Brown Leaves on Variegated Jade (pics)

bougainvillea(8b/ VA Beach)July 19, 2010

Hi, I love this forum and have been reading and learning lots of things especially on Jades. I have a problem with my variegated jade, it's 1 yr old, starting to have brown leaves about 3 weeks ago. It stay in east windowsill, I water when it dries-the leaves feel soft. It's in soil-perlite mix. I thought it's maybe over watering? I then reduce the amount and time for watering, but still the problem continued. I decided to change the soil last week: 1 part soil: 2 parts perlite: 1 part pea gravel: 1 part pine bark and some pebbles on top. The roots are healthy. Then I gradually put the jade outside, introduce it to more sun. I have not watered the jade. These are the pics of the brown leaves and the plant after re-potting and putting it outside. Please help what cause the brown leaves? I'm looking to have healthy jade with big fat trunk. Thank you :)

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I think you're seeing the result of the overwatering. You've taken the correct steps to repair that (i.e. more porous soil) and time will heal all wounds, at least of the overwatering type. Gradually introduce it to more sun, give it water when it's dry, give it bottom heat if you can, and all will be OK.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 5:14PM
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greenthumb_gray(Zone 8)

You're variegated jade looks EXACTLY how mine looked when it was introduced to too much sun too quickly. Exactly. As expected, the variegated variety is more sensitive. Unless it's rotting, I would think you're okay to water when the leaves are softening. That's pretty standard practice. It looks like it's growing in a gritty mix. Is it? And how much sun is it getting through that window and how long has it been acclimated to that environment? There are others here that can answer your questions much better than me, but maybe these questions will help them. But it LOOKS like sunburn to me.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 5:46PM
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greenthumb_gray(Zone 8)

Also-- Is it dropping leaves/ are they easily knocked off? Or did you pluck those? My experience was characterized by the former.

I wouldn't have put it outside and introduced it to sun so quickly after a repotting.

I really do think it's sunburn. I've been through this. It'll recover. Keep it out of the sun until you've received further/better instruction on what to do next.


    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 5:53PM
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greenthumb_gray(Zone 8)

Yes, nevermind the question about the gritty mix. You've made the right call by transplanting it to the mix you've described.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 6:53PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Jades will also go semi-dormant during High Summer, and I find that leaves will be discarded
as a result of any watering. This year, my plants went dormant around the last week of June
and resumed growth during the first week of July.

Your plant looks wonderful, by the way.
Pluck any leaves that'll grow more immediately. I agree, you've right well
by this little Jade.


    Bookmark   July 19, 2010 at 7:54PM
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bougainvillea(8b/ VA Beach)

cactusmcharris, thank you and it's good to hear that time will heal all wounds. I took lots of brown leaves already.
Are those brown leaves still good for rooting? If so, I will wait for another week until the cut callous over first.

Gray, the jade is in a gritty mix, been sitting in the same window sill since the first time I got it and getting a few hours (about 6 hours) of morning sun everyday. I plucked those leaves and they were not easily taken-fell off by itself. I set the jade outside about a week ago and it's still in a shady place where it gets 1-2 hours of early morning sun and bright light only. I took all my jades and succulents indoor yesterday, we had thunderstorm and heavy rain for couple hours.

Josh, this is a new thing I have never learn from this forum before that jades can go semi-dormant during High Summer. I have another types of jades and need suggestion on how to shape those jades bushy on top only with big fat trunk. It takes time and lots of pruning- cutting I guess. I think I will post a new subject another time. Thank you :)


    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 7:40AM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi Nat, just my two cents worth. Since you live in zone 8 I'm guessing that part of the problem is what Gray mentioned...too much sun! I have this Jade and it did the same thing when I had it in full Fl summer sun, I've since moved it and placed it underneath some palm trees where it gets bright light but diffused sun. I've noticed with my variegated Jades, they do much better for me when they don't get full direct sun all day. Not much you can do about the old leaves...but I think it will help a lot on the leaves that's left and upcoming ones. You've done all the right things as everyone mentioned replacing the soil and changing your watering. You've been given great advise by great members, like Josh said...its a very nice Jade. Best of luck

