Jade plant branches usually fall off due to water shortage and overwatering in the pot. It may also drop its leaves and stems because of environmental factors and natural aging.
Similarly, you will also notice droopy Jade branches due to fungus and bacteria attacks. But you can resolve these problems by adjusting the watering schedule and eradicating any fungal issues.
So, let's learn more about it in the following guide.
Why Are My Jade Plant Branches Falling Off?
The Jade plant looks great when it is thriving and all the branches are growing upwards. But there are times when you will see the branches falling off from their natural position.
The primary reason why this happens is because of overwatering. When you water your plant heavily, it leads to root rot in a few days.
Source - Reddit
Further, it advances to the stem rot condition, and this causes the branches to droop and fall off. This is typical behavior from the plant, as it is not used to having too much water in its natural habitat.
The other possible reasons for this issue are too much sunlight, top-heavy plant, small pot, underwatering, and under-overfeeding. All these issues can play their roles in making plants weaker in the process.
List Of Common Reasons
Here is a list of things you need to consider before addressing this branch issue in your Jade plant -
As I discussed earlier, overwatering is the prominent cause of droopy branches and leaves in various houseplants.
The newbie gardeners often believe the plant needs to be watered every other day. This may be true for some outdoor or vegetable garden plants, but you shouldn't follow the same rule for indoor plants.
Indoor plants like the Jade plant do not require a lot of water. They need to be watered regularly with an adequate amount of water. If you water them unnecessarily, the plant will start displaying signs of overwatering.
As you know, this can also cause the branches to fall off the plant. If you don't stop watering frequently, you will have to deal with even more difficult issues.
Sometimes, your efforts to make things work for such a damaged plant won't be enough to revive it entirely. Ultimately, you will have to throw it away and get a new one as a replacement for your home garden.
2. Direct Sunlight
Have you kept your Jade plant in direct sunlight?
I know many people suggest keeping this plant in full sunlight, but the ones in your indoor garden may not like the exposure to the sun.
The indoor plants acclimatize themselves to thrive under minimal requirements, which include low sunlight and water. When you move such a plant outdoors or expose it to direct sunlight for a while, you might see its branches falling off.
In the early stages, the branches may also remain downward if the water levels deplete in the soil. So, ensure you have not kept your Jade plant in direct sunlight for too long.
You must consider this factor while addressing the problem if that's the case.
3. Underwatering or Irregular Watering
Although underwatering is not as troublesome as overwatering, you shouldn't rule it out completely.
If you have been on vacation or haven't watered the plant in 2-3 weeks, you might see the droopy branches on your Jade plant. Some of them even fall off the plant completely.
However, as I said, it's not something you should worry about. This problem can be fixed by watering the plant again, and hopefully, the droopy branches will be off the ground as soon as they get refreshed.
In summer, you may also consider misting such a plant, though the Jade plant doesn't like misting too much.
4. Overgrown Jade Plant
Does your Jade plant look like an overgrown plant?
When the Jade plant grows a lot, some of its lower branches will try to find the surface to root.
In case you don't know, the plant sends aerial roots out to get more moisture and nutrients from the air. So, in the process, the heavy branches might lean down a bit to get in touch with the soil.
If you see something similar on the plant, you can put it to good use. You can cut those hardy branches and root them again in a new container.
Since the branches already have roots, it won't take long to see a new plant growing well from this pot.
Note: This problem may not cause the branches to fall off suddenly, but it needs to be addressed immediately.
5. Rootbound Jade Plant
The root bounding process can also lead to an imbalance in the plant's structure.
When the plant gets bigger in the existing pot, the roots don't get enough space to grow further. Due to this, they form a structure of intermingled roots underneath the soil.
The only way to confirm this issue is by uprooting the plant from the soil. Try gently removing it from the pot and see if things are alright with the roots.
If it looks rootbound, you can trim some overgrown roots and repot the plant with a fresh soil mix.
6. Small Pot
Generally, we love to have our indoor plants in small containers. They add natural beauty to the whole decor!
But the flip side of having such small pots is they don't last long. The plant will outgrow the current pot if it gets decent growing conditions.
Again, this might cause an imbalance in the structure, leading to heavy branches leaning toward the soil.
Often, the branches at the bottom try to support the entire plant. So, if you see similar behavior, you shouldn't be surprised.
Note: Again, it's pretty rare to see branches falling off entirely due to this issue.
7. Underfeeding or Overfeeding Your Jade Plant
Most probably, the above things will be the reasons for your Jade plant issue.
However, in some rare cases, you might see underfeeding or overfeeding leading to such an issue.
When the plant doesn't get enough nutrients or gets a lot of nutrients in less time, you might see its effects on the branches. In case of underfeeding and underwatering, the plant will droop.
On the other hand, the overfeeding process will strengthen the lower branches, which could again create an imbalance in your plant. And the branches will fall off eventually.
Overall, these are some of the potential issues that you must think of while attending the plant.
In the following section, let's quickly see how you can fix this problem.
