1. Agave X leopoldii
    Agave X leopoldii
  2. Euphoria suzannae
    Euphoria suzannae
  3. Pachypodium baronial v. windsorii
    Pachypodium baronial v. windsorii
  4. Uncarina roeoesliana
    Uncarina roeoesliana
  5. Kalanchoe fedchenkoi
    Kalanchoe fedchenkoi
  6. Pachypodium rosulatum
    Pachypodium rosulatum
  7. Psedobumbax ellipticus
    Psedobumbax ellipticus
  8. Ipomea platense
    Ipomea platense



The best possible source of light is sunlight and the best place to grow them  is in the greenhouse. However, the optimum amount of sunshine would be some where between 6500 to 7500 foot candles (full sun in our area is over 10000 foot-candles). Here in South Florida we have the luxury of having a lot of sun, full sun or just all day long sun. But Succulent plants do not need  intensive amounts of sunshine all the time.                        
Other ways to say that some shading would be essential, especially in summer.  Even in the wild, plants that are exposed to full sun from sunrise to sunset are potentially  more suffering than plants that have some shade from other larger plants or rocks, some time even ground level (plants stay partially  under ground). More shading is even more critical when we are talking about the early stage of a plant (under 1 year old).
My experience gave me an  idea that most Succulents will do well in semi-shade (approxim. 30-40% from full sun). For young plants, at the beginning stage, shade would be more likely near to 50%, when they mature within a couple of years or so, then you can provide more sunshine, reduce shade to around 30%, just to make plants feel they are in habitat conditions. 
Full grown, well established Succulents can usually handle full sun, but only if good ventilation is provided . 
On the other hand, if given poor light plants will turn to light – green, unnatural color, becoming etiolated and rot-prone.


In general all Succulents thrive in high temperature conditions. In fact,  most of them are not frost tolerant and can go down to only 55*F without visible damage such as leaf drop, discoloration or stem and leaf burns. Ideally temperature 60-65*F at night and 85-90*F during the day will keep them actively growing. Most Succulents can endure lots of heat. In fact, in my greenhouse, earlier in the afternoon temperature as high as 120F (near 50C) in summer – fall season. Cool nights are very beneficial, but unfortunately not available in the summer months. Night temperature in summer is around 75-85 F and in fall-spring season it is  around 60-70 F, with exception of some cold spells once or twice a season, which is perfect for this group of plants.
High mid day heat  during the summer is not a problem, but the coolest night temperature are necessary to redress the balance and give the stomata (microscopic pores in the epidermis of the stem) a chance to be open for a while, to manufacture food (synthesis of glucose). In winter months they can tolerate temperatures down to 40*’s F only for a short period of time. Succulents consume carbon dioxide and produce oxygen and water during the process photosynthesis. Humid stagnant air will reduce evaporation and water migration, so air movement is absolutely necessary to replenish consumables and in helping complete the process. I believe that when a big HAF fan installed in a greenhouse it will provide good air-circulation that would be beneficial during the night, or on gloomy rainy day when stagnant air with the high humidity needs to move around.  

Success in growing Succulents depends on quality of H2O and correct watering regimen more than any other factor.
Regardless of rainfall in their habitats, the most intensive watering on all cultivated species will go to spring, late summer and early fall. Right after dormant period (late December, January in S. Florida) they respond well to one or two moderate waterings, continue to water them well till beginning of summer. When humidity level will rise high it is better to withhold heavy watering, use light watering, reduce the amount and frequency, depending on size of the pot, allow up to a couple of weeks in between, but do not let them became too dry (this may result in roots to became dehydrated and even dry-out or just disturb development of the plants). One can even let them go in to semi-dormant for a couple of months. This would be beneficial for well established, more mature plants. At the end of summer, early fall, when night temperatures will go down, most of Succulent plants will again respond to a good soaking, continue to the very end of vegetation (late December in S.FL). At this time when watering them do not be afraid to do it well. The most common  mistake is that many growers often-underwater Succulents to avoid root rot, and keep them in dry-shocking conditions. These plants will never develop good strong roots and will never grow at a desirable rate. We all know that overwatering will lead to root rot and need to be avoided, but very scarce watering will eventually become deadly from dehydration. Even in the wild Succulents experience heavy rainstorms, followed by period of  drought. The most important thing to know is when to water them. 

This may depend on several individual conditions, such as heat, and aridity, amounts of light and humidity, the pots (size, clay or plastic) and soil structure.
Generally, you have to let your potting medium almost completely dry between watering. In one condition it may take one week, another will take as much as 2-3 days or so. The best time of the day is in the morning or late afternoon, right before sunset, but not recommended to water in the heat of the day, it may cause some scorching.
Late fall - early winter reduce and then stop watering completely for the dormant stage. Most, but not all species of Succulents can survive prolonged dormant periods without water and need to be sprayed, but not watered on warm and hot days. Regular watering could be resumed in mid - late February in South Florida weather conditions. At first with only small light watering up to a few days apart. Plants at this stage are incapable of absorbing much water, but on very second watering will be beneficial to increase amount of water and soaking them well.
Quality of H2O also plays a vital role in end results when talking about quality Succulents. Chemically perfect water should have pH 5.5-6.2 with EC below 1.0 and alkalinity in range of 60-120. Amount of minerals is not important because of constant fertilizing program that is implemented. If necessary, injection of sulphuric acid may need to be implemented to neutralize alkalinity and lower the pH of irrigation water.

