Succulent Houseplants That Are Not A Cactus

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Succulent Houseplants That Are Not A Cactus

succulent houseplant
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Succulent ouseplants are one of the best ways to bring life and beauty into your home. They can help purify the air and provide color and greenery. Many people love houseplants because they provide color and life to the space while purifying the air.

Suppose you love having houseplants around your home. In that case, you should know how to choose houseplants. They don’t cause damage to yourself or anyone else. Have you come across succulents?

 

 

What Is A Succulent Plant?

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Succulents are becoming popular, yet many people have never heard of them. They’re one of the most diverse groups of plants on Earth and grow in every corner of the globe. The succulent plants usually store water in their leaves and stem to help them survive dry conditions.

More than 2,000 species of succulents are there worldwide. Still, only a few dozen are grown by gardeners because they need specialized care.

Succulents are plants that do not form woody stems or roots. They grow from a single point, called a corm, often covered with a spiny covering called the epidermis. Succulents can be grown in rock gardens, container gardens, and even indoors.

These plants have been around for hundreds of years and have many uses. They can decorative ground cover to hide yard or garden areas. Some types of succulents are even edible!

 

 

 

9 Types of Succulent House Plants

types of succulent
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Most succulent plants are easy to care for because they don’t need much sunlight or attention. Succulents are also fertilized and watered easily. This means that you can grow succulents in an indoor garden.

You can grow a variety of succulents at home using the varieties listed below.

 

Mother of Thousands (bryophyllum daigremontianum)

succulent house plants | Mother of Thousands
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The succulent plant, a native of Madagascar, goes by Good Luck Plant, Mexican Hat Plant, Alligator Plant, and Devil’s Backbone and grows from a single stem. Its broad, pointed, 6-inch-long, and 3-inch-wide leaves are a deep blue-green shade. Unless you cut it to a reduced height, the plant can reach heights of 18 to 35 inches. Before purchasing one, remember that children and pets get poisoned by this succulent.

This plant annoys the garden because of the many seeds that develop around the leaf margins. More seedlings than there is space for sprouting. You can give this to your friends as a houseplant!

Plant in a location that allows for growth in well-drained soil. Only water once dry. It’s crucial to get rid of more seedlings when they emerge. You have the opportunity to propagate a few extras to use in your home or to share. 

 

 

 

Aloe succulent plants (Aloe genus)

succulent house plants | aloe vera
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Aloe succulent is the most frequent name for the Aloe plant. Skin-soothing, digestive help, and minor burn treatment are a few of this plant’s health benefits. It is also used in manufacturing cosmetics, lotions, and gels for manufacturers.

There are many more kinds of Aloe Vera, some more common than others, within the genus. Some of the species of aloe vera can be usually found worldwide in arid regions with less rainfall.

The most common type is Aloe barbadensis, also known as aloe vera. It is used in cosmetics as a moisturizer to reduce skin scars. It is sometimes used in food additives such as ice cream and milk products. At the same time, the aloe ferox was an ancient common type of Aloe used as medicine. This plant contains vitamins that help heal wounds and repair damaged skin cells.

Aloe succulent propagation

propagating aloe
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Aloe vera is a popular plant for the home and can be grown from cuttings. But not all cuttings will grow into mature plants. So choosing a cutting with good root structure is important.

Growing an aloe plant from a leaf cutting is a common question. It’s possible, but the most successful way to propagate aloe plants is to use “pups” or “offsets,” which produce new plants.

 

 

 

Snake plant succulent (Dracaena trifasciata)

snake houseplant
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This succulent plant may be a favorite and is easy to care for. Still, several varieties can grow into large shrubs. The plant’s common name is Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, Saint George’s sword, viper’s bowstring hemp, and Chinese hemp.

The snake plant has a long thin stem that grows up to two feet tall with an oval-shaped leaf at the top. Leaves of snake plant succulents are usually green in color and can grow up to six inches long. Some cultivars have reddish or purple colored leaves.

The flowers appear on the top of the stem during springtime. And followed by small black berries that fall off and ripen in late summer into fall. If you are looking for green air purifiers, this is one of the best house plants. But, you should be careful since they are also toxic when ingested.

 

 

Snake plant propagation

propagating snake plant
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A snake plant is usually rooted in water. The fastest way to get a new snake plant is to divide it. It’s the same as perennials in the garden. Pick a snake plant propagation method and get started.

