Do All Succulent Varieties Bloom?
No, not all of them produce flowers. Some succulents will take years before they can bloom, while others do not bloom at all. Some succulent species will bloom even during the early stages. However, other species will wait for its maturity period before they are ready to bloom.
Some of the reasons why a few succulents fail to bloom are environmental issues and growing conditions. However, there are things that you can do to help your succulents bloom. You need to provide them with plenty of sunlight and the right temperature. You should grow them in an environment that is similar to their natural habitat.
How to Make Your Succulents Bloom?
Healthy plants have greater chances of flowering. Hence, it is very important to provide them with a proper environment where they can grow and thrive. Some succulents and cacti require sufficient sunlight so they can bloom. Be sure to expose them to sunlight for at least five to six hours daily.
There are a few plants that only bloom once then they die afterward. This includes tomatoes, sunflowers, etc. These plants will grow, develop some flowers and fruits, then they will eventually die. Perhaps, this entire life cycle will last for a year. But there are also some plants which take several years before they bloom and ultimately die afterward. Sometimes it is frustrating to see your plant die after having a single bloom. These types of plants are also known as monocarpic plants.
Monocarpic is a combination of the words “mono” and “karpos.” Mono means single while karpos means fruit. Monocarpic plants are those plants that only bloom once before they die. Plants that can bloom more than once are known as polycarpic.
Why Do Monocarpic Plants Die After They Bloom?
The reason why plants bloom is to generate seeds for their reproduction. Monocarpic plants consume a lot of energy when they bloom. Because of this, they can’t continue to grow and prosper because they have lost so much energy. Most of these plants will eventually die. But with monocarpic succulents, death is not the end of it.
One of the most well-known monocarpic plants is Agave. You may not be aware of it, but agave takes a lot of years before they bloom then they die. Agave Americana will take several years before it blooms and then dies. But not all agave varieties are considered as monocarpic.
If you are growing a monocarpic Agave, then don’t worry since most of them will grow numerous offsets or “pups” on the stem or at the base of the plant. These pups will continue to grow and thrive even after the mother plant dies. They will grow on the same stem and root structure.
Some monocarpic succulent plants do not truly die after they bloom. In the case of Agave, it is just the main plant that dies but not the plant itself.
One good example of monocarpic succulents is sempervivum. It will die after its flowers fade. Sempervivum implies “always living” so why does it die after it blooms? Sempervivum is popularly known as “hens and chicks.” This is called as such because its large rosette will produce several tiny rosettes around it. Typically, a “hen” can grow between three to four years before it will finally bloom. During this time, it will generate lots of smaller rosettes around the large rosette.
Finally, when the large rosette bloom, it will die. The good news is your container, or your garden won’t be empty since the smaller rosettes will continue to grow and prosper. Time will come that each of these smaller rosettes will grow and bloom, then die.
But before they die, they will produce their chicks as well. If you are growing a sempervivum rosette in a container, and it generates dozens of rosettes, then you did not lose the plant after the large rosette died. The fact is, you have even gained more succulent plants.
Most varieties of Kalanchoe species bloom the entire seasons. There are only a few of them which are considered monocarpic. Kalanchoe luciae and K. thyrsiflora are both monocarpic. These monocarpic succulents share the same characteristics with agave since they will produce numerous pups at the base of the plant. These pups will continue to grow and thrive even after the main plant has died after blooming.
Some yucca varieties and a few species of aeonium are also known as monocarpic succulents. But they are quite different compared to the other types of monocarpic succulents. Aeonium and yucca varieties will grow branches as time goes by. When they become mature, they will look like a tree with a rosette of foliage at the end of each branch.
Throughout the years, some of these branches will bloom. These blooms can last for months before they will fade away. After its blooming days are over, the branch will not bloom again. However, the rosettes below the branch will continue to thrive. They will form new branches and rosettes.
Hence, when it comes to monocarpic aeonium and yucca varieties, the whole plant will not die after blooming, it’s only the branch. Even some of its branches will die, new ones will arise. This means that the plant will continue to survive.
Remember that not all yucca varieties are monocarpic. Also, those which are monocarpic do not truly die after they bloom. Even if a single branch dies after it blooms, the rest of the plant will continue to grow and prosper.
At Eden Succulents, you can find lots of information about succulents. We can provide you the best tips in growing and caring for your succulents. If you are interested in monocarpic and polycarpic succulents, then leave us a comment below!