Succulents have become one of the hot favourites with the plant lovers, especially those looking for indoor plants. Have you ever given a thought to find the best low light succulents that you can grow inside your home? We will explore top 10 best low light succulents that can perhaps help you achieve more positive results.
As we all know succulents are plants with plump stems that store water in them and can be with or without leaves. These plants are known to be hardy and can grow in extreme conditions. They need the least care and are fond of sunlight. The majority of succulents require less water.
Some succulents can flourish even in low light conditions and if you are in search of succulents that do well in low light, here in this article we will explore 10 best low light succulents.
10 Best Low Light Succulents
- Snake Plant
- Panda Plant (Kalanchoe)
- Ox Tongue plant (Gasteria)
- Parodia Haselbergii (Scarlet Ball Cactus)
Sansevieria (Snake Plant)
Sansevieria or Snake Plants are also famous as Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, have long green leaves with yellow sides that taper towards the top. These plants are very hardy plants that can survive in harsh conditions without any care.
These are the best indoor succulents that need low light but flourish in bright sunlight. Protect them from scorching heat.
Snake plants purify the air by absorbing toxins like formaldehyde and benzene from the air inside homes, and hence are ideal to be grown as indoor plants. Snake plants need less water and in favorable conditions, they can grow up to 5 feet in height and can survive for many years.
Echeverias are indigenous to Mexico and Central America. Echeverias have beautiful rosettes of different shapes some are compact and short-stemmed and others have hanging rosettes on long stems.
The leaves can be narrow or wide and plain or hairy and are found in varied colors and shades. Different hybrid echeverias are also grown these days.
You can plant Echeverias in the soil directly or in pots and containers. Certain Echeveria species can flourish in low light or partial shade. In low light do not overwater as it can lead to rot.
Most prefer bright indirect sunlight but avoid placing them in scorching heat. They are sensitive to cold.
Panda Plant (Kalanchoe)
Kalanchoe are indigenous to Madagascar, and are little shrubs with plump leaves of different shapes and forms. Leaves can be smooth or covered with hair. Kalanchoes are famous as indoor plants that are usually grown in pots.
They are very resilient plants that can be grown easily in low light conditions, but they love bright, indirect light and even scorching heat. They bloom with bunches of colorful flowers.
Certain Kalanchoe species multiply easily and are known as “Mother of Thousands” due to the plantlets that root easily and grow wherever they fall.
Kalanchoe looks spectacular with blooms in bright pink, oranges, yellow, white, and red, on a 6-12 inches tall, compact and upright plant. The blooms survive for many months. The plants are beautiful green throughout the year.
Ox Tongue Plant (Gasteria)
Gasteria is a succulent indigenous to South Africa. These plants grow in areas with low light conditions and lots of rainfall. Gasteria takes its name from “Gaster” meaning stomach in Latin, as it blooms with a flower similar to the shape of a stomach.
They have long, broad, furrowed foliage and stomach-shaped flowers that are curved. Most gasteria species can grow indoors in low light conditions. They flourish in bright but indirect sun. They grow well in pots indoors or in covered areas.
Gasteria is a genus of rare succulents that look like Aloe. It is also known as “ox tongue” due to its long leaves with a rough feel. Gasteria leaves have beautiful patterns and colors.
Native to South Africa and south-west Africa, Haworthias are stunted succulents that are indigenous to South Africa and SouthWest Africa. Some Haworthia species are identical in appearance to Aloe Vera and are often confused for each other.
Most Haworthia species flourish in low light but prefer a bright, pleasant atmosphere. Keep Haworthia away from full sunlight or scorching heat.
Some species have strong, thick, plump, and dark green leaves, whereas others can have soft and translucent leaves.
They form rosettes of different shapes and sizes according to the species, some are single and others grow in clumps. They have wide roots.
Aloe has about 300 species and Aloe barbadensis miller is one most popular species grown as a houseplant. It is famous for the soothing gel that can be easily extracted from its leaves that is used for sunburns and other minor skin ailments.
This tropical succulent has a small stem with plump, spear-like leaves with saw-toothed sides and grows to form a rosette. In favorable conditions, spiky blooms of red, yellow or orange shade grow on the long stalks.
Aloe takes about 3 to 4 years to reach maturity and blooms thereafter, and aloe that are grown indoors may or may not bloom. Propagation occurs by the pups that grow easily into new plants.
Outdoors, Aloe Vera needs bright light up to about six hours and shade in the afternoon. When grown indoors, place Aloe near a window that receives bright, but indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight can burn the leaves and poor light will lead to elongated and weak foliage.
Aloe vera can easily grow in poor soil without nutrients. Pots should be well-draining and use a cactus potting mix with coarse sand and perlite. Aloe likes slightly acidic soil but can grow well in alkaline or neutral soil also.
Rhipsalis is an indigenous cactus of the rainforests of South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Rhipsalis are epiphytic plants growing on other plants and they take moisture and nutrients from the surroundings.
These plants grow in the form of long, beautiful green vines along with stems that hang like chains.
Rhipsalis Paradoxa has a beautiful appearance throughout the year irrespective of any weather, however, keep your plant away from the harsh weather. These plants look beautiful in both gardens and houses.
Although cacti and succulents need bright sun and arid conditions, Rhipsalis can’t tolerate direct sunlight and arid conditions.
Rhipsalis can be grown as indoor plants or in places that receive low light. They like the morning sun and shade thereafter. Rhipsalis cannot survive drought and need watering regularly. Avoid over watering as it can cause root rot.
