When to fertilize succulents?

Best Fertilizer for Succulents

Some Choices from a Certified Horticulturist for Happy Succulent Plants

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Other links on this site may lead to other companies that I’m associated with.

Succulents, like all plants, need feeding, but in small quantities with perfect timing – here’s a resource to give you some guidelines and choices.

Many succulent plants are extremely sensitive to salt – guess what most fertilizers are made from?

That’s right – salts! Fertilizer will dry out the tiny root hairs and make it impossible for a plant to even get moisture, let alone nutrients.

I find the best way to feed succulents is with a tiny amount of steer manure or compost, mixed into the soil, which is (ideally) gravelly or sandy, with perfect drainage.

I’ve used worm castings for this too, which gives a very mild boost, which is ideal for succulent plants.

Succulents looking tired and worn out? Give them a boost with some kind of liquid fertilizer for almost instant results.

I make my own compost tea almost exclusively, but sometimes this isn’t possible to make, if you’re living in a condo, for instance.

In that case, use some kind of commercial fertilizer, like this one from my affiliate.

It’s important to follow the mixing directions, if it’s a concentrate – don’t think that if a little is good, more must be better.

Amazon has a wide range of liquid fertilizer to choose from.

Finding the right kind of fertilizer can take a bit of trial and error – learning how much to use, and how often, depends on

  • the type of plant
  • how big it is
  • and how much soil is in the pot

That’s why I can’t give you exact numbers – it’s going to be different for everyone depending on their conditions (such as climate, weather, temperature, light levels and many other factors) and the age and growth habit of your succulent plants.

It also depends on whether the plant has gone a long time without feeding, or if it’s been well taken care of.

Generally, succulents don’t require any fertilizer at all during the winter. Only fertilize when they’re actively growing, and stop early so they have a chance to use up what’s in the soil.

So, if you start to prepare them in late September for a winter indoors, in anticipation of a frost, then you would stop feeding them in early August, so the salts in the fertilizer don’t build up in the soil when the plants start to go dormant.

What’s wrong with this Epiphyllum? Can you tell from the color?

How Do You Tell If a Plant Needs Feeding?

If a plant needs feeding, you can tell from the color.

Generally, pale or yellow foliage indicates that it needs some Nitrogen.

However, in some cases this color change indicates that it’s in the wrong kind of soil.

The Epiphyllum above looks to be potted in almost pure peat moss. Peat moss is acidic, so it ties up Nitrogen, not allowing the plant to access it. There might be lots of Nitrogen, but it’s not available to the plant.

The cure in this case would be to sprinkle Dolomite Lime on the top of the soil, and water it in – don’t add fertilizer. Over the next few weeks, a change will be obvious, with the leaves changing to green as the Nitrogen is released from the soil.

Check the pH of the water you use – you may be surprised at how out of whack it is. Then, change the pH of the water to suit your plants perfectly.

The pH down or pH up solution can alter the water, and make it easier for plants to access the nutrients they need.

Although this is made specifically for hydroponics, it’s great to use for soil grown plants too.

The pH of a soil can make it impossible for plants to uptake nutrients, either all or some of them.

Some plants absolutely demand a sweet soil, or one with low pH, and this product makes it easy to change the water and not only make it possible for the delivery of nutrients, but it also prevents you from over fertilizing in the mistaken belief that the plants need feeding.

Echeveria are the oddball among different types of succulents; they prefer (or require) a pH on the acidic side, not alkaline (or sweet) like most others.

Adding charcoal to the base of a terrarium or other container without a drain hole can make it possible to grow even succulents in that type of pot.

Although not ideal to attempt to grow anything other than moss this way, terrariums and aeriums are a popular way to grow succulents, and this is where charcoal fits in.

This product is meant to add to drainage, remove or lower carbon dioxide, increase oxygen flow, and better soil quality.

If your planter or container is without a drain hole, charcoal can help keep your plants happy for a lot longer.

Charcoal is easy to find online at Amazon.

One type of fertilizer that is popular is slow release fertilizer. It’s used a lot in commercial greenhouses and nurseries because it can be applied to the top of the pot as a top dressing, or mixed right into the soil – sounds easy, right?