Nowadays it is hard to imagine that plants can grow without proper feeding. Because of the soilless compost that most growers are using today as a growing media, artificial fertility will be essential. Without it growth will become retarded and have poor quality. Numbers (N-P-K) on plant food label is an international code that shows proportions of major elements necessary for plant growth. 
The first number represents amount of nitrogen, this element is responsible for building tissue (stem). The second number represents amount of phosphorus, responsible for root growth, flowers and seeds production. The third number stands for potassium, potash usually supplies this element thats responsible for a strong stem and  increases plant resistance to disease.
There are three different nitrogen available for a source of Nitrogen -- Nitrate nitrogen (NO3), ammonium nitrogen (NH4) and urea nitrogen (NH2)2. A formula containing high percentage of ammonium/urea-based nitrogen will make plants weak and in some cases even become toxic to them. Ammonia-based fertilizer on the market cheaper, easy to produce and easier to bland, but results will be far from satisfaction.   
Besides that ammonia-based fertilizer will makes plants less resistant to disease, in conditions when soil temperature will go below 65F’, ammonium will converted to toxic ammonia, especially in waterlogged soil mixes. (bad drainage
Better formulas will have a good percentage of their nitrogen delivered from urea. Nitrate nitrogen is a source of nitrogen that all plant growers should demand. Usually, a good fertilizer contains a combination of Nitrate and ammonia made from calcium nitrate, potassium nitrate, monoammonium phosphate, monopotassium phosphate, magnesium nitrate, and soluble trace elements (8-10) mix that are nicely balanced. (for example: 17-5-19 Peters with minors or 15-5-15 Peters Excell with extra Ca & Mg)
One can take a look at the formulation 20-20-20 and found that this will contain up to 70% ammoniac nitrogen, which is way too much for Succulents and for most cacti. In the same sense, low magnesium and calcium and very low amount of minors. It is important to remember that plants in general and succulents in particular do NOT eat, they DRINK (this means that all chemicals used to feed them must be water-soluble). They manufacture their own food from the gases they soak up through their thorns and leaves and water they take in through their roots. They use sun, water, and air to produce all the organic elements they need. They are able to carry water from roots up into their body and then to the surface, where it evaporates. This movement of water is used to transport nutrients up from the roots. Then, as this water evaporates, plant heat is dissipated improving the efficiency of photosynthesis. After all - good fertilizer should be supplement with minor elements (trace elements). They are called minor (cooper, iron, boron, magnesium, manganese, zinc, molybdenum and others) because they are required in very small quantities, but they are absolutely necessary for the plants health. My favorite fertilizers: 13-2-13; 17-5-19; 9-45-15; 15-5-15 all water soluble from Peters. Slow release: Nutricote 18-6-8 (180-270) and single elements supplier CaNO3 – 15.5-0-0 calcinit, STEM complete minors by Scotts.

Potting media plays a very important role in the growing process. The general rule for the Succulent plants is that substrate has to be well drained and well aerated, plus it has to have good moisture holding capacity. Some commercially blended soilless mixes work quite well. Metro mix 500 with additional 15-20% of perlite for example or Sungro GBX with some vermiculate is a good choice. However, I have designed my own pair of super mixes that will bring all necessary elements to have perfect potting media. They contain Canadian peat moss, Cypress dust, composted pine bark, WellPoint sand, or pumice, plus some dolomite, talstar (ant control)and ban root (roots health). Anyhow, soilless substrate that growers use for growing Succulents should have pH 6.0-6.5, EC below 1.0 and alkalinity should be low. Make sure that your analyses of potting medium are conducted on a regular basis. This is very important when growing plants in small containers such as 2 – 4 inch pot size. Plants that are grown in the small containers and are irrigated more frequently will show deficiency symptoms much faster than plants grown in large containers. That is because any buffering agent that is initially in the media is eventually overwhelmed by amount of water which builds up soluble salts such as carbonates and bicarbonates.
Sansevieria pinguicula
 Flowers are borne in clusters of 5-6 on an erect branched panicle up to 10 inch long. The flower bracts are small, brownish and bottle shaped
with white anthers and stamens. Fertilized flowers produce globular berries, however very few fruit mature to produce seed. The flower spike develops from the apical meristem and a rosette will no longer grow after blooming.
However, the rosette will not die after flowering, and will instead produce many stolons bearing new plantlcts.
Originally from Kenya, Eastern Africa.
Sansevieria pinguicula is a very rare variety that has short and erect stem
that resembles a dwarf Agave.Unlike most Sansevieria which grow from an underground rhizome, this species produces aerial stolons which terminate in new plantlets.
These then produce stilt-like roots that extend downward to the ground, resulting in a plant that appears to be walking away from its paren. 
The blue-green leaves of
S. pinguicula are covered in a thick waxy cuticle, and contain the deepest stomata of Sansevieria species. The leaves are arranged in a rosette and lunate in cross section. The leaves can be up to 10 inch in length and near an inch or more thick, and are tipped with a single sharp spine. A wide channel runs the full length of each leaf and has reddish-brown margins edged with tough, papery white cuticle. The underside of each leaf is smooth when water is plentiful but develops deep longitudinal grooves in drier conditions as the plant draws upon the water stored in its leaves.