How Can I Save My Aloe Plant That is Turning Brown?

Last Updated on November 11, 2022 by Stephanie

The plants of Aloe turn brown due to the soil is damp around the roots because of excessive watering or inadequate drainage. Aloe plants are drought-resistant plants and require the soil to dry out between watering sessions. When the soil becomes damp, the leaves of aloe turn brown and become soft.

The most common reason for the aloe plant becoming brown

  1. Too often, watering can cause root decay (Aloe plants require the soil to dry out between every watering).
  2. Potting soil is prone to retaining excessive moisture, which causes root rot (Aloe plants require specially-formulated succulent and cacti soil that recreates the well-draining soil conditions that the native aloe habitat).
  3. Aloe plants that are planted in pots that do not have drain holes at the bottom (Decorative outside pots, saucers and trays create excessive water to collect around the roots of the aloe and cause root decay.
  4. The aloe plant has burned reddish brown because of sunburn (moving aloes from shade to full sun , without enough time to allow the aloes to adapt to the increased intensity of light causes scorched brown leaves).
  5. The leaves of aloe plants become brown and crisp at the base when the plant grows (this is typical for aloe plants , but it could also be caused by an underwatering incident or lack of enough sunlight).
  6. Aloe plants become brown and soft upon repotting because of root rot that is caused by potting soil that holds too much moisture (Normal pots hold too many gallons of moisture for plants like aloe to bear or isnt equipped with drainage holes at the base).
  7. The tips of the leaves of Aloe plants change color due to a abrupt change in the weather (A abrupt increase of the intensity of light or temperature, or a decrease in humidity causes the tips of the leaves to darken, and submersion can also be an element).
  8. The effects of watering aloe plants can cause them to become brown and thin. The aloe plant needs their soils to dry out between every watering, and should be watered with a thorough soak to ensure that the water gets to the roots at the point it is needed, or leaves become pale and brown (a indication of stress due to drought).

To keep aloe plants from becoming brown, recreate the conditions in the native habitat by reducing the frequency with which you water them, and allowing the soil in your potting pot to dry out between every watering session placing the aloe in six hours of sunlight in the morning and making sure that the aloe is placed in a pot that has drainage holes at the base.

The high temperatures may also contribute to the aloe plant turning brown, especially if temperatures are higher than the normal temperature range of 55degF to 80degF (13degC-27degC) for a prolonged period of time.

Continue reading to find out the reason why your aloe is turning brown, and what you can do to apply the correct solutions to keep your aloe plant from becoming brown…

Aloe Leaves Turning Brown and Soft (Overwatering)

  • Symptoms. The plant of aloe is turning brown and has soft, mushy texture.
  • Causes. Pots that are overwatered, the soil in them retains excessive water, pots with no drainage holes in their bases and saucers and trays which result in water accumulating around the bottom of the container.

The most frequent reason why aloe plants turn brown is due to root rot caused by overwatering and inadequate drainage. Aloe plants have evolved to withstand drought require the soil to dry between every watering. If the soil remains wet, the plant will develop root rot, which transforms the leaves into soft and brown.

Aloe plants are drought-resistant and are specifically adapted for growing in a sandy well-draining soils with frequent rainfall and hot temperatures in their native regions in Africa as well as in the Arabian Peninsula.

To cultivate an aloe plant effectively and prevent it from becoming brown and mushy, with an look of drooping, it is essential to replicate the conditions that grow in the aloes natural habitat, by planting the aloe in a well-drained, grity soil, and allowing the soil to dry out between watering sessions.

(Read my article on the the best potting plant soil).

The aloe plants have adaptable to desert conditions and are prone to suffering in moist soil, watering them frequently or putting them in regular pots (which retains excessive water) are the main causes of aloe plants becoming soft and brown.

Potting soil may also be damp because of a lack of drainage holes in the soil base that causes water to collect over the root of the aloe plant.

If you dont empty containers and saucers beneath the aloe plants container the water will collect around the bottom of the pot, which hinders the soil in the potting pot from drying out and creates conditions for rot. This makes the plant soft and brown.

