When you think of succulents you may just envision their unique forms and thickened leaves and stems. But bright and bold succulents produce eye popping flowers in the right conditions and are an important and easy to grow part of the spring and summer garden. So when selecting indoor or outdoor plants, consider some flowering, dazzling succulents to enliven your living spaces.
Bright succulent flowers lend an exotic appeal to dish gardens, singular potted specimens and outdoor garden beds. One of the more commonly grown, hens and chicks, is a variety of Sempervivum, which is very hardy, low maintenance, and crowned with brightly colored blooms in summer. There are many more succulents with striking flowers that will bring a host of hues to your garden situations.
Indoor Dazzling Succulents
Many commonly available succulents are ready bloomers, but not hardy outdoors in most zones. These make perfect houseplants that will surprise you with electric flowers in a variety of colors. As an added bonus, they are tolerant of some neglect, require infrequent re-potting, and thrive in the home environment. The tropical holiday cacti are another group of succulent consistently available, especially around the winter holidays. They need a bit more moisture than most succulents but can thrive in moderate light, although bright light will promote more blooms. Flowers come in hues of pink, purple, and vibrant red. Some other indoor specimens to try that will produce flowers are:
- Mammillaria species. Generally small, daisy-like flowers in brilliant tones.
- Kalanchoe. A common gift plant that develops blooms in numerous colors.
- Crassula species. Many forms and varieties. Each produces clusters of tiny flowers.
- Echeveria. Rosette forms primarily, with stalks filled with bell-like blooms.
- Senecios. Trailing plants with sweet little flowers, many of which have a spiced scent.
Bright Succulent Flowers for Outside
Many of our available succulents are native to hot, dry regions, and have little cold resistance. However, there are many that are excellent as garden bed plants. Some are groundcovers, while others are towering plants. Each has a unique flowering situation and interesting flower development. Sedums are one of those go-to plants that are quite hardy and form colorful flower clusters. Many are spreading, while others are larger groups of rosettes, perfect as stand-alone plants or in outdoor containers. Aeonium is another group of rosette formed plants. Often the leaves themselves are ornamental enough, but they will also develop tall blooming stalks. Also consider:
- Delosperma. Also called Ice Plant, quite hardy, spreading, with hot pink daisy-like blooms.
- Yucca. A fairly large, spiky leaved succulent. Amazing tall shoots with awesome drooping flower clusters.
- Opuntia. Very hardy but prickly so take care where you plant this genus. The flowers are monstrous in hues of orange, hot pink, yellow, and red.
- Euphorbia. Another group of super hardy succulents with striking flowers.
- Aloe. Grow in a warm region or in a container to bring indoors in Autumn. Not all produce flowers so check your species tag carefully.
Growing Bright and Bold Succulents
Pay careful attention to any plant care tags, especially the hardiness zone. Select sites and soils with good drainage. You may have to amend in-ground sites with gritty material to encourage percolation. Situate plants where they get the correct amount of light. Although we think succulents need bright, hot locations, some prefer protection from the highest sun rays. Water when soil is dry on average, but infrequently in winter. To promote blooming, feed your plant with a succulent formula, diluted in water monthly from spring until mid-summer.