Succulents don’t need a lot of fertilizers to grow. An empty eggshell is the most effective and natural way to give all the required nutrients to the Succulents. This is a years-old technique. You can easily find your grandpa or grandma to follow it.
Yes, Eggshells are good for succulents as succulents are resilient to arid conditions, many of us are fond of cacti and succulents. We love to see them in healthy and blooming condition. With the right nutrients, these can easily be full of life. And the most effective, affordable, and organic way of this is to use empty eggshells.
Eggshells are a good source of Phosphorus, calcium, Magnesium, potassium, and other essential minerals needed to grow a plant. The eggshells can supply sufficient calcium that can help a plant to be bigger and thicker. Eggshells are very commonly available in most houses and can act as a very effective fertilizer for succulents.
Are Eggshells Good for Succulents? The Actual Answer
Yes, eggshells are good for succulents and cacti. Besides nitrogen and phosphorus, calcium is also very crucial in the growth of this type of plant. As a fertilizer, empty eggshells are an excellent source of calcium carbonate.
If you have succulents in your house, don’t throw the empty eggshells in the bin. Calcium carbonate helps plants in keeping their membranes and cell walls strong. It also promotes the growth of newborn cells. It also helps in growing the roots and pollen tubes.
Calcium deficiency is a very common problem in these plants, affecting the new leaves mainly. The leaves start to deform, and sometimes the roots become black, and the plant dies gradually.
Benefits of Using Eggshells for Succulents
Eggshells are very common household items. And you can use it as a fertilizer for your succulents. If you use eggshells in the right amount, it can benefit your succulents in multiple ways.
- Minerals: Besides being a rich source of calcium, eggshells have phosphorus, magnesium, and many other vital minerals. These minerals not only keep the plant healthy, but it also helps the plant to grow faster. These minerals are more than enough for the sustainable growth of succulents.
- Calcium is the main nutrient in eggshells, and calcium is essential for the growth of the plant’s cells. Phosphorus is also found on a large scale in eggshells. Phosphorus helps in making strong roots.
- As a good fertilizer: The experts always suggest using a fertilizer containing low or nil Nitrogen. And promisingly, eggshells don’t contain any nitrogen. So, it is the most environment-friendly, organic fertilizer.
- Keeps bugs away: Eggshells can easily keep bugs away from your plant. Because of its awkward smell and dry, sharp edges, most animals (like deer), snails, and slugs avoid the area. I hope I have been able to clear your confusion regarding your question “are eggshells good for succulents?”.
How To Use Eggshells as Fertilizers for Succulents?
If you don’t have any succulents and plan to plant one, you can crumble the eggshells and place them into the soil. This is a slightly lengthy process as the shells take months to decompose.
And it is only applicable if you don’t have the plant and are planning to take one and prepare the soil for its growth. But, if you already have one or two succulents, then some prep work is needed.
First, you need to rinse the shell wall properly; and ensure there is no egg white or yolk left. If not, it will drag pests and start to smell bad.
And now, there are two ways to transform it into a fertilizer: eggshell tea and eggshell powder. Both are very easy, and you can follow anyone at your convenience.
Making eggshell tea
Compared to the other plants that produce fruits, succulents require less calcium. But, for its growth, minerals are very important. So you can make eggshell tea, store it in a pot, and apply it to the plant from time to time.
The process of making eggshell tea is pretty simple. For each gallon, you need to use 10 egg shells; if you want to make it strong, make it 20. Now you need to boil the water at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for almost 20 to 25 minutes. Then add the eggshells to it, cover it with a lid, and keep it aside overnight.
The next morning strains the water properly and must ensure no particles are left in it. And that’s it; your eggshell tea is ready. For better results, you can apply it to your succulents once a year; it will boost the calcium and potassium levels of the soil. The main drawback of eggshell tea is its smell. If you have indoor plants, it is good to use eggshell powder.
Making eggshell powder
If you want to use eggshells in powder form, then no issue; its making process is also very easy. After rinsing the eggshells properly, you must leave them dry properly.
Then blend them with the help of a coffee grinder or a simple blender. Make sure the particles are as small as possible. Now you can mix this powder into your succulents’ soil.
Make sure not to put too much eggshell powder into the soil, as the succulents are not very calcium hungry.
The amount of eggshell powder depends upon the plant’s age and size. A full teaspoon of the powder is more than enough for a year. For a mature plant, you can increase it to 2.
For a mature plant, you can use one cup of eggshell tea; for small ones, ¾ portion of a cup is more than enough. But after applying eggshell tea, don’t use water until the soil completely dries out.
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How to use eggshells as a pot for succulents?
You can use eggshells as a DIY pot for planting succulents for a fancy indoor garden. As the overall area of the eggshells is small, you must use small plants. But you can plant succulents in these small shells using the cuttings propagation method.
But you cannot use it permanently; because of its natural biodegradable nature, these pots start to decompose within one or two months. Then you need to transfer the plant to another regular pot.
If you are still interested in using eggshells as a pot, follow the steps below. Thrust me; it looks unique and eye-catching.
breaking the eggshell in a proper method
First, you need to find the proper equipment for breaking the shell. A sharp knife will be the best option. First, make a small hole by tapping the top of the eggshell. Gradually enlarge the hole and make it big enough to plant a succulent. Now remove all the elements that are present inside the egg.
cleaning the eggshell
For cleaning and washing the eggshells, you need to use warm water and wash the shells completely from the inside and outside. It will remove all the bacteria present in the shell, especially salmonella.
