How to Save Your Sick Succulent Plant 

July 23, 2019

How to Save Your Sick Succulent Plant 

Succulents are one of the easiest plants to care for. If your succulent looks like its not doing well, this doesn’t mean you aren’t good at taking care of plants. Different succulents require different care but there are some general rules of thumb. Indirect sunlight, the proper soil and infrequent watering are essential to succulent plant care. You want to know if your succulent is sick and how to save your succulent if need be. 


Is Your Succulent Sick? 

Dried out and crispy leaves on your succulent is natural when they are at the bottom of the plant. Every plant has a period where they shed the old for the new to sprout. If the leaves towards the base of the plant are drying out but the leaves at the top are vibrant and plump, your succulent is still healthy. 

Yellow, transparent, brown and mushy leaves are a sign of too much watering. If you gently touch your plant and the leaves fall off easily, this is an early sign of too much watering. It is better to know before they get the yellow and mushy look. Give the watering a rest for the time being. Soft black spots of the leaves are a sign of severe overwatering. This is the case where saving them may be difficult. 

If your succulents leaves look the way your fingers do after being in bathwater for too long, then this is a sign of underwatering. Wrinkled and dry leaves need to be watered more often. If they are completely shriveled up, they may not be able to be saved. This is most commonly seen for new succulent caretakers. Succulents store water. You will begin to see the leaves plump up again after a few weeks with the right amount of water. 

How to Save Your Sick Succulent

Dried out and crispy leaves doesn’t mean your succulent is sick. However, you can gently remove the dried leaves from the bottom and discard them. Do not force the leaves off. If they don’t come off easily, they aren’t ready. Keep the plant potted when you do this.

For overwatered succulents, cut back on your watering schedule. Wait until the soil is completely dried out before watering them again. If they look like they need some extra care, you may need to do some cutting. Using a good pair of shears, cut off the top of the plant. Trim away all black spots. Allow the cutting 5 days to dry out. You can propagate your stems in new soil. Be sure your succulents are in pots with drainage holes and in soil made for succulents. Even if you don’t water them frequently, this may be the cause of your overwatering issues. 

For underwatered succulents, be sure to soak the soil when watering to ensure they are receiving the right amount of water. Wait until the soil completely dries out before watering them again. Do not use a spritz bottle to water your plants. Their roots will not suck up the water this way. 

Growing your own succulents is a fun experience! When you start from scratch you learn a lot more about your plant and the care it needs. Although it may be easier to just discard your succulent and buy a new one, you may want to save your succulent. This is especially true when we start a new plant from a seedling. Know your plant and how to heal it if it becomes sick to ensure a long and healthy plant life! 


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