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Why Is My Wandering Jew Dying – 4 Heartbreaking Reasons!

Wandering Jew plants are admired for their beautiful, vibrant colors and specialty of growing as a vine.

They look stunning in pedestals or hanging baskets where the tendrils can flow down. They are easy to take care of.

But sometimes, some unfavorable things happen that can cause your gorgeous plant to suffer. If you are wondering, “Why is my Wandering Jew dying?” you are at the right spot!

Improper Sunlight, Over or Under Watering, and Rotten Stem are major causes of why Wandering Jews die.

There are many different Wandering Jew plant types, which makes growing it fun. They are ideal for hanging baskets in a backyard because of their distinctive, bright tones.

To find out more about why your Wandering Jew is dying, read this article till the end.

It can help you identify the reasons for your dying Wandering Jew and learn how to revive it.

Dying Wandering Jew plant—why is my Wandering Jew dying
Why is my Wandering Jew dying? – Image via Reddit.

Why Is My Wandering Jew Dying?

Tradescantia zebrina, often known as a Wandering Jew, is a quick-growing, low-maintenance plant. It looks stunning if you hang it in front of a window that receives brilliant, indirect light but no direct sunlight.

SpiderWort and Inch Plant are common name choices for Wandering Jew.

A Wandering Jew plant is a common indoor and outdoor plant, first discovered as a 1–2 ft tall wildflower in Canada and Argentina.

These plants can react to colder, darker days by shedding leaves and tendrils to the point where they begin to look sick, even though they are very easy to grow. These plants can also get brown patches or lose the color of their leaves.

Most of these problems have quick, easy remedies.

Below are four reasons to why is my Wandering Jew dying.

1. Insufficient Sunlight

Wandering Jew does not require direct sunlight, but it does require sufficient lighting. Insufficient lighting is probably why your Wandering Jew is losing its color.

If the plant doesn’t get enough sunlight, its leaves will rot, and it won’t grow many flowers.

Place the plant somewhere with better lighting. If the plant extends upwards or outwards, you should cut up to 1/4 of the plant to reorganize it and encourage it to produce more flowers.

2. Improper Watering Schedule

Wandering Jews may have brown stains if they are not watered properly.

An overwatered Wandering Jew suffers similarly to one not watered enough.

Don’t water the plant’s leaves; instead, pour water into the soil directly. In the summer, Wandering Jew requires more water than in the winter.

Before watering the plant, consider the climate and weather.

3. Improper Growth Environment

This tropical plant requires humidity and a proper drainage hole in the pot to prevent wilting and death.

  • Your plant will drown if there are no drainage holes in the pot.
  • Use a well-drained pot and water the plant just enough to moisten the soil.
  • Using a proper potting mixture according to the nature of your plant is also essential.
  • A quick DIY is to place pebbles on the bottom tray and add just enough water to cover the stones. Then set the plant’s pot on top.
  • If your plant is indoors, another option is to get a humidifier.

Why is my Wandering Jew dying, you say? Well … try providing it with a proper growing environment.

4. Rotting Stem in a Wandering Jew

Check the plant for signs of pests or fungal diseases, as these conditions might also result in spots.

Fungi or bugs in the soil may harm the root. See whether there are any indications of decaying roots by inspecting the roots.

If there is, use sharp scissors to carefully cut away the rotted roots and discolored portions of the plant.

Repot the plant, fill it with fresh soil, and watch it heal.

Why is my Wandering Jew dying? | Wandering Jew Plant Care: Growing Tradescantia Zebrina – YouTube

What Causes Brown Leaves of Wandering Jew Plant?

Inadequate watering can result in plants’ leaves losing their color and developing brown spots. Also, lack of proper humidity can cause this. The leaves will eventually turn brown if the plant continues to breathe in dry air.

Less airflow and a central heater lower the humidity, which can harm indoor plants during winter.

