Ask a Question forum: Yucca watering help

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Rocketdogroya
Jan 24, 2017 9:12 AM CST
I've had a yucca for around 4 years and it has been fine! Then yesterday I noticed brown shriveled and dried leaves and some yellowed leaves that are on there way. There are also brown leaf tips! Having got help from Google it says brown tips equal over watered and full brown leaves means under watered. But I have both? I think the soil is fairly dry but it was watered about a week ago?

Please help, I do love it so and want to help it survive!
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jan 24, 2017 11:37 AM CST
Welcome!

I wish you had shown the top of the plant also. If only old leaves are yellowing, I wouldn't worry. The brown leaf tips could also be a sign that your Yucca needs some fresh soil. You may be dealing with salt buildup.

I am assuming you haven't changed anything: watering habits, change in location...
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Jan 24, 2017 1:45 PM CST
Yucca often does that to the older, lower leaves. As long as it is producing new leaves at the tip, it should be fine. It can be also due to the salt in our tap water.
Oftentimes, browning leaves could either be both due to over and underwatering.
It is a drought tolerant plant, but needs to be planted with good drainage, in containers with drainage holes. Does that container have drainage holes?

Rocketdogroya
Jan 25, 2017 8:02 AM CST
hi thank you for replying. No it doesnt have drainage holes in the pot but how would that work on an indoor plant that it not recommended to have a tray to catch the water in underneath? I have never changed the soil since ive had it so that is something i can do as it does look a bit grey and not brown. there are some leaves (not nearly as many that are shrivelled) that are a paler green at the top which is possibly new growth but i cant be sure. Thank you for any advice. I am a complete plant care novice and thought Yuccas were meant to be easy! I tip my hat to you.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
Composter Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener
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tarev
Jan 25, 2017 10:57 AM CST
I put flat clay stones right under some of my indoor plant containers, so water dribbles out and excess water is caught by the saucer under it, so plant is not sitting in water.

So based on what you said, the plant is really suffering, roots getting too wet below. It does take awhile to kill it, but it will go if it continues like that. If it were mine, I would put it in a container with drainage holes, replace the soil with well draining and gritty media.

My growing area is rather different from yours since we have mild winters. I grow mine in a container with drainage holes outdoors year round with gritty media. This winter season has been very rainy for us, so it really helped having gritty well draining media. Yucca's are such toughies, handling extreme heat, here it goes to over 100F during our long dry months and our cold overnights that goes down to the low 30F's during winter.

Out in the cold, thankfully our days of rain is over for now:
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gritty, well draining media - I used cacti mix, perlite, pumice, crushed lava rocks, chicken grit-insoluble crushed granite.
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new growth continues from the center tips
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Btw, I took a photo of my flat clay stones, this one is under my Clivia plant which is another drought tolerant plant:
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There are other similar products called pot feet, deck protectors, to help elevate the pot a bit and allow water to drain out.
[Last edited by tarev - Jan 25, 2017 10:59 AM (+)]
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Rocketdogroya
Jan 27, 2017 2:31 AM CST
Wow thank you for such a detail response I think your plant stand saucers are a great idea! Thank you!

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