The Q&A Archives: Jade Plant

Question: I received a beautiful jade plant in April, and it seemed fine until about a month ago when the leaves started to fall each time I touched it. I did not overwater it. The jade plant was in a rather small pot, so I repotted it. Now everytime I go near it, the leaves fall off and the rest are kind-of drooping. Did I kill my jade plant, or do I need to get some plant food and try to revive it?

Answer: Your Jade Plant (Crassula argentea) is showing signs of stress from overwatering, and possibly from the use of cold tap water. The secrets of successfully growing a jade plant include all of the following tips. A jade plant thrives in average daytime household temperatures with nighttime temperatures about ten degrees lower. Keep the jade plant in a bright windowsill with some direct sunshine. Water your jade plant thoroughly when the soil begins to dry out, using tepid water, but water sparingly in winter (every 6-8 weeks). Jade plants like fresh air, so open the window whenever possible. The root systems on a jade plant are small compared to the size of the tops of the plants, so repot only when necessary and chose a shallow rather than deep pot. Don't feed a jade plant that isn't growing well. Instead, unpot the plant and inspect the roots. If they're brown, the jade plant is suffering from root rot and may not recover. If the roots are creamy white inside (snap one in half to check), then the jade plant should recover once you start following the above steps. Good luck with your jade plant!

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