How to Revive a Dying Jade Plant Properly

Last Updated on August 15, 2022 by Stephanie

The reason why a declining jade plant usually excessive moisture around the roots as a result of excessive watering and moist soil. Jade plants become yellow and lose their droop, giving an appearance of dying due to root rot due to excessive watering as well as slow drainage soils.

Jade plants may lose their leaves because of overwatering or submerging.

To bring back a declining jade tree ( Crassula ovata) it is necessary to mimic their growth conditions, with a focus on giving the soil a good soak and before allowing the soil to dry out with a well-drained soil, and some sunlight.

Be sure to read this article If your jade plant is losing leaves, becoming yellow, leaves are mushy and appears droopy the jade plant isnt expanding…

Jade Plant Losing Leaves

  • Symptoms. Jade plants lose leaves. Sometimes, the leaves wrinkle or brown and crisp prior to falling away.
  • Causes. Stress from drought is caused by inadequate irrigation, overwatering or other factors like being too close to the source of heat while indoors and possibly due to overwatering. Insufficient heat and insufficient sunlight can also contribute to.

The most frequent reason behind Jade plants to lose leaves is due to drought stress caused by not being watered enough often or watering too lightly , so that the water does not get to the roots in the proper way.

Jade plants also shed their lower leaves frequently when they mature and this is not an indication of stress, but is a natural process.

If the leaves on the bottom on the leaves on your Jade plants are falling off and possibly becoming crispy and brown, then there is nothing to be concerned about.

The leaves that are older at the bottom usually fade away as the plant develops and creates new leaves higher in the plant.

It is possible to remove the dying leaves that are brown on the bottom of your dont like how they look, but you should only remove them from the plant when there is no resistance.

Stress from drought…

Jade plant is a succulent that have particular adaptations for dry conditions, with frequent rainfall as well as sandy soils and high temperatures within their natural region in South Africa and Mozambique.

But they can also be afflicted by drought stress at home due to the water not being drained or irrigating regularly enough.

The Jade plant stores water within the leaves, stems and roots that is the reason they appear wrinkled when they arent getting sufficient water.

In times of drought stress, jade plants shed their leaves in order to minimize overall loss of water and is a sign of severe drought.

Some people take the notion that jade plants dont require much water to mean to only water the plant however it really prefers an effective soak, and then a time of dry.

(For more details, check out my article on on how you can water your jade plant to find out how to determine the frequency and amount to give your jade a good watering in your climate and in accordance with the conditions you face).

jade plant flowering in glass

Jade Plant Losing Leaves Because of Over Watering or Under Watering?

The best way to determine the difference between the jade plant losing leaves due to water loss or underwatering is to observe that underwatered leaves shrink before falling off, whereas leaves that have been overwatered tend to be mushy and may turn yellow before they drop.

Examine the soil at the bottom of the pot by using drain holes. If it is dry, drought stress could be the cause however if it feels too saturated or boggy, then excessive the watering could be the problem.

Be aware that the use of saucers, trays, and other decorative containers can also prevent the water from escaping, which could cause an overly spongy soil in the base of the plant, around the roots. The top of the soil could appear dry.

Clean out your trays, saucers and pots with lids on a regular basis to stop root rot from causing the leaves to fall off.

If properly cared for, jade plants can last up to 100 years old.

How can you revive the Jade Plant which is losing its leaves

  • If your Jade plants are losing its leaves because of drought stress, then it needs a thorough soak. Put the pot in the water basin for 10 minutes in order for the water to penetrate the soil in a proper manner. If the soil is been completely dried, it will sometimes block water from the surface. Submerging in the ball of root for 10 mins will allow the water to soak in properly to allow the roots to absorb the moisture they require.
  • Always give your jade plants an ample soak. The watering is usually minimal and only will moisten the top inch or two of soil, and the water does not get to the roots, where it is required. Soak the soil until excess water is released from the drainage holes at the bottom to ensure that your Jade plant is properly watered.
  • Set up a proper watering schedule to Jade plants. Check the soil in the bottom of the pot by using the drainage hole at the base. If it still feels damp, then wait to water for a couple of days. If the soil becomes dry and squishy, it is the ideal time to start watering.
  • Make sure that the jade plant is in direct sunlight. Jade plants require at least four hours of sunlight. Gradually expose your jade plant to more sun hours instead of all at once because the brightness could be too intense and cause the leaves to burn and the leaves to fall off. The jade plant pot should be moved to expose it to just a few minutes of sunlight each day, so that the jade is able to adjust properly.
  • Make sure that the jade plants dont get too hot or too cold. The ideal daytime temperature of jade plant is around the temperature of a room, which is around 65degF-75degF (18degC up to 22degC) with a night temperature of 55degF (12degC) or higher. If temperatures are significantly outside of this range, it could cause fall of the leaves, so ensure that the jade plant in an area with constant temperatures while it re-energizes.
  • Make sure that the jade leaves plant arent in contact with windows. Sometimes, frosty or cold windows during winter can cause leaves near to the window to drop and then die back.

Jade Plants turning Brown or Yellow with soft leaves

  • Symptoms. Jade plants that have leaves turning translucent, brown, or yellow with a soft touch to the leaves, often with a droopy appearance. Brown spots on the leaves.
  • Causes. Too often watering slow draining soils, the use of pots that do not have drainage holes that are properly placed in the base can cause root decay.

The reason that jade plants turn yellow is due to excessive moisture around the roots caused due to excessive watering slow draining soils, and pots that do not have adequate drainage around the base.

Jade plant leaves become brown and mushy because of excessive moisture. Jade plants may die due to root rot if not treated.

Jade plants are drought-resistant succulents that thrive in dry areas that receive little rain and well-drained sandy soils which do not hold the moisture.

