Jade Succulent Plant Problems – Leaves Turning Yellow & Dropping Off?

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Even with the jade plant (Crassula ovata), sometimes called the “money plant,” problems do show up on this generally easy-to-grow succulent houseplant.

Let’s get one thing out of the way. Although, my preference is to always use the natural organic insecticide diatomaceous earth or neem organic insecticide oil, many people reach for the old standard – Malathion.

jade plant dropping leaves and other problems Pin

Malathion is very effective in controlling many houseplant pests like mealy bugs for example.

Even with the best Jade plant care, they can still get mealy bugs. But never use Malathion on jade or any of the Crassula plant family. They cannot handle it.

Some people control mealybugs by blasting them with water. This can break the plant and also water the plant more than it can tolerate.



For the homeowner… stay simple and safe. Fight mealybugs with alcohol on cotton swabs.

Related: Getting Rid Of Mealybugs on Jade Plants

Potted succulent plants, vivid & sunlit.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @_garden_ji

Succulent Jade Plants Not Flowering

Most people will never see a flower on their dwarf jade plant. Flowering is usually a matter of plant age. For plants to flower they are generally are 5-8 years old. Indoors most plants never bloom.

There are times when a young plant may flower, but that is not common.

Jade Plant Leaves Falling Off Or Dropping

There are several reasons you may find a leggy Jade plant dropping plant leaves.

Close-up of a healthy Crassula ovata plant.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @anndanger

Moving Succulent Jade Plants Inside and Outside

I’ve never been a fan of moving plants indoors for the winter and outdoors during the summer.

Often plants spending winter indoors develop a plant leaf which is soft and dark green due to the reduced lighting levels.

When the jade plant moves outdoors for the summer it often finds itself exposed to direct sunlight and leaf scorch happens.

Jade Tree With Leggy Growth

If you notice – Leaf drop, growth which is leggy, the usually succulent green leaf is underdeveloped and has little branching.

Potted succulent plant on a wooden stump.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @succulentsathome

Check to make sure the plant has adequate light, and if needed, supplement with additional lighting such as grow lights.

Jade Plant Crassula Yellowing In Mass

If you find your Jade plant losing leaves and the succulents leaves turning yellowing in mass, plus some rotting… this is usually caused by over-watering.

Reduce your watering. If the plant continues to decline. Remove the plant from the pot and check the root system. At the same time, check to make sure nothing is covering the drainage holes to prevent the soil mix from draining.

If the roots look healthy and are white – repot Jade plants in fresh clean cactus potting soil. Water sparingly.

If some of the roots are rotted. Remove the badly rotted roots and repot them in fresh clean cactus soil.

If all the roots are rotted, it’s time to try your hand at some jade plant propagation by starting new jade plants from cuttings or leaves.

Crassula plant in blue pot with pebbles.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @reikiuae5

NOTE: Do not use leaf shine products on jade plants. If you have – clean the leaves with a soft cloth and lukewarm water.

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Jade Plant Dropping Leaves

If you are asking yourself, “Why is my jade plant losing leaves?” First, look at…

If the plant begins to experience leaf drop on older leaves, and there is soft, leggy growth. This is usually due to the temperature being too warm.

The area where the plant needs more air movement and lower temperatures. This can be the case during winter months when the plant could be growing close to a heating source.

Diseases of Jade Plants

You will not find many jade plant diseases in the home. Most jade plant diseases and “ills” can be traced back to a few things – water and humidity.

Over-watering, causing root rot!

Excess water coupled with too high humidity results in the plant’s base and stems becoming soft and mushy.

Check the root system first – repot if needed. Remove infected areas and spray or paint the infected areas with a fungicide.

Symptoms and Conditions

If you notice a black mold coating on the leaves of your jade, it most likely is from too much humidity.

Using soapy water, “gently” wipe the mold away, place the plant in an area where it gets more light and less humidity.

Check the soil to see if the top potting mix in the pot has a white or gray covering. This is also mold resulting from too much fertilizer or improper watering.

Potted plant with sprouts on balcony.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @_share_a_thought_

Try to reduce the watering and fertilizing and gently remove the mold from the surface. This can usually be done by “scratching” the soil’s surface.

In general, jade plants are pretty carefree. When jade plant problems arise, look first at your watering schedule, then check the roots, then humidity, and finally, temperature.

Become a master of caring for your Jade plant, and you’ll enjoy it for many, many years.

If you’re looking for other easy care plants check out Crassula muscosa (zipper plant), the wax plant, ZZ plant, Sansevieria plant (mother-in-law tongue or snake plant) or cast-iron plant.

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