What do you do when your succulent has a baby?

What do you do when your succulent has a baby?

Congratulations! You’re a grandparent. Your succulent just had a baby, otherwise known as a ‘pup’ in the succulent community.

Why plant babies are better than the human kind.
  • Easier to care for - just water, no breast milk.
  • No public tantrums
  • No staying up all night
  • No childcare fees - winning!

What to expect when you’re expecting (succulent babies)

Succulent babies are essentially offshoots that are a credit to you being a great plant parent. You have essentially mastered the art of proper watering, access to sunlight and adequate neglect and now your succulents are ready for you to look after the future generations. 
For most parts, you can expect such growth in the warmer months. Most succulent pups will grow at the base of the parent plant. You can use the offshoots to propagate new plants and keep the cycle going.  

Propagating little succers, the down low

Since you know how to look after your larger succulent, plant propagation for small succulents should be relatively simple and quite cost effective. They also make for a great (and sustainable) gift because you can keep growing them and gift your friends your babies. What a nice surrogate friend you are.

Propagating  is the act of taking a mature succulent and using it to grow a new plant. You can do this even if your succulent doesn’t have pups. Any offsets, leaves or stem cuttings from a mature plant will do the trick. 

Picture credit - Good To Grow

There are a few steps to follow when you’re propagating a little succer

Step 1 
Separate the pup from the parent plant. Yes, this is an initial cause for separation anxiety, but you’re essentially trying to make sure that no stub is left on the original plant. You can twist the offset or cut it off. 

Step 2 
Brush the soil off the pup’s roots and wait for a callus to form (anywhere between a few hours to a day).
This is the point where your offset is essential being given up for foster care and is waiting for a new home.

Step 3 
Prepare a new pot or planter for your small cactus. It’s ready to be led to its new home. Fill the hole with soil, wet it slightly and allow the succulent pup to settle in.

Step 4 

Treat the newly planted little succer as you would a baby. Introduce it to sunlight slowly and wait to water it till the roots start growing. Tug on the head gently, if there’s resistance, it means the roots are sprouting. 

Picture credit Joelix.com

Our biggest piece of advice as a new plant parent? Patience! Your little succer will take anywhere between a week to ten days to reach adolescence, and then it’s on to puberty. We’ll leave you to deal with that.  

Tara Shelton