How Do I Fix A Leggy Aloe Vera?

Aloe vera is prized because of its unique habit of growing straight upwards with sturdy foliage that grows closer to each other.

The prevention of your aloe vera becoming thin, long, or sagging is a major problem. If you notice a floppy appearance, it’s usually an indication that something is not right with the aloe.

Leggy aloe vera is often caused by inadequate lighting, excessive watering or using too much fertilizer, or having the wrong pot size.

Cut off droopy or elongated stems of your aloe vera’s leggy stems to promote healthier growth and restore its original shape. You may also trim part of the upper portion of your aloe plant, or transfer it into a larger pot to allow it to expand. Ensuring adequate sunlight, keeping temperatures at a lower level, and avoiding overfertilization can aid in preventing leggy growth.

To stop and fix the growth of leggy tissue, you must first determine the reason why your aloe vera was stretched and leggy. It also became floppy.

What Causes My Aloe Vera to Become Leggy?

In certain circumstances, the aloe vera’s stems may grow too fast to allow the leaves to catch up.

A rose-like look with constant growth results in an unnaturally stretched and leggy structure. The stems of this arrangement aren’t strong enough and could snap.

The stems that are stretched can be fragile and loose at times dependent on the length of time they’ve been.

To stop the plant from collapsing To prevent it from falling over, the plants have been stretched further away from the plant’s central point and could be at risk.

Etiolation is the scientific name for this erratic and rapid development of stems, leaves and other plant parts.

If your plant needs moisture or light Etiolation is among the strategies that can be used to “reach” for those supplies.

Aloe vera, among others, are able to access the nutrients they need by stretching their limbs. They are unable to move in a normal manner.

Let’s take a look at the most frequent causes of etiolation as well as the growth of leggy aloe vera.

[1] Lack of Light

Lack of light can be the main reason for leggy aloe vera. Because of the Aloe Vera’s natural adaptation mechanism, it can “reach” toward the light source through the growth of elongated stems to compensate for the absence of light.

You may also observe that the side facing the door, window or other. tends to have leaner stems than the opposite side.

The nodes that connect the leaves are more likely to stretch and elongate in the absence of sunlight.

In the end, your aloe may appear unhealthily, spindly, and sagging instead of full and lush.

Additionally, the stems of your aloe will be shorter and the plant will weigh less than normal.

The tips of stems that are growing are incredibly attracted to light, due to the etiolation.

Thus, the phytohormones in your plant can cause the stems to lengthen as a way to survive because of the absence of sunlight required for photosynthesis.

The rapid etiolation as well as the growing leggy of aloe vera in a garden with the canopy of trees and other plants could make the difference between survival and extinction.

For houseplants, such as aloe vera, the slack growth isn’t harmful, however it could make your plant appear less attractive.

aloe vera centre

[2] Overwatering Your Aloe Vera

Stress can be caused by overwatering and an appearance of leggy in the aloe vera plant. But drought-resistant succulents such as aloes can thrive in dry conditions.

They make use of their succulent stems to store water, which allows them to endure droughts that are severe.

If you are watering your aloe vera excessively it will take up too much moisture and develop new stems that are too fast to adjust to the changes that you’re making to it.

Two indicators of an aloe vera that has been overwatered are swollen, soft stems, and a damp growth medium.

If you don’t want to over-water your plants let the soil dry completely prior to the next watering.

If you are finding it difficult to adhere to a routine schedule of watering, you might want to consider buying an all-in-one soil meter, or a self-watering planter. (Check the most current prices at Amazon right here)

Place the probe in the medium that is growing, and voila! You have an precise readings of the moisture level every time! In general it is recommended to wait to soak till the reading reads between 1-2 to prevent overwatering and sagging growth.

[3] Excessive Fertilizer

The good news for lazy gardeners is the fact that aloe vera doesn’t not require fertile soil. Therefore, you’ll be good to go if you apply a standard home plant fertilizer every year, in the early spring.

The problem is when you are too enthusiastic about your aloe, and end up harming it. Apart from “burning” the roots and foliage, fertilization too often can cause aloe vera to have an unnatural appearance.

Aloe vera and other succulents don’t require a lot of fertilizer since they don’t grow rapidly.

The majority of cultivars and varieties thrive on soil’s nutrients. When you nourish it frequently the aloe will develop taller stems because of the additional nutrients.

A plant that is over-fertilized can expand into “unoccupied spaces,” searching for new places to expand. As your plant searches to itself, it’s long appearance doesn’t look very appealing.

[4] Wrong Pot Size

The aloe vera roots are quite shallow which is why they tend to be near their surface.

So, you’ll need to plant your aloe again in a larger container as it grows, which means you’ll need a bigger container.

