Is Your Jade Plant Dropping Its Leaves? Here Are Some Reasons and Why

If you’re wondering whether it’s usual for a jade plant to shed leaves, the answer is yes! This is a typical problem with succulents of this type, such as dwarf jade, bonsai jade, and Gollum jade. I’m going to walk you through the reasons why your jade plant could be losing leaves in this post.

Crassula Ovata is a succulent plant endemic to South Africa and Mozambique. It is also known as the jade plant, fortunate plant, money plant, or money tree. Due to its easy upkeep, it is a popular houseplant all around the world. However, you may notice your jade plant shedding leaves from time to time, which necessitates some TLC. Crassula Ovata is hardy in zones 10 and 11 of the United States Department of Agriculture’s plant hardiness zones.

Why are my jade plant’s leaves falling off?

There are several reasons why a jade plant will shed its leaves, and I’ll go through each one with you. It’s natural for the plant to remove older leaves, which is perfectly acceptable. However, if you observe a lot of leaves dropping off your jade plant, it might be because of the watering schedule, the potting mix, the light, the temperature, or pests.


One of the most common causes of a jade plant shedding leaves is overwatering. Succulents and cactuses are well-known for their ability to store water in their stems for extended periods of time, which is why they thrive in dry conditions.

Overwatering a jade plant not only causes the leaves to fall off, but it also causes root rot and finally causes the plant to collapse over. Crassula Ovata despises being left in damp, soggy soil, therefore choose a container with drainage holes and never keep your houseplant submerged in water.

Overwatering can cause a jade plant to die, as well as attract pests like scale insects, mealybugs, and fungus gnats. It will also stymie your plant’s growth, leaving you asking ‘how large do jade plants grow?’

What does a jade plant look like after it’s been overwatered?

The leaves of a jade plant that has been overwatered may begin to drop. The leaves of the jade plant will also turn yellow and droop. When you touch the leaves, they will feel mushy and moist, and the branches will occasionally feel the same way.

These are all signs of root rot, and you should inspect the bottom of the plant if this happens. Unfortunately, if the roots are coated with slimy, black/brown stuff, it signifies the plant is decaying at the roots. You’ll notice your jade plant’s leaves becoming black if the root rot continues to develop.
If the soil isn’t moist and soggy, simply allow it to dry out.
If you suspect root rot is causing your jade plant to shed leaves, take it from its container immediately, wash away the dirt, cut away any damaged roots, and repot.


Underwatering, like overwatering, can cause the jade plant to lose its leaves. Finding a good balance is the key. The leaves can also become crimson if they are underwatered.

As a general rule, you should always wait for the soil to dry up completely before rewatering succulents. When watering, make sure the plant gets a good soak until the water drains out of the drainage holes. Less frequently, but with more water! Water when the top 2.5 inches of soil dry up in the summer months since this is when a jade plant shoots and flourishes.

What does a jade plant look like when it’s submerged?

A jade plant that has been submerged will begin to shed its leaves quickly. Check the bottom leaves of the plant; if they appear withered and about to snap off, the soil should be checked. If it’s absolutely dry, your plant is in need of water.

At first, nailing the proper watering schedule can be difficult, but as you become familiar with your plant’s root structure, it will be a breeze, and you will know just when to water the plant.

Inadequate Lighting

Succulents, in general, like a well-illuminated environment. Suppose you have an indoor houseplant; attempt to position it in a window that faces south.
If you see your jade plant losing leaves at the start of winter, it’s probably because it’s not getting enough light! Move your Crassula Ovata close to a window, but keep a safe distance from the glass since a persistent draft can be just as harmful as low light.

You can utilize artificial light, such as pure white CFL light bulbs if you reside in a very chilly place where there is usually a draft coming through the window. However, I would always prefer natural light over this technique.

Succulent etiolation occurs when a jade plant receives insufficient light or is confined in a dark place for an extended period of time. This is a plant with an irregular growth pattern. You’ll note how lanky, stretched-out, and lengthy it seems. This is because it is attempting to find the nearest accessible source of light. Fortunately, this is mostly a cosmetic issue that will not harm the jade plant.


