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How Long Can Succulent Cuttings Last Unplanted?

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colorful succulent cuttings for sale
Chopstick And Succulent Cuttings

Do you know how long succulent cuttings can last unplanted?

You’ll be surprised, but those succulent cuttings can survive for days, even weeks without soil or water.

The moisture succulents store within their cells allows them to survive on top of a paper towel or even inside a box for days!

That’s what makes succulent plants unique among other plants.

They can store water within their leaves, stems, or roots and their water-storing ability is to their benefit especially in situations where water is not available. Like, inside a shipping box!

Most plants will wilt a few hours after they are cut, but succulent cuttings will not.

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Succulents are adorable plants.

Some of them look like flowers, especially when they are very colorful.

Like most Echeverias for example, with leaves arranged into rosettes.

A lot of people are so obsessed with growing succulents these days.

Some say it’s their stress reliever, others say these plants make them happy. Still, others earn extra income from growing and selling them.

Some of these succulents are expensive and collecting a lot of them can cost so much.

But there is a cheaper way to start growing your collection. And that is by growing these succulents from cuttings.

Colorful succulent cuttings ( Chopstick And Succulents)

Yes, you can plant succulents from cuttings and they are so easy to grow. If you want to learn how to plant succulents from cuttings, you can check out my video tutorial here.

These plants have multiple survival tactics to conserve water to survive. 

With the right soil mixture that drains fast, you can plant them and they will grow with less effort on your side.

To those who are new to succulents, growing them from cuttings can be very intimidating especially if one hasn’t tried growing some before.

But what you will learn from this post will help build your confidence and hopefully change the way you look at them.

Succulent cuttings can last for up to 2 weeks or even longer without being planted.

But of course, not all succulents are the same. Some can survive longer than others, depending on how much water they can store and how good they are at holding it.

You can use freshly-cut succulent rosettes as decorations during special events. Even without soil or water, they will look fresh. What’s even better, when the event is over, you can plant them and they will continue on thriving.

succulent cuttings available at Chopstick And Succulents
Colorful succulent cuttings by Chopstick And Succulents.

That also means that succulent cuttings can be placed inside a box and shipped unharmed.

This is good news to those who have grown a lot of succulents already. You can mail the cuttings to your friends living miles away.

There are a few things you need to keep in mind when you ship succulents.

Although rooted succulents and cuttings can survive without soil or water for several days, there are a few steps you need to do to ensure their safety, especially when you are sending them enclosed in a box. So, in case you want to ship some succulents to either sell or give away.

Here are some tips you need to know.

  • Keep them dry. And I cannot emphasize this enough. They should be really dry as much as possible. While other plants need their roots moist to stay alive, succulent cuttings need to be very dry. A drop of moisture present inside a box can ruin the plants in contact with the moisture. The more moisture, the faster they get destroyed; and the longer they stay moist inside, the more damage can occur.
  • Allow them to breathe. For good aeration, it is better to wrap them with paper instead of plastic. Wrap them with materials that can absorb the moisture like paper towels or tissue papers.
  • Prevent them from getting bruises. Wrap the succulent cuttings well and protect the leaves. Placing them loosely inside the box can can damage their delicate leaves. So, don’t just toss them into the box. Provide them some protection.
  • Pack them nicely! Make a good impression. Surprise the receiver when the box is opened. A beautifully arranged pack of succulent cuttings may look like a bouquet of fresh flowers. This will make someone’s day or motivate them to give you a nice review if you are selling them.
  • Know the restrictions. Be aware that each country has restrictions when importing and exporting plants.

What You Should Expect When You Receive A Box Of Cuttings

  • Expect chubby plants. That’s what succulents are. Their leaves are thicker than most plants.
  • Some leaves may fall off. Some succulents with chunky leaves, like the Graptopetalums can easily separate from the stem. If the the leaf is intact, plump, and not mushy, you can propagate them.
  • You might see some bruises. Those dark spots on their leaves are bruises. It is pretty common in Aeoniums. They will outgrow those damages overtime.
  • Some colors may fade. Leaving the succulents too long inside the dark box can cause some changes. When you see those pale colors, know that they are still very delicate. Protect from the sun as they are most likely to get sunburn.
  • Some might elongate. Especially those that stayed in the box too long. Trim the elongated part and plant anyway. Soon new sprouts will grow.
Tweezers for succulents and gardening scissors combo
Here are the tools you need for gardening with succulents.

What if you do not have the time to plant these succulent cuttings when you receive your box?

Do not worry. These plants can wait.

That’s the beauty of succulents. You do not need to work on them right away.

If you do not have the time. You can air dry them and work on them on the weekend if you like. When you are not in a rush, you’ll enjoy planting even more.

But first, you need to open the box and allow them to air dry. Place the plants on top of a paper towel or cloth and allow them to dry for a few more days.

Just make sure you do not expose them to direct sunlight while you air dry because they are still very delicate and they can easily get sunburned at this phase.

Keep in mind that cuttings will get sunburned if exposed to direct sunlight. That’s because they are not stable and aren’t used to the heat of the sun yet, they are not ready and need time to slowly adjust.

So you need to look for a cool dry place protected from the direct heat of the sun.

Introduce them slowly to the full sun to avoid sunburn.

But when they are rooted and stable, they utilize multiple ways to protect themselves from harm, especially from the heat of the sun and lack of water.

To survive, they will not only close their pores to prevent water from escaping, but they will also grow aerial roots when left unplanted for too long to absorb moisture from the air.

When you are ready to work with them, plant your succulents in a fast-draining soil mixture, do not water for 2 weeks, and again, do not expose them to direct sunlight.

That’s how simple it is!

Colorful succulents do exist. In dry, sunny areas like California, it is possible to grow colorful succulents.

So, if you happen to grow succulents outdoors in an arid location, yet, your succulents are mostly green, then you should check out my course on How to grow colorful succulents and enjoy this hobby even more.

Learn how to grow colorful succulents
Learn how to grow colorful succulents .

If you wish to earn extra money growing succulents, then, you need to learn how to achieve their amazing colors and consistently achieve the result.

When I started growing colorful succulents, my YouTube channel exploded, my sales skyrocketed and I’ve never enjoyed growing succulents more. The link to the course is in the description below.

If you decide to ship succulent cuttings, this video will guide you how to do it correctly.

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