Cut back my large jade

stothetJune 26, 2011

So my large jade (about 3.5' tall, 4.5' around) was starting to look very sad (see photos). Branches were falling off, and the new growth was very spindly. I've had it for about 2 years. The first year, it was very happy in our sunny kitchen. Then we got new windows that block out lots of things that are beneficial for plant growth (not sure of scientific wording, ha).

I was told by a local jade expert to just cut it back, repot it and start fresh. So far, I have cut it back (see photo). Now it will be a lot easier to repot. However, I am looking for some advice on repotting. I am going to buy well draining soil today, and I also have a large amount of turface. Is there anything else I should do before/while I repot? I want to ensure that it will be happier! I will be placing it outdoors and controlling the amount of sun it gets.

Also, as you can see, I have made many cuttings (see photo). Should I just put root powder on them, and let them be for awhile (how long?)? Ive made large cuttings on this in the past, and they have all died. In the past, I put rooting powder on, then stuck them in soil after 3 days, and didnt water until I saw new growth. After a few months, they had all died.

Please let me know your overall advice on this process. I have only been working with succulents for a few years and still have a lot to learn.

Thanks so much!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Wow thats a massive jade and a MASSIVE cut back! it looks great :-))

    Bookmark   June 26, 2011 at 2:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
FshyPlnts(5, 6)

This was bold. Very impressive. I would love to see the results of this project. How many cuttings did you end up getting from the parent plant?

Here is a link that might be useful: Envi Sci and Fshyplnts

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 10:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenjay(Zone 6)

O.K. I'm jealous !

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 11:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Nothing is better for a large, spindly jade than cutting it back. Great job! I take it you are in a warmer place than I am, so putting it outside is okay for you. I cut mine back two springs ago, and just put it outside in full sun after it was done frosting here. Full sun gives the new growth a nice reddish tint. The cuttings should be left aside to harden off,and then put in dry, fast draining soil, out of the sun until they root maybe, maybe misted, but not sure how humid it is where you are. Once I left some cuttings with leaves laying upside down on bare dry clay soil all summer long having forgot about them. They rooted from their skinny top stems, got new growth from the top that went up, meanwhile their thick stem parts were sticking straight up as well! Very odd U-shaped plants they were! So you need less water than you think to get cuttings of jade to root. Yes do keep us posted as to how it all turns out.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 11:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Nice rehab. Try to get it a sunnier spot so it doesn't get all spindly again.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 12:01AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good job! Few have the courage to cut back so severely, though if it were mine, I might have cut back even more! Your plant will show its gratitude once it starts sending out new growth.


    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 8:19AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I'm sure it's covered in lots of new growth at this point.
An update would be awesome.


    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 11:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

YES would love to see a update too.....linda

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 2:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chaparralgirl(Sonoran Desert (CA))

Good Lord! Echoing a few other posts, that IS a large plant, and a MASSIVE cutback. Has it always sat in the spot you show it in the photos? I'm not sure about the windows, but with those blinds down like that, you definitely want to find it a place with a lot more sun. The "spindliness" is known as etoiling - the plant is essentially stretching itself in search of more sunlight. (I have a number of indoor jades that have done the same thing.)

I don't believe you'll need any sort of rooting hormone. Just follow ASeed's advice, and all should turn out well. You'll have quite a lot of jade plants fairly soon. :)


    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 12:51AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm surprised that your cuttings died. I just stick mine in the soil and they root. One trick with Jades is to keep pinching the two small leaves growing at the tops so that it branches out.
What is sad to see today is what passes in the stores as "Jade Plants" are really a bunch of cuttings stuck together in a pot.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 6:33AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bikerdoc5968 Z6 SE MI

Stothet, please forgive me. I don't mean to steal your thread but I couldn't help ask the opinion of others who have already commented. I have had the pictured plant for more years than I care to count! Every couple of years I do some "pruning" to keep its shape and remove some of the etiolated branches, which I toss because there are so many and I have nothing to do with them. During the Michigan summers (from late April to mid October) I drag it out in the sun and by this time of year it abounds with bunches of white flowers. Because of its size, I winter it in the door wall, because I have no other area in my home; I know there isn't sufficient light but this is the best I can do. This past summer it received less sun so no flowers this year... that's OK because, as you know, when they dry out they are a mess to clean up! Anyway, getting back to the question: I've never cut my plant back as much as yours because I'm fearful it won't grow back. Is this fear unwarranted? Should I take the plunge and next spring get out the machete? What do you all think?

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 10:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Yes, prune it back judiciously!

It's a great looking Jade that deserves to have some of its trunk and branch structure shown off.
I wouldn't wait 'til Spring, either - I'd start removing the small, droopy, and downward hanging
growth right now. Then, late in Spring, I'd make the more significant cuts once I had an idea of
the ultimate shape in mind.


    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 10:36AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


Crank the Husqvarna up and have at 'er - your fear is completely unwarranted. I'd think that within two weeks you will be seeing new nodules of verdant joy forming, assuming you follow Uncle Josh's advice re slicing and dicing. The regrowth will be happening, assuming you give it some sun in the winter, just at the depths of winter, so it's a game changer in terms of seasonal affective disorder - look at me, I live in a forest of them and I'm happy as clam can be. Do be careful about the watering (little sips around the base of the plant) but after the 1st month, I daresay you can give it a shot of fertilizer with the water. Watching you cut it would be quite Youtube-worthy - just think what a difference you could make in the lives of us of slash for no cash. That's a really nice plant now that would benefit from some divinely inspired machete work.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 12:32PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
What kind of Succulent is this?
I've been trying to figure this out for a while but...
Euphorbia Cristata Dying - HELP
OMG - I've had this plant for 5-6 years. I grew it...
Jenny Marsden
Is this a Sempervivum?
I need help identifying this plant. I like succulents...
Is it ok to plant this in the ground?
It's opuntia englmanii in the clay based houston soil....
End of day 2 greenhouse complete!
The greenhouse is finished now yay! More of every thing,makes...
Sponsored Products
Kjaerholm: PK31 Lounge Chair Reproduction
Modern Classics Furniture
Robert Abbey | Juliet Wall Sconce
$385.00 | YLighting
Georgetown Door Knob Set with Rope Rosettes - Privacy, Passage and Dummy
Signature Hardware
Beat Light Brass Pendant - Tall by Tom Dixon
$535.00 | Lumens
5556 Round Adjustable Pendant
Premierl II Power Recliner
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™