Schlumbergera is a cactus that belongs to the tropical rainforests of Brazil. They like humidity and dislike heat, so avoid placing them in scorching heat and frost. Schlumbergera differs from other cacti in physical appearance and habits.
In moist areas, Schulmbergera, being epiphytes, grow on trees or on the rocks as epilithic plants. Leaf- shaped, flat or bottle shaped joints are formed by the stems of Schlumbergera.
Christmas Cactus and Thanksgiving Cactus are two popular cacti of Schlumbergera genus that are famous indoor houseplants with spectacular blooms. These cacti love the morning sun and partial shade and should be kept away from the scorching afternoon sun.
Hoya plants are also known as Hindu Rope or Wax Plant are indigenous to Australia, East Asia, and Southern India and are famous for the heart-shaped foliage and vine-like appearance. Only some Hoya species like Hoya Hearts or Hoya kerrii are tropical succulents that are grown widely and are available as leaf cuttings in the market.
Hoya hearts are from the Dogbane family, Apocynaceae, and plants of Apocynaceae have latex, are scented, and contain alkaloids ( Iridoids). Hoya blossoms are scented and have waxy appearance and the scented components of the blossoms are used in perfumes.
These plants don’t require direct sunlight and flourish in partial shade. They cannot survive in scorching heat and frost. They look beautiful in the hanging baskets.
These plants need the least care with limited watering only once every 2 to 3 weeks or when the soil is parched and leaves are shriveling,
Parodia Haselbergii (Scarlet Ball Cactus)
Parodia Haselbergii is commonly known as Scarlet Ball Cactus which is indigenous to Brazil and South America. It can live in low-light conditions. They flourish in bright sunlight and need to be kept away from intense heat.
Parodia Haselbergii can grow individually or form clumps and are grayish-green in colour that blooms with bright orange or yellow blossoms. They bloom in spring.
They are used in pots and planters for terraces, windows, balconies, and in mini gardens for cacti and succulents.
In the Spring season, water adequately once in 10 days, weekly in summer and in the fall, once in 15 to 20 days. Watering cautiously can protect your plant from any disease and pests.
Use mineral cactus fertilizer once in early spring. Pruning is not required by Parodia. Propagation is slow and is usually done by seeds that are sown in spring.
Succulents That Need No Light – Best Indoor Succulents Low Light
Succulents cannot thrive without light. If you are growing succulents in an area where there is no light, you require to grow lights for your succulents and you can grow low-light succulents easily at your place. Buy a grow light and place it over your succulents for at least 6 to 8 hours every day and see them flourishing. Let’s find some best indoor succulents low light:
Succulents like Gasteria, Haworthia, Sansevieria, Aloe, Schlumbergera, and Kalanchoe, etc. recommended above which are best indoor succulents. Some more succulents are mentioned below :
Kalanchoe tomentosa is usually known as the Panda plant. These low-light succulents have soft, fuzzy, and grey- green leaves with brown tips. Panda plants can grow up to 18 inches and have thick stems that will be etiolated more in low light conditions than in excess light. You can cut your plant from the top a few times to make it bushy.
Place your indoor panda plant in bright or medium light. Water your Panda plant infrequently and allow the soil to dry before watering. Panda plants can grow in humid conditions and when you are growing them indoors, sufficient humidity is available for this low-maintenance plant. The panda plant can live indoors for a longer time period.
Senecio Rowleyanus ‘String of Pearls’
String of Pearls is a very popular indoor plant with bead-like, green leaves that grow on slender stems, appearing like Strings of Pearls, hence given the name String of Pearls. They look awesome in hanging baskets with beautiful beads on the trailing green stems.
These plants require partial shade and should be kept away from the direct sun. In low light, they need less water and overwatering can lead to root rot. These plants are vulnerable to rot due to thin stems.
You can use a grow light in low light conditions for your String of Pearls plant.
Beaucarnea Recurvata (Ponytail Palm Tree)
Ponytail palm trees are succulents that belong to the Agave family and are not palm trees as the name suggests. These plants have a dome shaped stem that stores water, and has long, thin leaves growing from the apex of the trunk, similar to a ponytail.
These plants are low in maintenance and need less watering. They can easily thrive in low light conditions and hence are ideal to grow as houseplants, but can be kept in bright sunlight also.
How much light does Succulents Need?
Most of the succulents will need at least six hours of light per day. They will grow better in bright direct sunlight, but they should work well in the indirect light as well. You can place them in an area that receives enough sunlight even when it may not be direct. However, if your indoor space has very low light, you can choose the succulents that can thrive in low light.
It is advisable to place your succulents facing the south window. This will give them enough light to survive. However, it is never recommended to place them at the north window. They would continue to grow, but will not thrive at all. Having said that, while you can have succulents that can live with low light conditions, they will never live in the complete darkness.
All the plants mentioned in this article are succulents that do well in low light, and hence can be grown indoors. Succulents also need light, and if you are looking for succulents that need no light, you can grow succulents that need low light instead and put the grow lights for the better growth of such plants. I hope this article will help you to choose the succulents of your choice to add to your collection of plants.
How much light does an indoor succulent need?
Most of the succulents will need around six hours of direct of indirect light. In fact, most of the succulents can survive in low light conditions. However, they may not survive in total darkness.
Which succulents are best for indoors?
Best succulents that groww indoors would include snake plant, aloe vera, jade plant, and ZZ plant to name a few. These plants will require less water and low light conditions.
Are there any succulents that grow in shade?
A couple of the best succulents that can work best in shade would include Panda plant and Zebra plant.