aloe in blue light

How to save an Aloe Plant which is turning Brown and soft

  • Reduce the amount of watering. If youre watering your aloe plants more than every week, youre overwatering, and this can result in the plant becoming soft and brown. To mimic the normal aloes watering pattern in its natural environment, let the soil in the pot to dry out between every watering session. Typically , this means that you water every 14 days, however this could vary based on the climate and the dimensions of the pot as well as the type of soil used for potting.
  • Repot the plant using the pot soil. Even you are able to keep your aloe plant hydrated at the correct frequency, it could become mushy and brown if the soil holds water over the root for too long. Repot the aloe using specially designed, well-draining soil that mimics the soil conditions that are typical of the aloes natural habitat. A well-drained soil is the primary element in reducing the chance of aloe plants becoming soft and brown.
  • Aloe plants can be planted in pots that have drainage holes at the base. Aloe plants can be grown in any pot , as they have drain holes at the bottom, and the pots size is in proportion in size to that of the plant. A good drainage is vital because the soil used for potting must dry between waterings, in order to avoid the aloe turning brown.
  • Aloe plants in pots are proportional in size to that of the plant. The bigger the pot, the greater the amount of soil, and more capacity for conserving moisture, which results in that the aloe to become soft and brown. Aloe plants should be planted in a pot that is about 1.5 inches more space on either side of the aloe, if your plant is beginning to turn brown. This will help the soil dry faster, preventing root rot as well as soft, brown aloe plants. (Read my article on the best pots for the aloe plant).

To determine how often you should water your aloe plants, check the soil in the base of the pot by the drainage holes at the base. If the soil is damp and spongy, you can put off watering for a few days. If the soil is dry, then its the ideal moment to apply water.

The frequency of watering mimics the rain that is followed by the drought cycle of irrigation in the aloe plants native habitat, to prevent root decay.

(Read my article on the best way to water Aloe Vera to find out how often you should water aloe plants in different seasons of the year.

I want to emphasize that it is important to empty saucers and tray before water accumulates at the base of your aloe pot , preventing it from draining effectively.

After youve allowed the soil of your aloe to completely dry and reduce your frequency for watering you can replace your soil, and then repotted the aloe. The aloe will have the chance of reviving with the brown color fading in the coming months.

If the area soft brown, mushy area of the aloe grows in size, it is essential to cut the individual portion of the aloe back to its healthy growth using a sharp, sterilized pruners.

The removal of the brown, soft rotting part of the aloe stops it from spreading to other areas.

The wound that is left will callus and heal over the next few days and the plant will start to heal. Aloe plants are stronger than they are acknowledged to be and removing rotting areas from the plants is usually the most effective way to increase the chances of reviving your plant.

Aloe plants that have serious roots decay…

If the plant of aloe is becoming more soft, brown and mushy, another choice (which could be used in conjunction with cutting off the brown, mushy areas from the plant) is to cut the cuttings from healthy tissue to propagate.

Aloe plants are easily propagated by cuttings of leaves (succulents are often propagated from leaves and offsets within their natural habitat to create an entirely new plant) that can be inexpensive, simple and enjoyable way to preserve your plants of aloe, especially when you notice that the soft brown rot seems to be a serious issue and is spreading.

Check out this YouTube tutorial to learn how you can easily propagate aloe plants using cuttings and produce plenty of additional plants for no cost (as long you propagate from left-over healthy tissues):

Aloe Plant Turning Brown at the Base

  • Symptoms. Leaves at the base of the plant becoming brown and crisp.
  • Causes. As part of the life cycle of aloe plantsis the lack of water or lack or sun can cause leaves becoming brown at the base.

The reason that aloe leaves are becoming brown at the base is that the leaves naturally become crispy and brown as the plant grows. The aloe diverts energy from supporting older, lower leaves to encourage new growth higher up on the plant, which causes leaf leaves near the bottom to become brown and dry out.

It is a natural aspect of the aloe plants life cycle , as the plant gets bigger.

The older leaves of the base of the aloe are often shaded out when the plant gets bigger, which means that they will have less light available to photosynthesize and, consequently, cost the plant more energy than it is responsible for.

Lower leaves on the plant typically turn brown and crisp and then fall off or be removed gently away from the plant.

If the leaves of brown do not resist I would suggest letting it rest for a couple of weeks, rather than using force that could cause damage to the plant.

If the plant of aloe is growing leggy (growing extremely large as well as spinning) as well as its leafy leaves near the bottom have begun to turn to brown as they die, it is because the plant does not get enough sunlight.

Aloe plants generally require about six hours of direct sunlight every day. In areas with shade, the plant sheds its lower leaves and encourages growth in search of more light, resulting in an appearance of leggy.

The presence of water can be an important factor.

Although aloe plants are designed to withstand dry conditions, they require a good soak to ensure that the excess water drips from the bottom in the container (to ensure that the water gets to the roots) when its time to soak them in water.

If you water your plants too light, just the upper inch or two of soil gets moistened and the water doesnt get to the roots of the aloe which results in dry, brown leaves.

