Common Jade Plant Problems | Causes and Solutions

Last Updated: April 9, 2022

Jade Plants are often believed to bring you luck, but one thing that is never lucky is noticing that your plant has started to develop some problems. Whether it’s yellowing on the leaves, or the entire plant drooping, it’s important to treat any problem as soon as you spot it as this will give you the best chance at reviving your Jade Plant and bringing it back to full health. 

In this post, we will cover the different factors that cause yellow Jade Plant leaves, a drooping plant or curling leaves. We have also written some more detailed guides on specific issues so take a look over those if you’re experiencing brown leaves or if your Jade Plant is losing leaves.

Causes of yellow Jade Plant leaves:

  1. Overwatering.

    A good rule to remember for most plants is that yellow leaves can often signify overwatering and it is our first port of call whenever diagnosing this issue. To figure out if overwatering is the reason your Jade Plant has yellow leaves, it’s important to check the moisture levels as if the soil is waterlogged, then there is a good chance the roots have started to rot. Trim away any rotten roots and replace soggy soil with fresh dry potting mix. To prevent more yellow leaves from being caused by overwatering adjust your watering schedule, either watering less frequently or cutting back on how much water you give your Jade Plant each time. 

  2. Pests.

    Although this is a rarer issue, pests are definitely more worrying and harder to treat. Give your plant a thorough check and if you do spot pests, treat your plant with neem oil daily for a week. We also recommend removing the worst affected leaves to try to control the problem.

  3. Sunburn.

    If the yellowing on your Jade Plant’s leaves is quite patchy, rather than single leaves turning a solid yellow colour, then it may be too much intense direct sunlight that has burnt the leaves. Jade Plants like areas with bright light, but there is such thing as too much sunlight, particularly during summer. Although the burnt yellow patches are irreversible, to stop the problem from progressing further, move your Jade Plant a metre or so further away from the window in warmer months to avoid any more leaf burn.

  4. Fertiliser.

    Too much fertiliser can very quickly cause scorched leaves and yellow patches, this is called fertiliser burn. Make sure you aren’t fertilising your Jade Plant during winter as your plant will be dormant. You also want to remove any fertiliser spikes and refresh the soil if you’ve mixed it in with pellets. Hold off fertilising for a good few months and make sure to use less than the recommended amount when you restart. 

  5. Natural ageing.

    Over time it is normal for your Jade Plant to lose some of its oldest leaves as it focuses on new bigger growth. These old leaves will first turn yellow before falling off the plant. As long as the rate of yellowing is slow and your Jade Plant is growing more leaves than are turning yellow, then this is nothing to be concerned about.

Why is my Jade Plant drooping?

  1. Root rot.

    This can be pretty damaging to your plant as Jade Plants have quite sensitive and delicate roots compared to a lot of bigger plants. This means even the occasional overwatering can lead to root rot and a drooping plant. Luckily, if you can’t spot any other issues with your plant, you have probably caught the issue early. Replace the potting mix with dry mix and trim away the rotten roots. 

  2. Lack of sunlight.

    Another cause of drooping Jade Plant leaves is a lack of sunlight. These plants need quite a bit of sunlight to really thrive and work well in brighter rooms. The best thing to do is move your Jade Plant to a spot in your home that gets bright but indirect light. Avoid anywhere too close to windows as your plant will struggle with intense direct sunlight. 

  3. Environmental stress.

    Drooping leaves after repotting, propagation or moving your plant to a new spot are totally normal. Usually, this shock is temporary and if the environment and care are right for your Jade Plant, it should bounce back in a week or two and stop drooping. Keep an eye on your Jade Plant after repotting to make sure that the signs do not continue for too long. 

Causes of curling leaves on a Jade Plant

  1. Cold temperatures.

    If you notice that the leaves on your Jade Plant have started to curl, then we would first recommend looking into any temperature fluctuations. Jade Plants need warmth to survive and if they are being exposed to cold airstreams this can severely impact their health. Curling leaves is often one of the earlier signs of temperature stress with Jade Plants so it’s important to act quickly to rectify the issue before it causes more permanent damage. Use a digital thermometer to check the area that your Jade Plant is in to ensure that it’s getting enough warmth. 

  2. Underwatering.

    If temperature isn’t the cause of the curling leaves on your Jade Plant, then you should also consider underwatering. Curling leaves are one way that plants can hold onto as much moisture as possible. Whilst they are succulent plants(meaning they deal well with dry soil), they do still need moisture to survive and can’t go weeks and weeks without a single drop of water. If you have recently forgotten to water your Jade Plant, then this is most likely the cause of the curling leaves. Water your plant a little bit once a day for 3 or 4 days to moisten the soil and then return to a more normal watering schedule. 

If you want to learn more about what care requirements you need for your plant, check out our Jade Plant care guide. 

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