 

 

 

Zebra Haworthia

Zebra Haworthia
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Zebra Haworthia
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Zebra haworthia is a low-maintenance succulent houseplant that needs only infrequent watering. It also needs some sun, indirect is fine, to stay happy. But, its best feature might be in the attractive growth habit. Many consider this to be among the most photogenic of all succulents.

Zebra Haworthia’s leaves are usually bright green and oval. They can be up to 3 inches long and come in pairs or clusters. The leaves also have distinctive white stripes along their midribs.

The succulent plant’s flower spikes are also very attractive. It has pale pink with yellow tips. Each flower spike has several flowers that open at different times throughout the year.

This species is named after Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker, who first described it in 1877. He named it because its brown stems reminded him of zebra stripes!

 

 

Zebra haworthia propagation

The method of propagation described below is best at the end of dormancy or the start of the growing season. Choose a young leaf. Older leaves at the plant’s base root are few successful. Remove the leaf with a knife. Don’t use scissors on fleshy leaves.

Cut the stem 1/2 inch above where it joins the leaf, and then make three cuts across the cut end, each one 1/4 inch deep. The cuts should be perpendicular to each other and cut into both sides of the stem.  Make sure not just one side like a knife would do in a straight line. This will help ensure you get more roots than one layer in your grafting operation.

 

 

 

Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata)

succulent ponytail palm
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Is this a palm or a succulent? The Ponytail Palm, or Nama Hecate (Hechtia hecata), is a member of the succulent family and grows best in full sun. It does well as a succulent houseplant outdoors and indoors but won’t tolerate frost.

The Ponytail Palm’s name comes from its unusual trunk. Usually, this grows vertically rather than horizontally like the trunk of a tree. This structure is more like cacti than in other plants.

A Ponytail Palm’s trunk has two distinct parts. An upper part displays red-orange flowers during the summer months. And a lower part that stores water in its trunk. The plant also produces abundant roots that extend into the soil below.

While these succulent plants grow up to 15 feet tall in the wild, your houseplant will stay smaller and grow very slow.

 

 

Ponytail palms propagation

Ponytail palms are simple to grow indoors. You can get away with giving your ponytail palm tree about half the bright light it needs. Because palms are tolerant. You can maintain it in low-light circumstances for half of the year. But a strong light for the other half, and it will still be happy. Ponytail palm can tolerate indoor light conditions as long it is outdoor during summer.

 

 

 

Blue Echeveria

Blue Echeveria houseplant
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The blue echeveria is a popular succulent houseplant. It can be grown in various conditions.

This rosette-shaped succulent houseplant provides an interesting design in an easy-to-care-for plant. But the one concern you need to watch for is crowding. The blue echeveria fills out the size of its container. So it is best to keep it with a single plant or a group with adaptable varieties.

The blue echeveria is an easy-care plant that thrives on neglect and only needs some light watering during the summer months.

 

Blue echeveria propagation

propagating Blue Echeveria
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The quickest and easiest technique to propagate echeverias is to separate offsets. Small clones are also known as “chicks” or “pups”.

Usually, you can propagate anytime a leaf cutting when it is a healthy plant. But since echeverias’ fat, thick leaves sprout roots and develop into new plants.

When propagating succulent plants, you can also use stem cuttings. Echeverias with rosettes that grow low to the ground aren’t the ideal candidate for this strategy because they don’t have branches or stems.

 

 

 

Sempervivum “Ruby Heart”

Sempervivum "Ruby Heart
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Hen & Chicks, Ruby Heart’s alternate name, may be more familiar to you. This distinctive succulent houseplant hue becomes more intense in cooler temperatures.  Its name came from the primary rosette stalk, the hen, and the side rosettes it generates, the chicks.

The pale yellow flowers of hens and Chicks are borne in mid-summer (July-August) on a single stem. They’re very pretty, but they’re also poisonous to humans. If you want to keep one as a succulent houseplant, use gloves when handling them outdoors or indoors because they can cause skin irritation.

They shine in the fall when the nights are turning cooler and the foliage is at its most vibrant. Some primary events to look for include red rims or plummy cores, deeper color or even’ watermarks,’ as the phrase suggests.

‘Hens’ of Sempervivum will die after the flower has ripened. This is an undeniable characteristic, along with the flowers’ variations.

 

 

Ruby Heart propagation

Sempervivum is one of the popular succulent houseplants for a succulent garden. It is easy to grow and available in a wide range of colors. The 100 species and more of this plant have their unique characteristics.

