How to care for outside succulents in cold winter

How to care for outside succulents in winter

As we all know, the succulent is a ''lazy'' plant that can be easy to care for. However, winter is coming, and it is tough for some succulent plants to survive in winter.

Suppose you prefer to keep them outside. Then, you must take some protective measures to help them, or the cold and frosty weather will kill them.

Therefore, knowing the care guide for succulents in winter is necessary. This guide will start with the introduction of succulent types and cover detailed guidance, which will allow you to learn more about how to take care of outdoor succulents in winter and help them survive the winter.

Can Succulents Thrive Outdoors in Cold Winter?

Before answering this question, I'd like to introduce the two types of succulents: "Hardy succulents" and "Soft succulents."

Soft succulents and hardy succulent thrive outside

Hardy succulents: The cold hardy succulents can tolerate frost and thrive in temperatures below 0 degrees F, such as in the USDA hardiness zones 4-5. They are perfect for outdoor gardening all year long. Hardy succulents thrive outside more than they do inside.

Soft succulents: Tolerate drought but frost; should be moved indoors before cold winter. However, they are ideal for growing outdoors when sunny and warm seasons.

You can quickly tell which succulent variety can live outside on a chilly day by differentiating whether succulents are hardy or soft. Furthermore, it's critical to be aware of what growing zone you live in, which you may determine using the USDA growing zones by your zip code.

USDA Hardiness Zone Map is the best guide to select succulent varieties

For instance, if you live in zone 5, you must bring soft succulents rate zones 9 to 10 indoors throughout the winter, while succulents with a hardiness rating of zone 5 or 4 or even lower can survive outside in winter. 

Outdoor Succulent Varieties Recommended

Still hope to keep some beautiful succulents to enrich your bare garden in winter? Then, there are some ideal outdoor succulents for you: 

How to Care for Hardy Succulents in Winter

As was previously mentioned, hardy succulents can stay outside in the winter, but they still require your care. Read on for some advice:

Tips on growing hardy succulent outdoors in winter

Repot your succulents

Succulents in pots should be repotted underground before the first frost, at least a month in advance, as it takes time for the hardy succulents to establish roots and adjust to their surroundings. Underground planting will maintain better insulation and enable the roots to receive more warmth. 

Cover Your Succulents

Plant cover protects outdoor succulents from frost winter

The covers help succulents keep more moisture and warmth, just simply drive some wooden or metal stakes into the ground and cover them with a piece of fabric.

Good examples of stuff to use include: horticultural fleece, burlap, bed sheets, table cloth, fabric row cover or plastic covers. 

Remove Dried Leaves of succulents

The old leaves at the bottom of healthy succulents will be devoured and die along with the new leaves as they grow. Therefore, it's imperative to pick up the fallen leaves frequently, and it's especially crucial to do so before winter.

The lowest dead leaves will absorb a lot of moisture from the air during the cold, wet winter, which can cause root rot across the entire plant. So please get rid of them quickly and avoid letting them cause the succulent's demise.

Do your succulents have rotted roots? Don't worry, click here to know how to fix rotten succulents.


Move Succulents from water

Winter is a dormant time for succulents typically do not require watering. If it is too late to transfer your succulents underground, relocate them in pots to a porch with a roof or another location where they will be protected from the elements.

Snow can be utilized as a cover to protect hardy succulents rather than freezing them. Installing a rain cover is also smart if you live somewhere where it doesn't snow in the winter.

How to care for soft succulents in winter

Now we know that the soft succulent should be moved indoors in the winter. Is simply moving them indoors enough? In addition, there are some useful tips for taking care of soft succulents indoors in winter:

Care tips on growing soft succulents in winter

Make sure your succulent is pest-free: Check its health before bringing it inside because it is risky to spread pests to other plants there. To be safe, treating the succulent with insecticide or neem oil to get rid of pests about three weeks beforehand is best.

Reduce the watering frequency: You can let the soil get completely dry before watering very sparingly to keep plants just moist enough to avoid dehydration. How often do water succulents in winter? Click here for the answer.

Provide drainage and airflow: Even though watering has been reduced in winter, it is still vital to ensure that the roots of your succulents do not get waterlogged. Use well-drained cactus soil and succulent pots with drainage holes. In addition, you need to keep the air flowing indoors or put the succulent in a ventilated area indoors. Good air circulation can maintain succulent healthy roots.

Provide more light: Your plants hardly ever receive full sun in the winter, especially indoors. To prevent your plants from bending or fading from the light coming from only one side, rotate the pots frequently and place them as close as possible to a window where the succulent needs sunshine. Consider purchasing a grow light if you don't have an appropriate window.

If you want to order some succulents, but are concerned about the succulents being affected by frost in transit. We offer a 72-hour heating pack that will protect succulents for a long time, and you can add to your order at checkout.



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