I don’t recommend using this handy and economical feeding system for succulents in a home situation, because it tends to keep releasing, long after you would prefer the plant to start going dormant, making it unlikely to overwinter properly.

If you insist on using it, add a tiny amount on the top of the soil, then remove it in the late summer to allow the plant to go dormant.

However, for a great alternative, use worm castings for a slow release fertilizer. They’re much more gentle on the plant delicate roots, and can last most of the summer.

Do the same thing commercial growers do; sprinkle a teaspoon of the dry castings on the top of the soil, close to the plant.

Or mix it into the soil when you go to repot an overgrown plant.

Or make it into compost tea.

There are many choices of slow release fertilizer at Amazon.

Stay away from fish fertilizer inside your home.

The very smell of this will drive you outdoors to escape it, and the plants may do well for a while, but it’s just too strong and can harm the roots of many succulents.

Keep it where it belongs; in the vegetable garden.

This resource for finding the right nutrient source for your succulent plants will be revamped as I test and trial other systems and products.

Want your succulents to survive the winter? Learn how to bring them indoors and be happy and healthy with this free e-course; Fill in your name and email address on the form below to enroll!

Did you know plants can get hangry too? A “hangry” (hungry and angry) plant can start to die because it lacks the proper nutrients it needs to live. Plants use the nutrients in the soil to feed themselves and stay healthy. Over time, the plant’s soil eventually needs plant food to replenish the depleted nutrients.

Store-bought plant food can vary in price and tends to have filler ingredients and chemicals that aren’t the best for you or your plants. Homemade plant food is an easy and inexpensive way to feed your potted plants without accidentally harming your houseplants or breaking the bank.

Lots of common household items have the properties needed to replenish the nutrients in your plant’s soil, so you can create natural plant food in the comfort of your own home. We identified a few remedies to try out to create your own DIY plant food.

What Does My Plant Need?

The chemical elements in household items are important to keep in mind. The most important elements are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. These elements are in store bought plant and measured by the “NPK” balance with each letter referring to its symbol on the periodic table (“N” referring to nitrogen, “P” referring to phosphorous and “K” referring to potassium). Each element helps productivity in different processes in the plant. Some other important elements to keep in mind include magnesium and calcium. Test a small portion of your plant soil first to make sure it will not harm any plants.

Now that you know all the important elements your plants need to survive it’s time to put them to the test by creating your own homemade plant food recipe.

Homemade Plant Food Recipe


  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon epsom salts
  • ½ teaspoon of ammonia
  • 1 gallon of water

An old plastic milk jug serves as a good container for this recipe. Add all of these ingredients to your container and let it sit for about half an hour. This gives your solid ingredients time to dissolve.

Add plant food directly to the soil so that the plant’s roots can best absorb the nutrients. Start by lightly topping your soil once a month and adjust how often you feed your plants based on how they respond.

Pro Tip: Label your container and store away from curious pets and kids!

Types of Deficiencies and How to Solve Them

Plants show us what they’re hungry for based on their appearance. Yellow leaves and stunted growth are a couple ways our plants try to tell us what they need. Take a look at these signs of deficiency to see what your plant is craving.

Helpful Plant Hacks

Homemade plant food is ideally used for outdoor plants since smells and ease of application can vary. Adding plant food to potted plants can also be a little messy, so be extra careful when adding homemade plant food to your indoor plants.

Keep in mind that some ingredients, like ammonia, can be unpleasant to your eyes or nose, so double-check your ingredients and recipes before you start adding them to your plants! Most items can be purchased at your local grocery store if you don’t already have them around your home.

The most accurate way to detect nutrient deficiency in your soil is to get the soil tested. Many at-home soil testing kits can be bought at your local gardening or hardware store, but keep in mind that most of these tests are analyzing pH levels. If you want to test deficiency for a specific element (nitrogen, for example), you’ll want to contact a Cooperative Extensions Service (CSREES) or a local commercial soil laboratory. This can either come with a small fee or no fee depending on where you live.