While it’s true that Sempervivum is easy to grow, they need some special attention when it comes to caring. But you can grow this plant indoors or outdoor, but it grows best in well-drained soil. You can propagate this evergreen plant by removing a few rosettes and placing them in well-drained soil.

There is no mistaking the plant’s ruby-red leaves. Which earns it the name Sempervivum ‘Ruby Heart.’ As a bonus, this succulent garden plant is one of the easiest and most familiar to grow. During the flowering stage, it’s quite gorgeous to behold.

 

 

Sempervivum “Pacific Blue Ice” 

Sempervivum "Pacific Blue Ice" 
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Like Ruby Heart, this variety features a unique “blue ice” colouring that highlights green succulents. These succulent varieties are cold tolerant. So it allows them to be outdoors even in mild climates.

Pacific Blue Ice is also known as ‘Blue Ice,’ ‘Blue Ice Succulent,’ or ‘Blue Ice Cactus.’ It was introduced to prominence by the hit television show ‘The Big Bang Theory. ‘ And was later made as an example of a non-exotic plant.

Pacific Blue Ice is an excellent choice for the home landscape or container planting. It is also ideal as a living wall in the office, retail spaces, or around patios and pools. This succulent’s features have a bright blue-green leaf with white centers.

 

 

Blue Pacific Ice propagation

Numerous methods exist for propagating Sempervivum pacific blue ice. Cutting off a rosette or two of leaves and some stem is one of the simplest and most used methods. You won’t have to do much to get these to develop, as they’ll take care of themselves.

You won’t have to do much to help these grow.

You can use the tiny plants grown around your parent plant as an additional propagation method. To accomplish this, you’ll need to dig up about a quarter-inch of the root system and plant it in the soil. If it is properly cared for, it should take root in weeks.

You can break up huge clumps into smaller pieces for the final option. For this, you’ll need to dig up and transplant the roots from one side of the clump. Make a lot of new plants at once by using this method.

 

 

Burro’s Tail

burro's tail succulent houseplant
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Despite the common name, burro’s tail cactus (Sedum morganianum) is classified as a succulent rather than a cactus. Even though all cacti are succulents, not all succulents are cacti. Gritty soil, good drainage, sunlight, and protection from severely cold temperatures are all common requirements for both plants. Planting a burro’s tail in your home or garden is a beautiful way to add interest and texture to your surroundings.

Planting a burro’s tail in your home or garden is a beautiful way to add interest and texture to your surroundings. It can be grown indoors in a pot on the kitchen counter or outside in a container near the patio door.

Burro’s tails are also great for use in containers on patios or decks because they tolerate extremely dry conditions better than other succulents. They will tolerate temperatures as low as 20°F for short periods, but most varieties prefer temperatures between 50°F and 70°F.

 

 

Burro’s Tail propagation

While not the easiest plant to start, once the burro’s tail succulent houseplants take hold, they become much easier to grow. Once started, they grow quickly into an impressive feature plant.

It creates a beautiful waterfall effect in a hanging basket as a lovely trailing plant. Keep it in partial shade. You might utilize it in a multi-variety arrangement, too.

 

 

8 Interesting Facts About Succulents

growing succulents
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Succulents add a beautiful festive touch to your home and add personality (and life) to any dull corner. Although many succulent plants are easy to care for, there are some key things you should know before you purchase one.

  1. Succulents have a wide variety of shapes and sizes, so it’s important first to determine whether or not you have space for a particular variety before purchasing.
  2. Some succulents require full sun, others partial shade and others prefer filtered light. If you’re unsure about what type of plant will thrive in your home, ask an expert at the nursery where you purchased it!
  3. Succulents grow slowly, so avoid watering them too often (or too little). This will help prevent root rot and other diseases that can kill your plant over time.
  4. Be careful when repotting your succulent! Some plants need to root pruning every year; others only once every few years, depending on how much they’ve grown and how much soil they’re using up each season.
  5. Succulents are usually used in arid climates, a technique called Xeriscaping.
  6. Creative gardeners sometimes plant succulents on walls, such as a photo frame, growing vertically. The slow growth rate and infrequent watering needs allow for this artistic flare. The reason is succulents grow in a colorful rainbow.
  7. Succulents symbolize enduring and timeless love to people of the western hemisphere.
  8. In Asia, they symbolize wealth and prosperity. 

 

 

 

Enjoy succulent houseplants

Because they aren’t demanding or difficult to maintain, succulents may help you relax more than other plants! As long as you follow the succulent care guidelines we’ve provided, you won’t have to be concerned about them dying out.