How To Fix Jade Plant Branches From Falling Over
Here's how to go about it -
1. Stop Overwatering The Plant
Yes, there is no point in watering the plant if the soil looks wet. The Jade plant is succulent, and it doesn't need a lot of water.
Water it once in 10-15 days, which should be good enough to keep it growing at a standard rate. If you are unsure about the watering process, you can read this detailed guide I've shared on the blog.
Like overwatering, you should also avoid an underwatering situation in the plant, which can only be fixed by following the right watering frequency.
2. Prune Overgrown Branches
If you feel the plant is overgrown, you should prune some of its damaged and unwanted branches. It will make the plant lighter.
While performing the pruning process, you should start from the lower branches. These are the ones that generally pull the entire plant structure down.
Once you get rid of them, the plant should do alright. Having said that, you shouldn't perform pruning regularly. You should only do it if the plant is not in great shape and looks outgrown.
Also, pruning helps in many ways, including producing new branches for the plant. So, prune the branches that are falling off due to heavy weight.
Here's a video that shows you how to prune unwanted branches from the Jade plant -
3. Do Not Keep It In The Sun For A Long
Finally, you don't want to keep your plant in the sun for long. Even though it's succulent, it won't do well in harsh sunlight.
So, try to place it in a well-lit location in your house, but ensure it doesn't receive direct sunlight for long hours. Otherwise, the branches will continue to be in such a position despite taking all the care.
4. Inspect The Plant Well For Other Issues
If the weather is humid and rainy, there is a slight chance of having fungal or bacterial infection on the plant.
This usually happens when there is a lot of moisture in the soil and air. So, the above overwatering tips will help address half of the issue.
For the other half, you will have to inspect the plant closely. Look for signs on the leaves, branches, and stems. If you see something unusual, use fungicides or Neem oil spray to control the spread.
Besides these tips, you don't have to consider the different reasons mentioned in the guide. Most of the other issues will not directly affect the plant, as those can be controlled if you take care of the plant.
It could be because of overwatering or fungus issues in your plant. You must inspect the plant thoroughly to see if things are under control.
The easiest way to promote branching in the Jade plant is by providing enough nutrients through fertilizers.
The other way is by pruning the plant. Try to work on the first solution before removing the unwanted long branches.
If the plant is overgrown, you can trim some of its branches.
However, you most likely don't have to perform the hard pruning. The light pruning technique should be good enough to keep your plant thriving.
Note: Don't trim the main stem of the plant, as it will stop the upward growth and cause the plant to grow sideways.
The leggy Jade plant situation arises due to several issues, but it happens mainly because of a lack of sunlight and heavy nitrogen-based fertilizers.
Both these problems can be fixed if you move the plant somewhere near a sunny position in the room.
Also, avoid feeding your plant for a month or two. It would help if you also kept an eye on the overwatering situation in your plant.
Yes, Jade plants do well in small pots. But you will have to repot or transplant the plant once it gets top-heavy or rootbound.
My jade plant stems are leggy, new leaves also falling off, existing are having shrivelling and i water when soil has dry cracks. Not sure how to fix. Keep in morning sun 4-5 hours
Harshad Sawant says
Thanks for your query.
You shouldn't let the soil dry too much. Even though the Jade plant can do well with low water content in the soil, don't wait till it forms cracks. Keep the soil moist.
Moreover, it could be a seasonal issue as well. So, you need to consider this aspect too.
For the leggy plant, check the light conditions. You will need to provide more light to such plants.
steven goodman says
I have a very mature plant, and it has branches that have sent out the air roots described. I had been watering it once a month. I had given it a little miracle grow once a month. The main trunk, about 3 inches or so from side to side, feels solid, very few branches are facing up, and most are down. I noticed one branch fell off, and the end where it fell soft and rotten inside, part way down the branch towards the main trunk, also a little soft, but not all the way. I am at a loss.
Thank you for sharing your situation with me. From the looks of things, it appears your Jade plant is suffering from overwatering and insufficient light.
Keep it in indirect sunlight and give it more space to grow. Also, avoid watering too much water at once. You may change the watering frequency once the plant recovers completely.
William John McCauley says
My Jade has withering (dried up) branches, as well as fully healthy (looking) branches that just drop off. What behaviors do I need to modify to help my Jade?
If the branches have dried up, you just need to prune them off.
If the healthy-looking branches are dropping off, it is probably due to insufficient light or water.
Give your Jade plant plenty of sunlight and water it regularly.
This should help solve the problem.
My very large Jade plant started to show signs on the branches of softness and rottenness. I cut the branches but the whole trunk looked brown and mulch. It lost almost all the main branches and I am left with just two main branches. This is an almost 20 years old plant. I did overwater it before I left for vacations but it stayed indoors for over a month. Do I have hope to revive it? I have not water it in a month.
It seems overwatering might have been the problem, as too much water can cause rot.
If the trunk is still firm, there may be a chance to revive your Jade plant.
You will need to trim off all of the brown and rotting branches, then water it regularly and give it plenty of sunlight.
It may take a few years for the plant to recover fully, but it is worth trying.