Now that you’ve learned a few ways to feed your hungry plants, keep a close eye on them in the following weeks to see how they respond to their new food. Adjust how often and how much you feed your plant based on how they react. If your plants start to perk up, you can afford to feed them a little more and see if it helps its growth. You can also try picking up a new plant or two if you want to continue filling your home with greenery. If you’re interested in learning more about plant care or need help deciding which plants are right for your home, take a look at our guide to the best houseplants for every room in your home.

Learn how to fertilize succulents

How often do succulents need fertilizer?

Now that you know about a great fertilizer, you may be wondering how often to fertilize succulents. While you can fertilize succulents as often as once a month, especially if you’re using manure tea, they will generally do just fine with one fertilizing each year in the spring.

For a lot of succulents this is the beginning of their growing season so they can are ready to use the added nutrients. If you have mostly winter growing succulents, I’d recommend fertilizing in the fall.

If you decide to use something other than manure tea for your succulent fertilizer, stay away from slow release options. These are extremely potent and can often burn the succulents rather than help them grow. I recommend using a water soluble fertilizer diluted to half the recommended strength.

Fertilizing indoor succulents

I’ve gone back and forth on whether indoor succulents need fertilizer. Ultimately, I’ve decided to fertilize mine just once per year in the spring (when the days are getting longer).

The fertilizer causes succulents to grow more quickly which can cause a lot of stretching if your succulents aren’t getting enough light.

If possible, move your succulents outdoors to a bright, shady area just after fertilizing to help them stay compact as they enjoy the boost of nutrients. If you do keep them inside, try to give them as much light as possible and even consider using a grow light.

So, if you’re itching to fertilize your outdoor succulents, order some manure tea and get started! I know you’ll love how large they grow and fill in. I’d love to know about your experience fertilizing succulents!

Also, if you know anyone who you think would benefit from this post, please share it with them on social media or via email.

How and when to fertilize succulents

Sharing is caring!

Sublime Succulents may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page.

Even novice gardeners know that fertilizer is important to encouraging and maintaining healthy growth in plants, but how does it differ for succulents?

Table of Contents

What kind of fertilizer should I use?

There are many kinds of fertilizer on the market, from commercial chemicals to worm castings. Succulents are quite adaptable and can utilize most types. If you choose to use a commercial fertilizer, you should get one that has a higher ratio of phosphorous to nitrogen. While both are essential for growth, nitrogen is already abundant in most soils – phosphorous is the limiting factor. Additionally, an excess of nitrogen can encourage pests including fungus and insects. There exists commercially available succulent fertilizer. This is a good choice for most succulents.

How much fertilizer do I use on my succulents?

This is the most important aspect of fertilizing. As you know, succulents live life at a slower pace than other plants. Just as they need less water, they need less fertilizer. In fact, if you are using a standard commercial fertilizer, you should dilute the dosage to half. If it is a liquid, ensure that you are applying it to the soil around the plant, not directly to the plant. I like to mix fertilizer into the water I am watering with, it makes application easy. When using solid fertilizers, mix them into the top layer of soil (if you can). Try not to disturb your plants!

If you have outdoor succulents that are planted in the ground, fertilizer is usually not necessary. They are able to receive the necessary nutrients without your help. That being said, applying fertilizer sparingly can help to encourage growth if used at the right time.

When should I fertilize my succulents?

It’s hard to generalize this one, as it varies from species to species. A good ruleof thumb is that you should fertilize them in early spring, when growth begins to pick back up. Summer is a good time as well. If you have a species of plant that is dormant during the winter, don’t bother fertilizing it. You should only have to fertilize your succulents a few times a year, so space it out by a month or so during the growth seasons.

Do not fertilize when the soil is dry – this could cause your succulents to be burned. Instead, mix the fertilizer into the water before you water your plants, or add it after.

What is your preferred succulent fertilizer? Comment below!

Miracle-Gro Cactus, Palm & Citrus Soil Potting Mix 8 qt.


