Jade Plant Yellow Leaves: Causes And How To Save It!

Are your jade plant leaves turning yellow? Do you find yourself asking this question, that it is normal for a jade plant to do so?

And the answer is yes! It is a very common problem and the popular question asked at our forum, and you are not alone. Thank God, in this article, I am going to list the 9 most common reasons why your jade plant leaves turn yellow and what you should do to fix this issue. So, keep reading this article till the end!

Let us first start with an overview of jade plants!

Jade Plants Overview

Jade plant or Crassula ovata is one of the most famous plants that every plant lover has. As Jade plants are succulent plants, they are beginner friendly and are resistant to drought conditions. They thrive well in sunlight since they originate from the rocky hills of South Africa. They may not need much water or special soil mix for their survival, but need some care if you plant them indoors. If you ignore your Jade plant and fail to provide it with proper care, you may observe some problems that can bother your jade plant’s growth.

Why are your jade plant leaves turning yellow?

Jade plants are hardy plants that can withstand tough conditions. Although jade plants can be maintained easily with low care, they need some attention to be healthy. When your plant does not get enough attention and care, some problems may arise and one of them is “the leaves of the jade plant turning yellow”. Let us discuss the reasons why your Jade plant turns yellow and how to save it. I have given below some of the most probable 9 reasons for the yellow leaves of the Jade plant.

1. Lack of sunlight in jade plants

This is the most common reason if your plant is facing a problem. Jade plants love to be in direct sunlight. They require full sun for their healthy growth. A Jade plant that grows outdoors may get enough sunlight to thrive. But if you place your plant indoors (probably on a window sill), it may not be getting enough sunlight to grow properly. It is better to place your jade plant in an outdoor garden, if you cannot manage plants outside then place it on a window sill that gets maximum sunlight. South, west, or south-west facing window sills are the best places to place your indoor Jade plant. Also, turn your plant in regular intervals to allow all the parts of the Jade plant to receive enough sunlight.

How to fix this issue

If your Jade plant leaves have already turned yellow and it is due to insufficient sunlight, then it is better to place your jade plant in direct sun for a while. Remove the most damaged leaves. Stop watering the plant very often until it recovers. You can observe the plant recovering, then place it in a sunny spot in your home.

2. Under-watering the jade plants

Although Jade plants are succulent plants and do not require much water to grow, they need a minimum amount of water (even in winters) to survive. Underwatering is another common reason for the jade plant’s leaves turning yellow. Because many of us ignore watering a jade plant, as it is a succulent. The roots of the plant need water to survive in the hot soil and to transfer water to all its parts. Watering once in 2 weeks is enough in hot and dry climates and also water your jades once a month during the winters or when the temperatures fall.

How to fix this issue

If your Jade plant is suffering from underwatering, then place it in a spot that gets partial sun. Do not let it overdry, you can provide it full sun after recovering. Prune the leaves that are completely dried. Do not pluck the slightly damaged leaves. Over pruning may shock your plant and it can stop growing. Water your plant, until the water drains out of the drainage holes, and also, water once a week until you notice the reduction of yellow leaves and production of green leaves. Provide moderate sunlight until the plant recovers. Keep an eye on your plant and always check the soil’s wetness. Water your plant whenever it needs to be.

3. Overwatering the jade plants

As we know that succulents do not need much water because they store the water in the plant cells and thus the leaves and stems look bulbous and that is why the jade plant needs a very little amount of water to maintain its healthy growth. Depending on the climate of your place you can water once or twice in two weeks, during the summer season. In winters you can just water it once or twice a month to pacify the thirsty roots. Watering more than that may lead to several problems like discoloration (turning yellow, black or brown) of foliage, pest growth, fungal growth, and root rot. Jade plants that grow in the waterlogged soil may have squishy leaves which can be injured easily and develop bacterial growth on them.

How to fix this issue

Check the moisture level of the soil before watering it. Water it if the top layer of the soil is completely dry. Trim the highly damaged yellow leaves, if they are too squishy. Put the plant in direct sunlight (preferably outdoors) to let the water in the soil dry. If the damage is too high then repot the plant with a suitable and well-draining soil mix.

4. Controlling the temperature in jade plants

The Jade plant should be grown at a certain range of temperature to maintain its healthy growth. Temperatures below and above the range can make the foliage turn yellow. The suitable temperatures of the Jade plant are between 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. These plants can tolerate temperatures slightly above this range but they cannot grow properly in temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

How to fix this issue

Bring the plant indoors, during the nights of winter, and in falls to maintain a warm environment. You can also use plant lights in this case. It is better to keep the plant outdoors in the summer as they thrive well in the hot sun, providing proper watering. Do not let the plant sit outside in a very hot climate where the temperatures are above 85-90 degrees Fahrenheit.

5. Due to improper soil mix in the jade plants

Jade plants prefer a well-drained soil mix or a cactus mix for their survival. They do not grow properly in a normal household soil mix. They prefer slightly acidic soil for healthy growth. The suitable soil mixture for planting your jade plant must have pH 6. The root system of the jade plant gets contracted or wrinkled if the soil is alkaline resulting in turning the leaves yellow.


How to fix this issue

Repot the affected jade plant by using a well-draining soil mix with pH 6 as I discussed above and the damaged part of the plant can be pruned.

6. Lack of winter care in jade plants

The leaves of your Jade plant may turn yellow and become too rough if they are left outside in the freezing winds. Also, they need less amount of water during this season. The growth rate of the plant falls in winter but needs more care. Be attentive to the plant’s needs and bring your plant inside to maintain a suitable temperature.

