Aloe Vera is a house plant that remains unaffected if you miss two or three watering. It is drought tolerant like most succulents. The fact that aloes do not like soggy soil is equally true. Plant parents must note that serial overwatering can lead to an unhealthy aloe plant. Dark spots may show up on the plant parts. The plump leaves may appear droopy, or you may observe brown leaf tips.
The aloe plant gets its appealing buffy appearance because the leaves store water. A sign of overwatering is shriveled and yellow leaves. Can you save an overwatered aloe? Do not worry, as the answer is a big yes. Follow up this article till the very end to know more details.
How do I know if my aloe is overwatered?
If the plant leaves develop water-soaked spots that look soft and soggy, you will know that your Aloe Vera is overwatered. Overwatering is a common problem in succulents. The entire surface of the leaf fills with water and then turns to mush. Aloe Vera is green with firm, plump, and upright features. Shriveled, droopy, and damaged leaves indicate an unhappy plant. Mostly, you can solve the problem and restore your plant’s health.
To save an overwatered plant, dig it up and let them dry out for two or three days. Remove any roots and leaves that appear dead or mushy gently. If your plant has multiple offshoots growing near the base, this is the best time to divide your plant. Move the younger plants that are healthy to new containers in fresh soil. After the plant’s root ball has dried out completely, dust the base with rooting powder. Thus, plant a new pot with drainage holes and place it on the dry side. New and healthy leaves will begin to shoot out from the center of the plant in a few weeks.
Do not let the roots of indoor aloes sit in too much moisture because this can cause root rot. Always place the plants in pots with drainage holes. Use potting soil available, especially for succulents. This potting mixture dries a little quicker than the regular soil. Touch the soil and water it only when it feels dry. Empty the excess water from the saucer. Place the pot in indirect, bright light. The best position will be the west or south-facing window.
Beautiful, decorative saucers do not have drainage holes. You can use them in two ways. One, drill a hole in the saucer. Two, use it only as a decorative outer pot, called cachepot, that you will place in a plastic container with drainage holes. Elevate the inner pot half an inch of pea gravel so that any excess moisture can come out after watering. Else, take the plastic pot to a sink for watering and place it again in the cachepot.
What does an overwatered Aloe plant look like?
An overwatered aloe plant has yellow leaves, rotting roots, and mushy stems. A healthy aloe plant has lush green leaves that grow upright. Rotting spots, fading leaves, and mushy stems are signs something is wrong.
What are the signs of an overwatered aloe plant?
The signs of an overwatered aloe plant are yellow and brown leaves, mushy stems, and root rot disease. Let us discuss them one by one:
Overwatered aloe plants can also have soft and mushy appearing stems. The excess moisture the stem tissues hold gives it a soggy feel. The succulent looks weak, soft, and mushy due to water-soaked spots that develop on the leaves. An advanced sign that your aloe vera plant is experiencing serious overwatering is mushiness. Treat it correctly and at the correct time, else it will die.
Yellow and brown leaves
Overwatering is the primary reason for the discoloration of leaves in the aloe vera plants. They have little water needs for survival as they belong to the arid desert regions of the globe. When fed with saturated water in pots, the roots cannot draw sufficient water from the soil. It leads to the yellowing of leaves. Leaves turn brown or black in extreme situations.
The leaves will start to wilt and appear wrinkled if not treated on time. The look will be as if the plant is underwatered. These signs contradict the appearance of healthy aloe vera leaves with a plump and have a glossy texture.
Root rot disease
The roots of the aloe plant will rot due to prolonged sogginess. The soil experiences fungi and other bacteria environments because of excess water storage for a longer duration. These pathogens then rot the roots of the aloe vera plant. To identify root rot, look for soggy texture and brown-black discoloration. Plants with rotten roots also produce a foul smell.
Is it possible to save an overwatered aloe plant?
Yes, it is possible to save an overwatered aloe plant. It has an aesthetic appearance and is a sensitive plant. Its leaves are filled with clinical juice inside. They store the needed water because they are born in tropical deserts. Their bodies cannot survive the extra water load. Their cell membranes can burst inside the leaf if you overwater them. Overwatering leads to rotten roots that are visible as soft leaves.
The adequate living conditions for aloe plants are high moisture and low temperature. They cannot fight against the fungus spores. Because of this, the fungus can thoroughly eat leaves, stems, and roots. To save aloe plants from overwatering, you must be first aware of the signs of this condition. Plant parents will not like their aloe plant with curry leaves, will they? No one likes to see their plants sick and dying, so take action immediately. The roots can entirely rot due to excess water, thus making it hard to revive an overwatered plant. But it is possible if you treat the signs at an early stage.
