall succulents that grab your attention. Succulent growers should explore bonsai techniques, where form and features play a crucial role and aspect considerations.
Aspect considerations mean that a view angle lets the viewer appreciate the arrangement best.
People looking at your succulent pot must be drawn to the featured plants with bold, towering, and colorful colors.
For example, blue-green succulents would pair well with yellow-green succulents.
Cannas, Cactus, Agaves, and other genera make great feature plants. The North Carolina Plant Toolbox is an excellent resource for choosing plants.
Fleshy Cascading Succulents Suggestions
Adding cascading succulents to the container’s ends adds dimension and quality to the arrangement.
You can select succulents that cascade to expand the sense of space and quantity and fully exhibit the difference between each plant.
Filler Succulents Suggestions
With a featured plant arrangement in the background and a cascade on the edges, you need shorter succulents to fill the pot’s surface.
Most succulent fillers create textural contrast to the featured plants and lush environment.
Fillers can also conceal nearby succulent plants’ bare, unsightly stalks and stems. You can experiment with various plants, but consider using Begonias, Cupheas, Dusty Miller, Lantanas, Plectranthus, and Pentas to fill the gaps.
Pots and Containers
Your choice of pots to plant succulents in is almost infinite when planting succulents. Your setting, furnishings, and other houseplants should inform your choice of size, shape, color, and material from which it is made.
Using contrasting colors and unique shapes can add aesthetic appeal, but remember that glazed pots drain less efficiently than terracotta or concrete pots.
You can adorn your succulents with pebbles or LECA, depending on the style of your pot or container. The options are endless.
Considering Water Needs
Most succulents are drought tolerant, although certain succulents may go longer without water than others.
Typically, succulents with thicker leaves require less watering spread over longer intervals, while those with thinner leaves require more frequent attention.
Crassula arborescens undulatifolia “Ripple Jade,” Rhipsalis cereuscula, and Portulacaria afra variegate are a few succulents that prefer more water.
Root health is easily ensured:
Ensure your soil is aerated, i.e., offers a balance between organic matter and inorganic materials.
Protect the soil from invading insects that spread diseases, like fungus gnats
That’s it. Get that right, and your succulent will have the needed basis to thrive. It starts and ends with your potting mix and essential plant management – like all houseplants.
Mixing Succulent Plants With Other Plants
It’s possible to grow various genera together if the essential plant health elements are compatible.
The same standards might be used, including looking at things like size, growth needs, shape, and colors.
Perennial plants are typically thought to go well with succulents. Your choice should be able to handle direct sunlight, limited moisture availability, dry air, and higher temperatures.
In addition to perennial plants, decorative grasses and shrubs can also be used in succulent arrangements with succulents. Succulents are adaptable and will gladly live with other plants.
Dormant Succulents In an Arrangement
When arranging succulents, it is essential to think about succulents. Winter dormant succulents will slow their growth, while summer dormant succulents will continue to grow. It is imperative to ensure your group succulents by dormancy also.
Succulents can throw out the balance of the look of the arrangement, so ensure to plant succulents based on their dormancy in your succulent collection so they have the same growing season.
Applying the above rules, most succulents or succulent combinations can create wonderful textures.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do succulents like to be grouped together?
When grouping succulents together, think of aesthetics—group based on color, shading, and growth requirements. Place complimentary colors next to each other. Consider how much moisture, humidity, soil composition, and nutrition each requires.
Can you mix all succulents together?
While you could technically mix all succulents, attention should be given to the individual care requirements of each succulent. For example, some may prefer different soil compositions or pH. In contrast, others may choose more light.
Can succulents get too crowded?
Although succulents like their roots to be crowded, like all plants, succulents can get too crowded in their containers, primarily as succulents produce pups ( Baby Succulents) that will grow and take up any spare room. These can be transplanted for space.
Can you put cacti and succulents together?
Having similar growing conditions, cacti and succulents can be grown together successfully as a rule. However, care should be taken when combining individual plants to ensure that all factors for their optimal growth are the same.
Should you separate succulents?
As succulents grow and produce pups ( Baby Succulents), separating succulents into separate pots will become necessary. Even though succulents like a crowded root system, you should create a room by separating succulents for optimal growing conditions.
Combining various succulents helps to emphasize their diversity and beauty. You can even mix cacti with other succulents if you manage contrasting water needs diligently.
You may arrange your succulents in countless ways, so don’t be afraid to try different things to find what works best for you.