A plant with yellow leaves is likely stressed, diseased, or suffering from an infestation of pests. Fortunately, the solution to this problem is usually quite simple. The first step in solving the yellow leaves mystery is to examine the conditions of your pot and its environment. Follow these steps for a quick fix to your yellow-leaved plants:
Watering should be done carefully, as overwatering can cause root rot. Water your plant enough to keep the potting mix moist, but not wet. If you’re growing a succulent or other plant that requires more water than would normally be needed for a houseplant of its size, consider using a drip tray under each pot in order to avoid overwatering and inadvertent ponding at the base of your plants.
Fertilizing your pot plants is an important part of their care. Many plants need fertilizer to help them grow healthy and strong. The type of fertilizer you should use depends on the type of plant you have, how big it is, what time of year it is, and your climate.
- A liquid or granular fertilizer that contains nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P). Fertilizers come in different forms, such as dissolvable tablets or slow-release pellets; follow package directions when using these products. Never exceed recommended amounts as overfertilization can cause nutrient burn in some plants.
Plants need light to grow. This should be obvious, as they are plants and they do not grow in the dark. However, it’s important to realize that plants will use different amounts of light at different stages of growth; a seedling needs much less light than a well-established adult plant.
Plants also need light to produce food through photosynthesis (the process by which plants convert carbon dioxide and water into glucose). Photosynthesis helps you know whether your plant gets enough light because if it isn’t receiving enough sunlight, it won’t be able to make enough energy from photosynthesis either!
Plants also need sun rays in order for chlorophyll production—a molecule that gives leaves their green color—to take place properly so that your plants can grow healthy and strong!
- Temperature: The ideal temperature for your plant is between 50 and 80 degrees. Too high a temperature can cause yellow leaves, while too low a temperature can result in wilting or dormancy. A thermostat can help you regulate the temperature to ensure that it stays within this range.
- Humidity: If you live in a dry area, you’ll want to increase the humidity by misting the leaves every other day with water from a spray bottle. It’s also important to remember that plants need plenty of light, so be sure that yours gets at least eight hours of sunlight per day!
- Fungal Diseases: These include powdery mildew, downy mildew, leaf spot and anthracnose.
- Bacterial Diseases: These include bacterial leaf streak.
- Viral Diseases: These include petal blight and mosaic virus.
- Insects: These include aphids, thrips and mealybugs.
- Nematodes: These include root knot nematode (meloidogyne sp.).
- Mites: These include spider mites such as two spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae), red spider mite (Panonychus ulmi) or broad legged thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis).
Pests are typically controlled with a combination of chemical and non-chemical methods.
Pest-specific pesticides can kill the pests without harming your plants. You can purchase these products at your local garden center, hardware store, or online. When applying pest-specific pesticides, always follow the directions provided on the product label to ensure that they are used safely and effectively. Keep in mind that some pesticides will have different rates depending on what type of plant they’re being used on—make sure you’re reading labels very carefully!
Non-insecticidal methods include sanitation (removing dead leaves), barriers (placing netting over pots), traps (using sticky tape or an insect lure) and repellents (applying essential oils).
Yellow leaves are a sign of stress or disease in your pot plants.
Yellowing leaves are a sign of stress or disease in your pot plants. Stress can be caused by too much or too little water, or by not enough light. It can also be caused by diseases such as root rot, leaf spot or fungus gnats. Stress can also come from pests like spider mites and mealy bugs.
If you think your plant has a disease, treat it as soon as possible. The best way to prevent the spread of diseases is to remove infected leaves and keep the soil moist. If you have an infestation of pests, try spraying them off with a hose or insecticidal soap. You can also use insecticides that are safe for pets and children (or better yet, avoid using chemicals at all).