Prepare Your Succulent Containers for Winter

by Jacki
(Grand Forks, B.C. Canada)





Winters coming - how do you prepare for it?


If you have containers filled with hardy succulents, this is an easy one - in most cases, those types of containers already drain really well, as that's a major requirement for those types of plants.

I usually just place them carefully among perennial plants in my garden beds, and the snow will cover them for protection. I know it sounds counter intuitive, but snow will actually keep them a little bit warmer, and the other property it has is that it prevents temperature swings, which is really crucial for many succulent plants.

I have many driftwood root planters that don't get any special preparation for winter. They emerge in spring, none the worse for wear. Any that are up off the ground, displayed on a bench for instance, will suffer some die back, and I might have to replace some of the plants in spring. It's a case of filling in the gaps, or in many of these planters, the existing survivors will grow to fill them in.

I was asked recently what to do in the case of some wedding favor succulents - these were Sempervivum, and the wedding is in December. This takes a bit of prior planning; this was my advice; prevent full dormancy before the wedding date by keeping them cool but under lights in a basement, and then after the big day place them in the garden and cover them with leaves. This will allow them to go into dormancy slowly, because of the protection of the leaves.

Mice can be a problem with succulent crafts such as globes and topiaries. I've made hardware cloth (wire mesh with very small holes in) boxes or cylinders to cover them, which works great. You can even fill those with dry leaves to protect them. In areas that get a lot of winter rain, I might even put a board over top to keep some of the moisture out.

Only you know your conditions, but these are a few ideas for successfully overwintering your succulent containers.

Comments for Prepare Your Succulent Containers for Winter

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Oct 20, 2012
Don't miss the Winterizing Succulents E-Course
by: Jacki

It's FREE! Sign up for it here: Winterizing Succulents E-Course; it's a five installment series to lead you through all the steps for bringing your tender succulents indoors for the winter.

If you're on a tight schedule, and in a hurry, sign up for this one instead: Overwintering Tender Succulents E-Course - same course, same great information, but on speeded up delivery over five days, instead of four weeks.

Jan 21, 2013
Thanks so much...
by: Julie

...for the timely advice - now, I can save a ton of money on my succulents for planting in the big containers on my deck. I will most likely still need some special ones, but the kinds of succulents that I will overwinter are the easiest to keep going.

I'll post some pics of my planters next year.

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