Ask a Question forum: Disease identification: Jade Plant

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Aug 4, 2017 4:18 PM CST
I tried propagating my mature jade, which kind of worked. My propagated jade plants rooted, but seem to have some kind of disease. I chopped them down to complete stumps in hopes of controlling the disease/ experimenting.

Sadly, when I went to water my mature jade plant, I also saw signs of the disease (or what I think is a disease).

-10 + year old jade
-right next to a South facing window
-large, way too deep pot (didn't know what I was doing at the time)
-I can't remember what kind of soil I used, hopefully a succulent mixture
- try to water it 2-3 times a month (Summer, hot, dry).
- let dry out between waterings
- a few large rocks at bottom

Thumb of 2017-08-04/Meehanf/771ed9

Thumb of 2017-08-04/Meehanf/58052f

-always an indoor plant (no outdoor space/way to heavy to move in&out)
-born in MN (low light, wet, cold) now lives in CO for 2 years (High light, dry, hot)
-repotted last in late 2016
- experience what I think was root rot early after repotting, saved it by drying it out. No clear signs of root rot.

-silvery/shiny aspect to leafs and branches
-weak branches and leafs
- crystallizing of leafs and branches.
-leafs and branches falling off.

Thumb of 2017-08-04/Meehanf/6a7cf9

Thumb of 2017-08-04/Meehanf/e8e1af

Thumb of 2017-08-04/Meehanf/394b2e

Is this a disease? If not, why silvery/shiny aspects to my propagated plants?
Should I cut down on watering?
Does it need more light?
Should I give it fresh new soil and see what the roots look like? (cut away any dead or diseased roots?)
New pot?

I guess really, does anyone know what is wrong with my jade and what I can do about it?

It seems happy- just sick.

Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Aug 4, 2017 4:57 PM CST
Are you looking at the little pores on the surface of the leaf that shine kind of silvery? Those are natural so no diseases or bugs. If you are looking at something else, let us know. (There is something in the crevice where the leaves come together in the first close-up photo).

The leaves of Jades will dry and drop off if they are kept too wet, too dry or aren't getting enough sun. You are right, that pot is huge and with the rocks on the bottom, you could be overwatering. Your plant is not getting enough light - it if was, the leaf edges would be red.

When you cut your baby Jades down, was the center of the stem green? If so, you did not have rot, so maybe you under watered them.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Name: Will Creed
Professional indoor plant consultan
Aug 5, 2017 6:23 AM CST
Your Jade is not diseased. My first observation is that your Jade is not getting as much sunlight as you think because it is off to the side of the window and against a wall. The elongated stem spaces between the older and newer leaf sets are symptomatic of less than ideal light.

The silvery appearance that you describe is a result of the waxy leaf coating drying and turning flaky. That and the loss of leaves and some stem drop are indicative of a root/watering problem. Some of the roots may be damaged by having surrounding soil staying too moist or getting too dry. Given the unorthodox pot and potting method used, it is hard to say just what is happening around the roots. Very large pots tend to absorb and retain water for a long time. Drainage material in the bottom is not effective in helping drainage. The porosity of the soil may also be a factor. My hunch is that the soil is not drying out sufficiently, but it could be the opposite depending on how much water you add when you do water.

That said, I don't recommend disturbing the roots any further. Use a soil probe or wooden chopstick to determine if the soil is really drying out deep into the pot before you water. Adjust your watering accordingly. When you do water, add just enough so that it reaches that appropriate level of dryness again in 1-2 weeks time.

Although it will not affect your Jade's health, I do think that pruning back some of the longer stems will make it look a lot better.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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