How to fix this issue

Cut-off the damaged leaves and generate heat in the home by using heat lamps or plant lights. Your plant will recover.

7. Lack of fertilization in jade plants

Generally, jade plants do not need to be fertilized often. But if you want to do it, you can fertilize it once a month during the winter and twice a month during the growing season to help the plant’s growth. Using a nitrogen-rich fertilizer that can help the plant from losing leaves. Remember to dilute the fertilizer before feeding the plant, to supply the nutrients to it. Over fertilization may result in discoloration of the leaves.


How to fix this issue

Do not fertilize it until it recovers, use the nitrogen-rich fertilizer if the leaves are falling off even after stopping the fertilization. Try repotting the plant to avoid discoloration and continue to care for it.

8. Pests and diseases in jade plants

Jade plants can be attacked by some pests and diseases that may turn the leaves yellow. Pests like mealybugs, spider mites and fungus like powdery mildew can grow on the surface of the leaves.


These are the small insects that survive by sucking the nutrients of the leaves. They lay eggs and thus spread their growth. They are not responsible for the yellow leaves but can harm the plant by damaging foliage.

Spider mites

These are other problematic insects that grow in the undersides of a leaf and they are capable of turning the leaves yellow or brown.

Powdery mildew

It is a type of fungus that grows at the beginning like a white powder on the leaves and stems of the plant, and later it forms a yellow cloud on the foliage. It is due to overwatering or waterlogged soil. If you observe white mold formation on the top layer of the soil, then check the roots whether they are rotten and repot the plant with a suitable soil mix.

How to fix this issue

Use pesticides or fungicides to treat the problem. Wipe the affected parts with a piece of cotton dipped in the rubbing alcohol. You can also spray the soap water to avoid this problem.

9. Aging in the jade plant

Aging in the plant can also make the leaves of the plant yellow and finally, the yellow leaves will fall off the plant. Don’t be afraid because the plant itself loses the old leaves to encourage new growth. During this process, the plant loses only a few leaves. If more or all the leaves of your plant are turning yellow then pay attention. It may not be due to aging. Consider all the above reasons before deciding why your jade plant leaves are turning yellow.

How to save a yellow jade plant?

Read the complete article if you are facing the problem of yellow leaves in your Jade plant. I have already mentioned the reasons. Now it is time for me to let you know about how to save your jade plant from turning yellow! Check out the following 9 methods to save your plant.

1. Providing proper care to your jade plant

You need to care for your plant if you notice yellow leaves. Do not overwater or underwater the plant, provide enough sunlight and use a suitable soil mix to maintain a healthy Jade plant. If the leaves are crisp and dry, you need to water them and if the leaves are bulbous and moist, reduce watering. Your care will treat the yellow leaves of your Jade plant. Be aware of your environmental conditions to provide proper care.

2. Pruning the affected jade plant

If the damage is high, then it is time to prune your jade plant. Remove all the dead leaves and affected parts of the stems and then place them in a sunny spot with proper watering. If it is too late and more than half of the plant is affected, then take the healthy part of the plant for propagation and discard the damaged plant.

3. Repotting a jade plant

Repot the plant after pruning the affected parts. Make sure to use the suitable soil mix to repot. Sterilize the pot before filling the soil mix. This helps to stop the continuation of the problem. Even if the problem continues, it is due to the lack of care or aging.

4. A soil mix of jade plants

Use a sandy dry and well-draining soil mix to plant jade plants. The bottom layer of the potting mix should have only gravel to avoid soil clogging in the drainage holes. The jade plants prefer a slightly acidic soil mix with a pH of 6.

5. Pots to be used for jade plants

Use a shallow pot preferably clay or a terra cotta to plant the Jade plants because shallow pots allow more air to pass on the surface of the soil as water in the soil evaporates quickly. Clay pots allow the water in the soil to dry quickly that is in contact with the plant and thus prevent the soil from waterlogging.

6. Placing the jade plants in a sunny location

Jade plants love sunlight. They will not get affected by any problem when they are exposed to sunlight. Do not let the plant completely dry by leaving it under a very hot sun, but make them absorb maximum sunlight by placing them in sunny spots.

7. Watering the jade plants

Water enough to your jade plant, and then check the soil moisture before watering. Water is only required when the plant is dry. Whenever you water your plant, let the water come out of the drainage holes. Adjust the watering according to the climate to maintain a healthy Jade plant.

8. Fertilizing the jade plants

Do not fertilize your Jade plant very often. Fertilization during the growing season will help the growth. But do not continue the frequency of fertilization during the winter.

9. Observing the jade plants

Observe your plant daily. If you notice any change or issue, check the reason for that and try to adjust your care to make it better. Follow my above-mentioned tips to find the roots of the problem and then solve it accordingly.


I hope my article helped you in fixing your jade plant turning yellow issue. Here, is a quick recap of the 9 reasons why your jade plant turned yellow:

  1. Lack of sunlight 
  2. Underwatering
  3. Overwatering
  4. Controlling the temperature
  5. Due to improper soil mix
  6. Lack of winter care
  7. Lack of fertilization
  8. Pests and diseases
  9. Aging 

Prevention is better than cure! Always love your plant and care for it. Finally, the more attentive you are, the fewer problems you will face.

If I missed giving any more reasons in the above list, please comment down below and if you like this article, don’t forget to share it with your friends and family. After all, all jade plant lovers should get all the information that I have given in this article!

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  • Purnima

    She is a Forestry and Agriculture graduate with over two years of experience in designing, planting, and maintaining an indoor plant and herb garden. She is an evergreen plant lover and plant parent.

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