55 Types of Succulents & Cacti - Growing Tips and Photos
The succulent garden design is great for temperate, warm, but also cold locations. Succulents are usually very drought-tolerant as they have thick leaves that they use to store moisture. As they store water in their leaves, they can withstand a long time in the sun with very little water.
If you are a person who’s not at home very often either because of work or a busy life, succulents might be the right plants for you. They require very little attention and can last for a very long time. These plants are also great for adding vibrancy and structure to your home. Sometimes, you might not be able to have a garden outside. Thankfully, you can grow some of these succulents inside in containers with no problems.
Most succulents do very well in hot weather with full sun. But you’ll want to pay attention to how cold of temperatures they can tolerate.
Succulents You Can Grow Indoors
If you are interested in growing a succulent or cactus inside your house, here are some of the below species that you can choose from. Their temperature and light requirements make them ideal for decorating your indoor spaces.
- Panda plant
- Aloe Vera
- Jade Plant
- Burro’s Tail
- Flaming Katy
- And more recommendations for low light succulents
55 Types of Succulents
1. Acanthocalycium Thionanthum
This is a very variable taxon that has several forms. They have many flower colors and spine sizes.
2. Aloe Vera
This well-known plant originates from the Arabian Peninsula. It usually grows in tropical climates and is cultivated for medicinal and agricultural uses. Some people use it for decorative purposes and grow the plant indoors very successfully.
3. Armatocereus Godingianus
This is a tree-like cactus common to South America. Usually, it has white flowers with a specific spiny ovary and fruits. The name comes from the Latin word, “inchesarmatus,” which means “armed.”
4. Ariocarpus Iloydii
This cultivar has fewer tubes, but they are fat, rounded at the apex, and very broad. It is quite a large tubercle compared to other species.
This cultivar has fewer tubes, but they are fat, rounded at the apex, and very broad. It is quite a large tubercle compared to other species.
6. Bishop’s Cap
This plant has some different characteristics from similar plants of this type – the A. myriostigma. Five ribs bishop’s Cap plant looks like A. myriostigma. But it has different fruits, seeds, embryos, and flowers. The differences are permanent and constant, so you’ll be able to distinguish it easily.
7. Blue Barrel
This is a barrel-shaped cactus that has a medium size, green-blue skin, and is usually solitary. When the plant ages, it produces a couple of heads. It can form a large mound.
8. Shafer’s Opuntia
This is a cactus species that forms erect clumps. It is moderately branched. It can grow up to 30 centimeters or even more, and up to 15 centimeters in diameter.
9. Aylostera Narvaecensis
This is a small, clustering cactus. It branches at a low level to form mounds or groups that are up to 15 centimeters wide. It has softly spined stems and rose-pink flowers.
10. Ball Cactus
This cactus usually develops a depression on the crown. This might cause a distortion when it ages. It has pale yellow spines. You can also find wavy edged forms, but those are usually grafted.
11. Beaver Tail
This plant branches up to 30 centimeters, sometimes even 60 centimeters in clumps of height and up to 1.2 meters in diameter. It is also a small prickly pear.
12. Bird’s Nest, Nipple Cactus
This plant can have 10-50 branches. It is solitary at first, but it clusters at a very young age. It forms clusters that can be up to 15 centimeters in diameter.
13. Living Rock
This plant generally develops deep magenta flowers, but pink or white colors and sometimes multicolor flowers can grow.
14. Monk’s Hood
This is a spineless cactus plant. It is almost always solitary, but sometimes it has very few branches. A section of the body reveals a form of a perfectly shaped star.
15. Burro’s Tail
This is a plant with pretty long stems. It has beautiful and specific green-blue leaves with shining pink-red flowers in the summer.
16. Brain Cactus
This plant grows very low. It is a cactus with very acute and wavy ribs. They are pleated very densely together, which gives the plant a wrinkly look. It has 6-18 flattened spines.
17. Brazilian Prickly Pear
This is a perennial, tree-like cactus. It rises perfectly straight up to 40 feet high. It has short, mostly declining or horizontal branches.
18. Flaming Katy
This is a very common houseplant spread throughout Madagascar. It will grow the best if you have clay pots with holes at the bottom. It is a great table plant or desk centerpiece.
19. Bunny Cactus
Usually, this plant grows very low to the ground. It has a lot of branches and can sometimes grow up to 1 meter in height. The pads don’t have any spines but are covered with yellow glochids.
20. Button Cactus
This is a very tiny erect cactus that grows in small groups or is unbranched. It has a globe shape and a gray color. It is relatively rough.
This is a night-blooming species. It mainly branches near the base. It has a bell and tubular-shaped white flowers.
22. Strawberry Hedgehog
This is a highly variable species. It has yellow and dark purple spined forms.
This is a tree-like cactus that has a lot of compact branches. It can be up to 4 meters in diameter and up to 4 meters tall. Occasionally, it is grown in pots. It can survive only a few decades.
24. Carmine Cob
This is a small cactus species. It has very bright colored blooms. It is variable and has received a lot of names like most of the other Lobivias.
