Anthurium plants are beautiful because they feature both lovely flowers and leaves. This is why they are among the most popular houseplants around.
However, if you happen to notice your anthurium’s leaves begin to turn yellow, it may be a cause for concern.
Why are your anthurium leaves turning yellow? The reasons why anthurium leaves turn yellow include overwatering, excess sunlight, lack of humidity, incorrect soil and extreme temperature.
Because there are many potential causes, it is important to identify the exact reason so you can apply the proper treatment.
Causes of Anthurium Leaves Turning Yellow
Overwatering is the #1 Cause Anthurium Leaves Turning Yellow
The most common cause of yellow leaves in anthurium plant is overwatering.
Like all plants, anthuriums need water. However, unlike other water-loving plants, this one does not like wet feet.
Therefore, giving it too much water or watering it too often are both bad ideas.
Instead, it is important to balance the amount and frequency with what the plant needs.
On average anthuriums only need to be watered once a week. This will increase during summer because of the hot weather. And it will significantly decrease during winter from the cold.
Unless you live in a hot tropical location where the plant gets a good amount of sun, it won’t need to be watered daily or every other day.
Instead, wait until the top 2 inches of soil have dried before you add water. Otherwise, you’ll be adding water to soil that is either still moist or wet.
When this happens, the plant’s roots end up swimming in too much water. As a result, it reduces or completely cuts off their air supply as water will fill all the small air pockets in the soil preventing air to get through.
This will cause the roots to suffocate which leads to root rot or at the very least root damage.
As a result, the plant not isn’t able to absorb water efficiently or can only do so a fraction of what it used to be able to do (since some roots have rotted and don’t function anymore).
This stress cause leaves to turn yellow or brown. Similarly, your anthuriums flowers and bracts will fade as well.
Thus, avoid overwatering to prevent yellow leaves.
Lack of Humidity
Another reason for anthurium leaves turning yellow is lack of humidity.
Anthuriums are tropical plants that are used to high humidity environments. As such, it prefers humidity of 70% to 80% which is where it is most comfortable.
That said, the plant is able to tolerate 50% humidity (and slightly less) without any issues.
Therefore, if you have not overwatered the plant and are seeing yellow leaves on your anthurium, check for insufficient humidity.
I like to keep a hygrometer near my plants to make it easy to know the humidity each day.
Also note that different rooms in your home have varying humidity. Similarly, indoor humidity is always lower than outdoors.
And your outdoor humidity will depend on a lot on where you live.
Therefore, it is important to have an idea of what humidity is around the plant.
If it happens to be too low, you can increase it through any of the following methods.
- Set up a humidity tray
- Move the plant to the bathroom
- Get a humidifier
- Mist your anthurium
- Group it with your other houseplants.
Insufficient Nutrition Causes Yellow Leaves in Anthurium Plants
Nutrient deficiencies can also cause yellow leaves in anthuriums.
In general, anthuriums don’t need a lot of fertilizer. However, they do need some.
Therefore, if you don’t feed your plant or haven’t done so a quite a while, it may be the reason for yellow heaves.
Before you do add fertilizer, make sure to eliminate both overwatering and low humidity first. Those are the simplest to check.
To feed your anthurium, apply a high phosphorus fertilizer. You’ll know from the N-P-K figures on the from label of the product.
You’re looking for the middle number to be higher.
The reason for this is you want your anthurium to bloom. And phosphorus is the component that helps with this.
Apply fertilizer only during the plant’s growing season which are spring and summer. And dilute the application by 50% the suggested strength on the label.
Indoor door plant in pots don’t need as strong a dose as outdoor plants in the garden. Therefore, you don’t want an overly high concentration.
That’s because too much fertilizer is also bad for your anthurium.
The excess nutrients and salts can harm the roots preventing the plant from absorbing water and nutrients as efficiently as it should.
Therefore, in addition to using fertilizer, it is also important to flush the soil with water every few months to get rid of the excess salt and mineral buildup.
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Excess Exposure to Light
Excess light can also cause yellow leaves on anthurium plants.