How to Save Aloe Plants from brown Leaves in the base

  • If you notice that the aloe has crisp, brown leaves at the bottom of the plant then theres nothing to worry about. As the plant grows and matures, the lower leaves become crisp and brown. Simply gently take off the crispy brown leaves that are at the base of the plant, but dont force them off, as this could damage the aloe in a way that isnt needed.
  • If your aloe is sagging with leaves that are turning brown , it requires more sunlight. Move your plant to a more sunny spot over the course of two weeks. Aloe plants require time to adjust to higher intensity sunlight (otherwise they could burn) therefore move the plant to a sunny location for about 20 to 30 minutes more every day. After about two weeks, the aloe will have adjusted to the brighter spot without burning. If the aloe appears to be limp, you may want to take cuttings to propagate the plant since it reproduces quickly.
  • Always give your aloe plants an ample soak. By watering the aloe thoroughly, ensuring that the excess water drips off the bottom of the pot, will ensure that the soil in the pot is evenly moist and that the water has soaked into the soil. This helps prevent the stress of drought which can cause dry, crispy leaves. Make sure to water the soil well when it appears dry at the bottom of the container. Check the soil through the drainage hole at the bottom of the pot to determine the dryness of the soil and then give it a good watering.

Aloe Plant Turning Brown (Sun Burn)

  • Symptoms. The leaves turn a scorched brown/yellow/reddish without the aloe becoming soft and soft.
  • Causes. Aloe plants are prone to scorching when exposed to intense sunlight during Summer. Moving aloe plants from shade to full sun , without getting the plant acclimated could result in leaves turning brown because of sunburn.

The reason why aloe plants are becoming brown could be due to of sunburn. Aloe plants are tolerant of full sun, however they can become brown and scorched when the aloe is suddenly moved from a cool and shaded location to an area with full sun , without having the chance to adjust to the higher brightness.

The majority of aloe plants which are grown for use in the home (such such as Aloe vera) are not accustomed to dry, hot and sunny regions of Africa as well as in the Arabian Peninsula and thrive in warm, sunny conditions.

Aloe plants generally require at least six hours of sunshine each day to be at their fullest.

But if you reside in a region that receives particular high levels of sun (such like Arizona) then six hours of sun in the morning and afternoon shade is the best way to avoid sunburnt, dark brown algae.

Aloe plants are extremely adaptable and can adjust to different lighting conditions in indoors even when its less than their ideal level of light.

But if the plant is relocated to a more sunny area or moved in the summer months from a shaded location to a bright, direct light all day long, the plant may turn to a dark reddish brown because of the abrupt change in the intensity of light.

Aloe plants are benefited by more gentle exposure to sunlight in order to avoid being scorched brown, so they can adjust to the increased brightness of light.

How To Save a Aloe Turning Brown due to Sun Burn

After the aloe is burned brown, it will not revert to its original form.

There are some good methods to know to stop further damage, as well as ways to enhance how the look of aloe.

  • Always place aloe plants in full sunlight through gradual exposure to greater direct light over two weeks. The aloe should be moved into the sun for 20 minutes more every day for a period of two weeks , to allow the aloe time to adjust to the increased levels of light intensity. After the aloe has acclimatized to more sunlight the potting soil could also dry out faster therefore make sure you examine the soil to determine the dryness and then give the potting soil an adequate soak after the soil is dry.
  • If the aloe is turning brown due to sunburn relocate it to a place that has morning sunlight followed by shade in the afternoon to protect. Dont deprive the aloe completely of sunlight because this could cause issues. The morning sun is less intense and temperatures are less which can help revive the aloe.
  • Aloe plants with brown color which have been burned do not look like they have recovered, but the plant will continue to live. While the aloe isnt necessarily at risk however, the sunburned section or leaf could dry out and then fall off because it is unable to longer produce photosynthetic energy. Cut off any areas of the aloe that seem dry, and then return to healthy growth that can aid in stimulating growth.

When the bulk of your aloe plant is showing evidence of sunburn to a certain extent, I suggest removing this plant to rest for some while to observe if new growth is emerging. Then, trim any areas of the plant that arent recovering with an sterile, sharp pair of pruning tools, returning to healthy, undamaged growth or the base, or any other place that is feasible.

If you can, cut a piece from the remaining healthy tissue to grow in the event that the entire plant is not preserved…

Aloe Turning Brown After Repotting

  • Symptoms. The leaves of aloe turn to brown, soft and.
  • Causes. Root rot is caused by the repotting of aloe in soil that holds excessive water, pots with no drain holes at the bottom, or water getting into at the bottom of the container.

