Succulent problems, a gardener should be aware of!

Succulents are versatile plants that can adjust in any weather condition, and are known for their benefits. They usually do not have issues often but can show up with some common succulent problems on complete negligence.

There are some common problems that your succulent may show if it is unwell and needs treatment. All you need to do is read them and solve their issue to turn them happy and healthy again. This article will help you get an idea of the succulent problems that haunt a succulent lover now and then, and tips to handle them.

Some common succulent problems are:

Falling of leaves 

The primary reason that the leaves of your succulent are falling is an overwatered succulent. Overwatering can cause swelling in leaves and make them mushy. It results in the falling of leaves as it weakens the tips. If you notice soggy leaves and swollen stems, it is a sign of overwatering.

Falling leaves


Avoid watering your plant till it is not completely dry. Ensure that the soil mix is suitable and does not hold onto water for long. And if the soil retains moisture for a long, plant the succulent into a new container.

While re-potting the succulent, leave it for a few days to dry before you plant it in the new soil mix. It will help the excess water drain out of them. Ensure that the container has holes in the bottom to drain out the extra moisture from the sand.

In summers, there is a common occurrence of succulent leaves drying up and falling off. If the succulent does not get sufficient moisture, they start losing leaves. The leaves fall off so that the succulent survives. It is a natural process, but to prevent this, you must take care of your succulent so that it does not lose its shine.


Shift the plant in shady areas or a place with lesser heat. Watering the plant, a little often in such conditions also helps.

Yellow Leaves- one of the most common succulent problems

There are some reasons because of which your succulent might have yellow leaves; major of them are nutrient deficient, under-watered, and overwatered succulent.

Yellow leaves- succulent problems

Inappropriate watering

Overwatering and under-watering both can be reasons that your plant leaves are turning yellow, one of the most common succulent problems.

If the succulent has swollen, mushy and yellow leaves, then it is because of overwatering. And if they have wilting, dry, yellow leaves, it is because of under-watering. They both may lead to instance of succulent leaves falling off when touched.


Improve the watering levels. Changing the water levels will bring effective change and improve the health of your succulent. So, observe and notice signs to sustain the color of your succulent.

Nutrient deficiency

The primary reason for the nutrient deficiency is that you are not using the correct soil mix. Also, you have not given your plants fertilizers for a long time, because of which you may find weak succulent leaves curling down.

Constant watering flushes out the nutrients from the soil. So, it is essential to change the container once a year. You can also add nutrients by fertilizing the topsoil of your succulent.


Re-pot your succulent in the right soil mix. Use a beneficial fertilizer for your plant or a fertilizer blend, especially for succulents.

Withering and wrinkling of leaves

The primary reason for withered leaves is underwatering your succulent. If the upper leaves of your plant look withered, it is because of a lack of water. You may have your succulent leaves drying up and falling off, if proper care is not taken.

Withering leaves succulent problems


Start watering your plant thoroughly and more often. In the summer seasons and growing years, succulents require a little more water. Also, note that the water drains out before you re-water the plant to avoid causing damage.

Overwatered succulent can also cause the leaves to wrinkle. But in overwatering, the leaves fall off easily and turn weak. Your succulents stem might also swell.


Ensure you water your plant lesser, and the soil is dry before watering it again. If still, things do not go right for your succulent then, re-pot it and allow it to dry before doing so. You can use devices to measure the moisture level in soil and air, like moisture meters and hygrometers. 

Dark brown spots on leaves– succulent problems caused by sunlight exposure

Too much sunburn expose is the most common reason for brown spots on your plant’s leaves; it can also lead to succulent leaves closing up, a defence mechanism of theirs. It can happen if your plant is getting direct sunlight or has been shifted suddenly to a place with more heat. The intense heat waves and warmth cause this reaction on your succulent so ensure you keep them only for 3 to 4 hours in sunlight.

Sunburned leaves


Shift your plants to indoors or shady places in the summer season. Do not your plant directly to sunny areas but slowly expose it to the sun. 

Also, ensure you do not place them in intense sunlight during their growing years as it will hamper their growth. You can also use sun protectors to keep your plants cool and healthy in scorching heat times, and avoid this one of the most commonly found succulent problems.

Dying lower leaves

The leaves in the lower region of your plant die when the plant has new growth. These dead leaves can accumulate in the soil and may cause slight damage, or become the reason behind other succulent problems. Ensure you remove these dead leaves from your topsoil so that it is healthy. Also, you can propagate them into new plants and expand your garden.

Dying leaves- succulent problems


Remove and pull off the dead leaves to prevent insects and bugs from attacking your succulent.

Stretching of stems– the leggy succulent problems

If the stems of your plant are stretching, then it is because of a lack of sunlight. Etiolation is your succulent’s natural way to show signs of lack of light.

The stems of your plant start stretching towards the sunlight to seek warmth. If you notice spaces in between the leaves of your plant, then the reason is etiolation. Your plant might also get weak in this state, and fall prey to other succulent problems.


Shift your plant to a brighter place. You can also keep them near windows that get sufficient sunlight if your plant is in the house. Make sure you do not move it directly to a sunnier area, or else it will damage.

For instance, do not move an indoor plant immediately to an outdoor plant. Slowly increase the intensity of light so that your plant does not face any side effects. If you do not have sufficient sunlight in your area, you may find your succulent leaves curling down. You can use a grow light to help your plant survive in the weather conditions.

Shapeless leaves

Wrong watering

The shape of your leaves can deform due to lack or overflow of water. Notice the reason for the miss-happening and treat your plant accordingly to help it grow well. Adjust the water levels and location to improve your succulent’s leaf shape.


If your plant has shapeless leaves because of watering problems, then adjusting the levels is the right remedy for you. You can also re-pot the plant if there is extra moisture in the soil. It will help in drying out the topsoil and clearing the issue immediately.

Shapeless succulent leaves

Lack of nutrients

Nutrient deficiency is another reason for the improper growth of your succulent. If you are using the same container and soil mix of your succulent for two years, it causes a lack of nutrition. Every time on watering your plant, the soil loses some nutrients. If this is the cause, you will notice the leaves turning yellow and losing their shape, it can be an invitation to different succulent problems.

You must add the right soil mix and compost so that your soil sustains the nutrients in it. It is essential to do it to keep your plant from suffering and leading to damage.


If the reason is lack of nutrients, then immediately re-pot the succulent using the best soil mix for your succulent. Also, ensure that the soil mix has good drainage and does not retain water. You can also add nutrients by fertilizing your plant. Use the right fertilizers and soil mix to overcome this problem in your succulent.

For more information about succulent problems and fixes, you can check this video

It has details about the issues with the leaves of your succulents and how to fix them. The video will give you a better understanding of your plant and its problems.

Now that you know the common succulent, you can confidently treat your succulents to be healthy plants. Succulents are not very difficult to understand and need the correct amount of care and love to thrive as beautiful plants. You love your succulents, and we know that, so we have given you the best harm-free remedies to treat your plants in this article.

To know more about different succulent problems, check the other blogs so that you can expand and improve your garden. Feel confident and prepares for your future gardening plans and execute them without any worry.