This can happen if you leave the plant:
- In direct sunlight
- In very strong, intense sun during the summer
- Too close to grow lights
Because people often see gardens soaking in full sun, they think that this is what’s best for all plants.
However, that’s not the case for many tropical plants, which also happen to comprise of most houseplants.
That’s because these plants live in tropical regions what have lots of sunshine, hot and humid weather. However, they are commonly found in forests living under the canopy of large trees.
As such, while they do get light, they don’t get direct sunlight. Instead, the trees’ branches and leaves block most of that.
What these plants do receive if filtered or dappled light which is the light that’s able to pass through the forest canopy overhead.
Thus, they cannot tolerate the intensity of the sun’s direct rays. And this will turn their leaves yellow gradually.
When it gets really bad, the excess light can even scorch the leaves and leave you with brown burn marks.
Therefore, if you notice your anthurium leaves turning yellow and it happens to be staying right under the sun, move it to a less bright location.
Ideally, somewhere with bright, indirect light.
This means that location is well-lit, but at no time in the day does the sun’s rays touch any part of the plant.
Poor soil can cause many issues depending on what kind of soil it is.
Anthuriums need well-draining soil with good aeration.
If the soil is dense, compacted or not porous, it will prevent oxygen from reaching the roots. This can cause the plant’s leaves to turn yellow.
Similarly, soil with poor drainage will get waterlogged as it holds on to too moisture. As a result, the roots end up drowning in liquid which prevents them from breathing.
Once again, the lack of aeration will lead to yellow leaves.
Even worst, if it is not fixed or keeps happening, root rot can occur.
Problems or any damage to the roots will ultimately lead to inefficient or low absorption of water and nutrients from the soil.
This can cause nutrients deficiencies which also turns leaves yellow.
As such, using well-draining soil with good aeration is very important for anthurium plants.
The anthurium has an ideal temperature of 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. And it cannot tolerate the cold.
In fact, it will struggle at temperatures below 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Unfortunately, when you leave it in this environment, the plant will get stressed. It will also experience chlorosis in its leaves where chlorophyll breaks down.
Chlorophyll is what gives leaves their green color.
In contrast, plants with variegations have non-green sections in their leaves because they lack chlorophyll.
Just as importantly, chlorophyll is what absorbs the light so that the plant can use it in photosynthesis to create its own energy.
Thus, the breakdown of chlorophyll means the leaves turn yellow in color and the plant’s growth also slows down or even stops.
So, if you noticed that your anthurium has yellow leaves and it is sitting somewhere cold, move it to a warmer location.
Anthurium Leaves Turning Yellow – What You Can Do (Fixes & Prevention)
The anthurium plant is tropical in nature. This means it enjoys lots of light, warm weather and humid conditions. it also does not like too much water.
Therefore, it is important to give the plant what it is used to.
Doing so is the best way you can prevent your anthurium from having yellow leaves.
Here’s a quick checklist that will help you do just that.
- Keep the plant under bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight as well as dim or dark areas.
- Make sure that temperatures is consistent. The plant does not like fluctuations. And that the climate stays between 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Use well-draining soil. Avoid heavy, dense or compacted soil.
- Only water when the top 2 inches of soil feels dry to the touch. Never before that. Also, don’t allow the soil to completely dry out.
- Keep the plant in high humidity, preferably over 50% humidity.
- Feed it once a month during its growing season making sure to dilute the fertilizer by half.
- Remove any yellow leaves as well as old, dying, brown or damaged foliage.
Giving the plant all these things will allow it to stay healthy an avoid yellow leaves.
Should I Remove Yellow Leaves from Anthurium?
Yes, it is a good idea to prune the yellow leaves.
These leaves will not turn green again. And while they are attached to the plant, it will continue supporting these damaged leaves. So, by cutting these leaves off, you allow the plant to focus all its resources to growing new leaves and the healthy ones.
Similarly, you can safety trim off the faded flowers of your anthurium plant.
If your anthurium’s leaves are turning yellow, it means the plant is stressed.
There could be many reasons for this. Therefore, you need to eliminate the different potential causes to narrow things down.
In order to prevent yellow leaves on your anthurium, it is important to give it the care that it needs.