Skip to Content

Why Is My Succulent Losing Leaves? (with 5 common causes and their solutions!)

Sharing is caring!

Are you a newbie grower who chose to grow succulents because of the ease, but often question yourself why is my succulent losing leaves? Or do you like the look of them and have taken succulent growing as a hobby?

Has this idea broken because your succulent has started looking unhealthy and is losing leaves? Well, if you fall into the dilemma of why is my succulent losing leaves?

Then you are at the right place because we are going to give you multiple reasons for why this might be happening and how to prevent it.

Succulents are known to be plants that are easy to grow since they can easily thrive indoors and so many people opt for succulents. However, nothing comes without its hurdles and so you might see yourself facing an unhealthy state of the succulent that you’ve grown attached to.

Why Is My Succulent Losing Leaves
My succulent keeps dropping leaves – via Reddit

Why Is My Succulent Losing Leaves?

Here are some reasons to answer why is my succulent losing leaves? :

1. Low Light

Like all other plants, sunlight is very necessary for succulents. A succulent receiving low light can start dropping its leaves. Even though they can survive in the dark for about 10-14 days, they still need light.

A sun-starved succulent will look stretched out and tall and will try reaching for the nearest light source giving its body a crooked shape.

2. Overwatering

Overwatering can prove to be more deadly for your succulent than you could’ve imagined. Not only can it cause the leaves to fall off but can also result in root rot or even the plant’s complete death.

If your succulent leaves are mushy, soggy, or falling off regularly, you need to immediately check on your watering routine.

3. Too Much Fertilizer

Another factor that can potentially cause your succulent to lose its leaves is that you might be using too much fertilizer. It can cause the leaves to drop and discolor the rest while simultaneously burning the root system.

4. Extreme Temperatures

Just like you, your succulents too will react to extreme temperatures, be it a blazing hot environment or the cold. It is a normal response caused by distress and draught. In extremely high temperatures, the succulent will start losing its leaves and start looking sunburnt and wilted.

In lower temperatures, the succulent freezes, causing irreparable damage. The leaves turn mushy and brown or black, and sometimes the leaves also fall off due to that.

5. Caustic/Chemical Burns

When using chemicals to help your succulents get better from a fungal infection or disease, misuse of the chemical by adding a higher dosage in the hopes of healing your plant quicker can also cause the leaves to drop off. Burnt plants will start getting burnt spots of brown coloring show up on them.

Why Is My Succulent Losing Leaves 2
Healthy appearing leaves falling off my graptopetalum – via Reddit

How To Prevent Or Stop Your Succulents Leaves From Falling?

If you want to see your succulent healthy again after witnessing it lose its leaves or never want to see it in this state, to begin with, we’ll tell you how to go about it.

1. Light Care

The best light condition for a succulent is to be under the sun for around six hours a day. However, newly planted succulents can scorch under direct sunlight so you should allow them to gradually get used to the sun by taking them out for a small period or by covering your windows with sheer curtains.

Helping a plant that is already losing leaves due to low light exposure is quite an easy fix. All you need to do is slowly acclimate your plant to the sun or a growing light.

It is preferred by experts to acclimate plants during the winters. But if you don’t have that luxury at the time of this crisis make sure that you bring your succulents out in an overcast sky so they can still get filtered light from the sun and not get burnt.

In the beginning, expose them to around an hour of sunlight every day and increase this period over time until the succulent receive the recommended amount of sunlight or 12 hours of artificial light.

2. Water Routine

An accurate and healthy watering routine is very important. You should only water your succulents when the soil it’s planted in is dry to touch which will be around once every week or two. Using a spout watering can come in handy as you can then have more control over the amount of water you pour in. 

Spout Watering Can Why Is My Succulent Losing Leaves
Spout Watering – via

3. Fertilizer

If your succulent is showing the signs of having been given too much fertilizer, first make sure there aren’t any white crystals present. If there are, remove those as they indicate excess salts present in the fertilizer.

You can remove excess fertilizer from your succulent by completely watering and then draining it. Repeat this process a few times and then make sure to also remove any dying leaves.

4. Ideal Temperature

The ideal temperature for succulents to grow in is around 40-80°F. If your succulent is showing the symptoms of being in a too hot environment, throw a shade on it or try cooling it down by moving it to a less sunny spot.

However, if your succulent freezes, the damage is done and the chances of recovery are little to none.

5. Repairing Burns

If any chemical product is added to the potting, you can water it a few times and then let it drain completely. Repeat this process a few times and from the next time follow the package directions completely and don’t apply the product more than recommended.

6. Pruning Leaves

If you can see none of these symptoms in your succulents and are already taking preventative measures but still have leaves fall off your succulents then you can try pruning the succulents’ leaves by cutting away any dead or damaged leaves.


Having a healthy succulent with a beautiful leaf structure is every grower’s goal which can easily be achieved if they follow these guidelines. This helps them to avoid reaching the question of why is my succulent losing leaves?

Keeping and growing a succulent is easier compared to other plants but caring and providing for it properly is also highly important!