Last updated July 17, 2019

Thank you for your interest in participating in Ace Hardware Corporation’s beta test of Ace Rewards® Platinum, a new membership program available for purchase by eligible Ace Rewards® program members. These Ace Rewards Platinum Program Beta Test Terms and Conditions (“Beta Test Program Terms”) govern the beta test of the Ace Rewards Platinum program (the “Beta Test Program”) and your participation in the Beta Test Program. These Beta Test Program Terms constitute a binding agreement between you and Ace Hardware Corporation (“Ace” OR “we” OR “us”). PLEASE READ THESE BETA TEST PROGRAM TERMS BEFORE PARTICIPATING IN THE BETA TEST PROGRAM, AS THEY AFFECT YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS AND INCLUDE A BINDING CONFIDENTIAL ARBITRATION CLAUSE, A WAIVER OF YOUR RIGHT TO PARTICIPATE IN CLASS ACTIONS, AND A WAIVER OF YOUR RIGHT TO A JURY TRIAL. BY PURCHASING A BETA TEST PROGRAM MEMBERSHIP OR PARTICIPATING IN THE BETA TEST PROGRAM, YOU ACCEPT AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THESE BETA TEST PROGRAM TERMS. If you do not agree to these Beta Test Program Terms, then you should not purchase a Beta Test Program membership or otherwise participate in the Beta Test Program.

Privacy and Additional Agreements

Your participation in the Beta Test Program is subject to these Beta Test Program Terms and to the following additional policies, terms, conditions, guidelines, agreements, and documents (collectively, “Additional Agreements”), all as modified by Ace from time to time in its sole discretion:

  • Ace’s Privacy Policy, which governs Ace’s use of your information.
  • The www.acehardware.com Terms of Use, which govern your use of the www.acehardware.com website (the “Site”).
  • The Ace Rewards® Program Terms and Conditions, which govern your participation in the Ace Rewards Program.
  • All other applicable policies, terms, agreements, FAQs, and documents posted on the Site, including our Customer Service policies.
  • A tool rental agreement will be required to take advantage of Ace Neighborhood Toolbox, the Beta Test Program’s tool rental benefit. More information on Ace Neighborhood Toolbox can be found in the Benefits section below.

To the extent of any conflict between these Beta Test Program Terms and any of the Additional Agreements, these Beta Test Program Terms will prevail.

Modification of Beta Test Program Terms

We reserve the right to modify these Beta Test Program Terms at any time in our sole discretion. Modified versions of the Beta Test Program Terms will be posted at https://www.acehardware.com/rewards-terms (or any other URL Ace may provide from time to time), together with a revised “Last updated” date. Although we may elect to send a mail or email communication notifying you of the modifications, we are not obligated to do so and you hereby waive any right you may have to receive such notice. You should check this page periodically to see if any recent changes to the Beta Test Program Terms have occurred. By participating in the Beta Test Program after we post any such changes, you agree to the Beta Test Program Terms as modified.


To be eligible to purchase a Beta Program membership and participate in the Beta Program you must:

(i) Be a member in good standing of the Ace Rewards Program (for information on the Ace Rewards Program, including how to become a member, please );

(ii) Have an acehardware.com online account linked to your Ace Rewards membership (for information on opening an acehardware.com online account, please ; and

(iii) Be an individual who resides in the delivery area of an Ace retailer participating in the Beta Test Program (“Participating Beta Test Program Retailer”). Corporations and other business entities are not eligible to participate in the Beta Test Program. To determine if you live in the delivery service area of a Participating Beta Test Program Retailer, please contact Ace Customer Care at 888-827-4223.

By purchasing a Beta Test Program membership, you are certifying that you meet all eligibility criteria.

Membership Purchase and Expiration

Beta Test Program memberships are available for purchase only on www.acehardware.com. The membership fee is published on the Site and is subject to change from time to time in Ace’s sole discretion. Taxes may apply. Your membership is returnable for a full refund of the purchase price within forty eight (48) hours of purchase. To obtain a refund, you will need to visit your Participating Beta Test Program Retailer. Thereafter, except as required by applicable law or expressly provided in these Beta Test Program Terms, Beta Test Program memberships may not be returned and the membership fee is non-refundable. Beta Test Program memberships expire one year from the date of purchase unless sooner terminated as provided in these Beta Test Program Terms. Beta Test Program memberships do not automatically renew.


