What type of succulent is this?

by Kelly
(Washington, DC)

It came in a small pot, but it seems unhappy. I'm not sure what type of succulent it is, so I don't know what type of pot or environment would make it happier. Thanks for your help!

Hi Kelly, first of all, no succulent will be happy in a jar that most likely has no drain hole, even if you avoid over watering them.

They absolutely require drainage, and most of them have a real liking for air in the soil, and 'tooth' or a rough surface for the roots to grip.

This is Kalanchoe thyrsiflora, and they really prefer to be outside for the summer, and watch out - they tend to grow quite large! With a bit of TLC, this character will be over 3' tall, and top heavy.

They also need bright light, more than what they might get in a window; a grow light is a good way to give it the intensity they require for the winter.

I recommend using some kind of terracotta pot, which are a bit heavier than plastic or other materials. This can stop the carnage when the plant falls over in a windstorm.

You can see more about these fascinating plants here; Kalanchoe thyrsiflora.

Happy succulent growing!

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