Hanging or trailing succulents are a superb way to beautify your home or garden. The uses and crafts have endless possibilities. The shade lovers can be used on top of furniture, hung from the ceiling, planted in tall pots, in trees, hung from railings, planted in window boxes, wreath etc. etc.
There are dozens if not hundreds trailing succulents out there. Some suitable for indoors, some for outdoors. But which hanging succulents are rare?
These are our 10 favourite rare hanging/ trailing succulents
Xerosicyos Danguyi ‘Silver Dollar Vine’
Cleistocactus Colademononsis ‘Monkey’s Tail Cactus’
Ceropegia Woodii Variegata ‘Variegated Chain of Hearts’
Disocactus Flagelliformis ‘Rat Tail Cactus’
Selenicereus Anthonyanus ‘Fishbone Cactus’
Peperomia Prostrata ‘String of Turtles’
Senecio Rowleyanus Variegata ‘Variegated String of Pearls’
Ceropegia Sandersonii ‘Parachute Plant’
Let’s have a look at each one a little closer to see what is the best position and care.
This trailing succulent is very popular due it its coin like leaves that are meant to bring good luck and money. Because of its appearance it is also nicknamed ‘The Lucky Money Plant’, ‘Coin Plant’, ‘String of Coins’.
The unusual thing about Xerosicyos Danguyi is that it grows tendrils, just like peas. If grown against a structure, it will use these to attache itself and grow upwards. In a hanging basket or a tall pot it will start drooping and hanging down as the leaves are quite heavy.
Xerosicyod Danguyi is not a fast growing plant and can be difficult to propagate. But once it gets going, it is quite hardy and can shoot multiple branches every year.
This plant will like partly shaded position or filtered light. It can be grown in a very bright spot indoors, but will preform best outdoors. It does not mind being watered, though, we recommend letting the potting mix dry between watering. If its outdoors and getting rained on, it is highly unlikely it will rot.
Great for pots and garden. Xerosicyos Danguyi is not frost hardy and will need to be brought in when the frosts and snow set in.
We have an in-depth article on this plant here.
The Monkey’s Tail Cactus is a truly spectacular hanging plant and indeed looks like a monkey’s tail with its fine long hair. In the right conditions, individual ‘tails’ can reach couple of meters or more, depending on the size of the pot.
This plant is also quite hardy and will happily live in part shade or full but very bright shade as well as most day sun, though, take care not to expose to harsh afternoon sun during heatwaves. The Cleistocactus should survive even this but may get burns once the temperatures start climbing over 37C (98F).
The Monkey’s Tail is best enjoyed in hanging baskets or tall pots. To get lovely, long tails update the pot once a year, so the plant can grow.
Succulent potting mix should be used in pots. In gardens the plant will be happy with ordinary soil. Only grow the Monkey’s Tail in the ground if you live in a climate with no frosts or very mild frosts. If the temperature dips below the freezing point only a few times in winter a frost cloth can be used to protect the plant from freezing.
This cactus is not too bothered about the water either. It should not rot if left out in the rain. A good succulent potting mix that will also drain fast will ensure the water does not choke the roots.
A super popular plant due to its gorgeous heart shaped leaves that grow on long ‘strings’. The variegated hearts are cream, pink and green, though the colours can change based on the weather, seasons, sun exposure and roots space. Although this plant is becoming a bit more mainstream now, we’d still class it as rare due to the fact it is not easy to come by and quite expensive in many parts of the world.
Individual strings can grow to well over a couple of meters, if the roots have sufficient space and the plant is in a good spot.
The ideal position for Chain of Hearts is either filtered light or very bright shade. This plant will deal with being exposed to sun during the cooler months, but should be protected in summer when the sun’s rays can burn the foliage.
To get a lovely, full plant with lots of hearts and long strings, the pot should be upgraded on a yearly bases and new, fresh potting mix added. Succulent potting mix is best in pots. Chain of Hearts will also grow in ordinary soil, if planted in the garden. We have seen some amazing garden walls covered in hearts planted in the ground. Just like with all the plants on this list, Ceropegia Woodii Variegata is not frost hardy and should not be left exposed to frost.
The hearts do like to be watered, but the potting mix should be allowed to dry out between watering. We leave our hearts outdoors and they seem to cope fine even in heavy rain.
To read a more detailed account of how to care for this plant, click here.
While the nickname for this hanging cactus is a little unappealing, we can assure you that this plant is nothing but gorgeous, especially when it bursts out in flower. Just like with the Monkey Cactus above Disocactus Flagelliformis grows long stems that can reach a few meters if grown in a big enough pot or in the ground.
This is one hardy plant and we have it growing in all sort of spots. Our nursery plants are grown under 30% shade cloth, but we also have pots in full shade, under a tree and in an exposed, full sun position. During summer the pot in full sun did have a few burnt branches from harsh UV on very hot days, so we would recommend to protect plants either by moving into shade in summer or pitching a shade-cloth over when heatwaves are expected.