This is a cylindrical, solitary cactus. There are three subspecies recognized. They include the nominate, crassihamatus, and wrightii.
26. Dwarf Chin
This plant is a solitary and very small cactus with radial spines. It is a highly variable species. The polymorphism makes some people think that there are too many unnecessary varieties.
This plant is also called the Christmas cactus. It has many branches. It can be up to 30 centimeters tall and 45 centimeters in diameter. It has many colors of flowers ranging from pink to orange to white to yellow to multicolor.
28. Jade Plant
The Jade plant is also known as the Money Tree, Friendship Tree, and the Lucky plant. This is a very common houseplant across the whole world. It requires very little attention or water and can survive even the harshest conditions.
29. Panda Plant
Panda Plant is also known as a Chocolate Soldier and Pussy Ears. It is fairly small in size and has red rimes on the edges. It is very easy to grow this plant and can be grown indoors too.
30. Claret Cup Hedgehog
Generally speaking, this is a mounding cactus. It forms bulbous piles ranging from few to more than a hundred cylindrical to spherical stems. There are densely spiny plants but also plants with no spines at all.
This shrubby cactus has branching stems that crawl on the ground. They can be up to 1.5 meters tall and 6 meters wide. The spines are usually dark and short. The flowers have an emerald green color.
32. Mistletoe Cactus
This plant has very strong stems that are covered with tiny branches. At first, the plant grows straight, but later is branching free and independent. The main branches are cylindrical, woody, and elongated. They are up to 20 centimeters long and up to 2 millimeters in diameter.
33. Saguaro opuntia
This is another tree-like cactus. It has very glossy and dark green arms that can be up to 1.5 meters high. The pads are much longer than they are wide. They have only a small of amount of spines, if any at all.
34. Old Man Opuntia
This is usually very furry cactus. The plant forms branches both near the top and base of the stems The name refers to plants’ vestments.
35. Creeping Devil
This is one of the strangest cactuses you’ll find in nature. It has very strong stems. They can grow up to 3 meters high and up to 8 centimeters in diameter. As they creep, they take root, eventually covering a huge area. Sometimes, the plant will separate from the parent and leave it to die.
36. Adromischus Cristatus ‘Crinkle-Leaf Plant’
This plant features triangular-shaped thick leaves that are common among succulents, with crinkled outer edges that give the plant its common name. The foliage is pale green and covered in tiny hairs. This plant likes to be kept very dry, even more so than most succulents. Water it sparingly and allow it to completely dry out between waterings. It can be grown outside during summer in warm climates or grown all year round as a houseplant on a bright windowsill. For the best health, it should receive at least 4 hours of sun per day. It grows slowly but easily, making it ideal for beginners. It can produce small flowers atop long stems.
37. Adromischus Maculatus ‘Calico Hearts’
This plant has paddle-shaped foliage that which grows in clusters. The leaves are gray-green, with purple spotting on mature plants, and darker edges. It will react badly to overwatering and should be watered generously and then allowed to completely dry out before watering again. It thrives best indoors as it is sensitive to low temperatures. It can produce tubular-shaped flowers, though blooming when kept as a houseplant is a rarity.
38. Echeveria Runyonii ‘Topsy Turvy’/ Echeveria ‘Silver Spoons’
This succulent has long leaves that form a rosette shape. Each leaf rolls under itself along the lengths, while the tip is flicked back inward to point at the center of the rosette. The foliage is gray-blue with a waxy texture. This plant grows quickly in the right conditions, and in summer, it will send out long stems with star-shaped flowers adorning them. It frequently produces pups or offsets that can be divided for propagation.
39. Aloe Brevifolia ‘Short-Leaved Aloe’
This compact aloe plant is loved for its triangular leaves that grow to form broad rosettes. The plant easily produces offsets, which grow to look like a vast aloe blanket covering the ground. The foliage of the plant is pale blue-green, but the color transforms to a rose-salmon in the sunlight. Each leaf is lined with sharp white ‘teeth,’ adding further interest to the foliage. This plant grows best outdoors in warm, bright climates.
40. Aloe ‘Christmas Carol
This slow-growing aloe has festive appeal, with its red and green coloring and rosette habit that forms a star shape. The fleshy leaves are dark green and have a spiky red trim. The foliage also features red spots that have a raised surface. The plant grows well in rock gardens, and in summer, it can produce brightly colored flowers that can last for many months.
41. Aloe Black Doran ‘Doran Black’
This is a complex hybrid made up of several other aloe varieties and is often mistakenly referred to as ‘Dorian Black.’ It has dark green leaves with creamy colored dashes covering the surface, creating an instantly recognizable pattern. The edges of the foliage are spiked, and the plant grows low and slow, readily producing offshoots to form full containers.
42. Aloe Haworthioides ‘Haworthia-Leaved Aloe’
This aloe is named for its tiny white hairs that cover the green leaves, giving it a similar look to the haworthia plant. The foliage grows in small rosettes, from which tall stems grow to bear peach-orange flowers in summer. This aloe is especially tough, growing natively amongst rock and quartz.
