7 Causes of Yellow Indoor Plant Leaves and How to fix it

Indoor plants can be a lovely addition to your living space, and they can keep you more connected with nature and provide an attractive backdrop for furniture and decor. However, if you notice your indoor plants turning yellow, it shows something is going wrong.

What Causes Yellowing of Plant Leaves

Yellow Plant Leaves

The cause of yellow leaves in plants is sometimes different and can be attributed to various reasons. Some factors causing the yellowing leaves in plants are as follows:

1. Aging

Sometimes, plant leaves turning yellow does not necessarily mean the plant is unhealthy; it can be a sign of aging.

It is natural for plants to grow, and their leaves turn yellow with time. It can take a few weeks or years before leaves start turning yellow, which is normal and part of their growth.

Older plants shed off odd leaves as they age, and the lower leaves turn yellow and drop off. This situation calls for no worries. You can also trim down the main stem if it becomes too leggy, and this also aids its new growth.

Treatment of Ageing

Once you notice your plant becoming too leggy, trim the main stem, and it aids new growth.

2. Overwatering

Watering Indoor Plant

This happens often and is a major factor contributing to yellowing plant leaves. As a new plant parent, tending to your plant is important and relaxing, but do it moderately.

You must water your plant only as much as it needs. Don’t only schedule time and days for watering; if your plant already has yellow leaves, ensure you check the soil.

Treatment of Overwatering

Dip your finger in the soil, two inches long, to check if the soil is damp or dry. Observe if the soil is still damp. If it is, then do not water it. Come back in a few days to check again if it is suitable.

Overdose of water damages the leaves. The soil is soaked and may drown the root system. The root won’t survive without oxygen.

Tending to your plant ignorantly is wrong. Understand the concept of watering as a new plant parent. More plants with different needs, foliage plants, cacti, and succulents, require extra care.

3. Underwatering

This is another common factor that causes the yellowing of plant leaves. If the soil is dry, and you notice the leaves at the bottom of the plant becoming yellow or pale with brown patches on them, it means the plant doesn’t get enough water.

When plants don’t get enough water, the leaves turn yellow, sometimes at the tips, and sometimes are accompanied by black spots. Watering the plant regularly should be a priority.

Treatment for Overwatering and Underwatering

You should water your plants more often if you notice any parched soil below the surface of your plants. Avoid overwatering your plants by watering them moderately.

When you notice that your plant’s soil is damp or overwatered, it is getting enough water.

Don’t overwater your plant to prevent its roots from sitting in water. It would be best if you also tried to move your plants to other pots with good drainage.

4. Lack of Nutrients

Lack of nutrients in plants can cause the yellowing of the plant leaves. Iron, calcium, nitrogen, and magnesium are common nutrients lacking in a plant with yellow leaves.

However, other reasons can affect nutrient uptake through the roots, but these four will always cause yellowing problems if they are insufficient.

Therefore, you may need to add more fertilizer to your soil to adjust the balance between nutrients. The wrong balance of nutrients leads to nutrient deficiencies, excessive salt levels, and harmful chemical elements like fluoride.

Treatment of Lack of Nutrients

When your plant lacks nitrogen, you notice yellow leaves and light green with new growth, which might also be a deficiency symptom.

Feed your plants with food that contains nutrients. While doing this, follow the recommended prescription to avoid fertilizer burn. When you feed your plant with the right dosage, in no time, you will see it blossom again.

5. Insects and Pests

Having yellow leaves on your plant could also show an infestation of insects. For example, plants with nutrient deficiencies are more attractive to aphids, and plants can suffer severe yield loss if these aphids aren’t managed in time. Mites may also cause this problem, so you must check your plants regularly for signs of insects.

Treatment of Insects and Pest

When you notice pests feeding on your plant, inspect, and you might notice another invasion. For example, tiny holes in the leaves could mean that spider mites are feeding on them. If the plant is covered in white wax, mealybugs are the perpetrator.

What you need to do when your plant is Infested is to cut off the affected area and spray with insecticide or neem oil.

6. Soil pH

The soil pH is also important because it can affect the root’s ability to absorb certain nutrients. The pH level of water affects the solubility of iron in different nutrients.

Too much acidity from the surrounding environment causes nutrient deficiency too. You can get the soil testing kit from a gardening store to know the level of your plant’s soil pH.

7. Excess Light

When you expose plants to too much stress, it affects their growth negatively. The leaves cannot get enough nutrients from the ground or air for photosynthesis.

You might see your plant leaves becoming yellow, and this might be due to too much exposure to stressful conditions like cold or sunlight. Some plants affect their growth or yield when exposed to these extreme weather.

Treatment of Excess Light

Only sometimes leave your plants in shady corners. Put your plant in a sunny spot and let them take in the sun for a few hours. Take note of how the plants adapt to this move. Not all plants adapt quickly or easily, and some have difficulties adjusting to new moves.

Various factors contribute to the yellowing of indoor plant leaves. You might quickly notice these issues and try to fix them immediately, and in some cases, you need help to understand what is wrong with the plants.

In these, ensure you make the necessary changes one step at a time. While correcting the problems, the yellow leaves might eventually fall off.

If the plant regains its health, it grows new leaves. Tending to plants demands patience; fix these common causes of yellowing leaves, and you will gradually see the improvement.

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