Knocking plants over isn't uncommon, especially if you have a lot of plants or live in a small space. You might have even had a child, friend, or pet knock some of your precious plants over too. While you might be tempted to throw everything in the trash, this is actually a great new beginning for succulents that can result in more plants than you started with. Succulent growers have given some great advice on what to do when a seeming disaster strikes.
It's a proportunity!
Many succulents propagate easily from leaves. So when your beloved plant spills, make sure to keep any of the leaves that got knocked off or broken and propagate them! Instead of having one of your favorite plant, soon you'll have lots! While some varieties won't propagate this way, others will grow from a remnant of a leaf, even if it was broken. Just make sure to let the end dry out before placing them on soil.
When a succulent has babies growing along the stem they can be removed and planted in their own pot. Many growers are afraid to uproot a healthy plant just to remove the babies. If your plant falls over, this is a great time to separate out all the babies and plant them somewhere new.
Examine the roots
Sometimes it's hard to tell if you're giving a succulent the perfect amount of water -- not too much and not too little. The best way to tell is by looking at the roots. But if your succulent is perfectly potted, it isn't usually worth uprooting it just to make sure you're on the right track. If it falls over though, that's a great time to see if the roots are healthy and if you're properly caring for your succulent.
Repot it, but don't water
Sometimes your succulent may still be intact and can easily be repotted into the original pot. In this case, go ahead and pot it back up. Just make sure you don't water it for a day or two. Watering a succulent that has recently been repotted can damage the roots and cause them to rot. It helps to let the succulent heal so any wounds on the roots dry before watering again.
An excuse to buy a new pot
One of the disappointing parts of a succulent being knocked over is if the pot breaks. Cleaning up the pieces of ceramic is sad, especially if the pot was handmade or expensive. However, this is also an opportunity to purchase a fun new pot for your plant! You could look for something similar to the original pot, or try something new.
Repair the original pot
If the original pot didn't break into a bunch of small pieces, it can likely be pieced back together like a puzzle. There's a beautiful Japanese technique for ceramic repair called Kintsugi. The pieces are joined back together using a lacquer mixed with gold or silver powder. In Japanese culture, it's believed that a pottery piece repaired this way is more beautiful than the original and embraces imperfection.
Prune it to a new shape
It's possible that when your succulent fell, some of the pieces broke off and it could be left looking a little lopsided. If this is the case, it's a great time to prune your succulent and give it a new shape! Pruning succulents promotes new branches to grow so you'll end up with more succulents than before. Plus, you can replant any of the cuttings you removed (or that broke off).
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This article originally appeared on Succulents and Sunshine.