To stop the leaves from becoming mushy and yellow, it is essential to recreate some of the conditions that grow in the jade plants native habitat by using a sandy soil that drains well and a good soak, then leaving the soil dry, placing the plants in pots that have drainage holes at the base.

Watering Jade plants excessively or putting them in regular pots that remain wet for too long creates excessive water around the roots. this drought-tolerant plant that is hardy and able to withstand.

Jade plants should be watered only after the soil is dry.

It is important to remember that jade plants generally need less water in the winter months because their rate of growth and need for water decreases due to shorter hours of sunlight and less intense light.

(If you notice that your Jade plant is showing spots of black or brown on its leaves, these are caused by excessive the watering. Check out my article what is causing my Jade plant turning black to learn how to fix the issue).

How to Revive a Jade Plant Dying due to Over Watering

  • Reduce the amount of water you are putting in. If you water the jade plant less than every week, you are overwatering. Jade plants should be watered after the soil in the container has dried out from when you last watered. Typically , watering Jade plants each 14 days will be enough however this may differ based on the conditions, the season as well as the dimensions of the pot the Jade is growing in.
  • Refill the soil. Even if youre giving your jade plant about the right amount, the leaves could remain yellow and the plant could die if its in a slow draining, water retention soil. If your jade plant has been placed in a standard pots or soil, if the soil is damp for several days following watering, then you should take it out of the pot and then replace the soil with a special succulent and Cacti soil (available at garden centers and on Amazon) that replicates the well-drained soil profile of jade plants native habitat and minimizes the chance of root decay.
  • Jade plant pots that have drainage holes at the base. It is essential that jade plants are placed in pots that have drainage holes to ensure that water excess can drain effectively. Examine whether the drainage hole is filled with soil that has been compacted or roots, if you observe the soil is draining slowly.
  • Pots for jade plantation which are proportional to the dimensions of the rootball. Larger pots have more soil capacity and, consequently, a greater capacity for moisture, which means bigger pots dry out faster. It is essential to plant jades in pots that are able to be able to accommodate the root ball, but not overflowing with extra soil in order to avoid root decay.

To determine the best irrigation schedule and to aid in helping the jade plants recover from excessive watering , feel your soil with the drain hole at the base. If your soil appears wet, put off watering for a couple of days. If your soils dry, this is the ideal moment to water.

This method of watering mimics what happens naturally in a downpour of rain, followed by drying weather, or drought, to which jade plants are adapting.

Make sure that, if youre using a tray or saucer under the pot, you empty it frequently to let water flow freely, so that the soil will dry out.

The soil around the roots of your jade plant is given the chance to completely dry and youve altered the frequency of your watering and/or replaced your soil to ensure it drains quickly enough for succulents, then the jade plant will have the chance to re-grow as well as show indications of healing in the coming months.

Jade Plants with severe root rot…

When the leafy parts of your jade plant change color and become mushy, more and more, this could indicate root rot. At this point, recovering fully from the jade plant can be challenging.

There is an efficient way to keep the jade plant alive even when it seems as if it is dying.

Jade plants easily propagate by cuttings of stems and leaves to create fresh plants out of. It is incredibly simple to propagate because jade plants reproduce vegetatively in their natural habitat.

Check out this YouTube tutorial for tips on how to quickly propagate Jade plants using cuttings to create a variety of additional plants for free:

Revive a Drooping Jade Plant

If you notice that your Jade plant is looking droopy, it is likely due to over the watering or low levels of light. The excess watering can cause root rot, which causes branches, stems and leaves falling. Insufficient light levels cause the jade to spin and then droop as it search for sun.

If you water the Jade plant more than every week, then it is likely that excessive watering is most likely the reason for the plants drooping and you must read the article above about overwatering to learn how to bring back the plant.

If your jade plant isnt in direct sunlight, the jade stems and branches become long and spindly, with less leaves and drop downwards under their own weight as they search for more sunlight.

To make jade plants in proportion and compact size, they must be growing in between 4 and six hours in direct sunlight.

If you shift the jade plant from shade into direct sunlight it could cause sunburn, so slowly expose your jade plant to light for about 10 minutes or more every day to allow it to adapt and adjust to more sunlight.

Jade Plant Not Growing

Jade plants are slow to grow during the Winter due to lower amounts of sunlight and colder temperatures. They may appear not to be growing. The Jade plant will return to normal growth during the Spring and Summer months, with more sunlight.

Jade plants also can develop very slowly when they are at temperatures that are around 55 degrees (12degC). Anything lower than 55degF usually results in the leaves dropping however if temperatures are constant at this temperature, the jade plant will develop very slowly.

The ideal temperature at which jade plants can develop is between 65degF and 75 degF (18degC up to 22degC) therefore, move your jade plant to a more shady part of your home.

When the plant of jade is placed in a pot substantially larger than the root ball, then the jade plant will focus its energy on the establishment of its roots, rather than the plant itself growing over the soil.

Larger pots can also dry out more quickly, which could increase the chance of root rot in the jade plants you have.

Always place jade in a pot that is in proportion to its size to ensure an optimum health plant and to prevent root rot.

Key Takeaways:

  • The dying appearance of a jade plant that has green leaves, and drooping look is due to excessive watering and damp soil that causes root rot. Jade plants losing leaves and appear to be dying are because of drought stress that is caused by overwatering.
  • Jade plants shed their leaves when they suffer from drought stress or due to extreme temperatures temperature or cold temperatures.
  • Jade plants can droop when they suffer from excessive irrigation or under a lack of light.
  • To bring back dying jade plants, mimic their conditions of growth by properly watering them and placing them in well-drained soil that is exposed to direct sunlight to prevent root decay.


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 :)