Planting Succulents in Containers Without Drainage

Michelle Hill

Succulent PlantsSource:

Succulent plants are known for their ability to store water in their leaves, stems, and roots, making them perfect for gardeners who don’t have the time or resources to water plants frequently. However, planting succulents in containers without drainage can be tricky. In this article, we’ll explore the best practices for planting succulents in containers without drainage.

Why Plant Succulents in Containers without Drainage?

Succulent Plants In ContainersSource:

Planting succulents in containers without drainage is a common practice among gardeners who want to display their plants indoors or outdoors. These containers can come in various shapes and sizes, such as terrariums, glass bowls, or ceramic pots. Succulents are perfect for such containers because they can survive in soil that is not well-draining.

Another reason why gardeners plant succulents in containers without drainage is that it allows them to control the moisture levels in the soil. When the soil is not well-draining, it retains more moisture, which can be beneficial for succulents that are not getting enough water.

The Risks of Planting Succulents in Containers without Drainage

Succulent Plants In Containers Without DrainageSource:

While planting succulents in containers without drainage can be beneficial, there are also risks involved. The biggest risk is root rot, which occurs when the soil is too wet for too long. Root rot can kill a succulent plant and is difficult to detect until it’s too late.

Another risk of planting succulents in containers without drainage is that the soil can become compacted, making it difficult for the roots to grow. This can stunt the growth of the plant and make it more susceptible to disease and pests.

How to Plant Succulents in Containers without Drainage

Planting Succulents In Containers Without DrainageSource:

Now that you know the risks and benefits of planting succulents in containers without drainage, let’s explore the best practices for doing so.

Choose the Right Container

Choosing The Right Container For SucculentsSource:

The first step in planting succulents in containers without drainage is to choose the right container. Look for a container that is shallow and has a wide opening. This will allow for better air circulation and prevent the soil from becoming too wet.

You can also choose a container with a small drainage hole at the bottom. While the hole is not necessary, it can help prevent water from pooling at the bottom of the container.

Use the Right Soil

Choosing The Right Soil For SucculentsSource:

The next step is to use the right soil. Succulents need well-draining soil that is porous and allows air to circulate. You can make your own succulent soil by mixing equal parts of sand, perlite, and peat moss.

Alternatively, you can use a commercial succulent soil mix, which is readily available at most garden centers. Look for a soil mix that contains sand, perlite, or vermiculite.

Plant the Succulents

Planting Succulents In ContainersSource:

Once you have the container and soil ready, it’s time to plant the succulents. Start by filling the container with a few inches of soil. Then, carefully remove the succulent from its original container and gently loosen the roots.

Place the succulent in the new container and add more soil around it, making sure to leave a little space at the top. Gently press the soil down around the roots to remove any air pockets.

Water the Succulents

Watering Succulents In ContainersSource:

After planting the succulents, it’s important to water them. While succulents don’t need water as frequently as other plants, they still require some moisture to survive.

Water the succulents sparingly, making sure to only moisten the soil. Avoid getting water on the leaves, as this can cause them to rot.

Maintain the Succulents

Maintaining Succulent PlantsSource:

Finally, it’s important to maintain the succulents to ensure their health and longevity. Keep the container in a bright, sunny location and rotate it occasionally to ensure even growth.

If you notice any signs of root rot, such as yellowing or wilting leaves, remove the plant from the container and inspect the roots. If the roots are brown and mushy, it’s likely that the plant has root rot and will need to be discarded.


Planting succulents in containers without drainage can be a great way to display these unique plants, but it’s important to do so correctly. By choosing the right container, soil, and watering schedule, you can ensure the health and longevity of your succulents.

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