Why Is My Pothos Turning Brown? 8 Causes And Solutions

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Everyone who’s got a pothos tree understands how frustrating it is when the leaves begin to turn brown. In this instance, there are many aspects at play, and all of them are easily fixed. Your plant will be as lively as ever following some minor modifications.

Pothos leaves turn brown due to poor watering. The problem could result from both excessive watering and the submersion of soil. Pothos may turn brown because of a myriad of reasons, such as pest infestation and fungal diseases, inadvertent fertilizer application as well as too much or little sunlight, and many other environmental conditions.

This article will help you understand how to spot the signs of browning Pothos leaves and the reason and treatment. Learn how to prevent becoming brown Pothos leaves, as well as some general Pothos maintenance suggestions.

How do I identify Browning Leaves on my Pothos?

Why Are My Pothos Leaves Turning Brown? (And How to Fix It) - Today's Gardener


It’s a simple concept. If your leaves are brown, this is the way to determine the signs of browning. However, there are some other things you can look for when you first notice leaf browning.

Leaves that are yellow that appear near the top of the leaf or in the centre, which extends outwards, are the first signs of becoming brown Pothos leaves. It is also possible the leaves are dried to the touch or that the plant appears droopy generally.

If you notice an orange or brown leaf, you should remove the leaf. This will enable the plant to concentrate on healthy leaves and increase Pothos’ general health and overall wellness.

The Causes of Pothos Leaves turning brown.

In this article, I’ll guide you through the specifics to help you identify the root cause before taking any action to stop it.

Watering Issues


Plants that thrive on Pothos thrive in warm, dry climates. That means that over-watering plants are the most common reason for browning leaves.

How often you do your Pothos will differ based on the size of the plant, their location in your house, and the environment. A smaller plant will require less water than a larger one.

The general rule of thumb for watering your houseplants is to soak the soil until it is damp. It will be evident that the plant is sufficiently watered when the water flows through the drainage holes in the plant’s bottom.

This method works for Pothos plants, too. However, it would help if you did not drink water after the soil had been given time to dry.

Test the soil by putting your fingers about 1 ” (2.54 millimetres) deep into the ground. If the soil feels damp, or if the mud is sticky to your fingers, the Pothos will require a bit more time to dry before replenishing the water.

You could also utilize a moisture gauge to check the level of hydration of your Pothos.

It is essential to allow your Pothos to dry between each watering to decrease brown leaves.

If you have adjusted your watering but are still experiencing browning leaves, it could be another issue. Here are a few more reasons why the leaves of your Pothos are turning brown.

This article provides more specifics on the importance of preserving overwatered Pothos along with the best way to water your garden correctly.

Irregular watering

While it’s essential to let your soil dry out a small amount between watering, consistency remains crucial. Note the timeline your Pothos plant appears to be in, and make an effort to keep a regular irrigation schedule.

Pothos plants are rigid and do not require to be given a lot of attention. But having a watering schedule will minimize the possibility of leaves becoming brown.

If you’re feeding your Pothos in the correct amount according to the proper schedule, it will help keep your Pothos plant content. This means you need to water your Pothos until the water flows into the holes for drainage at the base of your pot.

The exact timing will differ according to the particular plant. However, the average of watering once per week is adequate. Be sure to keep an eye on your soil over the first couple of weeks, and if it remains wet at the end of the first week, take it out for a few days.

Your plant will notify you when it’s time to water to be watered, and you can develop a routine for watering from there.

Watering using Tap Water

Pothos plants don’t care regarding how they drink their water. They are an excellent houseplant that can take plenty of abuse (making it a good choice for beginners or an active gardening enthusiast).

Tap water is suitable to use for the Pothos plant. But, if, however, you’ve tried other items on this list and discover that you still have brown leaves, check the water.

In most cases, tap water contains added fluoride, minerals and sodium that could be harmful to plants. Although this isn’t a likely reason for your browning Pothos leaves, it’s worthwhile not to eliminate it as a possible cause. (Source: University of Missouri Extension)

If you believe that tap water may be causing your leaves to turn brown, you should be brown; try using water that has been filtered to water your plant. Keeping the temperature at room temperature is recommended since it won’t change its temperature as much.

Pest Infestation

Mealybugs and Scale insects are the most frequent invaders in Pothos plants. Scale insects appear as small yellow blobs. Sometimes, they have a black spot in the centre.

Mealybugs are fuzzy and white. They both can weaken the plant’s immune system when they take the juice out of it, which could result in the leaves turning brown.

Cleaning your plants will prevent the spread of pests. Clean your leaves using a clean cloth every week to ensure that your Pothos are healthy!

If you suspect an infestation or have observed insects on your Pothos, there are methods to eliminate the pests. Insecticidal soaps, neem oil and rubbing alcohol can be efficient instruments.