The following benefits are available to Beta Test Program members:

  • Bonus Rewards – Beta Test Program members will receive a total of $40.00 in bonus Ace Rewards during the one-year membership term, issued as follows: one $10.00 Reward will be issued promptly after the membership is purchased and one $10.00 Reward will be issued in each of the second, third and fourth quarters of the annual membership term. The Ace Rewards® Program Terms and Conditionsda govern all Rewards issued in connection with the Beta Test Program, including the use and expiration of such Rewards. If you are ineligible for membership in the Beta Test Program and elect to terminate your membership for a refund of your membership fee, as described below, you will not receive bonus Ace Rewards.
  • Free Delivery – Beta Test Program members will receive free next business day delivery of merchandise purchased on the Site, subject to the following requirements and limitations:
    • Free delivery is subject to Ace’s Customer Services policies regarding Delivery From Store, except the $50 minimum purchase requirement, which will not apply to Beta Test Program members.
    • Items must be in-stock at the member’s local Participating Beta Test Program Retailer to be eligible for next business day delivery. However, if an item is not in stock, it will be delivered by the date indicated during checkout at the time of purchase on the Site.
    • Not all merchandise is eligible for delivery from all Participating Beta Test Program Retailers.
    • The order must be placed before 6pm local time on a day when the Participating Beta Test Program Retailer is open to be eligible for next business day delivery.
    • Delivery is limited to the member’s residence, which must be within the local Participating Beta Test Program Retailer’s delivery service area.
    • Items must be for the member’s personal use and not for commercial or business purposes.
    • “White glove” delivery, including delivery within the home, up or down flights of stairs, to the backyard, etc., may be offered by some Participating Beta Test Program Retailers for an additional charge.
    • Orders requiring assembly are excluded from next business day delivery.
    • Free delivery excludes assembly and same day delivery.
  • Ace Neighborhood Toolbox Program – Beta Test Program members may rent select tools from Participating Beta Test Program Retailers, subject to the following requirements and limitations:
    • Tool rental requires a signed Ace Neighborhood Toolbox Agreement (“Toolbox Agreement”) between you and your Participating Beta Test Program Retailer.
    • Tool rental requires a credit card or debit card accepted by your Participating Beta Test Program Retailer and will be processed as a purchase. Your Participating Beta Test Program Retailer will charge your credit card or debit card for the purchase price of the borrowed tool(s), plus applicable taxes. If a tool is returned as required by the terms of the Toolbox Agreement, the Participating Beta Test Program Retailer will credit the same credit card or debit card for the full purchase price. If a tool is not returned per the terms of the Toolbox Agreement, the transaction will be considered an “AS IS” purchase of a used item without warranties of any kind, and is subject to return and refund at the sole discretion of the Participating Beta Test Program Retailer.
    • Tool selection may vary by location
    • Tool rental is subject to availability.

From time to time, Ace may, in its sole discretion, add, eliminate, or modify Beta Test Program benefits. If we materially reduce Beta Test Program benefits, we will offer you the option of terminating your Beta Test Program membership and receiving a refund of your membership fee.

Additional Restrictions

Beta Test Program memberships and benefits (i) are for the personal, household use of the eligible member only; and (ii) cannot be sold, shared, leased, assigned, gifted, or otherwise transferred.

Sharing Your Information

In order to facilitate your participation in the Beta Test Program, you acknowledge and agree that Ace may share information about you, including personal information, with Participating Beta Test Program Retailers and that Participating Beta Test Program Retailers may share such information with Ace.

Termination of Membership; Modification or Cancellation of Beta Test Program

You may terminate your membership at any time by contacting Customer Service. If you do so, no portion of your membership fee will be refunded except as expressly provided in these Beta Test Program Terms.