Succulents are perfect for any space in your home — from the kitchen countertop to the dining table, from under a window ledge to hanging from a wall. And if you live on a budget and want to create a more natural look for your home, you can use succulents in many different ways!

 

 

20 Comments

  1. Ann

    Wao! I was delighted looking at all the plants you had listed in this point until I reached Burro’s Tail. Wao! I really like it. I was a bit discouraged when you said it requires a lot of care at the beginning. But after considering this and seeing the end results, it’s worth the effort. Thank you very much for this suggestion.

    Reply
    • Diane

      Some people report instant success with the Burro’s Tail, but most seem to need to fuss over it at first. You might consider getting a slightly larger started plant. That should create a better chance of its survival.

      Thanks for visiting- please stop by again soon!

      Reply
  2. Hilde

    I just came over your post today while searching for succulents to plant in my Garden. I have a stoney field in the garden where I intend to plant succulents. But I need some ideas. The sempervivum looks great. Doyou know if I can plant them outside. I live in a nordic climate sodo you think they could handle frosty arctic nights? I am going to add you to my Pinterest so I can gather inspiration from you.

    Reply
    • Diane

      Sempervivum are quite frost tolerant but if you are afraid they may suffer in even colder climates, you have a couple of options. Some people create a cold box, like a miniature greenhouse, around their plants for winter survival. It doesn’t require anything more than a covering that allows light to enter. We’ll have an article on these in the upcoming months.

      Another option is to plant them in small containers so that you can bring them in when the temperatures drop. If you choose to do that, just remember that plants don’t like to be shocked by drastic temperature changes. Bring them inside when your temperatures inside are within 10-20°f of your home temperature. In Spring, when you are setting them out again, aim for the same temperature balance.

      I hope that helps! Please visit again soon. And yes, our Pinterest page will be “growing” (pun intended!) over the upcoming weeks, so please visit often!

      Reply
  3. freefromtheboss

    I love succulents! They don’t seem to love me. Just like your beautiful images, that is the idea I have every time I purchase them. Three months later…they are dead.

    A little water for the young plants, maybe once a month or less. Can you recommend a way to get them going please?

    Reply
    • Diane

      It may be a factor of the amount of light they are receiving, the soil type, or even the humidity in your home. Succulents don’t love humidity levels about 40% and tend to fade as it reaches 50% or more. Some are more tolerant of the amount of light than others, so you need to be aware of that.

      I hope that helps. If you need further help, please write me at Diane@houseplantjoy.com – with information about your type of plant and what is happening with it. I’ll try to help!

      Reply
  4. DerrAd

    I was born in a neighbourhood where aloe vera seemed to be a must-have succulent plant. Almost every house had one and I didn’t know the reason until I was ushered into its usage. I like it for its medicinal purposes but I think there’s time for a variety in my house that’s why I’ve found myself on your website. 

     Thanks for the list you’ve put together but I’m curious to ask, why would someone choose to go for a succulent house plant which is toxic? Because of kids, I wouldn’t consider that. I want something that can provide beauty and also other health benefits. 

    Reply
    • Diane

      Yes, the aloe has always been quite popular!

      Some plants that are toxic are also quite attractive and also function to keep the air in our homes clean (see the article on air-purifying plants). For people who can keep them away from their children and pets (such as in hanging baskets) they work, as long as they are aware of the potential toxicity. Some families have only older children or none and no pets, so it’s not an issue for them, unless friends with young children visit.

      But I do mention it when writing about the varieties because too often a pet or young child becomes ill from one of these plants. In homes with young children or pets, I definitely recommend the non-toxics or at least keeping the toxic ones out of reach.

      Thanks for visiting; please stop by again soon!

      Reply
  5. Karin Nauber

    I have always been fascinated by succulents and have had several of them throughout my life. When I think about succulents, my mind almost always goes to the aloe vera plant. My grandma had one and was always using a piece of it on someone in the family to help with a sunburn or an abrasion or other malady. My other grandma on my dad’s side grew I think almost all of the ones that you wrote about. 

    My favorites of hers were the Zebra Haworthia and the Burro’s Tail. I loved to touch those two plants when I was a kid. They were the only ones that I did not get yelled at for touching!

    We have some Hen and Chicks that grow in our yard which strikes me as kind of odd because we live in Minnesota. Is it usual for these to grow outside in Minnesota? We are cold here about 6 months of the year with snow.

