Table of Contents
Pothos Plant Turning Yellow – Yellowing pothos leaves are mainly caused by overwatering or inadequate drainage. Dry the top inch of soil between watering pothos. Continuously wet soil promotes root rot, which stops roots from absorbing nutrients and causes yellowing and withering leaves.
As the plant develops and the vines get longer, the leaves naturally become yellow. Pothos plants enjoy bright, indirect light, and direct sunlight may curl and burn the leaves. Using too much or too frequently with fertilizer also yellows the foliage.
It’s possible that the container retains too much moisture around the roots, causing the leaves to become yellow after repotting.
Pothos leaves become yellow in the winter because of less sunshine, temperatures below 60°F, and low humidity. Continue reading to understand why your pothos (Devil’s Ivy) is yellowing and how to rescue it.
Yellow and Brown Pothos leaves
Overwatering and inadequate drainage cause yellowing and browning of pothos leaves. Pothos need one inch of dry soil between waterings. Pothos roots may die if they stay wet all the time. This stops nutrients from getting to the leaves, which makes them yellow and brown.
Pothos is a climber endemic to the Solomon Islands that prefers trees and well-drained soil.
The extra water makes it hard for the roots to breathe and get water and nutrients from the soil, which stops the pothos from growing. If the roots get water and nutrients, the leaves turn yellow and droop, which means the plant is dying.
If the soil does not dry out between waterings, fungi may grow and cause illnesses like root rot, which turns the leaves yellow and brown. Too wet or compacted potting medium reduces root oxygen availability and encourages root rot.
How to Save Yellow and Brown Pothos
Let the top inch of the soil dry out before watering a pothos with yellow and brown leaves. Then cut down any unhealthy or decaying roots and stems.
Reduce watering (water when the top inch of the soil feels dry). Overwatering causes root rot, which causes the leaves to yellow and brown. Just until the top inch of potting soil seems dry. This watering schedule mimics the pothos’ natural soil moisture cycle.
Check the roots of the pothos. Inspect the roots for illness. If the roots are soft, mushy, black, smell awful, and seem to be rotting, prune them back to healthy development (white, firm roots are good). Each time you cut, wipe down the blades of your pruners with a disinfectant-soaked towel. This will keep fungal diseases from spreading from the roots of plants with infected roots to healthy roots.
Substitute well-draining soil. Overwatering may cause a fungal disease in the soil. Mix 2/3 potting soil and 1/3 perlite or pine bark. This potting mix helps to achieve the pothos’ preferred well-draining soil conditions.
Take out any decaying stems. Healthy stems are solid, whereas sick stems are soft. Trim them with pruners and sterilize the blades between cuts.
Trim each stem to reduce the pothos size. Trim back any stems with excessive yellow or brown leaves, since these leaves are dysfunctional. Reducing the pothos’ size reduces the number of leaves that need to be maintained, which aids recovery after root snipping. Try to keep a few healthy stems and leaves so the plant may photosynthesize.
Repot pothos in a new pot with drainage holes at the base, or repot it in its original pot if you disinfect it beforehand. Empty excess water from saucers and trays to avoid root rot.
Repot the pothos and spray the foliage. Water and spritz the leaves to keep the pothos wet and reduce transplant shock. Less roots means less ability to suck up moisture and nutrients from the soil, thus the need for watering after repotting and misting the leaves.
After you improve the circumstances for the pothos and prune back sick growth, it should start growing again in the spring and summer. However, severe root rot causes plants to die back.
Yellow Pothos Leaves Green Up?
Whether or not pothos leaves green up again depends on the reason and severity of the yellowing. Yellow pothos leaves seldom turn green again after becoming yellow. Yellow leaves usually fall. However, fresh growth might occur when circumstances improve.
Snip the yellow leaves back to healthy growth or around 2 inches above the soil to encourage new, healthier vines and green, healthy pothos leaves.
Pothos Leaves Turn Yellow with Age
Pothos leaves develop into a golden base. Less energy is sent to the leaves nearer the ground, causing them to yellow and drop off.
Pothos are natural climbers, with each vine climbing higher into the trees. Because the leaves at the ends of the vines get more light and outcompete other climbing plants in the forest, the pothos prioritizes their development.
