What are your favorite succulent house plants species? Here’s a selection of popular succulent house plants grown in homes, with care instructions to encourage them to grow well…
Aloe Vera – Aloe
The Aloe plant is well known for its health and beauty benefits. These are very easy to care for and require little maintenance. Bright light without direct sunlight and a good soil mix that can keep the roots of the plant well aerated are part of keeping this species thriving. One of the very well-known succulent house plants.
Coral Cactus – Eurphorbia Lactea Crest
This unusual species the Coral cactus at first glance looks like thick lettuce leaves on a stem. It also looks very similar to types of coral reef, where it got its name. This plant is not a cactus, it’s actually a Eurphorbia that has been transfigured. An easy to care for species.
Kaffir Lily – Clivia Miniata
The Kaffir lily is a flowering house plant that blooms beautiful orange (my favorite), red-yellow, and cream flowers, in clusters of more than 10. These are fairly easy to care for, however, they may not bloom if not cared for correctly. It’s a must to understand the Kaffir’s needs.
Jade Plant – Crassula Ovata
The Jade plant is another common house plant that grows with a thick trunk and shiny oval-shaped leaves. This is also a plant that I remember having in the home while growing up. Mother propagated (using leaf cuttings) many Jades.
Mother In Laws Tongue – Sansevieria T
The mother in laws tongue (also known as snake plant) is a flowering species that is primarily grown for its slick-looking long leaves. This is a slow-growing plant that anyone can grow because of its low or high sunlight tolerance and ease of watering.
Mother of Thousands – B. Daigremontianum
Mother of Thousands is a succulent plant that produces many small plantlets at the edge of the leaves. This is where it gets its common name from. This species has numerous names including Devils Backbone, Mexican Hat, and others.
Panda Plant – Kalanchoe Tomentosa
The panda plant (botanical name: kalanchoe tomentosa) is a fairly easy succulent plant species to care for and maintain – which is grown for its interesting furry leaves. The panda plant is a succulent type species that grows thick leaves for water storage purposes, which means watering less often for the grower. These velvety leaves are greenish-gray in color.
Donkeys Tail Plant – Sedum Morganianum
The Donkeys tail succulent plant is also known as the Burros tail. This is grown primarily in a hanging basket because of its trailing growing nature, although it is still suited to windowsills or shelves. Flowering is difficult indoors although plenty of sun and correct temperatures may encourage them. The leaves are green and grayish in color.
Zebra – Haworthia Fasciata/Attenuata
This species is from the same sub-family of the Aloe plant and has many similar characteristics. Named Zebra because of its distinct Zebra-like stripes that are tubercles (like warts). They flower rarely indoors and produce small tubular-shaped blooms on an inflorescence. It’s very easy to care for and like most succulents just avoid overwatering during winter.
Tiger Jaws – Faucaria Tigrina
This is a great looking succulent. The flowers that bloom during fall and the beginning of winter are bright yellow in color and open then close during the day and approaching night. The foliage is also very attractive that resembles jaws with teeth. These teeth are spines that collect moisture.
Housetree Leek – Aeonium Arboreum
The Housetree leek is a fascinating species for a succulent – in how it looks, its color, and its tree-like stems. A difficulty for many growers to overcome is being able to provide enough sunlight and this is why those with conservatories are able to grow them well.
Jelly Beans – Sedum Pachphyllum
This succulent plant is from the Sedum genus and is named Jelly Beans because of its leaves that look similar to the sweet, Jelly beans. This species grows up to about 30 cm tall with a thick stem. When in flower it produces small yellow petals. Easy plant to grow and maintain.
Christmas Cheer – Sedum Rubrotinctum
The Christmas cheer plant is a hybrid of the Sedum pachyphyllum (Jelly beans). The main difference between these species is the Christmas cheer leaves will turn red when provided enough sunlight and the leaves usually grow a bit smaller.
Truncate – Lithops Pseudotruncatella
The Lithops pseudotruncatella has the common name of Truncate living stone plant. It has an obvious and unique living stones look, similar to large pebbles. The foliage only grows up to a couple of inches high and is olive green and brown in color.
Another Living Stones species, the Lithops fulleri grows taller than the Truncate living stone and the foliage is more gray in color rather than an olive green. These produce white daisy-looking flowers usually towards the end of summer or during fall.
Century Plant – Agave Americana
The Century plant is also known as the Agave cactus, American aloe, and maguey. In its natural sub-tropical habitat it can grow over 1.5m tall and has a wide spread. Variegated varieties are attractive plants.
The Argyroderma testiculare displays greenish-gray leaves that are split in the center. This center is where the attractive daisy-like flower blooms. Another Living Stones succulent plant type to add to the collection.
Drought-resistant succulent house plants are a special variety of plants that share similarities throughout their genera and families.
In their natural habitat, this plant type grows well in dry environments with little rainfall. This is why they produce leaves or organs that store water, preventing death when rainfall is non-existent for a period of time.
Common features for many include fleshy leaves or stems that function to store water, smaller roots than other plant types (not all species though), propagation methods (offsets, leaf cuttings, mainly), and rosette in shape (circular arrangement of leaves from the center stem – but others are bushy).
Not all succulents have the same features as mentioned above. You must read about each species individually.
For more detailed information about genera, origin, habitat, etc take a look at this wiki article – it’s very in-depth and provides many links to other sources.
SUCCULENT HOUSE PLANTS CARE
For each plant species, it’s best to follow care instructions specifically for that plant. However, here is some basic and comparable care advice you may find useful.
- Temperature: Most homes in temperate regions are more than suitable to grow a succulent house plant. The great thing about these is they will survive well when temperatures drop during winter and at night (they actually enjoy the drops at night). Lower than 40ºF (4.4ºC) should be avoided, which most homes never experience anyway.
- Lighting: Most succulents are sun lovers and enjoy being placed near a south-facing window. They still grow in shaded spots although slower.
- Watering: This is where many growers go wrong and is probably the worst succulent plant death offender. DONT overwater. Let the soil dry out between watering – during winter you may only need to water monthly. The soil might look dry or you may think they have not had enough water for so long, but remember those fleshy thick leaves have plenty in storage. Overwatering in winter because of the cold will cause a plant to rot and possibly die.
- Soil: It’s essential a grower uses soil that drains well and is well aerated. Poor soil not draining well can cause severe rot problems.
That’s the main area covered by many succulent species. They are very tough plants and survive neglect…keep it in mind that many suffer more because of too much rather than too little.
You can and your plants will enjoy being outside during summer. As mentioned above they will manage the drops in overnight temperatures, well actually enjoy the drops.
Elyssa Goins is an experienced house plant hobbyist who maintains over a hundred plants. She is a gardener, beekeeper, and a proud mother of four. She is a member of the American Horticultural Society, has a published study in the National Social Science Association, and loves to talk about her love of plants. For the past twenty years, she’s been all about growing and caring for various fruits, veggies, herbs, livestock, kids, and houseplants. Managing a big garden to feed four growing kids and raising dairy goats has taught her so much about being an excellent plant parent and now is her time to share with you.