Stretching or Etiolation - Plant Terms

Stretching or technically "etiolation" is a pretty common problem and something I experienced a lot of when I was first learning about succulents! As always, I wanted to dive in and do a little research about it and see what there was to learn! Here's what I found in a nutshell!


  • Etiolation happens when a succulent (other plants experience this too!) is not getting enough light. It's quite literally "reaching" towards any light source! It sometimes can give the illusion that it's growing.
  •  Once the plant has stretched, it's not goin' back, BUT you can try propagating the leaves.
  • If you notice your succulent starting to stretch, just try placing it in a new location closer to the light gradually. 
  • Depending on the variety and how much the plant has stretched you can snip the top part off and let it re-root (in a bright area!) and remove any other leaves to try propagating!
  • If your succulents have stretched, DO NOT feel bad about it! It happens to most (if not all) of us as some point and is part of learning! I've found learning about how to take care of them requires a bit of trial and error (and that's part of the fun!) 
  • If you wanna be super fancy, you can use a light meter to find the perfect locations for your succulents in you garden! This article by Leaf & Clay talks all about it! 

Wanna learn more?

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Image Courtesy of: @chachisgarden

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