A common question often asked about succulents is, “Are terracotta pots good for succulents?” If you, too, are searching for the answer to this question, we’ve got you covered.

Succulents have become the go-to choice for plant lovers, and finding the perfect pot for these adorable plants is crucial for their well-being.

In this succulent series, we’ll explore the benefits of using terracotta pots, their features, and why they might be the best option for your beloved succulents.

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What are Terracotta Pots

Terracotta pots are traditional containers made from fired clay, specifically a type of clay known as terra cotta.

The word “terracotta” itself comes from the Italian words for “baked earth.”

These pots are a popular choice for gardeners and plant enthusiasts due to their natural and rustic appearance, as well as their functional properties.

Key characteristics of terracotta pots include:


Terracotta pots are made from clay that is baked at high temperatures to achieve a hardened, durable, and porous structure.


The natural color of terracotta pots is typically a warm, earthy tone ranging from orange to reddish-brown. This earthy color adds a classic and timeless aesthetic to garden settings.


Terracotta is a porous material, meaning it allows air and moisture to pass through.

This property is beneficial for plants, as it helps regulate soil moisture and prevents waterlogging, which is crucial for succulents and other plants that prefer well-draining conditions.


The porous nature of terracotta allows the soil to “breathe,” promoting aeration and preventing the soil from becoming too compacted. This is especially important for the root health of plants.


Terracotta pots typically come with drainage holes at the bottom, ensuring that excess water can escape.

Proper drainage is essential for preventing water-related issues like root rot in plants.


While terracotta pots are sturdy, they are relatively lightweight compared to some alternative materials like concrete or ceramic.


Terracotta pots are available in various sizes and shapes, making them versatile for different types of plants and garden designs.

These pots are well-suited for a wide range of plants, including succulents, herbs, flowers, and more. However, it’s important to note that because terracotta is porous, it may require more frequent watering in certain climates or conditions.

 Additionally, terracotta pots can be more prone to cracking in freezing temperatures, so they may need extra care in cold climates. 

Overall, terracotta pots are a popular and practical choice for both indoor and outdoor gardening.

Different Types of Succulent Plant Pots 

Choosing the right type of pot for your plants, including succulents, depends on various factors.

Here’s a comparison between terracotta, ceramic, wooden, and plastic pots to help you make an informed decision:

Terracotta Pots:

  • Material: Made from fired clay, terracotta pots have a natural, earthy appearance.

  • Porosity: Terracotta is porous, allowing for good aeration and drainage. This is beneficial for plants like succulents that prefer well-draining soil.

  • Breathability: The porous nature also promotes air circulation, which is advantageous for root health.

  • Weight: Relatively lightweight but can be heavier than plastic pots.

Ceramic Pots:

  • Material: Ceramic pots are made from clay that is fired at high temperatures and glazed for a smooth finish.

  • Appearance: Available in a wide range of colors and styles, providing versatility for different aesthetics.

  • Porosity: Less porous compared to terracotta, but still allows for some breathability.

  • Weight: Heavier than both terracotta and plastic pots.

  • Drainage: Typically, ceramic pots have drainage holes, but some decorative varieties may not.

Plastic Pots:

  • Material: Lightweight and durable, plastic pots are made from various types of plastics.

  • Versatility: Available in numerous shapes, sizes, and colors, offering flexibility in design.

  • Porosity: Generally non-porous, so they retain moisture better. Some have drainage holes to prevent waterlogging.

  • Insulation: Provides better insulation against temperature extremes compared to terracotta or ceramic.
  • Weight: The lightest option among the three.

Wooden Pots:

  • Material: Crafted from various types of wood, wooden pots bring a natural and rustic aesthetic to your succulent arrangements.

  • Versatility: Wooden pots come in a variety of shapes and sizes, providing a versatile option for different plant styles and design preferences. They are available in different wood types, each contributing its unique charm.

