Human touch affects plants either positively or negatively. Some plants love to be touched, and others do not, and some others are indifferent to touch.
Therefore, you must know what your plants like for optimum care. Succulents are a unique species. One thing that makes them stand out is their luscious stems and leaves.
As a result, they are beautiful, and you will be tempted to touch and feel them occasionally.
However, it is best to find out whether they like to be touched before you go caressing them. They may interpret your gentle touch as harassment and react negatively to your touch.
How Succulents React To Touch
Depending on the species, you may notice that the succulents change their color after you touch them. This is a common reaction by plants that have powder coating.
The coating, which is also known as the farina, protects succulents from the sun. The echeverias and graptoverias are common succulents coated with the farina. When rubbed or touched, they lose their protective covering.
It may be difficult for you to repot this species of succulents without touching them. You would have to avoid the leaves and hold the stems directly. Since plants are mostly repotted when they are still little, it may be challenging to avoid the leaves entirely.
There are also some succulents that you can not touch as a result of the nature of their leaves. For instance, it will be challenging to feel a white filmed succulent as you would have to get past white film around the leaves.
Also, succulents with spikes on their lives are not touchy. The spikes are a good enough sign that they do not appreciate you touching their leaves.
If you are rethinking owning a succulent because you think they don’t like to be touched, there is good news for you. Some succulents react positively to touch.
Touching your succulents is essential for plant care. It is a way of nurturing your succulents, and here are some reasons why you should touch your succulents.
To Know The Water Requirements of Your Succulents
Flexibility is essential in gardening. You must be flexible in your approach. Most of the time, we come up with schedules and calendars for regular watering of succulents.
If you study your succulents for a few days and come up with a watering calendar, you may not find out on time that your plants need to be watered.
Succulents do well without a lot of water; this is why they are widely cultivated as indoor plants. They do not require frequent watering as they store water in their leaves and stems, and this can pose a danger if you stick with a watering schedule.
Succulents may still look fleshy and vibrant when they need water. Also, overwatering can cause root rots and kill your plants.
You can avoid over-watering or under-watering by touching your plants. Instead of merely studying the soil, study how your plants feel when they have enough water and when they do not.
This way, you will be able to tell from touching your succulents if they need more water or not. This is also a less messy way of finding out then touching the soil.
To Check Their Health Status
Touching your succulents will help you detect when they are unhealthy and need more of your attention.
Start by observing and touching healthy plants. If you get used to the feel of a healthy succulent, you will be able to detect any unhealthy plant in a bunch and remedy the defect.
Generally, succulents yield to your touch. A healthy succulent should be rigid when touched, but an unhealthy one might be turbid or flaccid. Some sick plants may remain rigid but not as stiff as a healthy succulent.
A healthy succulent may not yield to your touch but will feel rigid. You should watch out for these signs, and you can only find out when you touch your succulents.
To Know If They Need More Sunlight Exposure
It is possible to look at your succulents every day before heading out and still find the leaves drooping all of a sudden. This can be avoided if you touch your succulents.
Drooping leaves are generally a sign that the succulents need more sunlight as plants grow towards the direction of the sun.
It is advisable to feel the leaves of your succulents regularly. If you notice a slight bend, try to raise the leaf, and if they react to the touch and go back up, this may be a sign that your plant needs water.
However, if they do not respond to your touch and remain drooped, they are probably struggling to get sunlight exposure. Therefore, you may need to change their position to a place where they can get more sunlight.
It is easier to catch this early if you touch or feel your plants regularly.
To Know if They Need Shelter
Just as plants react when they need more sunlight, they also respond when they are heat-stressed. While succulents can grow under some unfavorable conditions, they are also super sensitive and can suffer from excessive heat.
If left directly under the sun, they would lose more water consistently and, as a result, turn pale. Also, their leaves will change it’s color to yellow or brown. The discoloration usually starts from the not too prominent part of the leaves like under the leaves.
Therefore, it is possible not to notice this even though you water your plants regularly. The best way to protect your plants from the heat stress is by actually checking properly for early signs and keeping them in a shaded environment.
You will have to lift the leaves and check under and around the tips to detect any sign of discoloration. This way, you can move your plants to an area with better shade if you recognize this on time.
Also, you can adjust your watering schedule and water more often to reduce the heat stress.
To Clean Your Succulents
If you intend to grow succulents indoors, you should be prepared for dust accumulation. Succulents have attractive leaves with sticky surfaces. Therefore, dust and other particles may settle on their leaves.
This has some adverse effects on your plants and your health as it inhibits the natural process of transpiration and photosynthesis in plants and also contaminates the air that you breathe.
It is advisable to wipe your succulents once in a while to get rid of any dust and other particles, and you cannot do this without touching your plants. However, be careful not to clean the natural covering if the plants such as the farina
You should naturally come to one conclusion from all of the above- succulents love to be touched, and touching your plants is very important when it comes to planting and caring for them.
It is easier to understand their needs when you feel them. Also, you will be able to predict their reaction to harsh conditions and remedy any defects as soon as you detect them.
Touching your Succulents is a participatory way of gardening, and it creates a bond between you and your plants.