As summer rolls on and the weather forecast is set to remain warmer and drier than average right up to October, you may start to see plants suffering from the heat. Wilting is often a common sight at this time of year. It is a sign that the soil is too dry and that there is just not enough water to keep your plants healthy. If ignored, it could result in permanent damage, or even the plants dying. Remembering to water plants often enough can be stressful and a task that is easily forgotten when things get a little hectic, but there are steps you can take to maximise the potential of your plants.
Why not look for plants that aren’t as thirsty and are able to withstand the summer heat? Succulents of all types are very fashionable and could be your perfect choice. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colours, and require little watering or pruning. They also tend not to overgrow, making them ideal low maintenance indoor plants. Here are a few more of the benefits to picking succulents this summer.
Healthy all year round
The majority of succulents come from dry and arid environments like deserts – so most of them do well in brightly-lit situations. In particular, cacti and money plants (a species of Crassula) as well as varieties of agave and aloe, are able to thrive in full sun. Some succulents, such as varieties of Sedum do not need full sun, preferring less intense periods such as the morning and later in the afternoon.
Whilst succulents don’t require much water, there are a few that don’t need a lot of sunlight either, so they’ll maintain a healthy state all year round. These are an ideal choice for office buildings which are often shaded from direct sunlight. Some plants that are likely to do well in lower light conditions include the Zamioculcas zamiifolia (ZZ plant) and species of Sansevieria (Mother-in-law’s tongue).
A moderate dose of water
While they don’t need as much as your average plant, even cacti require water to prevent them from shrivelling. Sedums and other succulents store water in their fleshy leaves and stems, and can survive infrequent or irregular watering.
Succulents grown indoors as houseplants can manage very well in quite shallow containers, with a free-draining soil mixture. They are best watered from the bottom, so place pots in a saucer filled with fine gravel or LECA and add the water there (make sure your pot has holes in the bottom). Try to avoid watering the soil surface, as moisture here might result in the stems rotting. Succulents covered with hair or woolly materials also benefit from a little gentle misting with water – the hairs or woolly growth trap moisture from mist and condensation in the wild.
Most succulents are grown for their interesting foliage and sculptural shapes. However, if you’re concerned that a succulent won’t be aesthetically pleasing enough for your taste, there are a few that will produce flowers, especially cacti, which produce striking, colourful flowers.
Ultimately the arrival of warmer weather does not need to signal the end for your favourite plants. If you’re struggling to navigate through the variety of options to inject a touch of nature into your office, why not consult the experts at Ambius? We will be able to help you design the perfect display for your office environment to ensure it thrives all year round.