The soap and neem oils will kill bugs upon contact by suffocating. Apply it to your leaf, and the job is completed.

To use rubbing alcohol, gently clean each leaf using an alcohol-soaked towel or cotton ball to remove the flies.

Pothos Diseases


Bacterial wilt diseases can impact the Pothos Plant’s overall health. This is more frequent in industrial production. If you notice leaves turning brown immediately after bringing the plant home, it may be the cause.

The first indication is the appearance of wilted leaves, brown colour, and black veins running through the leaf and stem. If you suspect the plant has an infection caused by bacteria, cut one stem off and place the branch in the water.

If the stem is infected, you’ll observe bacteria in the water. There may also be a spout of blood in the lower part of the stem, where one cuts it.

If you recognize the illness before it is too late, the simple use of a bactericide can help.


Fungal infections can create a myriad of problems for Pothos, which can cause the browning of leaves. If you suspect you’ve got a fungal illness, it is essential to get it under control quickly to ensure the infection doesn’t get worse.

Southern blight is a severe fungal disease that affects Pothos plants. In addition to having brown leaves, it is common to see streaks of white fungal growth sprouting from the soil to the stem.

The disease can spread rapidly in hot weather or the soil damp.

You must remove those affected areas of the plant. Place the healthy plant in an entirely new pot. The fungus may survive in the pool and then re-infect the plant.

Be on the lookout for your plant for signs of infection. If the southern blight is spreading over a large area of the plant, start over.

Root Rot

It is a common problem for root Rot is a frequent illness that affects many plants, such as Pothos. It usually occurs because the soil is too compact, either overwatered, or there is insufficient drainage within the pot.

If there isn’t a possibility that the soil drains correctly and dries out, mould can develop in the damp environment. The Pothos foliage will turn yellow If they’re infected with root rot.

Many recommend throwing a plant that has root decay away (in the planter). However, there are ways to save your plant before you do this.

A fresh pot with clean soil can bring about a dramatic reduction in your chances of getting a new infection. You can wash the dirt and pot you have, but if you can afford not to risk it, that’s the option to take.

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Remove the old soil and take out the mushy or brown roots. They are not salvageable. Infect those with healthy (white and complex) roots and let the root system dry out.

This is the most crucial step to avoid any future Root Rot issues. After it has had the chance to dry, plant the Pothos in the clean soil and container and be sure to monitor the amount of water you use to ensure it won’t occur again.

Light Issues

Excessive Light

Pothos plants thrive in light to moderate levels. If they are exposed to too much sun, it can cause the leaves to become scorched and the leaves to brown.

The first step in determining whether this is a problem with the Pothos plants is to observe the lighting in the room the plant is.

Ideally, you’ll find that your Pothos should have about 150 to 500 footcandles. (One footcandle is the measurement of a sphere of one-foot radius that is filled with light.)

Image of measurement for a footcandle. (Source: Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences)

A lot of direct sunlight can burn your Pothos leaves, causing the leaves to be brown and then dry out.

If you suspect your Pothos plant is receiving too much sunlight, it’s as simple as moving it to a place that is a new location. An indoor space that receives consistent indirect light is the best.

Lights are not present.

There is also the possibility of going too far in the opposite direction and leaving your Pothos plant the wrong amount of sunlight. The first indication of your plants receiving less light is the leaves to get more green.

This is because the plant is compensating for the amount of light it could have gained from the sunlight. If the plant is in this situation for too long, the leaves become brown and die as the plant age.

If your Pothos plant starts to grow greener, then the leaves turn to get brown.

It’s time to move your plant. The location with more light (indirect radiations are ideal) will aid your plant to get its energy quickly.


Pothos plants are great plants for novice gardeners. They are tolerant of a range of conditions. Temperatures are no exception.

However, the ideal temperature range for Pothos plants is 70degF (21degC) and 90degF (32degC). That means that if your Pothos becomes too hot or cold for an extended period, it could be in a state of shock.

It can occur in any direction, but it is more prevalent in cooler temperatures. The point where the Pothos plant is at ease is high enough so that the plant is more likely to suffer stress from heat.

When temperatures fall below 70 deg (21degC) on an ongoing basis, it could result in the development of browning leaves on your Pothos plants.

If you believe it is the case that Pothos plants suffer from dark spots due to repeated exposure to cold temperatures and cold, increase the temperature. If this isn’t possible, using a space heater for the space, your plant is (don’t place it near the plant) could also be helpful.


Pothos isn’t a particular plant about humidity levels. It is a native of The South Pacific, so you would expect it to require humid conditions to thrive. However, it can survive quite well in dry environments.

Maintaining a consistent temperature for your Pothos can help it the most. Rapid fluctuations in humidity or temperature levels can cause leaves to turn brown.