Then you need to heat the shell for almost two to three minutes. It will kill all the bacteria present in the shell. Now fill half of the eggshell with succulent potting mix.
Planting the succulent in eggshell
Now you can place a small plant in the eggshell. You can cut a small part from a mother plant if you don’t arrange any. Now you need to plant the small tree with great caution, or else the shell will break. Place some soil in the eggshell after planting the succulent.
Maintaining the succulents in eggshells
After planting, the main task is proper maintenance. For it, you need to keep a special eye on some points. And these are:
Sunlight is a must for the growth of every plant. You must ensure that the plant gets proper sunlight. As eggshells are very small, excess sunlight will also be very harmful. It will dry off the soil irregularly.
This is very important because there is no drainage hole in the eggshells. If there is excess water, the root of the plant will rot, and in the opposite case, the plant will not grow rapidly, and in some cases, the plant can die. Hardly one or two tablespoons of water will be more than enough.
Opt for the right soil
Using the right soil is a must when planning to plant succulents in an eggshell. There is readymade soil in the stores for this purpose. If you are making the soil on your own, you need to ensure the presence of horticultural-grade sand in the soil.
Insects and bug repellant
You must ensure that the insects and bugs are away from your plant. For this purpose, you can use some chemical repellent but in a very small amount because excessive chemical compounds can affect the plant.
Being very small, from time to time, cleaning the pot (eggshell) is important for the sustainable growth of the plant.
Things to Consider Before Using Eggshells For Succulents
How often should you fertilize succulents with eggshells?
The succulents don’t need too much calcium for their growth. So don’t fertilize these plants with eggshells too often. You should not apply it for not more than one time, within a year. For mature plants, you can increase the number to two; that will be sufficient.
Can you put eggshells on top of the soil?
Yes, by spreading some crumbled eggshells on top of the soil, you can easily keep the snails or slugs away from your plant. But while spreading it, please leave it at least two inches from the plant.
Are boiled eggshells good for plants?
To extract all the calcium from the eggshells, you must boil these shells in water. If you have any plant that produces fruits, you need to offer sufficient calcium. And the water that we get after boiling eggs shells is a very rich source of calcium and is fully organic.
And only after boiling the eggshells you can use these as a fertilizer. So boiled eggshells are very good for the plants, but the excess implication of it will also have a very bad impact on the plants.
Are crushed eggshells good for plants?
For most plants, eggshells are a good organic fertilizer, but some plants don’t react positively with eggshells. But before applying crushed eggshells, you must follow the proper steps to crash the eggshells.
For it, you need to use a baking sheet. Now, you need to place the eggshells on this sheet and bake them for at least 20 minutes at 225 degrees Fahrenheit. It will dry up the shells completely.
Now it’s time to grind the shells. For it, you can use a coffee or spice grinder or a blender. You need to grind the shells in a very fine powder.
Do you have to rinse eggshells before composting?
Yes, you need to rinse the eggshells before composting. It has two main benefits. First of all, by doing so, the shells will grind faster. If you don’t rinse these eggshells, they will attract animal pests. You can keep these animal pests away by simply raising these eggshells with hot water.
Can you put too many eggshells in compost?
If you are piling compost, don’t add too many eggshells. It will make the calcium and potassium levels too high. And in comparison to other components, eggshells take more time to decompose. So, a limited portion of eggshells will be more than enough for any compost.
If you put eggshells as it is without crushing them, eggshells will take more than usual time to break down
Yes, crushed eggshells decompose more quickly than intact or crushed eggshells. The best is to use eggshells in powder form.
Can I mix eggshells and coffee grounds?
Coffee grounds and eggshells are both very healthy snacks for plants. These two can deliver sufficient calcium and nitrogen that your plant requires. These two ingredients help plants to grow faster and become healthy.
Frequently Asked Questions (fAQs)
Do succulents like eggshells and coffee grounds?
Eggshells are one of the best sources of succulents. It can supply all the essential minerals for these plants’ growth. As it is a very rich source of Calcium, you need to apply it in a limited amount. But you can apply it anywhere.
Whether the plant is in the ground or a pot doesn’t matter.
But it is not the same as the coffee grounds. You can not apply coffee grounds to a potted plant. You can apply it if the plant is on the ground. It is a very rich source of nitrogen, and it can supply many vital minerals essential for plant growth.
How do you store eggshells for fertilizer?
You can simply use an air-tight jar to store the crushed and dried egg shells. You can also use the freezer, which is a better option as it doesn’t contain any smell if it is in the freezer.
Do eggshells attract rats?
Yes, rats are very attracted to eggshells. To avoid rats and other insects, it is necessary to clean the eggshell before making fertilizer or powder from it.
How long do ground eggshells last?
In general, it takes almost one year to decompose an eggshell. But eggshell power degrades faster.
The simple answer to the question “are eggshells good for succulents?” would be For calcium, eggshells are a good source. But succulents are not very hungry for calcium. But by its application once a year, the plants become healthier. But before using eggshells as a fertilizer, ensure no yolk or egg whites are left inside the shell; otherwise, it will attract other insects.