Ace may modify or cancel the Beta Test Program at any time in its sole discretion, with or without notice to you. In the event we cancel the Beta Test Program, your Beta Test Program membership will automatically terminate upon the effective date of Program cancellation. In addition, Ace may terminate your membership at any time, with or without notice to you. If we terminate your membership or cancel the Beta Test Program during the term of your membership, you will receive a refund of your membership fee, unless the termination is due to your violation of these Beta Test Program Terms or the Additional Agreements, or because you have engaged in illegal, fraudulent, or objectionable conduct.

If you purchase a Beta Test Program membership but are ineligible for the Beta Test Program at the time of purchase because you do not reside in the delivery service area of a Participating Beta Test Program Retailer, you may elect to terminate your membership for a refund of your membership fee. If you purchase a Beta Test Program membership but become ineligible for the Beta Test Program because you move outside the delivery service area of a Participating Beta Test Program Retailer during the term of your membership, you may elect to terminate your membership, but you will not receive a refund of your membership fee. In no event will Free Delivery benefits be available to you if reside outside the delivery service area of a Participating Beta Test Program Retailer.


Ace may send you mail and/or email communications related to the Beta Test Program.


Ace welcomes your feedback, comments, and suggestions regarding the Beta Test Program and potential improvements to the Beta Test Program (collectively, “Feedback”). Ace may use such Feedback, without restriction, to improve or modify the Beta Test Program and Ace’s other products and services. Accordingly, without payment or further consideration to you, you hereby assign to Ace all rights, including copyright and other intellectual property rights, in and to the Feedback. Without limiting the foregoing, you acknowledge and agree that Ace may make any product or service that incorporates the Feedback and/or otherwise exploits the Feedback in any manner Ace deems appropriate. You represent and warrant that your Feedback is not subject to any restrictions by third parties and that you have the right and authority to grant the rights granted herein without violating the rights of any third party. You agree that Ace is under no duty to use your Feedback or keep your Feedback confidential.

Disclaimer of Warranties and Limitation of Liability




Arbitration Agreement


You and Ace agree that any and all disputes or claims that have arisen or may arise between you and Ace in connection with the Beta Test Program shall be resolved exclusively through confidential, final, and binding arbitration. YOU ARE GIVING UP THE RIGHT TO LITIGATE A DISPUTE IN COURT BEFORE A JUDGE OR JURY. The arbitration will be conducted by the American Arbitration Association (“AAA”) under its rules and procedures, including the AAA’s Supplementary Procedures for Consumer-Related Disputes (as applicable), as modified by this Agreement to Arbitrate. The AAA’s rules and a form for initiating arbitration proceedings are available on the AAA’s website at: www.adr.org.

The arbitration shall be held in the county in which you reside or at another mutually agreed location. If the value of the relief sought is $10,000 or less, either you or Ace may elect to have the arbitration conducted by telephone or based solely on written submissions, which election shall be binding on the other party subject to the arbitrator’s discretion to require an in-person hearing if the circumstances warrant. Attendance at an in-person hearing may be made by telephone, unless the arbitrator requires otherwise.

The arbitrator will decide the substance of all claims in accordance with the laws of the State of Illinois, including recognized principles of equity, and will honor all claims of privilege recognized by law. The arbitrator’s award shall be confidential, final, and binding, and judgment on the award rendered by the arbitrator may be entered in any court having jurisdiction thereof. Payment of all filing, administration, and arbitrator fees will be governed by the AAA’s rules.

Prohibition of Class and Representative Actions and Non-Individualized Relief

You and Ace agree that each of us may bring claims against the other only on an individual basis and not as a plaintiff or class member in any purported class or representative action or proceeding. Unless both you and Ace agree otherwise, the arbitrator may not consolidate or join more than one person’s or party’s claims and may not otherwise preside over any form of a consolidated, representative, or class proceeding. Also, the arbitrator may award relief (including monetary, injunctive, and declaratory relief) only in favor of the individual party seeking relief and only to the extent necessary to provide relief necessitated by that party’s individual claim(s). Any relief awarded cannot affect other Beta Test Program members. YOU ARE GIVING UP THE RIGHT TO COMMENCE OR PARTICIPATE IN CLASS AND REPRESENTATIVE ACTIONS.