    Thank you for the beautiful memories that you gave me of my two grandmas and their love of succulents. It filled me with nostalgia!

    Reply
    • Diane

      I enjoyed hearing of your memories of your Grandma’s plants! It seems that many of us associate plants with happy memories of our grandparents.

      Yes, some varieties can survive through winter. It sounds like yours has adapted quite well!

      Thanks for visiting. Please stop back again soon!

      Reply
  6. Cassi

    Diane,

    I am an avid plant enthusiast and thoroughly enjoyed your article!  Although not very knowledgeable about succulents, I do have a wide variety of Aloe plants for health and medicinal purposes. 

    My wake up call was that the Snake Plant is toxic to pets and children. These grow in abundance in the Caribbean and are in open spaces in gardens and parks. I will certainly pay more attention.

    The Ponytail Palm is one of my favourite succulent and this was some additional learning. I had no idea that it was a succulent!

    I am looking forward to learning more about plants and will definitely be following.

    Thank you!

    Cassandra

    Reply
    • Diane

      Yes, we also keep aloe for their medicinal help.

      You are correct that the snake plant often grows wild and animals may frequent those areas. Most animals seem to leave the plant alone but there are always concerns that our pets might become curious, so I warn of toxic varieties.

      Thanks for visiting, Cassandra! I hope you will stop back again soon!

      Reply
  7. Name * Juan

    Hi Diane, what an interesting article for me. I realize that I am unaware of much of the information you share about these types of plants. I live in Mexico and at home we have several Alohe Vera plants, which we also call Aloe Vera, and which my wife waters weekly depending on what they require, but I did not know that there were such a variety of shapes, sizes and colors that they looked so decorative and they were so photogenic. I think your encounter with plants was fortunate and that you have the gift to cultivate them, because not all people get that quick and positive response that you have had from the plants that you have cared for. It has become a passion and it is a blessing to deal with what you like and are passionate about. I will follow you on your page because I find the way you talk about each plant very enjoyableomment

    Reply
    • admin

      I am glad you found the information helpful, Juan. Yes, the Aloe is very popular, but so many other succulents can share our homes, too.

      Thank you for stopping by. Please visit often!

      Reply
  8. Jim S.

    Hi Diane, I didn’t realize some of these were toxic! That’s useful information to know. My little daughter was sitting nearby, and now she wants me to get her a “Pacific Blue Ice.” I think it’s because it reminds her of some kind of character like Elsa. We have a few plants, but they seem only to last one season. I will have to try some of the hardier succulents and see if I can keep them around for a while and beautify the house. What would you recommend to someone who has a brown thumb? Thanks in advance for your help.

    Reply
    • Diane

      Almost any of the succulents, including cactus, should be easier to care for. Just remember that they need less water, well-drained soil, and enough light.

      Your daughter may enjoy having a couple of plants of her own to care for, too. It does help instill a sense of responsibility when children grow up caring for their own plants, just as with pets.

      I’m glad you found the information useful. Please stop by again soon!

      Reply
  9. Stephen Tan

    It is joyful to read your succulent house plant article, which is so exciting and colorful plant to know. There are many useful details for each type of plant with some commonly seen plant have unexpected information given. Like my snake plant frequently becomes rotten, maybe you are right due to over water. Zebra Haworthia is so pretty and easy to grow can fit my liking. Ponytail Palm is quite attractive to me with a fat trunk; I am not sure I can get here. Some succulent plants not seen in Southeast Asia. Thanks for sharing this interesting information with me.

    Reply
    • Diane

      I am glad you found the information helpful! Yes, it’s easy with any of the succulents to over-water and end up with rotted roots. Let them dry between waterings and make sure the soil drains well.

      Thank you for visiting my site–please stop back again soon!

      Reply
  10. Tam

    Thank you for your post Diane.

    Those succulents are absolutely adorable! They are just so diversified with various types. Some are also rare and also valuable (One of the most expensive ones I read about was $2500 USD)

    I especially like Burro’s Tail in your post. I have never come across one in my local nurseries. They look beautiful with great length. Also, the interesting facts about succulent house plants were interesting lol. Now I learn that they could be used as food, natural medicines and treatments.It was the best thing I learnt today.

    Regards,
    Tam.

    Reply
    • Diane

      I am happy you enjoyed the post, Tam. 

      Yes, some are indeed quite valuable and hard to find. But if you do acquire one, you can learn to propagate them to share with friends! We’ll be covering propagation in future posts.

      Thanks for stopping by- please visit again soon!

      Reply

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