Succulents indoors

Most succulents need full sun and are not (really) suitable for cultivation indoors. But there are also quite a few exceptions. Sometimes we advise nursery customers from Cape Town to keep certain plants indoors because of the local environment. Regulary we are approached by restaurant owners for low maintenance table arrangements.

The succulents which are suitable indoors are the ones which grow, in nature, in the shade of other plants like Gasteria- and Hawhortia-species. Some crassulas also grow nicely inside and so do some cacti. It surprised us, visiting Dallas (Texas, USA) once, to see so many peyote cacti (Lophocereus williamsii) behind the windows. And that in a state with such a restrictive drug law enforcement.

The suitability indoors is also related to the local environment such as the light intensity inside the house (dark- or light walls, ceilings; at a North- of South facing window; etc.). It also, partly, depends on your location. There is a difference in light intensity between different latitudes. That can imply that plants will do very well in Sweden behind a South facing window but in South Carolina a North facing window is recommended. Back to the Western Cape in South Africa: for the more ‘advanced’ knowledgable succulent lover are there also Lithops (as most of Haworthias and Gasterias indigenous to Southern Africa). Be patient and those ‘suckers’ will reward you with a stunning floral display in season.