I remember the first time I saw my plant leaves turn brown. I was deeply concerned because I felt the only solution was to pull out my gardening tools and start pruning, but when it kept reoccurring, I realized I needed to inspect before pruning. After a thorough inspection, I discovered that there are reasons and fixes in most cases of plant leaves turning brown.
Common Causes And Treatment Of Plant Leaves Turning Brown
There are several causes and treatments for plant leaves turning brown. Here are some of them:
1. Lack of Water
If the leaves of your plants are turning brown, the most likely reason is that they’re not getting enough water when plants don’t get enough water, their leaves wilt and turn brown.
The best way to prevent this is to water your plants regularly, giving them enough water so that the soil is always moist (but not wet). You can test the soil by sticking your finger in it—if it is dry, it’s time to water your plants.
If your plants turn brown and wilting, the most common reason for this is overwatering. When you water your plants too much, the roots can’t get enough oxygen, and they start to rot, causing the leaves to turn brown and wilt.
The best way to prevent overwatering is to wait until the top inch of the soil is dry before watering again. You can also water your plants less often, but give them a good soaking once a week.
3. Incorrect Light Exposure
One common cause of leaves turning brown is incorrect light exposure. If your plant is not getting the right type or amount of light, it will show signs of distress. Most plants need direct sunlight for at least six hours per day, so place them in a spot where they will get plenty of light.
The leaves will turn yellow or brown if your plant is not getting enough light. You can also tell if a plant is not getting enough light if it is growing very spindly and the stems are thin and delicate. If this is the case, you can try moving the plant to a brighter spot or supplementing it with artificial light.
4. Poor Drainage
If the drainage in your pot is poor, it could cause your plant leaves to turn brown. When water can’t drain properly, it will sit at the bottom of the pot and start to rot the roots of your plant. This will cause many problems, including yellowing and browning leaves.
To fix this, ensure your pot has good drainage. The best way to do this is to add a layer of rocks or gravel to the bottom of the pot before you add your plants, and this will help the water drain more quickly and prevent it from sitting around and rotting the roots.
5. Nutrient Deficiencies
If your leaves are brown, it might be caused by a nutrient deficiency. The most common nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, but they also need smaller amounts of other minerals. If your plant isn’t getting enough of these nutrients, it will show signs of stress, like leaves turning brown.
To fix a nutrient deficiency, you need to identify what nutrient is lacking and then take steps to add it back into the soil. You can usually do this by adding fertilizer or compost to the soil. If you need help determining which nutrient is lacking, you can take a sample of the soil to a gardening center or co-op for testing.
6. Pest Infestations
Pests are another common reason leaves turn brown and can be difficult to eliminate. If you think your plant has a pest infestation, the first step is to quarantine the plant from others to prevent the pests from spreading.
There are several ways to treat pests, depending on what pests you have. For example, if you have aphids, you can spray the plant with water or use insecticidal soap. For mealybugs, you can use rubbing alcohol. And for spider mites, you can use horticultural oil.
If you need to figure out what pests you have or can’t get rid of them with home remedies, it’s best to take the plant to a professional for treatment.
7. Environmental Stresses
There are a variety of environmental stresses that can cause leaves to turn brown. These include too much sun or not enough sun, too much wind, not enough water or too much water, extreme temperatures (hot or cold), poor soil water drainage, and air pollution.
If one of these is the problem, try to address the issue and see if the leaves start to look better. For example, if you think the plant is getting too much sun, move it to a shadier spot. And, if it lacks adequate water, water it more often. And so on.
One common reason for plant leaves turning brown is a disease. Diseases can be caused by fungi, bacteria, or viruses and often spread quickly from one plant to another.
There are a few things you can do to treat diseases in your plants:
Remove infected leaves from your plant, helping to prevent the disease from spreading to other plants. Then apply a fungicide or insecticide to the plant. Ensure that the instructions and directions on the label are followed carefully.
Increase the airflow around the plant, also helping prevent the spread of the disease to other plants. Ensure the plant is getting enough and the right water.
9. Fungal or Bacterial Infections
If you see small brown spots on your plant leaves surrounded by a yellow “halo”, this is a sure sign of a fungal or bacterial infection. These infections are most often caused by too much moisture on the leaves. To treat this, you must increase air circulation around the plant and ensure the leaves are dry before nightfall. You can also try using a fungicide or bactericide.
10. Herbicide Damage
The harsh chemicals in herbicides can cause plant leaves to turn brown. If you think this might be the problem, the first thing you should do is stop using the herbicide. If the damage is severe, you might need to replant your entire garden.
To prevent herbicide damage in the future, only use herbicides when necessary, and follow the instructions on the label carefully. Wear gloves and protective clothing when applying herbicides, and never spray them on windy days.