Experiment: growing succulents in water

1012 Terra
© 1012 Terra

I found this stunning photo on Pinterest (where else?) a little while ago.

It’s of a sort of terrarium-slash-vase called the 1012 Terra glass vessel (you can buy it here) and is made by a Japanese duo called Daisuke Tsumanuma and Kenichi Yamada. I have been lusting for such wondrousness in my house ever since seeing it.

At around £60 per single vase and factoring in the need to post it from Japan, my dream of having a row on the mantelpiece seems a little unlikely. But that’s not the only problem with this picture.

See all those plants? All those succulents and cacti? With their roots growing right in the water? Hmmm, exactly. Succulents and cacti thrive in desert conditions with hardly any watering at all, so I was a bit surprised to see them sitting there, apparently healthy, in permanent deep water.

After a bit of Googling, I came to the conclusion (as had many others, it seemed) that the photo was simply that, a nice photo to sell the terrariums, rather than a serving suggestion for succulent growing.

But then I found one tiny little internet discussion thread that seemed to suggest you could, in fact, propagate succulents straight into water and they would then grow special “water roots” which would be different to normal roots and they could stay in the water forever. Could such a thing be true?

I plan to take some cuttings from my succulent collection and give it a go. The plan is just to suspend a leaf slightly above a glass of water and see if the roots happily go down and grow there. Nothing more complicated than that!

If it does work, then I shall move the water-grown succulents into my lovely new Monti by Monti vases, a present from my husband for Christmas. They’re gorgeous (see below!) and just waiting for the perfect inhabitant.

Monti by Monti vases
© Monti by Monti

I’ll let you know how I get on…

11 thoughts on “Experiment: growing succulents in water

  1. Love your Monticello vases,l live in Louisiana and it rains here all the time,we have levees to keep us from flooding,and we grow succulents all over,and in regular flower bed,no special sand,rocks,nothing,just soil.I used to give them all that tenderness but after the cats knocked them from their perch to the flower bed and they grew there it just seemed like they had climates to the constant moisture.Sometimes we have 100%humidity and it’s NOT RAINING,just go figure.Love your blog.lady painter,from Louisiana,

    1. Yes, I’ve killed many a succulent in the past – before I knew much about gardening – by over-loving and over-watering them. It will be very interesting to see if they really can grow a completely different type of root that does well in water…

      The vases are water tight (or should be — I’ve not tested them yet!) Will share pics once I finally get them on the wall and get something into them!

  2. Can you tell me how the plants turned out? I have been trying to find the same thing out myself– can these things survive in water- and no one knows!

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