Why Is The Bottom Of My Succulent Turning Brown

  • Symptoms. Succulents’ leaves can become soft and mushy and become brown or black, but the intensity of the cold damage will determine the exact symptoms.
  • Causes. Although some succulent plants may endure a light frost, this is uncommon because most succulents are native to hot climes and normally suffer in temperatures lower than 50F (10C).

The majority of succulent types are not cold tolerant and will perish if left in temps below 50F (10C) for an extended period of time.

The majority of succulent species thrive in a standard room temperature environment, with a range of 55F-80F (13C-27C) being ideal for aloe vera.

Succulents’ leaves and stems may become mushy in texture and appear dark or black if they are subjected to chilly weather or even frost.

How to Revive Cold Damaged Succulents

Place your succulent in a location in your home or garden where the temperature is consistently between 55F and 80F (13C and 27C). Make sure that none of the leaves are directly in contact with windows, as these areas of the house can get much colder than the rest of the house. Reduce watering for the time being.

The cold damage should not likely worsen once the succulent is in a more stable environment.

Wait a few days, if not weeks, and the succulent’s mushy, cold-damaged section should dry out and callus over if the leaves feel gooey.

Cut the leaf back to below the injured section once the mushy portion has dried out. Cold-damaged succulent areas normally do not recover, but the succulent plant as a whole can recover.

In order to avoid additional potential issues, you should only restart watering the succulent once the callus of the leaf cut has completely healed over. Cold damage increases the danger of root rot.

The succulent can ultimately sprout new leaves and begin to regain its usual appearance after being damaged by the cold, but it takes a lot of persistence.

Key Takeaways:

  • The most frequent cause of succulent death is root rot brought on by over watering and poorly draining soils. Plants that can withstand drought, succulents need the soil to dry out between waterings. A succulent that has mushy, brown, yellow, or black leaves is withering because the soil is excessively wet.
  • Overwatering or sunburn cause succulents to turn brown. Brown, mushy succulent leaves are a sign of excessive moisture around the roots. Due to a rapid rise in sunshine intensity, scorched-looking brown succulent leaves may be the result of sunburn.
  • Because of excessive moisture around the roots brought on by frequent watering, wet soils, or pots without drainage holes, succulent leaves turn yellow. The soil needs to dry out between waterings for succulents. Yellow and mushy succulent leaves may be a sign of root rot brought on by over watering.
  • If succulents are exposed to too much shade, they become tall and lanky. Succulent leaves grow tall in the direction of the strongest light since the majority of succulents need bright, indirect light or full sun. Tall succulent leaves can droop under their own weight and often have weaker, withering leaves at the base.
  • Due to inadequate or excessive watering, succulent plants experience drought stress, which causes their leaves to shrivel. As a means of survival, succulents store moisture in their leaves. Underwatering your succulent causes it to draw on the moisture reserves in the leaves, giving it a shriveled appearance.
  • Recreate the circumstances of the succulents’ natural environment by planting them in well-draining, rocky soil with the appropriate amount of sunshine, and watering them when the soil becomes dry. To preserve the succulent, take cuttings from healthy areas of the plant.

Why are the ends of my succulent going brown?

Sunburn or sun damage is the most frequent cause of brown leaves on succulent plants. When you observe brown spots on your plants’ leaves after moving them to a bright place or after a heatwave or other period of extreme heat, these patches are the equivalent of sunburn.

Brown spots from sunburn do not actually injure the plant, but they do leave a permanent mark on the leaves, which is unsightly but not harmful. The leaves will ultimately fall off as new growth appears, but these spots won’t fade away. More sensitive to sunlight than mature plants are little baby plants or newly produced plants.

If you notice that the plant is getting burnt, move it to a more shaded area or give it some shade. If you intend to leave your plant in a position that receives direct sunlight all day, acclimate it to the heat by gradually increasing its sun exposure. Remember that during a severe heatwave, even a mature plant that has become accustomed to full sun might still get burnt.