43. Aloe Juvenna ‘Tiger Tooth Aloe’
This aloe grows on a tall, erect stem, with triangular pointed sturdy leaves densely packed around it. It looks as though lots of aloe rosettes have grown on top of one another to create an aloe stack, making it very visually interesting. Though it hails from Kenya, it is rarely found growing natively but is popular as a cultivated garden plant.
44. Beaucarnea Recurvata ‘Ponytail Palm’
This plant can survive periods of drought because it stores water in its swollen trunk. The trunk is at its thickest point at ground level, making it easy to see why it is also commonly known as ‘elephant trunk.’ It works well as a houseplant, growing incredibly slowly. In its natural environment, it can reach heights of 30 feet.
45. Cotyledon Tomentosa ‘Bear’s Paw’
This quirky succulent has swollen oval leaves covered in tiny hairs. The bright green leaves feature a row of red spikes that resemble claws, giving the plant its common name of ‘bear’s paw.’ The plant features star-shaped flowers in shades of peach, orange, and yellow.
46. Crassula Exilis Ssp. Schmidtii ‘Fairy Tongue’
This low-growing succulent forms mounds of dark green foliage with an abundance of dainty flowers blooming through fall and winter. It makes an excellent addition to containers or can be used in festive wreaths.
47. Crassula Falcata ‘Propeller Plant’
The gray-green long oval leaves of this plant grow at an angle to form the shape of airplane propellers, giving the plant its common name. Small, unusual flowers bloom from the top of this plant in scarlet red during summer.
48. Crassula Muscosa ‘Watch Chain’
Tiny green leaves grow along the upright stems of this succulent in an overlapping nature, forming a textured, stacked stem. It grows well in temperature climates or as a houseplant in bright areas with some shade.
49. Crassula ‘Tom Thumb’
This miniature succulent is a cute hybrid between Crassula rupestris subsp. rupestris and Crassula rupestris subsp. marnieriana. Erect stems are layered with chubby green leaves that become tinged with green in bright light. This plant grows quickly, and in the right conditions, will produce tiny white flowers.
50. Drosanthemum Speciosum ‘Red Ice Plant’
This shrublet features succulent foliage and blooms profusely with brightly colored flowers through spring and summer. The flowers close up during low light and open again in response to the sun. This plant is quite hardy and can survive outdoors all year long in temperate climates.
51. Euphoribia Milii ‘Crown-Of-Thorns’
This heavily branched plant features green oval leaves densely packed along thorny stems. It blooms all year round, though the ‘flowers’ are, in fact, technically bracts which resemble petals. It is most commonly grown as an ornamental houseplant, though be warned, it is highly toxic and poisonous to pets.
52. Senecio Serpens ‘Blue Chalksticks’
With upright blue-green cylindrical foliage, it’s not hard to see where this plant got its common name. It can be grown as a trailing plant but works best as ground cover, with nodes rooting to the ground as it grows.
53. Senecio Rowleyanus ‘String Of Pearls’
This popular houseplant has long stems and spherical leaves that resemble peas threaded along a string. The leaves store water, enabling the plant to survive drought. Unusually, this plant grows during winter and is dormant in summer.
54. Senecio Radicans ‘String of Bananas’
This succulent vine grows as trailing ground cover in its native habitat but is more commonly used as a hanging plant in homes and gardens. It features long stems from which glossy banana-shaped leaves dangle.
55. Senecio Barbertonicus ‘Succulent Bush Senecio’
This extremely drought-tolerant plant can grow quite large to form a succulent bush, covered in bright green fleshy foliage that is the shape of long thin cylinders and point up to the sky. It is named after the region of Barberton in South Africa, where it grows natively.
- Scott Calhoun – The Gardener’s Guide to Cactus The 100 Best Paddles, Barrels, Columns, and Globes (2012, Timber Press)
- William Harland, Sybil Harland – Growing Cacti & Succulents (Growing Series) (1993)
- Armatocereus Godingianus – Image courtesy of Castor
- Astrophytum caput-medusae – Image courtesy of Florentin Guitton
- Bishop’s Cap – Image courtesy of Petr Vodička
- Shafer’s Opuntia – Image courtesy of Cactus Jungle
- Aylostera Narvaecensis – Image courtesy of Sida
- Epithelantha micromeris – Image courtesy of Florentin Guitton
- Austrocephalocereus Dybowskii-Brasil – Image courtesy of someone10x
- myrtillocactus cohal – Image courtesy of Georges Jansoone
- Echinopsis Backebergii – Image courtesy of Paul Kaluschke
- Anstricocactus uncinatus – Image courtesy of Michael Wolf
- Cleistocactus smaragdiflorus – Image courtesy of Dick Culbert
- Cleistocactus smaragdiflorus – Image courtesy of Hectonichus
- Consolea falcata – Image courtesy of Peter A. Mansfeld
- Austrocylindropuntia vestita fruits – Image courtesy of Michael Wolf
- Stenocereus eruca – Image courtesy of Pamla J. Eisenberg
- Aloe Black Doran ‘Doran Black’ – Image courtesy of LynnK827