Wrinkles aren’t a good look on your succulent.
Luckily, you don’t have to buy an expensive face cream for them to look their best. All it takes is some water!
Spotting an Under-watered Succulent
When your succulent is healthy and watered properly the leaves are plump, firm, and don’t bend.
1. The first thing you’ll notice when a succulent needs more water is that the leaves feel rubbery and bend easily (see photo below.) They won’t necessarily change color, like they would when they are over-watered.
2. The second sign your plant is under-watered is shriveled and wrinkled leaves (see photo below.)
3. Additionally, your plant may start growing aerial roots, which appear as clear, white, or pink tendrils that grow out of the stem above the soil Check out an example of aerial roots here. Succulents send out these shoots to collect water from the air. They are common in high humidity areas, so if your succulent has aerial roots but isn’t displaying other signs of being under-watered it’s probably fine.
How to save an under-watered succulent
Good news! Saving an under-watered succulent is far easier than saving an over-watered one. Even succulents that are super shriveled still stand a chance! As soon as you notice your succulent’s leaves start to wrinkle and shrivel and feel rubbery, water it thoroughly:
- Using a watering can or cup, generously pour water onto the base of the plant.
- Wait until its soil totally absorbs the water, then pour more.
- Repeat Steps 1 and 2 until water starts coming out of the drainage hole.
- Allow all water to drain completely.
- After a few days, your succulent should look and feel firm again.
- If your succulent does NOT look or feel any more firm (it’s still rubbery and wrinkled) in 3-4 days, repeat the watering process (Steps 1-4).
- Resume a regular watering schedule but make sure to water slightly more frequently than you were before, so as not to under-water your succulent again.
Pro Tip: Don’t over-correct! If you were watering every two weeks and your succulent shriveled up, try switching to every 10 days. Basically, always err on the side of under-watering.
And that’s it! Pretty simple right? As always if you have any questions about watering or saving your succulents you can reach out.
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