Succulents planted in glass containers like mason jars and bowls look absolutely stunning. Plus, they make nice gifts for practically any occasion.
Listed below are the steps you need to undertake to plant succulents in glass containers as well as a few tips to ensure the longevity and health of your plants.
Here are the Steps for planting succulents in glass containers:
Planting succulents in a glass container is a pretty straightforward process that requires a minimal amount of materials.
For this project, you will need:
- Glass container
- Soil mix
- Pebbles or sand
Step 1: Remove the succulents from their container
Start by removing the succulents from the containers they originally came in. Remove as much soil as you can as most succulents that came from nurseries do not use the best type of soil for these plants. At the same time, remove unhealthy or dead leaves to improve the appearance of your plants. Handle your plants with extra care.
Step 2: Insert soil in to the container, but not too much
Next, fill up your container of choice with soil. For succulents, it is critical to use fast-draining soil to prevent problems associated with overwatering. Remember, glass containers do not contain drainage holes. You can either buy soil mix specially formulated for succulents or just mix your own. If you want to create your potting soil, mix two parts of organic soil with one part of sand and another part of perlite.
Do remember that different varieties of succulents each have their preferences when it comes to soil and you might have to experiment a little before planting your succulents directly to glass containers.
Do not fill up the glass container entirely. Fill it halfway before planting your succulents. This will give you ample room to maneuver while arranging the plants and adding decor like pebbles and sand.
Step 3: Plant the succulent into the soil
Plant the succulent into the soil in the glass container. Make sure that your succulents are planted straight and are not skewed or lopsided. Additionally, check if any leaves have been buried. Buried succulent leaves can become vulnerable to rot.
Step 4: Add the rest of the soil
After putting your succulents into the glass container, you can now fill up the container with more soil as well as your chosen top dressing.
Step 5: Add sand or pebbles to the glass container
Finally, you can add sand or pebbles to the glass container. If you are using white sand, be aware that you will need to replenish it after some time.
Should you plant succulents in glass containers?
Although succulents are hardy plants, able to thrive in harsh conditions, they are prone to overwatering. Succulents mainly require two things: correct watering and fast-draining soil. Miss out on any of the two and you can encounter a host of problems that can eventually lead to the death of your plant.
Many succulent growers prefer to grow their plants in containers with drainage holes which prevents the buildup of excess moisture which is detrimental to plant health.
If you are planning on planting succulents in glass containers, one important thing to remember is that these containers do not have drainage holes.
But that same caveat can also be an advantage, especially if you are keeping your succulents indoors. Glass bowls do not require the use of dishes beneath them. It is also less likely that you will encounter water stains on your table.
If you are intent on planting succulents in glass containers like bowls and jars, you should pay extra attention to choosing the right soil mix as well as watering your plants.
You can generate more interest in your project by using a few key design elements.
First, determine whether you want to use succulents that have essentially the same color or use plants with different colors.
If you want to go for a monochromatic look, you can generate visual appeal by playing around with shapes and textures.
For a more colorful arrangement, select plants with colors that are adjacent on the color wheel. Green looks great with purple and blue while red pops out with orange and yellow.
Some designers prefer using complementary colors. Complementary colors are those that are positioned opposite each other on the color wheel. With this approach, you can use green succulents with red-colored varieties.
Another critical factor you should consider before planting in a glass container is hierarchy. This is particularly important if you are using more than one succulent variety.
Start by choosing your centerpiece. This succulent should immediately stand out from your design.
Then, choose your filler plants. These succulents complement your centerpiece by adding color, texture, or even both.
Finish off your design with a spiller, typically a succulent species that trails.
Choosing which succulents to plant together
Even more important than finding and planting succulents that look good next to each other is finding species with similar lighting and watering needs.
Be aware that succulents have varying lighting needs. Some need hours of sunlight while others require low lighting.
Another important factor to consider is the watering needs of each succulent. The easiest way to determine that is leaf thickness. Succulents with similar leaf thickness, in general, have the same water requirements. If you are unsure, you can do a quick online search.
Remember to bear in mind these two factors to ensure that your plants thrive well together for a long time.
Dealing with space
A glass container brimming with succulents is a sight to behold. But bear in mind that planting your succulents too closely has a few pros and cons.
Succulents planted closely to one another gives an arrangement a more finished look. This look is ideal if you are planning on selling or giving away your arrangement. Additionally, the plants are more likely to hold their shape.
However, planting your succulents too close to one another poses a few problems. For starters, you might find it difficult to water your plants. The best remedy for this issue is to use a watering can with a thin spout to allow you to go between the plants.
Another downside that you may have to deal with when planting succulents close to each other is that some plants may look too big for the container as these grow. It is also not unusual for such plants to become root-bound.
To solve this problem, you can prune your succulents. For root-bound plants, you will need to remove all the plants and cut the roots.
Some designers prefer to plant succulents farther from one another. This gives the plants enough room to grow. The extra space also facilitates the growth of babies.
Spread-out arrangements also require minimal maintenance. Plus, watering is rarely a problem.
However, spreading out your arrangement has a major downside: your design may look unfinished. One quick remedy for this is to use either decorative rocks or top dressing.
Caring for your succulents
Because glass containers do not have drainage holes, you will need to pay extra attention to how you water your succulents. Remember, overwatering is the number one enemy of these plants.
Err on the side of caution. It is always better to underwater your succulents than overwater them. These plants can thrive in conditions with little moisture.
One of the easiest ways to determine when to water your succulents is to take note of the container’s weight after watering it initially. As the moisture evaporates, the container becomes lighter. How many days it will take will depend on the temperature and humidity.
Succulents planted in glass containers do not need to be watered deeply. It is better to water around the base of the container. The plants’ roots do a terrific job finding water.
Planting succulents in glass containers is a fun project that you and your loved ones can start.
Be aware of potential problems as well as the special considerations mentioned above and you will be assured that your succulents will thrive over the long term.
Image: istockphoto.com / Svetlanais