Hens and Chicks plants

by Sandra
Some weeks ago my hens & chicks looked great. I left town a few weeks and when I'm came back they look terrible. Husband watered them some but he knows not to give them much water. I gave them a good watering 2 days ago but they are looking worse. Can anyone help? I have removed half of the plants to another pot and added more sand.
hens and chicks plants, gardening, Today s photo
Today's photo.
hens and chicks plants, gardening, Pic taken 7 weeks ago
Pic taken 7 weeks ago
  33 answers
  • Lori J Lori J on May 29, 2014
    Are they getting enough sun? Sadly I lost nearly all my hens and chicks after a long, dry winter. We just never had any snow cover and it was harder on my yard than any bitter cold winter every has been.

  • Donna Byram Donna Byram on May 29, 2014
    I have had these for many years and have learned that they like early morning to noon sun then shade the rest of the day. Also, I use Miracle-gro potting soil or equivalent too and mix it with my yard soil. Also, you need to raise them up out of the pot and possibly a clay pot would do better. Do not place against a wall where the get heat that bounces off of the wall. Adding a picture of mine that is planted in an old bird bath. Most of mine are in the ground.

  • Susan Haynes Susan Haynes on May 29, 2014
    If they have been getting too much water or just came from a nursery they can be sunburned. Are they accustomed to shade? I've only lost mine due to my dogs wagging tail or birds eating them. They are very hardy here in Texas. They could have a root parasite or rot. Dig them up and try re- planting in another soil. I never used sand...Good Luck!

  • Amy Rohde Amy Rohde on May 30, 2014
    They really barely need any water. I found this advice online and it looks like maybe yours got too much water? As easy as hens-and-chicks are to grow, they must be protected from certain dangers. Invariably, the worst “fox in the henhouse” is overwatering. Because “semps” are succulents (and therefore accustomed to dry conditions), you must wait until they’re completely dry before watering. Then it’s preferable to give them a drink at the roots only, so that no moisture is left on the leaves. Since hens-and-chicks prefer well-drained soil, a layer of gravel along the surface will keep them from sitting in a puddle. (Like poultry, they’ll drown in too much water!)

  • Nanny Nanny on May 30, 2014
    Put them in dirt. Mine are outside and never do anything to them. They just sit there and look pretty. Sounds to me like he drowned them . Repot with dirt/ with fertilizer (Miracle grow) just enough water to get the air out , and let them sit. Don't water for awhile. I'll bet they will Spring back up if they aren't dead before you do this. Good luck. They are easy to grow.

  • Helen Helen on May 30, 2014
    Mine are in full sun daily and never get 'watered' except for the rain that comes down and they are thriving. It does sound like yours may have been over watered, it is easy to do with this type of plant. I would put them in an old boot or a much smaller container and have rock sitting just under them to that when you do water them the water will not be sitting just under the plant. Good luck with the Hens and Chicks.

  • Annie Smith Annie Smith on May 30, 2014
    They seem to be overwatered or the soil is not draining properly. Remove the plants and inspect the roots. Are the roots brown and rotted or white and vigorous? Trim away any rotten roots and transplant into a succulent mix or add perlite to potting soil. Good luck...these little plants are in distress! PS... The damage may have begun in the nusery so don't beat yourself up too much.

  • Cheryl Eisel-Long Cheryl Eisel-Long on May 30, 2014
    They have the appearance of too much water & or sun. Also they are to far down in your container.They need to be up higher or in the ground itself.

  • Karen Sheilds Karen Sheilds on May 30, 2014
    I believe they are (1) sitting too low in the pot, (2) in dirt when they should be in a catus or succulent soil that drains VERY well, and (3) have pebble mulch under them to avoid them sitting in water. Hopefully you caught them in time to save them! Good Luck!

  • Deb Byers Deb Byers on May 30, 2014
    We grew them in the window wells in a bed of dirt with rocks on top and they thrived. I think yours may have baked in the sun and being so low in the pot may have reflected the light or heat on them. They need to have room to spread out and be more like a ground cover in something shallow.

  • Buster Evans Buster Evans on May 30, 2014
    I think they may have had a bit tooo much to drink.. let them sit in a shade/sun area not too much sun or full sun and let em dry out for a while see if they get back to normal.