  • Porosity: Wooden pots are porous, allowing air to reach the roots and promoting good aeration. This porosity is beneficial for succulents, aiding in the prevention of overwatering and promoting a healthy root system.

  • Insulation: Wooden pots offer some insulation for plant roots, but they may not provide as much insulation as plastic or fiberglass pots. Still, they provide a buffer against temperature extremes.

  • Weight: Wooden pots are generally moderate in weight, offering a balance between the sturdiness of ceramic or concrete and the lightweight nature of plastic.

Considerations for Succulents:

  • Watering Needs: Succulents prefer well-draining soil and are prone to root rot if overwatered. Terracotta and plastic pots with drainage holes are well-suited for succulents.

  • Aesthetic Preference: Consider the visual appeal of the pots in relation to your plant and the overall design of your space.

  • Climate: Terracotta may crack in freezing temperatures, while plastic and ceramic pots are more resistant to temperature extremes.

For succulents, terracotta pots are often recommended due to their porosity and breathability, promoting optimal soil conditions. However, plastic pots can also be suitable, especially for those who prefer lightweight options and want to retain moisture better. 

Ceramic pots are a good choice for those who prioritize aesthetics but should be selected with drainage in mind. Ultimately, the best choice depends on your specific preferences, care routine, and the needs of your plants.

Are Terracotta Pots Good for Succulents

Yes, terracotta pots are generally considered good for succulents. 

Here are some reasons why terracotta pots are a popular choice for growing succulents:


Terracotta is a porous material, allowing air and moisture to pass through the pot walls.

This porous nature helps in the aeration of the soil and prevents it from becoming too compacted, which is beneficial for the root health of succulents.


Terracotta pots typically come with drainage holes at the bottom. Proper drainage is crucial for succulents, as they are susceptible to root rot if their roots sit in waterlogged soil.

The drainage holes in terracotta pots allow excess water to escape, preventing water from accumulating at the bottom of the pot.

are-terracotta-pots-good-for-succulents-pin-1 A common question often asked about succulents is, "Are terracotta pots good for succulents?" If you, too, are searching for the answer to this question, we've got you covered.


The breathability of terracotta helps regulate soil moisture. This is particularly important for succulents, which prefer well-draining soil and can be sensitive to overwatering.


Terracotta pots are relatively lightweight, making them easy to move around.

This can be beneficial if you need to adjust the placement of your succulents to optimize sunlight or if you’re bringing them indoors during colder months.

Aesthetic Appeal: 

The warm, earthy color of terracotta pots adds a classic and natural look to succulent arrangements.

They are available in various shapes and sizes, allowing for creative and aesthetically pleasing displays.

While terracotta pots are a great option for succulents, it’s essential to keep in mind that they can dry out more quickly than other types of containers due to their porous nature.

This means you may need to water your succulents more frequently, especially in warmer or arid climates.

Additionally, be cautious in freezing temperatures, as terracotta can be susceptible to cracking when exposed to extreme cold.

Overall, terracotta pots can be an excellent choice for growing succulents, providing the right balance of porosity, drainage, and breathability that these plants require for optimal health.

Tips for Choosing the Right Terracotta Pot

When choosing terracotta succulent pots, it’s important to consider several factors to ensure the well-being of your plants. 

1. Size of the Pot:

Choose a pot that provides ample space for the succulent’s roots to grow. The right container should be slightly larger than the current size of the plant but not excessively big.

A good rule of thumb is to leave about an inch or two of space around the plant’s base.

2. Drainage Holes:

Ensure the terracotta pot has good drainage holes at the bottom. Succulents are susceptible to root rot if water accumulates in the soil.

Proper drainage is crucial, and terracotta’s porous nature complements this by allowing excess water to evaporate.

3. Breathability and Porosity:

Take advantage of terracotta’s breathability. The porous material allows air to reach the roots, promoting a healthy root system.

Such breathable materials are especially beneficial for succulents, which prefer well-draining soil.

4. Consider the Succulent’s Size:

For small succulents or baby succulents, choose a smaller-sized pot to avoid water retention and overwatering.