The compact appearance of aloe vera’s leaves is so attractive that many gardeners limit the plant to tiny containers.

Aloe veras, as with all succulents, are renowned for their capacity to change. They can expand their territories to find more growing area, as well as more water and food sources.

If the remainder of the plant isn’t filled out properly, it could result in a leggy growth since the stems are overgrown.

[5] Improper Temperature

Other houseplants cannot endure the harsh conditions of desert that aloe vera is able to.

They can endure the extreme temperatures that are caused by direct sunlight, if they are given the right care and conditions such as a lot of moisture and air movement.

Aloe veras like temperatures during the day that range from 55 to 85 degrees (13-29degC) and at nighttime temperatures between 50 and 60 degrees (10-15degC).

They do however prefer hot or warm conditions, which allow them to grow more quickly than normal. So, they tend to spread their leaves and stems outwards in order to prevent getting too hot and to keep cool.

[6] Overcrowding the Pot

Leggy growths in aloe vera may occur because of being pot bound or overcrowding the pot in certain instances.

Since there’s not enough room for the plant to flourish It develops elongated, with sagging stems. They then spread branches until they have enough space to grow.

Leggy stems and leaves allow your plant’s roots to extend in various directions.

Because of the overcrowding the area, it might require an additional or larger container if it appears limp, droopy and expands inwards.

You can cut off the root as well as branches that are leggy by trimming them or placing the plants in a larger pot.

How to Fix Leggy Aloe Vera

If your aloe vera is in good health and doesn’t overturn an aloe vera that is leggy isn’t a big issue.

It’s an inherent defense mechanism aloe plants use in the event of a change in their environment.

It’s possible that it’s not detrimental to your aloe however it can reduce its appearance. The majority times, leggy growth is not a thing that can be controlled.

However hard you attempt the aloe plant will always be elongated and thin and its leaves could not fill in the gaps.

So, I suggest adopting corrective measures to repair your sagging aloe vera.

Pruning Your Leggy Aloe Vera

Pruning the aloe vera stems which are long is the most effective solution to get rid of it. Aloe vera grows thicker and bushier as a result of this process, even though it might seem counterintuitive.

Change the pot or place it is not necessary to trim your aloe’s leggy branches This is a simple and simple solution.

Take away all plant matter that appears to be mushy or dead at this point.

The benefit of succulents such as aloe is that they do not need to provide optimal lighting since regular pruning will help to compensate for this.

In the end, your plant will stay lush and bushy , and will it will not grow leggy.

Things You Will Need:

  • A pair of razor-sharp bonsai pruning shears that are sterilized or scissors.
  • You could also make use of a sharp, clean pocket knife. Clean it with bleach solution of 10.
  • A garden spade is an option, as is a trowel

Here’s a step-by-step procedure to trim the growth of a leggy aloe vera

Step 1: Have a Closer Look at Your Leggy Aloe Vera

It is better to consider the way you would like your aloe plant to appear. For instance is it sagging in one direction? Are there extra-long stems that you’d prefer to save for aesthetic reasons?

Think about what you would like to get rid of from your aloe, and what you should be aware of as you trim it.

Since you only have the ability to cut once, you must think about what you would like to hold onto and then decide what you would like to eliminate.

Step 2: Trim Off Leggy Growths or Unwanted Plant Parts

The stems that appear loose or sloppy must be cut down. Cut off any pinkish or brown parts of the leaves, as well as any tips that are brown or pinkish-brown.

Browning foliage won’t grow back and removing it aids your plant to regain its lush greenery while remaining healthy.

For taller stems and leaves Use pruning shears. Make use of a sharp pocket knife to cut small – to medium-sized aloes.

Although the wounds may heal on their own however, you can apply cinnamon in order to prevent pathogens away from excessively humid areas.

Step 3: Clean Up Your Plant

The wounds shouldn’t be exposed to soil, dirt, or water. If the wound is dark and soft it could be a sign of the onset of rot.

To tidy up your plant, cut off any offshoots of aloe. The plants that are recovering will be drained by these plants.

You can use a garden trowel to release them from their parent to grow them further by cutting them from the parent.

Step 4: Remove Old Stems and Depleted Flowers

It’s also an excellent idea to take out all dying or dead flower stems and flowers. Cut cleanly at the bottom of the stem, exactly as you would do if you were taking off the leaves.

Aloes will benefit from this method since it directs more nutrients to fresh, healthy stems and leaves. Aloe plants that are indoors rarely produce flowers, which means you don’t need to worry about them often.

Step 5: Stay on Top of Your Plant’s Aftercare

Aloe is a great beverage to replenish lost liquids that are stored in the cut stems. Be sure the soil doesn’t become wet.

It is recommended to keep your plant in a location that has temperatures that range from 55 to 85 degrees (13-29degC).