Thus, if your pothos has yellowed and dropped leaves at the base, it is not an indication of sickness, but rather a normal component of the plant’s development.
How to Save Pothos with Yellow Leaves
Trim long vines to 2 inches above the earth to keep pothos plants healthy and lush. This promotes the development of new vines with healthy green or variegated leaves and avoids yellowing of leaves at the base.
Not all the vines should be pruned back at once since this shocks the pothos. Cut back leggy vines with fading foliage. To revitalize pothos, trim back 2 or 3 vines at a time, depending on plant size.
When new growth starts, cut down any extra vines that are leggy and have yellow leaves. This will help the plant get back to being healthy. Too much sun makes pothos leaves yellow.
Pothos leaves turn yellow in direct sunlight.Pothos plants are endemic to tropical woods, where their delicate leaves are shaded by the forest canopy. Pothos leaves may burn yellow and curl when exposed to direct sunshine.
Pothos grows on trees in tropical forests in the Solomon Islands, where it is shaded from direct sunlight. Even though pothos can live in the shadows, its leaves usually turn yellow in the sun, especially if they’re placed near windows that face the sun.
To simulate the pothos’ natural habitat, place it in strong indirect light rather than full sun. Providing enough energy for the plant to expand its leaves and tendrils without scorching the leaves yellow is the ideal light balance for pothos plants.
Sun-scorched yellow Pothos leaves lose their green color but do not damage the plant. After moving your pothos out of direct sunlight, give it a deep bath and clip back any burned growth with yellow leaves using a sharp set of pruners.
Trimming off yellow leaves encourages new vine and leaf growth, which helps the pothos grow again.
Pothos Plant Turning Yellow after Repotting
Transplant stress and increased moisture around the roots lead to pothos becoming yellow after repotting. With more soil, larger pots dry out more slowly, causing root rot and leaf yellowing.
Larger pots hold more soil and hence more moisture, affecting how quickly the soil dries after watering. Other circumstances that changed after repotting that might have caused yellowing of the leaves include:
- Pots with no drainage holes (causing excess water to pool around the roots).
- Containment of moisture using saucers, trays, and outer pots
- Pothos requires well-drained soil, so this is a less efficient potting medium.
- After potting, the soil was compacted, reducing the oxygen around the roots.
- Too much moisture around the roots or too little oxygen in the soil may cause leaf yellowing.
Yellowing leaves may be caused by differences in sunlight, ventilation, temperature, and the risk of root damage when repotting.
How to Repot a Pothos with Yellow Leaves
Repot pothos in a pot one size larger than the previous pot. In order to keep the leaves from turning yellow because of root rot, the soil should dry out at the same rate as the leaves.
Repot pothos in aerated potting soil. Pothos prefers well-draining, friable soil. To keep the leaves from yellowing, repot them in similar circumstances. Repot pothos in a mix of 2/3 standard potting soil, 1/3 perlite, or orchid potting mix. To help prevent root rot, this potting mix mimics the permeable texture of pothos’ natural soil.
Do not compress the dirt around your pothos. Compaction of the soil removes oxygen required for root rot respiration. Pothos needs a permeable soil structure to keep its leaves green.
Always empty your pothos’ saucers, trays, and outside pots. To avoid root rot and fading leaves, constantly dump anything below your pothos pots to prevent water from accumulating around the roots.
If you transfer your pothos after repotting, keep the same environmental parameters. The quick change of circumstances might cause the leaves to turn yellow if you move the pot. Maintain the same temperature (away from the inside heating) and spray the leaves periodically to help reduce transplant shock.
After you move your pothos into a new pot, you should mist the leaves to help the roots adapt to the new environment.
Water your pothos as usual, letting the top inch of soil dry between waterings, and it should recover in a few weeks. If the pothos leaves continue to yellow, it may be due to root rot. Check the roots and follow the steps below.
Too Much Fertilizer cause Pothos Plant Turning Yellow
Pothos leaves yellow if too much or too much fertilizer is used. Fertilizer salts build up in the soil, causing negative osmotic potential, preventing roots from sucking up moisture and yellowing leaves.
Known for its rich foliage, pothos fertilizer is frequently advised to help it develop and stay healthy. Pothos is a sensitive plant to fertilizer and should only be fertilized once a month in the spring and summer.
