If you’ve been having trouble with your succulents getting leggy and stretched, don’t worry, you’re not alone.
A lot of people struggle with this issue.
In this article, we’re going to talk about what causes leggy succulents to stretch in the first place and how to fix it.
We’ll also discuss some prevention tips so that you can avoid this problem from happening in the future.
What Causes Succulents To Stretch and Get Leggy?
The most common reason your succulents may be stretching and getting leggy is that they’re not getting enough light.
If your succulents are in a spot that doesn’t get a lot of sunlight, they’ll start to stretch out in an attempt to get closer to the light source.
Succulents need at least four to six hours of indirect sunlight per day.
When succulents don’t get enough light, they can also start to lose their color and turn a pale green. Also, the leaves will begin to elongate and thin out.
Succulents can also stretch and get leggy if they’re fertilized but don’t get sufficient sunlight.
The excess nitrogen in the fertilizer will cause the succulents to grow too quickly, resulting in leggy growth.
How To Tell If a Succulent Is Stretched or Leggy?
It’s essential to know how to tell whether a succulent plant is stretched and leggy due to lack of light or if it is simply a natural growth pattern for that succulent.
Some succulents, like Aeoniums, tend to have leggy stems as they grow older.
If you’re not sure whether your succulent is leggy due to lack of light, there are a few telltale signs:
The Stem of the Plant Is Long and Thin
The stem will be long and thin when a succulent is leggy due to a lack of light.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy from the sun to grow properly and is stretching out to try and reach more light.
The Leaves Are Far Apart
Another sign that a succulent is leggy due to low light is if the leaves are far apart.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to grow correctly, and the leaves are spaced out in an attempt to catch more light.
The Plant Is Not Growing New Leaves
It is probably not getting enough light if a succulent is leggy but not growing new leaves.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to produce new leaves.
The Succulent Is Pale Green
If a succulent is leggy and pale, it is probably not getting adequate sunlight.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to produce chlorophyll, which gives plants their green color.
The Plant Is Falling Over
If a succulent is leggy and falling over, it is probably not getting enough light.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to support its own weight.
The Succulent Leaves Are Drooping
If a succulent’s leaves are drooping, it is probably getting insufficient light.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to produce turgor pressure, which gives leaves their rigidity.
There Is Little to No New Growth
If a succulent is leggy and there is little to no new growth, it is probably not getting enough light.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to produce new growth.
The Succulent Looks Weak and Unhealthy
If a succulent is leggy and looks weak and unhealthy, it is probably not getting enough light.
This is because the plant is not getting enough energy to grow properly.
How To Fix Stretched and Leggy Succulents
Leggy and stretched succulent plants can be a common sight, especially if you’re not sure how to care for them properly.
When succulents get leggy, it means that they have stretched out and grown too tall in search of light.
This can be a problem, especially if you’re trying to grow them indoors.
Luckily, you can do a few things to fix this problem.
Here are a few tips on how to fix leggy succulents:
Move Your Succulents to a Bright Location
The easiest way to fix leggy succulents is to move them to a brighter location.
If they’re not getting enough light, this will help them grow back into their natural shape.
Succulents thrive in bright, indirect light, so try to find a spot near a window where they can get plenty of light without being in direct sunlight.
They need four to six hours of bright light per day to stay healthy.
Prune Your Succulents
If your succulents are already leggy, you can prune them back to help encourage new growth.
Remove any weak or overstretched stems, and trim the plant back to its healthy base.
This will help redirect the plant’s energy towards new growth and away from stretching for light.
Use sharp scissors or a sharp knife to avoid tearing the leaves.
Repot Your Succulents in Fresh Soil
If your leggy succulents are not getting enough light, they may also lack nutrients.
One way to fix this is to repot them in fresh, well-draining soil. This will give them the nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy.
It’s best to use a cactus soil mix or a soil specifically for succulents.
If you’re having trouble finding a good soil mix, you can also make your own.
Here’s a recipe for a succulent soil mix:
- One part potting soil
- One part coarse sand
- One part perlite or vermiculite
How To Prevent Leggy and Stretched Succulents
If you want to keep your succulents looking full and healthy, there are a few things you can do to prevent leggy and stretched growth.
Here are some tips on to prevent leggy succulents:
Make Sure They’re Getting Enough Light
As we mentioned before, one of the main reasons succulents get leggy is because they’re not getting enough light.
To prevent this, make sure to place them in a sunny location where they can get four to six hours of light per day.
Try placing them near a bright window if you’re growing them indoors.
When grown outdoors, they should be in a spot where they will get plenty of light without being in direct sunlight.
Direct sunlight can be too harsh for succulents and can cause them to sunburn.
Bright indirect light is best for most succulents.
Turn Them Regularly
Another way to prevent leggy succulents is to turn them regularly.
This will help them grow evenly and prevent them from leaning towards the light.
Try to turn them every few days so that they get an even amount of light all around.
Make Sure Other Plants Don’t Block Them
If you’re growing your succulents in a pot, make sure taller plants are not blocking them.
This can prevent them from getting enough light and cause them to stretch and grow leggy.
Trim Them Back Regularly
Succulents don’t need to be trimmed as often as other plants, but trimming them back regularly can help prevent leggy growth.
Trim off any lower leaves and weak or overstretched long stem, and cut the plant back to its healthy base.
This will help redirect the plant’s energy towards new plant growth.
Use sharp scissors or a sharp knife to avoid tearing the leaves.
Don’t Over-Fertilize Your Succulents
One of the main reasons succulents get leggy is because they’re over-fertilized.
Succulents don’t need a lot of fertilizer to stay healthy. In fact, too much fertilizer can do more harm than good.
Only fertilize your succulents once a month during the growing season.
And when you do fertilize them, use a light hand. A little goes a long way with succulents.
Too much fertilizer can burn their roots and cause leggy growth.
Keep an Eye on Your Succulents
If you want to keep your succulents looking their best, it’s essential to keep an eye on them and see how they’re doing.
Check on them regularly and make sure they’re getting adequate light, water, and nutrients.
If you see any signs of leggy or stretched growth, take action right away to fix the problem.
It’s easier to prevent leggy succulents than it is to fix them once they’ve already become leggy.
Growing succulent plants can be a fun and rewarding experience. But like with any plant, there can be problems.
Leggy and stretched succulents are a common problem that many growers face.
Fortunately, it’s not difficult to prevent or fix leggy succulents.
Be careful to provide your succulents with enough light and not over-fertilize them.
With the proper care, you can keep your succulents looking full, healthy, and happy.