While treating the overwatered plants, we advise you not to change the pots of the plants at that time. You must carry out the process in the summer or late spring season. According to research, 55% of plants get spoiled when pots are changed. Rotten roots damage the entire plant. Slightly affected areas of an aloe vera plant by fungi and excess water can spread like an infection generating rotten roots.
The best way to make sure your plants are not damaged by rotten roots is by watering them. Some of the ways of watering are:
From the top portion
Start watering from the top of the plants. The best time for watering aloe vera is in the evening. Spray the plants using a fine sprayer. Do not water the plants during sunny temperatures, as it might burn the leaves. Research has shown that watering from the top is the best method for adult aloe vera plants. Do not wash out the soil and make the leaves wet.
From the below portion
The solar intensity is decreased in the early morning—water the aloe vera plants during the time estimation. During hot seasons, you can keep the plants beside the sunniest windows. It will help in checking out the exact schedule of watering aloe plants. To water from the bottom, take a pan and some water in it. Then place this pan in the plant container.
How to save an overwatered aloe plant? (Step by Step guide)
Here is the step-by-step guide to saving an overwatered aloe plant.
- Begin by monitoring the soil of the plant. Press your fingers a few inches down to check the moisture content. Does the soil feel dry to touch? If yes, your plant needs water. Being succulents, aloes can store water, and you do not need to water them enough. It must be done when it is necessary and not otherwise. Water only when the soil is dry and not otherwise.
- Check the aloe vera plants after every two days during the warmer months. Their water needs increase during these months. In the colder months, the plants keep themselves reserved with enough water. It is indeed true that these plants live more comfortably in a cool place.
- Aloe vera is a succulent that stores water in its leaves. The leaves become transparent and begin to drop due to insufficient water. Overwatering also causes harm to the leaves first. You must be aware of what you are doing to your plants. To know better, check carefully to bring the plant out of the pot and check its roots. Transfer the plants into a new pot by cutting the rotten roots.
- When watering your plants, make sure that water does not sit on the surface of the ground. To water with a light hand, you can consider using a sprayer. Check the plants every week.
- The first thing that occurs due to overwatering is rotten roots that slowly damage the entire plant. Transfer your plant to a new pot if you think they are dying in the current pots. Loosely hold the base and remove the plant from the ground. For simplicity and to ensure the safety of your plants, break its bottom to bring the plant out. You can take another person’s help to do this. It is a good idea to use a knife and cut the pot bottom near the interior. Keep it steady after you use it.
- Check the roots after removing the plants from the pots. See whether they are healthy or rotten. In most cases, roots damage the plants. You must work towards removing the mushy characteristic of the rotten roots. Cut down the damaged roots using a sterilized knife. Even weak aloe vera plants can inject natural nutrients into the soil. So cut only damaged and unhealthy roots, not the weaker ones.
- Make a mindful selection of the new pot before transferring the aloe vera plants. The new pot should be one-third times larger than the root system. The wrong new pot choice will only waste the purpose of the entire process and will also cause more damage to the roots.
- Use potting soil in the new pot as it offers a well-draining environment and has a higher sand content which is best for succulents or cactus. There are several online videos available you can refer to on making the potting soil for indoor plants. You can also buy a ready-made mix from the market. But be sure to choose a reputed brand.
- To completely replant the aloe vera, prepare the new pot by filling it with potting mixture and soil. Thus, gently plant the aloe vera in the soil. Cover the root ball entirely with the soil mixture. Do not bury the roots very deep as it can harm the plant’s growing roots. You can also attach gravel to the top portion of the soil. It will enhance the beauty of the pot plus which will help reduce the evaporation rate of water.
The above nine steps depict how you can save an overwatered aloe vera plant. Plants make your outdoor and indoor more aesthetic so take good care of them. Plants are easy to recover from any health condition because of their healing properties. They are most affected by overwatering and under-watering activities because they are succulents. However, their recovery is possible by following our given techniques.
The article acquaints the readers with the knowledge of an overwatered aloe vera plant. Now the only task left to you is saving your plant. You can grow this succulent in your home to enjoy its aesthetic beauty and extract its health benefits. You can keep the succulents healthy by watering them well. Plant parents are most happy seeing their plants healthy and thriving.