Ask a Question forum→Succulent won't stop dying!

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Colorado SpringS, Colorado
JenWhit
Jun 5, 2020 10:12 AM CST
First, let me start by saying I am a very inexperienced succulent owner. Though I have read a lot about plant care and also own many cacti and other plants, I am still unsure when it comes to the proper care of a succulent. Despite that, I wanted to dive in to this new life of beautiful plants, so I bought an adorable succulent arrangement from my local Home Depot a few weeks ago. It was plump and healthy in the store, and remained so for a few days after bringing it home. That was until one I day I made what I believe to have been a fatal mistake, I watered my succulents without checking the soil! I was so caught up in watering my other plants, I just gave it a little sip figuring it had probably seen some neglect on the store shelf. The next couple days after, it started showing signs of distress. The bottom leaves of my echeveria started turning to mush and falling off, there are noticable spots of rotting on some of the other succulents leaves, and the soil remained significantly wet despite not having any water since that first time. Now I have removed one of the plants (more like it fell out of the soil while I was discarding of the dead leaves that had fallen) and the soil has dried out completely. Everything seemed okay for a few days, but now my plants are suffering again and one has even wilted completely. I am worried that it is also a problem with the pot they are in, though the arrangement is very pleasing, it doesn't seem like there's suitable room for the plants. I don't have much experience with repotting, expect with plant seedlings. I am afraid that if I were to transplant my succulents, it would only make things worse. I also believe that it could be that they actually need some water now that things have dried out, but I am also hesitant with that for obvious reasons. I hate to leave them suffering in this condition though, so I am looking for some advice! I have attached a picture as well, anything would be extremely helpful, thanks!
Thumb of 2020-06-05/JenWhit/6384bb

Name: Sondra
NE Houston, Texas (Zone 9a)
Cat Lover Region: Texas Bulbs Cactus and Succulents
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SALL20
Jun 5, 2020 10:20 AM CST
Does the pot have a drainage hole?
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder
Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator
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Baja_Costero
Jun 5, 2020 11:11 AM CST
Let the soil dry out all the way before you water again, and hopefully things will be fine.

Those plants were arranged in that pot to be sold that way, not to have a long and prosperous life there. Once you are out of the woods with the watering, consider separating them or at least putting the whole group into a bigger pot. If and when you do this, wait for the soil to dry out before starting (this will be a way for you to visually confirm it is dry when you think it is). Be very careful to damage the roots as little as possible (patience, slow work from all angles) and be absolutely sure not to water after repotting. Wait a week after repotting to water. For all these plants, do not use a huge pot, just a little bit more space than they have now. The new pots should be wider than tall and have holes at the bottom. The soil you use should drain fast. Regular potting soil plus an equal volume of perlite/pumice/gritty equivalent should work just fine.

It will be extra difficult to get those plants out of their pot because of its narrow neck. After a few experiences with narrow-necked pots, you will learn to avoid them for your succulents, because a lot of the time the only way to get the plants out with their roots intact is to break the pot.

Welcome!
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jun 5, 2020 11:21 AM (+)]
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