How to fix this issue is as follows:

  • Using a spray bottle, sprinkle some water on the leaves.
  • Place pebbles or small stones on a tray, then pour water. Top it with the plant.
  • Use warm water to wash your plants.
  • Place the plant with appropriate humidity. The best location for this plant is somewhere with a temperature of 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • A humidifier or a system for a home greenhouse that retains heat and moisture can be used.
  • Use a well-draining pot and soil mixture of 50% peat moss. It helps to prevent overwatering.

Now that you know about the causes of dying Wandering Jew, let’s talk about the solutions.

How to Revive a Dying Wandering Jew Plant?

If your Wandering Jew has brown patches or is drooping, it is probably dying.

However, if the plant is still alive, it is possible to save it. How to revive a dying Wandering Jew plant is as follows:


Remove brown leaves and prune brown branches. To give the plant greater depth, trim the tendrils where they would produce two new tendrils. It is ideal to prune in late winter or early spring.


It’s possible that the plant needs new soil or that the pot is too tiny. Make sure there are enough drainage holes in the pot.

Proper Watering

Make sure the pot is thoroughly draining. Additionally, watering the plant will help it retain moisture and revive it throughout the dry season.

Branch Cuttings

By chopping the stems, you can revive the plant.

Trim the stems and soak them in water until new roots emerge. While you wait for the roots to grow, put the glass in the shade. Plant the roots in potting soil once they have grown.

Why Is My Wandering Jew Plant Turning Red?

Your plant grows red due to inherited diseases.

It can even make the leaves multicolored. Due to Anthocyanin pigments, the leaves may change various colors, such as pink, red, or purple.

It is a rare occurrence in plants and only occurs under certain circumstances, such as seasonal color changes in the fall.

Additional Tips to Grow a Wandering Jew Plant

Although this plant is simple to look after, it won’t hurt to give it a little more attention to keep it strong and healthy.

So, you need ideas for proper assistance and care for the plant.

Following are the tips for growing a Wandering Jew:

  • Gardeners grow Wandering Jew plants indoors as they prefer indirect, bright sunlight. So, both excessive and insufficient sunshine will cause the leaves to deteriorate. It is advisable to position the plant to face away from the afternoon sun.
  • This plant dislikes damp soil and needs potting soil that drains effectively.
  • To assist the drainage, combine pumice or perlite with your regular potting mix. It helps aid the vigor and growth of the plant.
  • Water the soil’s surface once if it appears dry. The plant has to be watered until it emerges from the drainage holes. Keep the soil from getting too wet from too much moisture, and ensure the drainage holes are clear. Root rot can be caused by too much water.
  • To give your plants extra nutrients, you can use fertilizer. For indoor plants, specially prepared nutrients are available. When using fertilizers, properly follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Watch this video to learn more about saving a Wandering Jew from dying:

Why is my Wandering Jew dying? | Tradescantia Care Guide – YouTube

Is it Possible to Propagate a Wandering Jew in Water?

Whether you try to propagate in soil or water, Wandering Jew will grow roots.

The steps to root it in water are as follows:

  • Trim 6 inches from one of the stems, just above the leaf node, where the new roots will sprout.
  • Use sterilized scissors. Put the stem submerged in water, do not drown them.
  • You can view and keep track of the emerging roots by placing the leaves in a clear glass container with water and securing them a few inches from the cutting’s bottom.
  • Replace the water in the glass container every three to four days, and keep it out of direct sunlight.
  • You can move the plant to potting soil once the roots have grown.

That’s all for today!

Final Thoughts

Now, as you have come along so far with us, you no longer have to worry about why is my Wandering Jew dying.

Wandering Jew is easy to look after. It might be tricky, but you are good to go once you know the growth tips and tricks.

Do not give up on gardening this beautiful plant if it starts to get complicated.

You now also know how to revive a dying Wandering Jew plant. So, just hang in there. You can do this!

I hope you liked the article.

Happy gardening!