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Why do succulents lose color

3 min read

Why do succulents lose color


Succulents are plants with a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and unusual features, which is why a lot of experts and newbie gardeners can't get enough of them and keep on getting more. Furthermore, they also offer different colors that range from white to nearly anything.

But have you ever wondered why some slowly fade their bright color or revert to a plain green color after a few weeks, especially with newly bought ones?

Keep reading to learn why this usually happens, as well as how to prevent it.

Over and Under Sunlight Exposure

Too much and too little sunlight exposure does not only result in an etiolated succulent or sunburn damage. This can also lead your precious plants to slowly lose their color and revert to pale green over time.


Over and under sunlight exposure can lead succulents to lose their color.

So if you see that yours are starting to experience color loss, all you have to do is to make some gradual changes with their light exposure while watching out for signs of too much and too little at the same time to prevent damaging them.

For starters, place your succulent in a bright shaded spot for at least a week, then relocate them where they can get about 4 hours of morning sunlight for another 4 to 7 days. Now, depending on how your succulents reacted, slowly transfer them to an area with more or lesser sunlight. Click here to understand more about different light levels.

Perfect Watering

Watering also plays a major role as to why a succulent starts to lose its color. Ironically, a perfectly watered succulent will often fade its color and eventually return to a plain green. So as soon as you notice your succulent start to lose its vibrant tips or foliage, you need to give it a bit of stress by cutting back with your watering routine.

Perfect watering can cause color loss in succulent

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For instance, if watering once a week makes your succulents slowly start to lose their vibrant look, then consider changing it to at least once every 2 weeks.

However, keep in mind that an extended period of drought can also lead to their death. So remember to keep an eye on your succulents so you won't end up with a dying plant.

Poor Soil Quality

Over time, a potting mix can become poor in quality, and yes, this can also cause color loss. Keep in mind that soil is what helps prevent succulents from sitting in wet for too long. Meaning, even if you water your succulents less often than you usually do, they will still start to lose their bright colors if the soil you are using does not drain fast enough or has become poor in quality.

To fix this, you can repot your succulents using either a cactus and succulent soil mix or by creating your own blend.

Pot is Too Big or Too Small

Not using the right pot size for your succulents can also be the reason why they start to become pale. Plus, using a pot or container that's too big or too small for your plant will most likely promote root rot (if the pot is too big) or hinders its growth (if it's too small).

Why do succulents lose color

Not using the right pot can cause color loss in succulent.

Ideally, the pot should only be around half an inch larger (between the plant and the edge of the pot or container). To get more information about getting the right pot for your succulents, read our “Choosing the right pot size for your succulents” article.


If you'll notice, the colors of succulents get less intense and don't pop from Spring through Summer months, as the temperature starts to get warm. Ideally, you need to keep the temperature between 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit to keep them happy and healthy. However, if you want to keep them from losing the intensity of their color, you have to stress them a bit by keeping the temperature between 70 and 40 degrees for an extended period of time.

Why do succulents lose color

Keeping the temperature between 70 and 40 degrees to stress them a bit and maintain the intensity of colors of succulents.

Stress is not a bad thing when it comes to caring for succulents. In fact, the most beautiful colors in succulents sometimes come only when they are going through periods of stress, which is why it is quite disappointing to see them slowly lose their colors. But hopefully, you find this post helpful!



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Find out more other Types of Succulents Care Guide

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