Larger succulents may require a bigger succulent planter to accommodate their growing roots.

5. Check for Cracks or Damage:

Inspect the terracotta pot for any cracks or damage. Cracks can compromise the structural integrity of the pot and affect its ability to hold soil and water properly.

6. Weight of the Pot:

Consider the weight of the pot, especially if you plan to move it frequently.

Terracotta pots are generally lighter than some other materials, but larger sizes can still become heavy.

7. Match the Aesthetics:

Choose a pot that complements the overall aesthetics of your succulent arrangement and your home or garden.

Terracotta’s warm, earthy color often works well with the natural tones of succulents.

8. Seasonal Considerations:

If you live in an area with extreme temperature variations, consider the seasonal needs of your succulents.

Terracotta may crack in freezing temperatures, so provide protection or move the pots indoors during cold spells.

Remember that the type of succulent, its growth habits, and your local climate all play a role in choosing the right terra cotta pots. 

By considering these factors, you can create an ideal environment for your succulents to thrive.

Care Instructions for Terracotta Pots

Caring for terracotta pots is relatively straightforward, and following a few essential care instructions will help ensure their longevity and optimal performance.

Here’s a guide on how to care for your terracotta pots:

1. Initial Preparation:

Before using a new terracotta pot, soak it in water for a few hours or overnight. This helps to saturate the clay and reduce its ability to absorb water from the soil.

2. Planting Mix:

Use a well-draining planting mix suitable for your specific plants. For succulents, mix potting soil with perlite or sand to enhance drainage.

3. Drainage Holes:

Ensure that the terracotta pot has proper drainage holes at the bottom. If it doesn’t, consider drilling holes using a regular drill bit to prevent waterlogging.

4. Watering:

Terracotta pots are porous and can dry out more quickly than other materials. Monitor the moisture levels in the soil and water when the top inch of the soil feels dry.

Water thoroughly until water starts to drain from the bottom. Allow excess water to escape to prevent waterlogged soil and root rot.

During hot or dry periods, you may need to water more frequently.

5. Protecting in Cold Weather:

Terracotta can be susceptible to cracking in freezing temperatures. If you live in a cold climate, consider moving terracotta pots indoors or to a sheltered area during winter.

6. Fertilizing:

Terracotta pots may leach nutrients more quickly than other materials. Regularly fertilize your plants during the growing season, following the recommended guidelines for your specific plants.

7. Cleaning:

Clean terracotta pots at the end of each growing season to remove salt deposits, mineral stains, and any algae or mold.

Scrub the walls of the pot with a brush and mild detergent, then rinse thoroughly.

8. Storage:

If you’re not using the pots during the winter or for an extended period, store them in a dry area to prevent cracking.

9. Avoiding Rapid Temperature Changes:

Terracotta pots can crack if exposed to rapid temperature changes. Try to avoid placing hot pots in cold water or vice versa.

10. Repotting:

Over time, the porous nature of terracotta can cause salts and minerals to accumulate on the outside of the pot.

If the pots become discolored or develop a white crust, repot your plants into fresh soil and clean the pots as needed.

By following these care instructions, you can maintain the health of your plants and extend the life of your terracotta pots.

Proper care ensures that the pots continue to provide an ideal environment for your succulents and other plants.

Conclusion: Are Terracotta Pots Good for Succulents

When it comes to selecting the perfect pot for your succulents, terracotta pots emerge as the best option.

Their breathable and porous nature, combined with proper drainage, makes them an ideal choice for succulent growers.

Before you go, here are more posts you’ll enjoy:

55 Best Red Succulents

45 Types of Jade Succulents

The Spiritual Meaning of Succulents

are-terracotta-pots-good-for-succulents-pin-1 A common question often asked about succulents is, "Are terracotta pots good for succulents?" If you, too, are searching for the answer to this question, we've got you covered.

Are Terracotta Pots Good for Succulents