The reason that aloe plants are becoming brown after repotted is usually because they have been placed in soil that holds excessive moisture. Aloe plants are drought-resistant and require the soil to dry between waterings. The soil that is left wet for too long can result in root rot, which results in soft and brown aloe leaves.

Aloe plants thrive naturally in well-drained, gravelly soils , which are especially porous and dont retain much moisture even with frequent rainfall.

Aloe plants need the pot soil to dry between watering sessions.

One of the most common problems when planting aloe plants is using ordinary pot soil (rather than using specially designed succulent and Cacti soil) because it remains wet for too long for the plant to withstand.

This creates conditions for root rot, which causes the plant to soften and turn brown.

Another reason why the aloe plant turning brown upon repotted is because of the new pot, lacking drainage holes at their base , which results in water pooling around the roots, which causes root decay.

Aloe plants can be adapted for being able to thrive in soil that drains well conditions. They do not like constantly damp soil.

The trays and saucers that are placed under aloe pots may create a pool of water at the base of pot, which can result in the aloe turning soft and brown.

How to Revive an Aloe Plant Turning Brown After Repotting

  • Reduce the amount of watering. Aloe plants need that the soil dry out between watering sessions and any extra water will only exacerbate the issue. After replacing the soil in the potting area withsucculent and cacti soils allow the soil to fully dry before watering it again.
  • Repot the aloe usingsucculent and cacti potting. A specially formulated succulent and cacti soils are designed specifically for succulents like aloe plants. The specially designed soil replicates the soil conditions of aloe plants native habitat with excellent drainage and holds less moisture than ordinary soil for potting.
  • Repot the aloe in an aloe pot that has drainage holes at the base. Aloe plants must be placed in a pot proportional to the size of the aloe (very large pots have more soil and may hold too many moisture levels for plants that need aloe). Terracotta and unglazed ceramic pots are porous, which permits that the soil dry out more evenly. Drainage holes at the base and sides of the container are vital to let water flow freely and prevent root decay.
  • Clean out trays and saucers of water frequently. When you notice any pooling of water around the bottom of the pot in a tray or saucer, take it out and empty it to allow water to be drained from the pot and soil will dry in a timely manner between watering sessions.

The time it takes for the aloe to repopulate is contingent on how long it was stressed because of too much water. However, you will begin to notice improvements over the next few weeks.

After it has given the soil the chance to dry out and the aloe has been placed in the correct soil and the brown mushy portion will shrink in size, and the aloe should regenerate.

When the black, sticky portion of the aloe grows in size, then you can cut the affected area with an sterile, sharp pair of pruning tools, and then revert to the healthy growth, or back to the bottom of the plant in order to stop the rot from spreading further.

The wound will heal within a couple of days, and the aloe should begin to heal.

Take cuttings of leaves or stems to propagate from healthy tissue. this is an excellent method to save an aloe plant in the event that it is severely affected by water stress and is not getting better.

Aloe Plant with Leaf Tips turning brown

  • Symptoms. The tips of the leaves of aloe plants turn brown and crisp. Sometimes, the tips of the leaves change color and turn brown.
  • Causes. Temperature increase, reduction in humidity, an increase in light intensity, and submerging.

The reason that the aloe plants leaf tips becoming brown is typically due to a sudden rise in temperatures and sunlight, as well as a reduction in humidity, and submerging. Aloe plants can withstand extreme temperatures, sunshine and low humidity, but its when the conditions change abruptly that cause the tips of the leaves to change color.

Aloe plants can be adapted for being able to survive in hot, dry and dry conditions, which is why they typically thrive in homes , which are typically characterized by high temperatures and low humidity because of central heating.

Aloe plants are able to adjust to the environment they live in, even when the conditions are not ideal, with less sunlight as well as some humidity, and temperatures that are not within the normal range for an aloe tree.

The brown tips of aloe plants result from an abrupt change in the weather that can cause the aloe plant to lose more water from the leaves (transpiration) than they normally used to.

Its usually a result of sudden increases in temperature, intense sunlight and low humidity which cause the tips of the leaves to turn brown, that can be further aggravated by submerging.

This is usually the case when the aloe plant is relocated outdoors during the summer or the plant was relocated to a different part of the home that is surrounded by sunlight or near heating in the indoor space, which could draw moisture out of in the atmosphere and cause drying of the soil quickly.

A sudden heat wave could also be the reason for the tips of leaves becoming brown.

Aloe plants can withstand the conditions of dry and hot conditions, but they typically require time to adjust to a new climate instead of a sudden and radical shift.

Insufficiently watering or not watering enough could cause aloe leaves to become pale and dark.

