Can Succulents Stay Outside in Rain?

Succulents are a type of plant known for their ability to store water in their stems and leaves. Due to their hardy nature, many people prefer to keep succulents outdoors. However, one common concern is whether or not these plants can withstand exposure to rain. In this discussion, we will explore the topic of whether or not succulents can stay outside in the rain.

Understanding Succulents

Succulents are a type of plant that store water in their leaves, stems, and roots. They are known for their ability to survive in arid environments, but that does not mean they can survive in any condition. In order to thrive, succulents need proper care and attention.

Common Misconceptions

One of the common misconceptions about succulents is that they are indestructible and can survive any weather condition. This is not entirely true. While succulents are hardy and can tolerate drought, they are not invincible. Excessive rain can damage the plant and cause it to rot.

Ideal Growing Conditions

Succulents thrive in bright, indirect sunlight and well-draining soil. They also need proper air circulation to prevent moisture buildup. In addition to these factors, succulents need to be protected from extreme weather conditions, including heavy rain.

The Effects of Rain on Succulents

Key takeaway: Succulents are hardy plants that store water in their leaves, stems, and roots, but they can be damaged by excessive rain. To protect succulents from rain, it’s important to cover them, move them to a covered area, improve drainage of soil, adjust watering schedules, and prune them during the rainy season.


Succulents are adapted to survive in drought conditions, but they cannot withstand excessive moisture. When succulents are exposed to heavy rain, the soil around the roots becomes waterlogged, and the roots suffocate due to the lack of oxygen. This can cause the roots to rot and ultimately kill the plant.

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Leaf Damage

Another effect of heavy rain on succulents is leaf damage. Succulent leaves are designed to store water, but they are not designed to handle large amounts of water. When exposed to too much rain, the leaves become oversaturated, and the excess water can cause the leaves to burst or develop mold.

Pest Infestation

Heavy rain can also attract pests that can be harmful to succulents. Pests such as slugs and snails thrive in damp conditions, and they can quickly infest a succulent plant that has been exposed to excessive rain. These pests can damage the leaves and roots of the plant and even kill it.

Protecting Succulents from Rain

Covering the Plants

One of the easiest ways to protect succulents from rain is by covering them. This can be done using a plastic sheet or a tarp. The cover should be placed over the plant and secured to the ground to prevent it from blowing away. However, it is important to ensure that the cover does not touch the plant as this can cause moisture buildup and damage the plant.

Moving the Plants

Another option is to move the plants to a covered area such as a porch or a garage. This will protect the plants from rain and other extreme weather conditions. However, it is important to ensure that the plants still receive adequate sunlight and air circulation.

Improving Drainage

Improving the drainage of the soil can also help to protect succulents from rain. This can be done by adding sand or gravel to the soil to increase its porosity. This will allow water to drain away from the roots and prevent waterlogging.

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Fungal Infections

Fungal infections are another risk for succulents exposed to rain. Fungi thrive in moist environments and can quickly infect succulent plants. Fungal infections can cause discoloration of the leaves, wilting, and ultimately kill the plant.

Watering Schedule

During the rainy season, it is important to adjust the watering schedule of succulents. Succulents do not need as much water during the rainy season as they do during the dry season. Overwatering during the rainy season can cause root rot and other issues.


Pruning is another important aspect of succulent care during the rainy season. Pruning removes any diseased or damaged leaves and helps to improve air circulation around the plant. This can prevent moisture buildup and reduce the risk of fungal infections.

FAQs – Can Succulents Stay Outside in Rain?

Can succulents survive in the rain?

Succulents are plants that have adapted to survive in harsh and arid environments. They can survive brief periods of rain, but too much water can be detrimental to their health. When succulents are exposed to too much water, the soil becomes waterlogged, inhibiting the uptake of oxygen from the roots. This can lead to root rot and eventual death of the plant.

Do succulents need to be protected from the rain?

Succulents do not necessarily need to be protected from the rain, but proper drainage is crucial to their survival. If the soil is not well-draining, excess water can accumulate, leading to root rot. It is essential to make sure that the succulent’s pot or planting area has enough drainage holes to allow excess water to flow out.

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Can succulents be planted outside in areas with high rainfall?

Succulents can be planted outside in areas with high rainfall as long as the soil is well-draining and they are protected from heavy rains. Planting succulents on elevated ground or using a raised bed can help prevent waterlogging, and covering them with a canopy or moving them indoors during periods of heavy rain can also be beneficial.

What should I do if my succulents get too much water from rain?

If your succulents get too much water from rain and you notice any signs of overwatering, such as yellowing leaves or mushy roots, it is best to stop watering and allow the soil to dry out completely. If the soil remains saturated for too long, it may be necessary to repot the succulent in well-draining soil. In extreme cases, the plant may not recover and may need to be replaced.

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