    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 12:27PM
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bougainvillea(8b/ VA Beach)

puglvr1, I have done everything from changing the soil and reduce the amount-time of watering. The new growth shows healthy leaves with no brown spot. The next thing I'm going to do is to move the jade into less sun/only bright light, no hot afternoon sun. I agree that the zone where I live can make a big difference. It's not only hot but humid... extreme heat Hi 97° real feel 105°. We have thunder storm and rain mostly every night since couple of days. puglvr1, cactusmcharris, Josh, Gray... you are great members, I have been reading and learning lots of things from you guys. Thank you :)


    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 1:03PM
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Oh, how I hate my zone - I'm in 6, but it's been acting like zone 8-9. Today is 94, 60% humidity, 108 Heat Index...

My Tricolor jade looks/has been acting the exact same way as the OPs. It's been in full sun, but I'll move it so it gets a break from the heat.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 5:20PM
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Crassula on the most part hate summer, they are winter growers, Give any transplated plant a good watering if and only if it has roots. Then leave it alone the rest of the summer unless well established. I grow mine outside with a Souther exposure, 30% shade cloth overhead. They do just fine. They may grow now, use up the water in the trunk and leaves, so they drop the bottom leaves, no big deal. They like to be crowded. Crassula are WINTER GROWERS yes I am shouting.
Read the past 8mo. post on this subject. Norma

    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 5:39PM
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bougainvillea(8b/ VA Beach)

Norma, thank you so much for the advice. I search on the same subject and found helpful information that I haven't read. I love jades and looking to buy for other varieties ( especially Hummel's Sunset) that I don't have yet. Thanks again Norma :)


    Bookmark   July 20, 2010 at 10:21PM
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greenthumb_gray(Zone 8)


As for that Hummel's Sunset...

You're likely already aware (from reading these forums) that they can be hard to track down (especially if you're up north like me). They pop up on eBay occasionally, but never go cheap. Thought I'd pass along a reliable source that Norma was kind enough to originally pass on to us. I know she still has cuttings available (if you can't find a rooted plant) and she sells them very cheaply. Send her an email with your inquiry. She was very kind and helpful. Good luck with your jades and your search for the more elusive and interesting types.


Here is a link that might be useful: K and L Cactus Nursery

    Bookmark   July 21, 2010 at 1:45AM
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bougainvillea(8b/ VA Beach)

Gray, I send her email this morning. She is going to send me some pictures of the Hummel's Sunset so that I can choose some small plants or maybe cuttings to start. Thank you for the information :)


    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 9:29PM
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I hope someone can help me with a brown leaf problem as well. Both my pachypodium cactipus and my pachy rosulatum gracilis have leaves that are starting to turn brown from the tips. Not all of the leaves, but enough of them to make me worry. They are both large specimens. They are on my porch which is screened in and face north. I try not to over-water them but...I didn't know if the problem was due to bugs, not enough root space, or over/under watering. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 4:00PM
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I would guess it's a combination of too much water and not enough sun - aren't most Pachypodium full-sun plants in their growth time?

And Terri, if you have a separate question, it's best to post it as a separate thread - it's seen by more members and can be answered more quickly, usually. I see why you asked here, though.

Anyway, back to your Pachys, unless they're severely underpotted, too, and are trying to grow with little/no success (and they should be in full growth mode now - warm and sometimes wet is how these tropical plants want it), I don't think you should have dying leaves.

Give them a full inspection for critters, too, but it sounds to me like it's not enough sun.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 4:44PM
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Thank you so much for your advice! (on how to post too - I'm new at this) Even though they're in full (sreened) sun most of the day, I wonder if the screen blocks out too much sun. Also, I have seen tiny black bugs in the dirt now and then. I just thought it was part of being outside. Does this little bug sound familiar?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 5:04PM
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can somebody help me? my crassula have leaves that are starting to turn brown from the tips. Not all of the leaves are affected! i keep it on sunny window,i suspect sunburn! i don`t overwater and i use good sandy soil- john innes number 2.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2012 at 11:24AM
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