  • Jennifer Brown Jennifer Brown on May 30, 2014
    Give them a more sunny place and don't water until they look better. just let them get rain watering

  • Toni Teague Toni Teague on May 30, 2014
    Looks like they need much more sun and less water. Are they in a pot with drainage? I would put them in the sun and leave them alone for at least 10 days, do not water.

  • Rhonda Clements Rhonda Clements on May 30, 2014
    way over watered. mine live on my rockery where half of them dont even touch any soil, and get almost no water, these look like some of mine did in an area that got flooded last winter, too much water for sure, not sure if you can save these.

  • Linda Linda on May 30, 2014
    Hens and Chicks love to be neglected. I have given so many hens and chicks away that no one wants any more. I have 2pots of hens and chicks that over grow the pot each year. They are outside in Marietta Georgia in goodpotting soil. They are ignored until I repot them next spring. They only getwatered when it rains.

  • Lorré Bonner Lorré Bonner on May 30, 2014
    Too much water & too little sun. I water mine during drought only.

  • Sandra Sandra on May 30, 2014
    Thanks Lorre

  • Sandra Sandra on May 30, 2014
    Thanks Linda

  • MaryAnn A MaryAnn A on May 31, 2014
    I just received some of the "chicks" in the mail from a friend on FB. Can't remember where she lives. They are my first try with succulents. I put them in a strawberry pot with just dirt from my back yard. they look ok. I am trying not to water them. the comments here are really helpful !! Thanks to all of you ! and esp @Sandra for posting the original problem, Mary Ann Welaka, FL

  • Katrina Katrina on May 31, 2014
    To much water & sun had some that happen to mine the same way yours my hubby accidently done mine one summer the same way as yours .....

  • Dudley Right Dudley Right on May 31, 2014
    Everyone is right. I have tons of them around my yard. They need little or no care, lots of sun, drainage and only water when they've been dry for a while...tho I never water mine outside. Just the ones I have in a pot in the house (very shallow). After the blooms dry up, cut them off and toss. Babies will spread by themselves. They will survive in shadier areas, but they won't thrive and multiply as much.

  • Jeanne Treend Jeanne Treend on Jun 02, 2014
    Like everyone has said too much water. My hens and chicks are direct sun all day but they are planted in a flower bed. The other thing that people mentioned is they are too low in the pot. Take them out add more soil and they should be fine. TIP if you're using a deep planter fill the bottom with Styrofoam (egg cartons) or emptied water bottles with lids to A. help with drainage and B. so you don't have to use so much dirt. They really don't need more than 4 inches of dirt. Good luck they are pretty hardy plants and should come back to life for you. good luck!

  • Sandra Sandra on Jun 02, 2014
    Thank you so much, Jeanne, and everyone for your help.

  • Sandra Sandra on Jun 02, 2014
    Thanks so much for all the good advice!

  • Sandra Sandra on Jun 02, 2014
    That is beautiful. I've never seen any so large,

  • Dylan Dylan on Jun 05, 2014
    any one help me get this plant? My grandpa use to have them and I loved them so much. How can I get some ?

  • Lori J Lori J on Jun 05, 2014
    Dylan, if you have a local radio program that does a trade/sell/swap thing, you could ask. Greenhouses sell them but they are absurdly priced.

  • Annie Smith Annie Smith on Jun 05, 2014
    I saw them for sale at my local Lowes.

  • Jeanne Treend Jeanne Treend on Jun 10, 2014
    Sandra, here are some of mine that I have planted along my landscaping

  • Sandra Sandra on Jun 14, 2014
    They are beautiful! Would love to have these all over the place. I replanted mine (some among some rocks around a tree) and a few of them may make it! Thanks for sharing Jeanne!

  • Melinda A Kershey Melinda A Kershey on Jul 25, 2016
    we found on two of our hens& chickens that they are growing upward like a stick what and can u show pictures

  • Robert Keeser Robert Keeser on Jul 29, 2022

    Is miracle grow harmful to hens and chicks

  • Robert Keeser Robert Keeser on Jul 29, 2022

    Is miracle grow harmful to hens and chicks