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Ailing Jade Plant

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by marxer on September 20, 2005 12:40 AM
I have a very large potted Jade plant that has moved with me frequently within the state of Florida with minimal leaf drop. Recently I repotted it because it was becoming top heavy and frequently falling over in my sometimes windy balcony (I live across the street from the beach). I had succesfully repotted before but this time something has gove very wrong! The leaves are turning a light yellow all over the plant and lots are turning brown and dropping off. I water once a week and only if the soil feels dry. Anyone know what is happening? Please help.

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M.
by Will Creed on September 20, 2005 09:15 AM
I know this defies one's intuition, but being top-heavy and falling over in the wind are NOT good reasons to repot. Plants should be repotted only when there is no longer enough soil to retain moisture for at least several days. There are other solutions for top heaviness.

Jades have very fine and fragile root systems. Repotting puts them under stress. More importantly, the excess soil added absorbs and retains water for a longer period of time. Unless you compensate by reducing your watering frequency, the roots will begin to rot. However, in many cases even reducing the water frequency may not be enough to prevent root rot.

You may want to consider moving your Jade back to its original pot.
by marxer on September 20, 2005 10:54 AM
Thanks for your reply. Actually, the top-heaviness issue was not the only reason I re potted. The plant had truly outgrown the terra cotta pot it was in and the soil was dry and compacted. At this point (most of it is now light yellow), wouldn't trying to repot again finish killing it off? Is there nothing else I can do short of re potting it? By the way, the previous pot had to be broken to get the plant out.

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M.
by tkhooper on September 20, 2005 09:33 PM
It sounds like you may want to make some stem cuttings to grow clones just encase it doesn't come back. Did you use the same kind of soil you always use? And did you bleach and then rinse the pot really good before you moved the jade into it? I'm sorry your jade is so sick. Could it be that you waited to long to repot this time?
by cinta on September 20, 2005 10:51 PM
Florida is 90% humidity. So it is getting a double dose of moisture. I would not water it once a week. My jade stays dry for a week or two before I give it more water.

Did you repot into another TC pot. They dry out a lot faster than a ceramic or plastic pot. In those I water once a month.

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by Will Creed on September 21, 2005 04:53 AM
Repotting is not a simple procedure. It requires properly loosening the roots, using an appropriate potting mix that is compatible with what it is already potted in, and selecting the right sized pot and type of pot. After that, careful watering is important.

So there are a lot of things that can go wrong when you repot.
by marxer on September 21, 2005 08:14 AM
My thanks to all of you for your posts. I did re pot into a plastic one this time, and too much moisture may be the culprit. I have taken several stems to start some clones and that may be the only thing to do at this point. I will let the soil dry out and hope some of the plant remains alive! I'll keep you all "posted".

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M.

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