Jade plants are known for being easy plants to grow and care for. They have simple watering and lighting requirements so it might be strange when the jade plant gets leggy.
What does a Leggy Jade plant look like?
A healthy Jade plant is known to look compact, as they have a slow growth rate and sufficient light levels could leave them looking bushy, so if you notice that your Crassula Jade plant has a stretched-out look, then it is leggy.
A tall Jade Plant can also be seen as leggy, and this is caused by insufficient exposure to sunlight.
Why is my Jade plant leggy?
Jade plants are known to grow well in areas of full sunlight or bright, partial shade. However, when placed in an area that doesn’t meet such requirements, the plant is forced to spread out in search of sufficient sunlight.
This is a natural phenomenon for the jade plant called Etiolation and it is what causes the plant’s leggy look.
In addition to the plant being leggy, A jade plant with little sunlight grows leaves of hues of a much lighter shade than their original shade.
Etiolation is the plant’s natural defense mechanism as it can be useful when grown in the wild, where the plant is forced to search for sunlight in areas of full shade to survive.
Tips For Fixing a Leggy Jade Plant
Leggy Jade plants don’t offer as much beauty to indoor spaces as compact health jade plants do. However, you can fix them by trying out these tips just remember they are slow growers, so it might take a while.
Provide Adequate Lighting
The first response you should give a leggy jade plant would be to provide it with the much-needed sunlight it requires for healthy growth.
This might mean relocating or moving the plant to a location that meets its light requirement. An eastward-facing window would be perfect.
A westward or southwards facing window can also be used, what matters most is that it receives at least 4 hours of direct morning sunlight each.
Afternoon sunlight is also necessary for the Jade plant. However, it should be filtered with the use of a light curtain to avoid scorching the leaves due to prolonged exposure to direct sunlight.
Use A Grow Light
Grow lights come in a variety of sizes and these light sources can be used in areas of low lighting or during the winter season.
Use the grow light as an extra light source for your jade plant. An ideal grows light would be an LED glow light.
Regulate The Room Temperature
Although Jade plants prefer areas with high temperatures, a cooler temperature forces the plant to reduce its growth speed, which is why the jade plant grows dormant in the winter.
Relocating your leggy jade plant to a room with a cooler temperature while still maintaining high lighting can help fix its legginess.
Pinch Off The Plant’s Tips
This helps the plant grow bushier. By pinching off the meristem, you trigger off a hormone in the plant that initiates the lateral growth points on the jade plant stem.
If done well, your jade plant would adopt an outward growth pattern that produces more branches and hence, gives the plant a bushy look.
Pruning Jade Plants
Trimming Jade plants is encouraged when trying to give them a rich, fuller look. Prune the leggy jade plants at the base of the stem.
When pruning overgrown jade plants, ensure you stop at a ‘leaf scar’, this is a point on the plant’s stem where there are visible brown rings.
These leaf scars would help encourage new jade plant growth with fuller lateral branches.
Before pruning your leggy jade plant, ensure that you sterilize the tool you intend to use, as this can help keep the plant free from infections.
Frequently Asked Questions
The best time to prune a jade plant should be between summer and spring, as these are its growing season.
You can make a jade plant bushy through proper pruning at the base of the plant’s stem.
Yes, jade plants are compact plants that have slow growth. They prefer smaller pots that snuggle their roots.
Sparse watering is required for the jade plant so water once in 2 to 3 weeks.
Jade plants can be drought tolerant and can go up to a month without watering.