If fertilizer is applied too often or too much, residual salts build up in the soil, which hurts the pothos’ ability to get water and nutrients.
Pothos leaves become yellow when the roots cannot absorb moisture or nutrients to deliver them to the leaves.
How to Save Yellow Pothos Leaves due to Fertilizer
To preserve a pothos with yellow leaves, properly hydrate it, reduce fertilizer usage, and replenish the soil. To encourage fresh development, trim the yellow leaves.
For 10 minutes, water the pothos with a running tap. This helps restore osmotic potential and allows the roots to effectively suck up moisture and nutrients. Repeat 2 or 3 times more to ensure all collected salts are dissolved. Allow the pot to drain well after each watering to remove any salt.
Reduce fertilizer consumption. Use no further fertilizer while the pothos heals. During the spring and summer, apply half-strength fertilizer once a month. Pothos thrives without fertilizer, so reducing its usage does not hurt it.
See if any leaves recover. After flushing the potting soil of excess fertilizer salts, the roots can correctly absorb water to sustain the leaves. If the overfertilization was modest, the pothos may recover in a few weeks. The vines should be trimmed down to 2 inches above the earth if the leaves are yellow and show no signs of healing after 3–4 weeks. This should encourage healthy new growth with lush leaves.
In the Winter, Yellow Pothos Leaves
Due to low humidity and less sunshine, winter causes pothos leaves to yellow. Pothos pants need 60°F to 90°F temperatures with intense indirect light. When temperatures drop below 60°F and the pothos is overly shaded, the leaves turn yellow as an indication of stress.
Pothos leaves often turn yellow in the fall and winter because there are fewer days and less light. The pothos native range in the Solomon Islands has rather regular sunshine hours.
The shorter days in the northern hemisphere may promote leaf yellowing and shedding. This is the pothos strategy of preserving resources in bad weather. Low humidity caused by heating indoors in the winter may make the leaves of pothos plants turn yellow.
Pothos plants need less watering in the winter owing to slower growth and milder temperatures. Therefore, they only need to be watered every 2 or 3 weeks.
Overwatering increases the risk of root rot and causes the leaves to yellow. To avoid yellowing and dead leaves, keep the pothos between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
How to Winterize a Pothos with Yellow Leaves
Pothos in the lightest room. Greater light in winter means more vitality for the pothos and less chance of yellowing and falling leaves.
Make sure the pothos are at least 60°F. Consider that a window sill’s temperature may be lower than the rest of the room, and that the glass itself may be much colder. Prevent the yellowing of leaves by keeping them away from the glass.
Winter watering should be done every 2 or 3 weeks. Damp soil produces root rot, which produces yellow leaves. In the winter, the earth dries up quickly, and the pothos need less water. Water the pothos well, allowing the top inch of soil to dry between waterings.
In the winter, mist the leaves more regularly to combat the dry interior air. Pothos is a tropical plant that prefers humidity. Therefore, water the leaves daily to create a humid micro-climate.
Leaves that have gone yellow in the winter may fall. When the temperature, humidity, and sunshine rise, the pothos should start growing new leaves.
Pothos plant turning yellow from overwatering or insufficient drainage around the roots. Pothos needs one inch of dry soil between waterings. Overwatering causes root rot, which causes the leaves to become yellow and brown and die.
Pothos leaves may turn yellow with age. The pothos directs energy to the leaves higher up the vine, while the leaves closer to the pothos’ base yellow and die.
Pothos leaves become yellow when repotted into a bigger pot because larger pots hold more soil and moisture. This slows soil drying, causing root rot in pothos leaves.
Pothos leaves become yellow under direct sunshine. Pothos plants are native to the forest canopy, and their leaves are particularly photosensitive. In direct sunlight, the leaves become yellow and curl at the edges, seeming to die.
Fertilizer used too often or too heavily yellows pothos leaves. Pothos roots can’t get water from the soil because there are too many salts in it. This causes the leaves to turn yellow and curl.
Pothos leaves become yellow in the winter because of the cold, shorter days, and low humidity. If the pothos is overly shaded and the temperature drops below 60°F, the leaves yellow and drop.