The leaves thin because the aloe is drawing moisture reserves, which are stored in the succulent leaves with the brown tips of the leaves signifying the stress of drought. (Read my article on on how you can determine whether your aloe has been drowned or overwatered).

The good news is that aloe plants are often able to recover from the brown leaf tips after they have been able to adjust however there are best practices and strategies to keep in mind…

How to revive an Aloe Plant using a Brown Leaf Tips

  • Give the aloe a good soak. If your aloe plant has leaves that are brown It is usually due to higher temperatures, more sunshine and less humidity, all of which increase the plants need for water, so you might need to water your aloe more frequently. Give the plants an extensive soak so that the excess water dribbles off the bottom in the container. This will ensure that the water is reaching the roots where it is needed. Verify that the soil is drying by feeling the soil with drainage holes in the soil at the base. If the soil remains damp, wait to water (to prevent root rot). If the soil is dry, give the aloe a good irrigation.
  • Gradually expose the aloe the suns intense light. Transfer the aloe to a sunny spot for an additional 20 minutes each day for approximately 2 weeks to allow the aloe adapt to increased brightness. This stops the aloe from burning and reduces stress that causes the leaves becoming brown.
  • In sunny climates you can find aloe plants during six hours of sun in the morning and afternoon shade. So, the aloe will benefit from the sun while the temperatures cool without having to endure the higher temperatures in midday and in the afternoon.
  • Remove the aloe from sources of indoor heat to prevent the brown tips. The indoor heat reduces humidity and may cause soil to dry too quickly, which could lead to the tips of the aloe plant becoming brown.

Should I Cut the Brown Leaf Tips off my Aloe Plant?

In general dont cut the tips of the brown leaves off the aloe plant. The tips of the brown leaves result from an abrupt change in the environment like temperature and light. After the aloe adjusts to the changing conditions, its brown tips usually bring back the green look of their leaves.

After you have dealt with any issues or negative conditions of the aloes surroundings The tips of the leaves often change color of themselves, without the need to take them off.

If the weather is favorable, it will take several weeks for the tips of the leaves to regain their form. It is worth noting that the brown tips of leaf tips heal faster in the case of aloe growing vigorously and more slowly when the aloe is in dormancy (due to the low levels of light in winter).

The aloe plants dormancy may also be observed in summer when temperatures are extremely high, and the aloe is often unable to grow in order to save water.

The process of cutting back the brown edges of your aloe plant using a sharp, sterilized pruning tools does not necessarily cause harm to the plant, and could be a method to enhance the appearance of your aloe plant quickly.

If the tips of your leaves are soft and brown, it is typically caused by overwatering, in which case take the leaf off and restore it to its healthy growth using an abrasive, sterilized pair of pruning tools.

(To find out more about the ways to save aloe plants, check out this the article what is the reason my plant dying of aloe?)

Key Takeaways:

  • Aloe plants become brown and soft due to root rot caused by excessive watering and poor drainage. Aloe plants require the soil to dry between outing of watering. Soil that is constantly over-watered, creates conditions for fungal and root rot. disease that makes the aloe leaves brown and have an amorphous texture.
  • Aloe plants may turn brown because of intense light. Aloe plants are often able to thrive in full sun but they require time to adjust to an increase in the intensity of light. If an aloe plant is relocated from partial sunlight to full sun, without having enough time to adjust the leaves of the plant, they could burn to a dark red.
  • The leaves of Aloe turn brown and crisp at the base as the plant grows. This is normal and doesnt mean that it is a sign that the plant has died. Sometimes, the leaves at the base may be brown due to the underwatering or a lack of sunlight.
  • The reason that aloe plants turn brown upon repotting is typically due to the fact that the aloe has been repotted in potting soil that retains too much moisture for the aloe is unable to handle. Aloe plants need that the soil dry out between waterings. If the soil in the potting area remains wet, the aloe plant leaves will turn brown and soft because of root decay.
  • The reason that aloe plant leaves change color at the tips is due to an abrupt change in temperature, light, humidity, or because of submerging. When aloe plants are brought to full sun or the temperature abruptly rises or the humidity drops dramatically, the aloe leaf tips will turn brown due to the abrupt change in weather conditions. The inability to water can cause the tips of aloe leaves to turn brown.
  • If you want to save an aloe that has soft, brown leaves, make use of sterile pruners to trim the damaged leaf back to a healthy growth to stop the brown decay from spreading. Reduce the amount of watering and let the soil dry between each round of watering, to increase chances of the aloe coming back.


Went from an inexperienced gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. I cover anything from general indoor plant guides and lawn care, to succulents and flowers. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)