My favorite pot plant is the money tree. It is easy to care for and a great way to add some green to your home decor. But lately, I’ve noticed that my money tree’s leaves have been turning brown. I’m unsure what’s causing this, but I want to fix it so my plant can thrive.
This is one of many I receive messages from people trying to understand how to solve the problem of their money tree leaves turning brown. So, let’s get into it.
Causes And Treatment Of Money Tree Leaves Turning Brown
There are several reasons your money tree leaves turn brown. Sometimes, it could be something you did, didn’t, or have not been doing. Here are some causes and treatments of money tree leaves turning brown.
1. I Water My Money Tree A Bit Too Much
Watering your money tree too much is one of the most common causes of its leaves turning brown. When you overwater a money tree, the roots can’t get enough oxygen and start to rot. This will kill the plant and turn its leaves brown.
The best way to prevent this is to water your money tree only when the top of the soil is properly dry. You can test this by sticking your fingers an inch or so into the soil. If it’s wet, don’t water it, but if it’s dry, water it.
2. I Keep My Money Tree in a Heavily Shaded Room
If your money tree’s leaves are turning brown, it might be due to a lack of appropriate light. Try moving it to a spot where it will get more sun or use artificial light.
3. The Climate Here is Quite Dry
One common cause of leaves turning brown on money trees is not having enough humidity in the environment. When the air is too dry, the leaves will wilt and then turn brown as they dry out.
If you live in a dry climate or your home is particularly dry, you can combat this by misting your money tree regularly with water. You can also try placing it in a pot with water at the bottom or setting it near a humidifier.
4. I Think I May Have Used Too Much Fertilizer
Fertilizing your money tree is essential to its health, but it’s possible to overdo it. If you see the leaves turning brown and dropping off, it could signify that you’re giving it too much fertilizer.
When this happens, it’s best to reduce fertilizer and water less frequently. Let the soil dry out completely before watering again, and don’t fertilize for a few months. Once the tree has recovered, you can start fertilizing again, but use a light hand.
5. I’ve Had My Money Tree in a Pot for Years
One common reason your money tree’s leaves might turn brown is stress from being pot-bound. Whenever your tree’s roots become too large for the pot, they circle the bottom and sides of the pot.
If you think this might be the problem, gently remove your tree from its pot and check out the roots. If they’re tightly tangled and spiraling around the bottom of the pot, it’s time for a larger container.
Pick a new pot that’s about 2-3 inches wider in diameter than the current one, and use fresh potting soil to give your tree a nice new home. Be sure to water generously after repotting, as this will help reduce any transplant shock.
6. My Pot Has No Drainage Holes
If your money tree’s leaves turn brown and fall off, it could be a drainage issue. Your plant could be sitting in water for too long, or the roots may be waterlogged.
To test drainage, stick your finger about 2 inches into the soil. If it feels soggy, you need to improve drainage. If the soil is dry, water it very well.
There are a few ways to improve drainage. You can mix perlite or sand into the potting mix or use a pot with drainage holes. Be sure to empty the drip tray after each watering so the roots don’t sit in water.
7. I Notice Some Insects on My Plant
Pest infestation is another one of the most common reasons money tree leaves turn brown. The most common pests are scale insects, mealybugs, and spider mites. These pests suck the sap, which contains nutrients from the soil, out of the leaves, causing them to turn brown and eventually die.
To get rid of pests, you’ll need to use a pesticide. Make sure to follow the directions on the label and apply it evenly to all parts of the plant. You should review this process several times before the pests are entirely gone.
8. I Notice My Plant Roots Appear And Smell Odd
If your money tree’s leaves turn brown, it could be due to disease. One common disease that affects money trees is root rot, which is caused by overwatering.
If you think your tree might have root rot, the first thing you should do is check the roots. If they’re mushy or smell bad, you probably have a case of root rot.
The best way to treat root rot is to replant the tree in fresh, well-draining soil. You’ll also want to make sure you don’t overwater your tree in the future.
If you don’t think root rot is the problem, it could be another disease like leaf spot or powdery mildew, and these are both caused by fungi and can be treated with fungicides.
9. It is Quite Cold and Windy Where I Live
If you notice that the leaves on your money tree are turning brown, it could be because of temperature stress.
This usually happens when the plant is exposed to drafts or sudden temperature changes. So, if you have your money tree near a door or window, that could be the problem.
To fix this, move your plant to a different location in your home where it won’t be exposed to drafts. If the temperature in your home is consistently too hot or too cold, you may need to invest in a humidifier or a space heater to help create a more stable environment for your plant.
10. I Don’t Remember The Last Time I Fertilized
The last cause, on our list, of money tree leaves turning brown is nutritional deficiencies. If your tree is not getting enough nitrogen, phosphorus, or potassium, its leaves will turn brown and drop off.
To correct a nutritional deficiency, you’ll need to fertilize your tree. I recommend using a balanced fertilizer that has a ratio of 10-10-10. You can apply the fertilizer directly to the soil around the tree or use a foliar spray.
If you suspect your tree is deficient in one nutrient, you can get a soil test done to confirm it. Once you know which nutrient is lacking, you can choose a fertilizer that’s high in that nutrient. For example, if your tree is low in nitrogen, you could use a fertilizer with a ratio of 20-10-10.