Applicable Law: The laws of the State of Illinois, without regard to principles of conflict of laws, will govern the Beta Test Program and any claim or dispute that has arisen or may arise between you and Ace.

Taxes: You are solely responsible for any federal, state, or local taxes and/or government fees that may be imposed in connection with the Beta Test Program and the purchase of your Beta Test Program membership.

Waiver: No delay or failure by Ace to enforce any of these Beta Test Program Terms shall be a waiver of any of our rights under these Program Terms.

Severability: The invalidity or unenforceability of any provision(s) of these Beta Test Program Terms shall not affect the validity or enforceability of any other provision. In the event that any provision of these Program Terms is found to be invalid or unenforceable, these Beta Test Program Terms shall be construed in accordance with their terms as if the invalid or unenforceable provision was not contained herein.

Construction: The headings used in these Beta Test Program Terms are for convenience only, are not a part of this agreement, and do not affect the interpretation of any of the provisions of these Beta Test Program Terms. Any reference to the term “including” means “including, without limitation.” All references to currency are stated in United States dollars.

Survival: The provisions regarding Feedback, disclaimer of warranties, limitation of liability, arbitration agreement, prohibition of class and representative actions and non-individualized relief, and these miscellaneous provisions shall survive termination of your Beta Test Program membership or cancellation of the Beta Test Program.

Customer Service

If you have any questions regarding the Beta Test Program or your Beta Test Program membership, please contact Ace Customer Care at 888-827-4223.

Miracle Gro cactus mix seems to wet? Info in comments

Definitely put your plants in terra cotta, pretty much exclusively as you’re learning the tricks of the trade. If you want to have prettier pots, place a piece of floral arrangement sponge stuff (that hard green thing you poke faux flowers into) under the terra cotta pot, and then place the terra cotta into a cachepot. Or you can put the terra cotta pots in baskets. That’s how I spice up the plain orange pots. You didn’t ask for that advice, but I wouldn’t want you to waver for prettier pots that will only hurt your new friends.

I would put them in a C&S soil mixed half and half with perlite. This isn’t the best, but you’re also just getting into this! You really don’t want to go all out and spend $50+ on potting mix for 40 plants you haven’t acquired yet. This is a gradual thing! You want these guys to be taken care of to the 90% level, watch them grow, love them, invest in a few more plants, read a little more, and gradually invest in a better potting medium. I am a broken record, but you should check out Gardenweb.com for information on 5-1-1 (with bark fines) and gritty mix (no bark, just rocky ingredients) potting mediums. Don’t confuse them. They are two different mixes and sometimes people get confused and make gritty mix with bark fines and like everything on the internet, one person will be a little bitch to you and make you feel bad for a rookie mistake. I hate when people do that on GW. Everyone was new to this at one point! We all make mistakes.

Good luck and PM me if you have any questions.

Edit: formatting

Fertilizing Cactus Plants: When And How To Fertilize A Cactus

Wondering how to fertilize a cactus plant can present a bit of a dilemma, because the first question that comes to mind is “Does a cactus need fertilizer, really?” Keep reading to find out and learn more about fertilizing cactus plants.

Does a Cactus Need Fertilizer?

The classic perception of the perfect environment for cacti is a harsh, dry desert with two extremes: periods of no rainfall whatsoever or sudden deluges that the plant must absorb, store and use throughout the next dry spell.

It’s important to remember that whether they are outside in the garden exposed to seasonal extremes or in a bright sunny spot in the house, fertilizing cactus plants can keep them happily growing no matter the season.

Just like with any other garden or houseplant, fertilizing cactus plants will help them adapt, actively grow and even multiply if that’s one of their characteristics. Cacti fertilizer requirements are pretty simple. Any good houseplant food (diluted to half) that’s higher in phosphorus than nitrogen is a good choice. A 5-10-5 solution can work well.

Now that you know that they really do need fertilizer, it’s also important to know when to feed cactus plants.

How Do I Know When To Feed Cactus Plants?

