Can Succulents Grow In Rocks? (No, Sadly They Can’t)

Succulents are a type of plant that stores water in their leaves, stems, and flowers. Some succulents have thick fleshy leaves that can reach up to a foot long, while others have tiny leaves that are just a few millimeters wide.

Succulent plants need a porous, absorbent medium to thrive and grow properly. Soil is the perfect medium for succulent plants because it is lightweight and has a high water retention capacity.

But, can succulents grow in rocks as well?

No, succulents won’t be able survive and grow in rocks for a longer time period. It will survive for a few days, but in order to grow properly they would need proper soil and water.

However, a potting mix made with perlite, vermiculite, and compost can substitute for soil in succulent plants. 

Can Succulents Grow In Rocks
Can Succulents Grow In Rocks? 

Can Succulents Grow In Rocks?

Succulents are plants that inhabit arid and semi-arid habitats. These plants have adapted to grow in soil but will not survive if placed in rock. Succulents need water and soil to survive, so putting them in an unsuitable habitat can cause their death. Succulents can survive for a short time or months, but eventually, they will die if not given the right environment.

Succulents are a genus of plants that typically have fleshy leaves, but some species have bony or cartilaginous leaves. 

Direct sunlight is essential for succulent growth, and the soil must be well-drained. Succulent plants need a lot of water, so water them frequently. Fertilize with a balanced fertilizer twice a year in Spring and Fall.

Soil composition is one factor that affects whether succulents will grow in rocks. Succulent plants need well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter and good drainage. They also need moderate amounts of moisture and bright, indirect sunlight.

Should Succulents Be In Soil Or Rocks? 

Succulents need soil to grow and flourish. However, succulents cannot grow in rock. Succulent plants need proper drainage, so water can flow away from the plant and out of the root system.

If the soil is too wet or too dry, the plant may not be able to get enough oxygen and nutrients, leading to leaf drop, stunted growth, and even death. People usually grow succulents in soil because it is easy, and they get a lot of nutrients from the ground. 

Should Succulents Be In Soil Or Rocks
Should Succulents Be In Soil Or Rocks? 

Succulents cannot grow in rocks because they lack the necessary moisture and nutrients. The soil that succulents need to thrive is composed of good drainage, aeration, and plenty of organic matter. Additionally, succulents need access to sunlight and fresh air to thrive.

Succulents and cactus plants do just fine when planted in well-draining or sandy soil and then topped off with small rocks. These plants can withstand a bit of drought, but they will look their best if given plenty of water and fertilizer.

Will Succulents Grow In Gravel?

Succulents cannot grow in gravel alone as they cannot provide the vital water and nutrients that the plant needs. A succulent’s natural environment is damp, well-drained soil.

Gravel does not hold water or nutrients like soils can, so the succulent will not receive the hydration and nutrition needed to thrive. If you want to grow a succulent in a gravel garden, mix it with other types of soil or plant it in a potting mix that includes gravel.

Will Succulents Grow In Gravel
Will Succulents Grow In Gravel?

Gravel is not only added for decorating purposes in succulent pots. The gravel barrier stops the evaporation of water from the soil, and this helps to increase the plant’s water uptake. In addition, it also helps to prevent soil compaction and provides drainage for plants.

What Kind Of Rocks Do You Use For Succulents?

Succulent gardens require a variety of rocks to provide drainage, humidity, and temperature control. Some stones are suitable for cacti, while others work well for succulents. Here’s a look at some of the most popular types of rocks for succulent gardens.

What Kind Of Rocks Do You Use For Succulents
What Kind Of Rocks Do You Use For Succulents?

Red Lava -crushed Rock 

Succulents are plants that require a porous substrate to grow, such as cinder blocks, pumice, or lava rocks. These rocks have many small holes and spaces that allow water and nutrients to reach the succulent’s roots. Some popular succulents grown on lava rocks include Aloe vera, Agave americana, and Crinum intriguing.

Desert Gold-Crushed rock

Succulents need a porous rock to help distribute water and nutrients evenly. Crushed rocks make a great choice because they’re relatively inexpensive, easy to find, and have a lot of tiny pores. You can use more significant chunks of stone if you want, but break them into smaller pieces before adding them to your succulent garden.

Gambler Gold-Crushed rock

Crushed rock is an excellent option for beginner succulent gardeners because it is affordable and easy to find. In addition, the small pieces make it easy to mix with other landscaping materials, and the gold colour helps it blend in with other plants. 

Mexican Beach Pebble

Mexican beach pebble is a type of sandstone that is great for succulent gardening because it has high water and air retention levels. This makes it perfect for plants that need water and soil to survive, like succulents.

How Do You Plant Succulents With Rocks And Soil? 

How Do You Plant Succulents With Rocks And Soil
How Do You Plant Succulents With Rocks And Soil?

Step 1: Clear the area

When planting succulents with rocks and soil, it is essential to create a clear area so the plants have adequate sunlight and air. In addition, succulents need plenty of water to survive, so provide them with regular rainfall or a water dish. 

Step 2: Add Soil

Succulents thrive in soil rich in organic matter, but they can also be planted in porous rocks or other inert substrates. Delicate succulent plants like Agaves and Aloes can be placed near the floor of a room to create a cool, shaded area or in front of windows to improve air quality. In warmer climates, succulents can be grown outdoors as container plants on a rock garden or slab foundation. 

Step 3: Place the big rocks

Succulents need porous rocks to grow well. Place the big rocks first, ensuring they are at least twice the size of your planting pot. Next, fill the pot with soil and plant your succulent. Water sparingly until established, then increase watering to match rainfall patterns.

Step 4: Add succulents

To plant succulents with rocks and soil:

  • Dig a hole two or three times the size of the succulent you want to plant in your soil mix.
  • Add organic matter such as compost or aged manure to the bottom of the hole before adding your succulent.
  • Place the succulent in the centre of the hole, positioning it so its roots barely touch the sides of the hole. 

Step 5: Add small rocks

Adding small rocks to your succulent potting soil will help to improve drainage and aeration. This is especially important if you live in a humid climate, as water can be trapped beneath the rock for long periods. In addition, succulents can absorb water and nutrients through their leaves, so adding some smaller rocks will help ensure that your plants receive the nutrients they need.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is it OK to put rocks around succulents?

Succulents are plants that thrive in dry environments. They can be placed in any room in your home with the proper care, but it’s essential to choose an environment that suits their needs. One popular place to put succulents is in a rock garden or around water features. However, some believe that rocks can damage succulents and should not be used as part of their environment.

What is best to plant succulents in?

Succulents thrive in a wide range of soil types but do best in well-drained soils with high nutrient content. If you’re new to succulents, begin planting them in containers and moving them to the ground as they become established. Succulents like full sun, but they can tolerate some shade. Water them regularly, but avoid overwatering; succulents can tolerate drought conditions.

Why put pebbles on succulents?

Succulents are perfect house plants for people who want an easy care option but don’t want to deal with watering or fertilizer. But what’s the best way to keep them happy and healthy? One popular option is to put small pebbles on the soil surface. Studies have shown that succulents grow better in an environment with plenty of moisture, so putting a few pebbles on the soil will help keep it constantly moist.


Succulents can grow in rocks but need plenty of water and good drainage. Nevertheless, succulents make great additions to any landscape, and they can last for years with a little care. So if you’re thinking about adding some succulent love to your garden, start small and work your way up!

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