Yucca plants are unique succulents that put you in the mind of the more beautiful and exotic aspects of the desert.
For the most part, they are easy to grow and care for, but sometimes, due to accidental neglect or improper care, they begin dying on us.
Thankfully, reviving a Yucca plant isn’t the hardest gardening trick in the book.
Read on below to find out exactly what causes your Yucca to go downhill, and just how to revive it.
How to Revive Yucca Plant
Not enough light, too much or too little water, transplant shock, and several other common issues may be the cause of your Yucca starting to wilt, rot, or otherwise start dying. Reviving it begins with examining it and taking appropriate measures to reverse its state of health.
1. Provide Enough Light for Your Yucca to Thrive
Yucca plants like warm places with lots of sunlight, and to be healthy, they require about six full hours of bright sunlight per day. If your plant looks all wilty, like it will break and die, if it wasn’t in a nice, sunny place, it needs to be moved immediately
Move the Yucca plant on the sunniest spot in your home. Preferably, close to the Southern window (3-5 feet), especially if it’s Wintertime when there is less natural light.
Water the plant and wait for a few days. The Yucca plant should fully recover in that period of time.
2. Avoid Underwatering
Underwatering a Yucca plant is a very common mistake that people make. The Yucca Plant is a succulent that doesn’t require much water at all and it’s easy to miss watering quite a few times.
When you notice yellow, dry leaves and soil is also more than a bone dry, yes your plant desperately needs some water.
Keep watering until the soil around your Yucca plant looks soggy. Make sure that the pot has big holes on the bottom and water will drain out. Leave it in a dry place with lots of sun.
During the late spring and summer, the Yucca plant should be watered about once per week when soil is dry two inches deep but never let more than half of the soil in the pot to get dried out.
3. Avoid overwatering
Unfortunately, overwatering Yucca plants has almost the same symptoms as underwatering. Leaves look wilted, turning yellow and drooping. That’s why you need to double-check the soil.
If it is moisture that is a clear sign that your plant was getting way more water than it needs. Yucca is a desert plant and has the ability to store water in its leaves and steams and it is not hard to make a mistake thinking how it is thirsty.
Stop watering immediately. Change the soil in the pot and be sure it’s dry well-drained soil. Leave it in a dry environment with a lot of sun to recover.
4. Check and Treat for Root Rot
Root rot is very often a consequence of overwatering your Yucca plant. Root rot may also occur if the roots couldn’t get enough nutrients. At any rate, the leaves will turn yellow and roots will become brown, slimy, and rotten.
You need to cut off all affected parts and leave only healthy parts of the root system. Wash the roots with hydrogen peroxide and spray some fungicide on. Transplanting in a new soil medium will give Yucca the best chances to survive.
5. Deal with Temperature Changes
Curly leaves on your Yucca? If so, it could be a sign of your plant stressing out due to temperature changes.
Yucca plants can happily live in a range of temperatures from 45°F up to 90°F. If you have noticed red spots on the leaves and the whole plant is drooping, it is probably suffering from temperature stress.
Move the Yucca plant back to an optimal temperature environment and it will start recovering in a day or two.
6. Avoid Stress Caused by Transplanting
Leaves on your Yucca plant are turning yellow and wilted? Steam doesn’t seem so great, either? And you just bring it to the home and freshly transplanted? Well, that’s the reason why the plant is dying.
Keep the Yucca in the sunny spot, water not more or less depending on the season, and more than likely it will fully recover. To avoid this issue in the future, never transplant plants after they change the habitat they are used to, rather wait for a few weeks.
7. Deal with and Prevent Pest Infestations
White spots appearing on your Yucca? If so, you may have a pest problem.
Yucca is sensitive to certain types of insects or fungi. Insects, like aphids and mealybugs, can attack your plant and nothing is surprising about it.
Move all yellow leaves and parts of the plant that were affected. Spray with horticultural oil, you can use Neem oil, for example, it is very effective and completely natural.
If the infestation seems to be out of control you might need to use pesticides.
In case the Yucca plant gets infested with spider mites, remove all critical parts and use products generally called acaricides.
8. Avoid Too Much Fertilizer
If your Yucca plant is not developing equally (steam is too big compared to the leaves for example) it means you may be adding too much/often fertilizer.
Don’t fertilize Yucca more than 2 or 3 times during early and late spring and summer. Never fertilize during wintertime. Too much fertilizer can cause death to the plant easily.
You need to wash off as much fertilizer from the soil as possible. It is best to use a hose and pouring water directly into the soil will help get rid of some nutrients.
The pot needs to have holes on the bottom to let water disturbingly go through. After some time, transplant the Yucca plant.
9. Treat Your Yucca for Sunburn
Yucca plants really like the sun but you need to be very careful moving them in direct sunlight after spending the whole winter inside. Further, it may suffer serious damage and die. Yucca will get yellow and brown spots on the leaves that also will start curling.
Move the plant in a shadier spot as soon as you notice sunburns, water it and let it fully recover before moving again. Move it back on the sun exposing it step by step and follow reactions.
For more tips on how to care for your Yucca, check on our article Red Yucca in a Nutshell.
Marcel runs the place around here. He has a deep passion for houseplants & gardening and is constantly on the lookout for yet another special plant to add to his arsenal of houseplants, succulents & cacti.
Marcel is also the founder of Iseli International Commerce, a sole proprietorship company that publishes a variety of websites and online magazines.