As previously said, jade plants thrive in bright sunlight. This implies they do best in temperatures ranging from 55 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. A fast shift in temperature will cause your jade plant leaves to fall off, much like a cold draft will. The leaves will begin to grow again after the plant has become accustomed to its new circumstances.
If you wish to relocate your plant to a different area, do it gradually over time to avoid the leaves falling off.

Frost will almost surely destroy the plant, so bring your outside jade plants inside if you live somewhere that gets really cold in the winter. Extreme heat, like extreme cold, will harm the jade plant, so keep it away from radiators.

Succulents can get sunburned just like people! To avoid this, you should rotate your jade plant periodically during the hot months.


The plant kingdom’s most dreaded term. PESTS. Because an infestation may quickly spread from plant to plant, if you suspect your jade plant is infested, you should separate it from all other houseplants right once.
Mealybugs and spider mites are the two most frequent pests found on jade plants. An infestation of either of these pests should be dealt with as soon as possible. Both will result in leaf drops, distorted leaves, and a sticky, moldy jade plant.


Mealybugs are tiny small insects that drain the sap from the leaves of a jade plant and are one of the most prevalent pests among succulents. They are so little that you may not even realize they are pests.
Mealybugs on jade plants have a tiny white cottony look that might be mistaken for the fungus by the untrained eye. They might also seem brown or cream in hue at times. They can cause jade plants to shed leaves, as you may have surmised.

The worst part about mealybugs is that they spread like wildfire and prefer to hide in all the nooks and crevices of your jade plant, making it difficult to completely eradicate them.

What is the best way to get rid of mealybugs on a jade plant? There are a few possibilities, but the simplest and quickest is to use an isopropyl solution that is 70% or less. Instructions will be provided with the purchase, however, you should dilute in water to avoid Phytotoxicity (leaf burn). To properly disperse the product, use a cotton pad or a spray bottle, and be sure to get into all of the hard-to-reach areas.

This should get rid of your infestation, but if the bugs return in a day or two, repeat the method until they are completely gone.

Spider Mites

Spider mites are the second most prevalent insect that causes jade plants to shed their leaves! But what exactly are they? Spider mites are small reddish/brown pests that wreak havoc on your indoor plants; they are particularly abundant in South America.

You could confuse spider mites for a speck of dust if you live in a colony. The spider mites, like mealybugs, will suck all the fluids out of your jade plant, finally causing the leaves to fall off. If the infestation is not addressed, the colonies will grow and finally destroy your jade plant.

What is the best way to get rid of spider mites? Spider mites can be tough to get rid of, but neem oil is a wonderful solution. This might be unpleasant and difficult, but it is necessary if you want to keep your plant. Because spider mites like to reside in hard-to-reach spots, make sure you put the neem oil everywhere. Until the infestation is gone, reapply every 2–3 days. I always buy Kate Blanc’s Neem Oil since it’s inexpensive and comes with a pipette, making the application a breeze!

Your jade plant will also lose leaves if you use the improper potting mix. Jade plants want light, airy soil that drains quickly; anything too thick will retain too much water and produce root rot.

A mixture of organic materials, such as peat moss, and inorganic stuff, such as granite, is the finest soil for jade plants. You should be able to get a bag of soil particularly designed for succulents and cacti at your local garden center, and this will suffice.

Will the jade plant’s leaves regrow?

Sometimes it’s necessary to answer honestly. It all depends on the situation. If your jade plant has been overwatered and is suffering from root rot, you should concentrate on reviving your plant rather than worrying about whether the leaves will ever come back.

Yes, if you’ve just moved your jade plant from one room to another and it’s been exposed to a temperature fluctuation. Once the jade plant has adjusted to its new environment, its leaves will regrow.

In general, a jade plant shedding leaves is a common issue among plant enthusiasts. If you take proper care of your jade plant, the leaves will usually regrow, and you will have a healthy, happy jade plant in no time!


I hope you appreciated this post about the jade plant leaf drop and that you are now more prepared to cope with the situation. I’ve had a few jade plants over the years, and every time the leaves have fallen off, it’s been due to one of the issues listed above.

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