When a severe heatwave is predicted, move the plant or offer shade to avoid this from happening. Never leave young plants, plants without roots, or leaves that you are propagating outside in the direct light. Always give protection from the sun to prevent them from becoming completely cooked.

While solar damage is the most frequent cause of dark leaves on succulent plants, there are generally additional factors at play. While the majority of them may be resolved quickly and easily, some are trickier to resolve than others.

Why is the bottom of my succulent’s stem becoming brown?

The leaves of a rotting succulent will be dark from the bottom up. The stems would seem mushy and possibly black or brown. These are indications that overwatering has caused the plant to rot from the roots up. If the plant is left to rot on its own, it will eventually dissolve and turn into a mushy mess, leaving you with nothing but a rotting mess.

Overwatered Sedum burrito (burro’s tail or donkey’s tail) plant with rotting leaves

This succulent planter can’t be rescued, regrettably. Overwatering caused it to decay and turn to mush. (My mum absolutely adored this Mother’s Day gift that I gave her.)

Why are my succulent’s bottom leaves falling off?

Most likely, if you recently bought a succulent, you did so with the idea that it would be simple to maintain. It can be beginning to look a little dejected or simply be developing more slowly than you had intended. I’ve undoubtedly killed my fair number of plants and succulents in my inexperience as a succulent grower. But I’ve progressively come to understand what it takes to maintain these challenging plants. Make use of these 6 suggestions to grow lovely succulents!

Water carefully, first.

Overwatering is the simplest way to kill a succulent. Due of their drought tolerance, succulents can survive without routine irrigation. Only every other week or once a month do they require water. Before watering the soil once more, make sure it is fully dry. Some of my succulents haven’t had water in nearly two months, yet they’re still flourishing!

Under-watering:

There are a few warning indications that your plant needs more water. The succulent’s leaves will start to wrinkle and the soil will have entirely dried out, especially around the bottom of the plant. This indicates that the plant is dehydrated and is replenishing itself with the water in its leaves. If you water sparingly, the wrinkling should go away in about a day.

Over-watering:

Sadly, overwatering is much more difficult to correct than underwatering. The apparent warning signals are that your succulent has received a little too much water: if the lower leaves are yellowing, mushy, or easily falling off the plant. Additionally, it is too late to salvage your plant if the stem is becoming black. Few alternatives COULD rescue your succulent if it is only dropping leaves. Allow the soil to totally dry before giving it further time before watering. Remove the succulent from the soil and any dirt adhering to the roots if you have already done this and the plant is still shedding leaves. Before repotting the succulent in fresh soil, let it sit in the sun for a day or two. This will let any moisture that was trapped in the soil to evaporate and dry out the roots. Don’t water for a week or more after planting in new soil. Delaying watering until your succulent stops dropping leaves or the leaves start to show signs of being under-watered is a wise precaution.

2. Employ the proper soil

Since succulents like little to no water, their soil plays a significant role in how happy they are. In order to assist them absorb any extra water, succulents require a certain type of well-draining soil that contains big particles (such as perlite or crushed rock). It’s simple to locate specialist soil for cacti and succulents at any gardening store. You might need to replace your succulent if it doesn’t look as well as it used to or if the soil never seems to dry out.

3. Pick the appropriate pot.

Although a succulent won’t reject the pot you put it in, some types do make them grow better. Terra-cotta pots aid in soil drying out and water absorption. They are not necessary, though! Any pot will suffice as long as everything else is in order! It is ESSENTIAL to use a pot with drainage holes. Without drainage, a pot will retain too much water, which will likely cause your succulent to rot.

4. The Sun

Succulents adore the light! They will grow more quickly if you place them on a sunny windowsill, which will also assist the soil to dry out in between waterings. While some succulents can tolerate bright sunshine all day, others will burn if exposed to it. That is correct! If your succulent is not used to receiving direct sun all day, they could burn. Given that early light is far less powerful than afternoon sun, many of the more delicate succulent species can survive just a few hours of morning light. Just gradually adapt them to more light to prevent sunburn!

