Echeveria Stretching: Cause and Solution

It happens most often in winter. The previously compact, densely leafed echeveria plant stretches without ceasing. In the end, the succulent plant has lost its harmonious shape and has long, thin shoots. Read here what causes echeveria stretching and how you can solve the problem.

echeveria stretching

Lack of light causes extensive growth in length

Almost all types of echeverias are sunbathers or at least want a partially shaded location. If the plants are in a place that is too warm and dark during the winter, they stretch themselves fearlessly towards the light.

Experts call this process etiolation. As the echeveria plant rushes to get more light, the new shoots become long and thin. The distance between the leaves (internodes) becomes noticeably larger. If the succulent plant curves at the same time, botanists speak of phototropism. The affected plant will definitely be unsightly. So read on for what to do now.

How to solve the Echeveria stretching problem

When an Echeveria grows elongated due to lack of light, not all parts of the plant are affected. By cutting, potting and caring for undamaged offshoots in good time, the exotic succulent plant will be preserved. How to do it right:

  • Cut off normally grown head cuttings or lateral offsets
  • Let the cuts dry for a few days
  • Pour nutrient-poor cactus or succulent soil into a pot and moisten it
  • Do not plant the offshoot too deep in it
  • After 8 to 10 days, begin normal adult succulent care regimen

If your Echeveria has no suitable offshoots or cuttings, the rescue plan can also be successful with leaf cuttings. Twist and pull off a leaf from the stem to reveal the juicy tissue. Let the leaf callous over for a few days. Then place the cutting on poor, slightly moist succulent soil so that it can take root and produce new succulents.


To prevent your Echeveria plant from forming a long stem, it should overwinter in a bright, cool location from November to February. If there is no suitable plant room available, simply compensate for the lack of light in well-heated living rooms with a grow light.