Despite the fact that cacti can survive (and thrive) in some of the harshest conditions on earth, most of them prefer multiple small feedings instead of one gigantic flood. Cactus plants really don’t require a ton of water or fertilizer (they do require a lot of bright light).

At a minimum, fertilizing cactus plants once a year is a good rule of thumb, but if you’re really organized and can set up a schedule, feeding them 2-3 times per year in the spring, summer and fall will easily satisfy your cacti fertilizer requirements.

Cactus plants need fertilizer during their active growing periods more than any other time. Many gardeners use a time-release mechanism that will feed the plant for a longer period of time, such as 3 or 6 months in order to be sure not to miss their peak growing time.

Finally, remember one of the “golden rules of growing” as you plan to care for your cactus plants: never overfeed! Overfeeding is as dangerous to your cactus plants as overwatering is to any plant. Being careful not to overfeed is just as important as knowing when to feed cactus plants and how to fertilize a cactus, and gives your plants the best chance of staying healthy and happy.

Feeding your desert garden: You’re probably doing it wrong


Check out EchinopsisFreak.com to really see the vigor at which cactus should flower, and if yours aren’t up to par, read on. Our cactus should perform like this every year and yet so many fail. These Echinopsis on the videos are so floriferous because they are generously fed to stimulate blooms just as we do with roses.

Outside Mexico City, special thornless prickly pears are commercially grown for nopalitos, the young newly forming pads that are not yet fibrous. The farmers fertilize annually with an 8″ deep layer of cow manure. This demonstrates, as some local gardeners have discovered, that cactus can be big nitrogen lovers.

We grow a lot of different kinds of cactus in the high and low desert environments. Those native to our local soils such as compass barrel, hedgehog and blue beaver tail are nicely adapted to low nutritional levels. But exotic cacti from both North and South America are some of the most exciting day and night bloomers. Yet all too often ours seem to languish, parsimonious with new growth and flowers. The answer is their foreign soils of origin quite different in composition and organic matter than our desert ground. Some contain much higher nutrient levels and cactus from these habitats need to be fertilized the right way at the right time to meet their needs.

At the end of our winter rains, deeper layers of porous soil are fully moistened. This and the lengthening days kick off cactus flowering season, providing the ideal conditions for effective fertilization. The two cactus experts I have worked with both use water soluble blue crystal fertilizers with their clean delivery and high nitrogen content.. Water soluble means you mix and apply in water so it quickly carries the nutrients directly into the soil for quick access by roots. Because its moist just beneath the surface, the fertilizer solution travels deeper than dry ground, carrying the nutrition far and wide. When sandy soil is very dry the liquid won’t travel the same way without extensive watering in.

Experts attest to the use of this same blue fertilizer as a foliar feeder, which means you can wash the plant with your solution allowing it to run off the cactus onto the ground. Cactus are also able to take up the fertilizer through their epidermal layer. Because cactus absorb light energy during the day to fuel photosynthesis at night to stimulate intake. Do not foliar feed during the day because drops lingering afterward cause unsightly spotting or blotch burns.

Cactus growing in pots suffer the same nutritional losses because they grow in man made soil mixes created for express drainage. They become nutritionally deficient rather quickly, so feeding becomes more and more important as needs increase with age and size. Because pots limit root spread compared to cactus growing in ground, they can’t travel to find more nitrogen when it’s exhausted. This may stimulate dormancy, halting growth. Therefore it’s wise to feed once in early spring after temperatures rise above freezing at night to stimulate the reproductive growth phase. Then feed lightly again three months later for more vigorous vegetative growth.

If you’re big on keeping things simple, this method of fertilization lets you feed your entire garden without using another plant food. Apply it with a watering can, with a Miracle Gro hose end feeder or the $15 hose proportioner that allows liquid concentrate to be mixed into your hose water.

Always remember that when feeding cactus, less is more. Mix exactly as directed or use at a lesser strength to avoid burning roots. Always water deeply after feeding to speed uptake by plants. Feed at the right time of year and the right time of day to avoid damage. Be thorough and even with application. After spring feeding you’ll enjoy time on the patio watching your cactus explode into bud and bloom, growing more colorful each day as the mercury rises.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *