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How Often To Water Elephant Bush? Watering Tips!

Elephant bush is a type of succulent plant that gets its name from its thick, grey leaves that look a bit like an elephant’s skin. Pretty cool, right?

What Is An Elephant Bush?

The elephant bush (Portulacaria afra) is a small succulent shrub that is native to South Africa. It is a member of the pigweed family and can grow up to 6 feet tall. The leaves, which are both thick and fleshy, are arranged in a rosette shape. 

The elephant bush is known for its unique grey-green color, which makes it stand out from other succulents.

You need to know that elephant bushes are succulents, which means they store water in their leaves. This makes elephant bushes less dependent on frequent watering. 

In fact, if you water them too much, they can actually get sick and die. So, it’s important to be careful not to over-water your elephant bush.

How Often Should You Water An Elephant Bush?

Here’s a quick guide to help you figure out when to water your elephant bush:

  • During the summer months (when it’s hot outside), you should water your elephant bush once a week.
  • During the spring and fall, you can water your elephant bush every two weeks.
  • During the winter (when it’s cold outside), you can water your elephant bush once a month.

Of course, these are just general guidelines. The key is to pay attention to your plant and to the soil. If the soil is dry to the touch, it’s time to water your elephant bush.

Pro Tip:

Be careful not to over-water or over-fertilize your elephant bush. These plants are tough, but they can still get root rot if they’re sitting in water for too long.

Other watering tips

  • It’s best to water your elephant bush in the morning or evening, when the temperature is cooler. This will help prevent the water from evaporating too quickly.
  • Make sure to use a pot with drainage holes so that the water doesn’t sit in the bottom of the pot and make the roots too wet.
  • Never let the soil dry out completely. Elephant bush prefers moist soil.


For example, let’s say it’s summer and you just got back from vacation. Before you left, you watered your elephant bush a week ago. 

Now you’re back, you should check the soil. If it’s dry, then it’s time to water it. If it’s still moist, then you can wait another week before watering it again.

Care and Maintenance of Elephant Bush!

The elephant bush is a low maintenance plant that is perfect for beginners and prefers well-draining soil and does not like to be overwatered. In fact, it is best to let the soil dry out completely before watering again. 

The elephant bush can tolerate a wide range of temperatures and can be grown indoors or outdoors. It can handle full sun to partial shade, but it does best in bright, indirect light.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the basics:


Elephant bushes need to be watered about once a week, or when the soil is dry to the touch. Be sure to use well-draining soil and a pot with drainage holes to prevent water from sitting in the bottom of the pot.


Elephant bushes can tolerate low light, but they prefer bright, indirect light. A south-facing window is ideal.


Elephant bushes can tolerate temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.


Use a well-draining cactus or succulent soil mix.


Elephant bushes don’t need to be fertilized often, but you can give them a light dose of cactus or succulent fertilizer once a month during the growing season (spring and summer).

Uses of Elephant Bush

As a houseplant

Elephant bushes make great houseplants because they’re easy to care for and they look great. They can be grown in small pots, or in large pots for a bold statement.

In landscaping

Elephant bushes can be used in landscaping as a groundcover, or as a small shrub. They’re great for rock gardens, or for adding a touch of green to a hot, dry area.

As Bonsai

Elephant bushes are a popular bonsai plant, and they can be trained to look like tiny trees.

As miniature forest

Elephant bushes can also be used to create a miniature forest. Plant several of them together in a large pot, and you’ll have a tiny forest that you can keep on your windowsill.

Some Cool Facts About Elephant Bush!

  • Did you know that the elephant bush gets its name from its thick, grey trunk that looks a lot like an elephant’s?
  • Despite its name, the elephant bush is actually a succulent, not a bush. So technically, it’s more of an “elephant succulent” than an “elephant bush.”
  • The elephant bush is a popular plant among bonsai enthusiasts because of its unique shape and texture.
  • The elephant bush is a great plant for forgetful gardeners, as it can go weeks without water and still thrive.  
  • In some cultures, the elephant bush is believed to bring good luck and prosperity. So, if you’re looking to get rich, you might want to consider adding an elephant bush to your collection of houseplants.

Final Thoughts on Watering Elephant Bush!

The elephant bush is a unique and interesting plant that is sure to make a statement in any collection. With its thick, grey-green leaves and low maintenance needs, it is the perfect choice for those who want to add some excitement to their houseplants. 

And watering your elephant bush is all about paying attention to the plant and the soil. How often do you water your elephant bush? Let me know.

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