7 Reasons Why Hens and Chicks Are Rotting?

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hens and chicks rotting

Hens and chicks are super easy to grow, they are the type of succulents that can be propagated from their shoots. Due to this, they are very popular among gardeners. The problem occurs when they are rotting. Let’s quickly get to know: Why are Hens and chicks rotting?

Hens and chicks rot when they are overwatered or planted in poor soil. This type of soil retains a lot of water which harms the roots and causes rotting. The other reasons for rotting are inadequate light, a fungal infection.

A few years ago I had my first Hens and chick plant. I used to care for it frequently, but even after caring for it, I saw that the plant started to rot. 

As a beginner, it was difficult for me to understand the reason for rotting. Just like me, there are a lot of people who might face this problem. Let’s get to know the reasons. 

7 Reasons why Hens and chicks rot

Hens and chicks are low-maintenance plants, but they have certain requirements that you need to take care of. if you miss meeting those parameters they might rot and eventually die. Here are a few reasons why they rot.

1. Overwatering

The most common reason for the rotting of the hens and chicks is overwatering. They do not like to sit in water for long period. 

When they are overwatered, the water settles in the soil and that causes the root rot in the plant. Overwatering can also lead to fungal infection and then plant might die due to it. 

Hens and chicks need to be watered correctly, you must understand their watering needs to avoid rotting.

How to Fix:

  • To avoid overwatering, make sure to use the soak and dry method for watering hens and chicks. Water them only when the soil is completely dry. This is a great way to understand their watering requirements.
  • Make sure that you have the correct type of soil.
  • Have a good drainage system for them.

2. Poor Soil

You must have a good quality fast-draining soil for the Hens and chicks. Poor soil retains a lot of water in it and stays damp. 

That does not allow the roots to breathe and they drown in it which causes the root rot. Also, this type of soil does not have any nutrients in it.

This is can be the reason for the rotting of your hens and chicks.

How to Fix:

  • Consider buying good quality fast-draining soil. This type of soil flushes all the excess water from the soil and retains the required amount of moisture.
  • Fast draining soil has all the nutrients required for healthy growth.

Related Article:

My Hens and Chicks plant dying.

3. Inadequate light

Hens and chicks are hardy in nature. They like being exposed to direct sunlight for hours. 

If they do not get a good amount of light daily, they might start to stress and eventually rot. This mainly happens when you are growing them indoors. 

You must keep them in a place where they can get bright light throughout the day. 

How to Fix:

  • Consider giving them direct sunlight at least for 3-5 hours daily.
  • If you are growing them indoors, keep them near the windows to give them bright light throughout the day.
  • If you are growing them outdoors, keep them in a place where they can get direct sun for a long duration. 

Related Article:

Why is My Hens and Chicks Plant growing tall?

4. Pots without a drainage hole

If you are growing Hens and chicks in a pot without a drainage hole. That causes root rot in the plant. 

This happens because all the excess water settles at the bottom of the pot which eventually increases the moisture level of the soil and roots drown in it. 

Therefore you must have fast-draining soil with good pot drainage.

How to fix:

5.  Fungal Infection

If your plant has caught any fungal infection, then the Hens and chicks are prone to rot. 

  • Keep the hens and chicks in a pot with a drainage hole underneath. Such types of pots will flush away all the excess water from the pot.
  • Consider buying the correct size of pot for the plant.

Fungal infection is a sign that they need to be taken care of to avoid further rotting. It is tough for any plant to survive the infection but with proper care, the plant can thrive. 

Therefore, if you notice any sign of infection then the plant can start to rot and die.

How to Fix:

  • To cure the fungal infection, apply the fungicides to the infected area. Make sure to use organic or homemade fungicides.
  • To avoid fungal infections, do not overwater the plant. Water them only when they need to be watered.

6. Pests

A pest attack is the worst nightmare for any plant. Hens and chicks mostly get attacked by the mealybugs. 

These are the tiny white creatures that feed on the plants. They are very contagious, if any of the plants have mealybugs make sure to immediately isolate the plant. 

They can rapidly spread from one plant to the other. This creature eats up the whole plant, and that is another reason for the rotting of hens and chicks.

How to Fix:

  • Consider applying the pesticides or alcohol rub till the bugs have completely vanished.
  • Frequently inspect the plant and do not forget to check the blind spots such as under the stem or behind the leaves.  

Related Article:

How to get rid of Mealybugs from the succulents?

7. Excess Humidity

Hens and chicks do not grow well when they are kept in humid places. Too much humidity can cause the rotting of the plant. 

This can mostly happen when the plant is kept in humid places like bathrooms, or when watered incorrectly. 

While watering them do not water on their leaves as that increases the humidity of the plant and it starts to rot. 

How to Fix:

  • Avoid watering on the leaves of the plant, water directly into the soil till the soil is completely wet.
  • Keep them in ventilated places, avoid humid places while growing indoors.

How to care for Hens and chicks? 

 Hen and chick plant care

Hens and chicks do not need much care and attention. They just need a few things to grow healthy and beautiful. You must take care of these simple things to help them grow healthy.


Hens and chicks need to be watered correctly, for that you can use the soak and dry method. In this method water them only when the soil is completely dry. 

This is the perfect way to understand the water needs of the plant. The other way to water them is to water them once a week. 

I have tried both the methods and both work simply great for the hens and chicks. It is up to you which suits you better.

Giving them good light

Hens and chicks need direct sunlight to grow healthy and beautiful. They need at least 3-5 hours of direct sunlight daily, so keep them in a place where they get the direct sun. 

If you are growing them indoors, make sure to keep them near the windows, and give them indirect light throughout the day.

Having good soil and pots

succulents potting soil

Hens and chicks need good quality fast-draining soil to grow healthy. They grow healthy in such soil, fast-draining soil flushes away all the excess water from the soil and retains only moisture for the roots. 

You can make your own potting soil by adding a ⅓ portion of each: soil, perlite, and cocopeat, and then mix it. 

With good soil, you also need a pot with a drainage hole underneath. This type of pot flushes away all the excess water from the pot by preventing any accumulation of water at the bottom.

Fertilizing them

The last way to care for the hens and chicks by fertilizing them once a month at least. Fertilization provides all the essential nutrients to the plant that are needed to grow healthy and beautiful. 

They do get the nutrients from the soil but the soil does not have all the essential nutrients in it. Therefore, you must give the extra source of nutrients by fertilizing them.

Related Article:

How often should you fertilize the succulents? 


How often should you water hens and chicks? 

Hens and chicks should be watered once a week at least. The other way to water them is when the soil is completely dry. Do not water them if the soil is damp, which can cause overwatering the plant.

Final Thoughts

Hens and chicks are beautiful plants, they are one of the most favorite plants among gardeners. They can reproduce themselves by their shoots which makes them unique from the other plants. 

To avoid them from rotting make sure to take care of them correctly. Look for the above-mentioned reasons if the plant is rotting.

I hope you found this article helpful. Do share this information with others.

Happy Planting!!

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