Let the medium for growth dry completely before the plant is fully recovered. The reason for this is that bone-dry soil causes the leaves to pucker and shrink.

Repotting Leggy Aloe Vera

After you have removed any stems that are leggy or growths that are not healthy The next best step is to plant the aloe vera.

It’s a great technique for either fixing a damaged aloe vera, or to prevent it from getting leggy in the first instance.

Here are some important steps to follow when you are you are repotting your aloe plant:

  1. The first step is to remove the Aloe plant’s leggy pot and open the roots.
  2. Clean the soil to remove as many as you can from the root.
  3. Get rid of any roots that are overgrown particularly those that extend into the drain holes. Get rid of any diseased, dead, or infected roots , too.
  4. Create a cactus or specific potting mixture. To increase the drainage of the medium for growing, I often add sand, perlite, vermiculite, or pumice. If you’re making your own mix make a mixture of 2 parts pot soil one part sand and one part vermiculite or perlite. Mix them thoroughly. the ingredients.
  5. Plant your aloe vera in a container that is slightly bigger (not necessarily larger or deeper). Terracotta pots are my preferred because they drain very well.
  6. Before planting, make sure to fill the new container about two-thirds of the way. Be aware that aloe vera grows with roots that are shallow, so plant it in a deep medium.
  7. The pot should be filled with new medium (if you’re using it again I don’t recommend that you ensure the soil has been sterilized).
  8. Make sure to give your freshly repotted aloe vera a thorough cleaning. Indoors, you can enjoy ample, indirect sunlight. Make sure to trim and water frequently however, do not let your soil get too wet.

Using Suitable Pot Size

Like any transplant, it is important to select an aloe vera container that is at least one size larger than the one you had before. A quarter one-inch space between your root ball and the the container wall is ideal.

Choose a larger container than a smaller one because your aloe vera ripens and needs to be repotted.

Can I Cut the Top Off My Aloe Vera?

Although it’s not the most effective solution however, you can cut an aloe vera plant below the rosettes. Then, the aloe vera , it will grow from the stump that has been cut.

Provide Enough Light

Aloe vera can be prone to become sloppy, bloated and floppy because of the absence of sufficient exposure to light.

It is essential to supply the plant with six to eight hours of light that is bright and well-filtered sunlight each day.

Beware of exposing your plant to excessive direct sunlight as this can cause it to become burned and burn.

Aloes require plenty of sunshine to remain healthy and strong without becoming overweight. Plant your aloe in a window that has sheer curtains that face towards the south.

In the event that you do not have windows that has southern exposure or a window that is draped to the west could be a good alternative.

Maintain Low Temperature Around Leggy Aloe Vera

As we have mentioned the high temperatures can stimulate aloe vera’s growth, which causes stems to expand quickly and sagging growth.

They are able to thrive in moderate room temperatures, daytime temperatures that range from 55 to 85degF (13-29degC) and at nighttime temperatures that range from 50 to 60degF (10-15degC).

They are able to withstand temperatures of up to 90 degrees (32degC) However, the aloe vera plant will begin to stretch to prevent overheating, which will send your back to drawing boards.

It is crucial to remember that your aloe plant can not stand cold drafts, frost or temperatures that are below 40 degrees F (4degC).

Spreading your Aloe Vera

Although seeds can be used to reproduce aloe vera stem cuttings and offsets of plants that are the source of their parent much more practical.

Here’s how you can cultivate aloe vera using leaf or stem cuttings:

  1. Choose a good-quality stem or leaf and then cut it off. It doesn’t have to be the whole leaves or stem. It is possible to remove just a few inches from to the upper part of the leaf, or the entire thing. Utilizing a sharp, sterilized cutting tool, make sure the cut is clean and tidy.
  2. Let the cut dry and then scab for a couple of days prior to the cutting can be propagated to avoid the rotting.
  3. Make the propagation pot ready The container should be filled half-way with potting soil that is well-drained. Place your cuttings in the soil in a straight line, leaving the cut ends protruding out of the soil.
  4. The hormone that stimulates root growth is not necessary to help the cuttings develop roots.
  5. Be careful when cutting. It is important to keep the soil damp but not completely damp. Consider spraying the cut flowers with mist.

How Do You Grow Aloe Vera Leaves Thicker?

  • Give your aloe enough lighting at a minimum ensure that your aloe receives 6-8 hours of light indirect sunlight every day.
  • Make sure you use the correct size pot Make sure to use a larger pot when you are repotting.
  • Pin the tips on the leaf to stimulate growth that is thicker.
  • Regularly prune your aloe plant to avoid thin, leggy growth
  • Make sure to water the aloe vera plant as quickly as your soil has dried to point of contact.


Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)