An all-day sun-exposure succulent may be seen in the top image. The SAME succulent is shown in the bottom shot one month after being placed in a window with a north orientation. Although it is still expanding, the lack of direct sunshine has caused it to lose some of its brilliance.

5. Accept the outcome

Succulent maintenance can be debatably very difficult. If they pass away, don’t let it bother you. Due to careless mistakes, I have lost a ton of succulents. It occurs. Each one will increase your knowledge!

6. Avoid discarding discarded leaves.

Did one of your succulent’s seemingly healthy leaves fall off? Don’t discard it! Succulents are experts at self-propagation and can grow a brand-new plant from a single piece of dead foliage. Allow the leaf to callus over the area where it was linked to the main plant for a few days. When the soil is dry, place it on top of a layer of dirt and spritz it with water. I typically water mine every two or three days. White or hot pink roots and possibly a little leaf will start to emerge. You’ll have a scaled-down version of the original in a few months!

This blog post could easily go on for several pages, but I’ve kept it short and sweet by focusing on only the essentials of caring for succulents. Each plant is unique and could respond in a different way. I’m hoping these pointers will help you become a skilled succulent carer!

What does an overwatered succulent look like?

The appearance of the leaves is the best indicator of whether your succulent is being overwatered or overwatered. While an overwatered plant will have mushy, nearly translucent leaves, an underwatered plant will have wrinkly, shriveled up foliage.

These are the plainly visible warning signals that your succulent is being overwatered or underwatered. However, the signs are frequently difficult to read. A succulent that has been submerged in water may act similarly to a plant that has been overwatered.

And here is the part where most folks are perplexed. Other indicators can help you determine whether you are indeed overwatering or underwatering your plants.

How can you tell whether a succulent is well-watered or not?

Okay, so we’ve talked a lot about succulents that are dry, but what about those that have received too much water? Well, if you recall, overwatering essentially causes those particular balloon-like cells to overfill and burst, leading to damaged cell structures and rotting leaves and roots.

Discoloration and a change in the shape of the leaves are the first indications of overwatering to look out for. The leaves will turn transparent, floppy, and squishy, and unlike those that have been under-watered, they won’t be retrieved by the plant. It won’t be simple for succulents to recover from this state, but they can. Taking leaves and cuttings to root and grow new plants is an alternative to rescuing the overwatered succulent.

How much sunlight are required for succulents?

1. Ensure that your succulents receive adequate light. Depending on the type, succulents need six hours of sunlight each day because they are light-loving plants. You might need to gradually expose newly planted succulents to full sun exposure or give shade with a translucent screen because they can burn in direct sunshine.

What are the signs that your succulent is receiving too much sun?

Succulents quickly begin to display signs of stress from excessive heat or intense sunlight.

Succulents frequently “blush” or change color when they are receiving enough sunlight. What a lovely transformation to witness!

However, if they begin to receive excessive sunlight, the leaves will actually burn. The succulent leaves may start to show white or pale areas. This harm cannot be undone.

As an alternative, make an effort to relocate your plant to a location with less intense sunlight and wait for new leaves to emerge. It is optional to remove damaged leaves if there are just one or two of them.

The leaves may truly turn dry and black in rare circumstances. The margins of the leaves will first turn black, and it will be dry and crispy (in contrast to blackening from rot which starts in the middle of the plant and is wet and mushy).

Once more, this injury won’t go away until the leaf totally withers and new leaves emerge.

A succulent in the shade may start to turn a golden or yellow tint if it is still quite hot outside. Instead of turning entirely white, as would happen with sunburn, the succulent instead appears warmer or more yellow than usual.

If the succulent is transferred to a colder setting, this usually disappears or the succulent returns to its normal hue.

I can keep succulents alive very well sometimes, but not always.

I recently relocated to Arizona from Utah. Growing succulents can be challenging for a variety of reasons, including relocation. You must pay close attention to how much heat and sunlight each area of your garden receives.

Although it’s a little humiliating, I’m going to show you what my garden looked like when it received excessive sunlight and heat in the video below.

Hopefully, this example will show you what to watch out for so that your garden doesn’t turn out like mine did.