Again, succulent potting mix should be used for pots. In the ground ordinary soil will suffice. Disocactus Flagelliformis is not frost hardy and so should be protected during forsts/snow.
Our outdoor plants seem to deal well with water and so far we have not experienced rotting.
Dischidia Numularia is a beautiful plant that grows opposite leaves in the shape of coins. It is mostly a tropical plant and so will do best in a shaded position, ideally humid too.
This plant may prove a bit hard to care for as it is very specific in what it likes which is warm, humid, bright environment. We have one growing in a greenhouse which is quite humid, but our outdoor plants are not doing that well and really struggle in times of draught.
A sunny position indoors should be good, though the plant will need to be misted often. We found a bright bathroom window is also an excellent spot, but it has to be bright with a bit of sun coming through at some point during the day.
Dischidia Numularia is an epiphyte which means that in the wild it does not live in soil but mostly on hosts such as trees, or in rocks. It is, however, not parasitic and only uses its host as a place to grow, not to feed off it. Because in nature Dischidias grow in high humidity environment, they can survive this growing arrangement.
Outside their native environment make sure the potting mix is of good quality and drains well. The plant will need to be watered and misted often, but it is also important not to let it sit in soggy potting mix.
Selenicereus Anthonyanus is a strange looking succulent with stems that resemble a fishbone or a zig-zag. In a hnaging basket the ever-growing stems will droop and hang down. This will give a fantastic and unusual look to the garden or the verandah. It is possible to grow this weird but wonderful plant indoors, but a bright spot is a must.
The Fishbone Cactus is another epiphytic succulent and just like Numularia above likes humid and shaded environment.
We grow this plant in our nursery and find it is quite easy to grow even if not in a humid environment. As long as it gets watered regularly and is kept in a bright but shaded position, the Fishbone Cactus will thrive.
We use succulent potting mix and the plants grow well. In our opinion orchid mix (which is suggested by some other sites) may be a little too fast draining and keep the plant thirsty. If you are unsure both options can be tried, as in tropical areas with regular rain, the orchid mix may work well.
The Selenicereus Anthonyanus is not frost hardy and should be protected from frosts. It will put up with low temperatures, but as soon as they start dipping below freezing point, steps will need to be taken to keep it warm.
Peperomia Prostarta is prized for the round leaves with markings that look like, you guessed it, a turtle shell from the top. It is extremely cute, but also slightly difficult to keep alive at times and perhaps the reason why this little succulent is a bit more rare than then rest.
In the nursery, we found this plant does not do well during droughts outdoors and also likes to stay warm in winter. It grows best in a warm greenhouse or indoors in bright locations. Our indoor String of Turtles are thriving on the windowsill.
Peperomia Prostrata will prefer a succulent potting mix that is very well draining. A good quality indoor plant potting mix with some added perlite can be used as well.
This plant should be watered when the potting mix has dried up.
The regular String of Pearls is quite a common hanging succulent these days, though the variegated version is slightly rarer. White and green pattern on leaves and albino leaves add to the already gorgeous plant that is famous for its ball-shaped leaves on long strings.
Senecio Rowleyanus Variegata will grow best in a bright, filtered light position outdoors under a tree, on a verndah/balcony or indoors in an airy & super bright room.
The individual strings can grow meters long and gorgeously thick, if the pot is big enough to support all the growth.
Watering should be done when the potting mix has dried up. Our pearls live outdoors and do not seem to mind the rain, though we have heard accounts of pearl rotting if too wet. A good succulent potting mix that is light and airy should prevent the rot.
To get a nice full plant with long strings upgrade the pot yearly to give the roots extra growing space and fresh potting mix.
Ceropegia Sandersonii is closely related to Ceropegia Wodii and is prized for it’s bizarre flowers that look like a parachute or an umbrella. This plant is vine, but will hang nicely if kept in a tall pot or a hanging basket.
The leaves are green and waxy, growing opposite each other. The vine is quite a bit thicker than what you would see on Ceropegia Woodii and is dark green.
Ceropegia Sandersonii is an outstanding shade plant that will happily grow outdoors or in a bright spot indoors. If you live in a cold climate with regular frosts in winter, this plant will need to be brought inside as it is not frost hardy.
Succulent potting mix should be used in pots. In the ground, Sandersonii will grow in ordinary soil.
Just like with all the other succulents, water when the potting mix dries out and do not worry too much if this plant is left out in the rain.
Hoya Kerrii Variegata or the Heart Hoya is a trailing plant with cream and green variegated leaves in a shape of a heart. Plants are fairly slow growing, but can, in time, grow long vines if the pot they are in is big enough.
A huge bonus here are perfumed flower heads that are so typical of most hoyas.
Hoya Kerrii variegata will love it indoors, especially in humid rooms like the bathroom, though make sure it is also bright. This plant will not grow very well or flower in a dark room.
Hoyas will love a good quality succulent potting mix. Water when the mix is starting to dry out. A little misting will also be quite beneficial as Hoya Kerrii likes humidity.
Repot once a year so the plant keeps on growing.
You can share your favourite hanging plant with us in the comments below 🙂