If your home’s temperature is consistently high and you observe that your plant isn’t getting enough water, it could like a little misting. Misting your plants once per week will ensure the consistency of your environment.

Incorrect Soil Usage

Pothos plants require drainage-friendly soil. This is crucial for allowing plants to breathe out between every watering. When the ground becomes too dense, it could make it challenging to avoid overwatering.

There are many different types of potting soil, and not all are alike. The plant will thrive when you use the best ground. For Pothos plants, that’s a lot of aeration as well as the possibility to drain.

If you suspect that the browning leaves originate from the soil, be very gentle in repotting your Pothos.

If you’re planning to do this, ensure that you have adequate drainage at the bottom of the pot. Pebbles or plastic recycling broken-up pieces from an earlier post.

This allows water to flow through the drainage hole faster and reduces the volume of water in the soil.

Once you’ve prepared the pot, fill it with soil that is aerated, and then put it in your Pothos plant.

Keep the conditions in the same way as they were before the repotting. The Pothos plant will adapt to the new soil, provided that it’s not awed by changes in temperature or a new site simultaneously.

Fertilizer Issues

Your leaves may have turned brown as a result of fertilization that is not correct. Most likely, this means that you’re applying excessive fertilizer.

In excess fertilizer, it can trigger the burning of the fertilizer, the second type of scorching. The plant is shocked because it’s receiving too much nitrogen salts and can eventually kill your plant. Browning tips on the leaves are the first indication that you may be over-fertilizing.

Pothos plants require a little fertilizer every month. The amount of fertilizer depends on the amount of the plant. A good fertilizer selection and using it in the manner that is recommended to avoid burning the fertilizer.

Burning fertilizer can make your Pothos become a black colour. This article will help determine the causes of the problem and ways to correct it, too.

Natural Causes

Plants don’t live forever, unfortunately. If you have addressed the issues above and are still experiencing browning leaves, it could be natural.

The average lifespan of the Pothos plant is between five and ten years, and without diseases or pests.

This is not meant to convince you to abandon your plant. It’s to remind you that if it feels that you’ve tried everything, but your Pothos leaves remain brown, it’s not you.

Be on the lookout for it, but remember that it may be your plant participating in the cycle of life.

It’s hard to let go of the plant which you’ve invested so much effort into. Keep in mind that plants can’t last forever. This is not related to the skills you have as a gardener.

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Preventing brown Leaves

Finding resources to help your plant recover if there are brown leaves is excellent. A checklist to keep your Pothos leaves from becoming brown any time soon is much more helpful!

Here are some suggestions to prevent browning leaves from developing on your Pothos at all.

  1. Check your light levels. Pothos need regular, indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight can cause burning and scalding, while too much light can cause the plant to consume more energy than it is consuming.
  2. Keep your temperature cool and consistent. Monitor the weather to ensure you can plan for temperatures that fall outside of within the 70degF (21degC) and 90degF (32degC) range. If it’s likely to be cold, move your plant to the warmer part of your home or make use of the space heater. If it’s too hot, try keeping plants as cool as you can.
  3. Keep your plant clean! Every time you dust, your Pothos will provide you with the chance to look for insects and eliminate those that you spot.
  4. Water-smart. This means watering your plant on a consistent schedule, using clean water and making sure that you’re watering your Pothos in the right amount. Be aware that overwatering can be the main reason for browning leaves.
  5. Prioritize drainage. As you are aware, Pothos plants are vulnerable to excessive watering. This can be even more difficult when you do not use good soil. You should have good drainage in the bottom of your pot and make sure to use soil that’s not too dense to ensure that water drains.
  6. Verify for the presence of. Just like humans need regular checks at the doctor, the plant would benefit from having a periodic review to look for signs of the illness. A plant that is sick can be saved, but it is imperative to act quickly. Monitoring your plant regularly will increase the chances that to detect any possible illnesses earlier.
  7. Cut dead leaves off quickly. If a leaf has a brown hue, it’s finished. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to abandon the entire plant. Eliminating the dead leaf in the shortest time possible will enable the plant to deliver nutrition to healthy areas of the plant much more quickly.
  8. Enjoy Your Pothos. Pothos plants do not require any special care to thrive; however, providing your plant with some attention will make it more successful. Every week, regular fertilization and misting can maintain your pothos plant’s health as you can.

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Frequently Answered Questions

What’s the reason for the edges of my Pothos leaves becoming brown?

There are a variety of reasons why the leaves of your Pothos plant are turning brown towards the tip. It could be caused by overwatering, either directly or indirectly, or fertilizer burn.

Pothos plant thrives in rooms with indirect sunlight. You should water your Pothos plant in a regular manner (about every week); however, make sure it gets time to dry before you water it again. Pothos require only a little fertilizer each month.

What is the reason why is my pothos turning brown?

It could be a warning indicator of the presence of. Pothos plants are susceptible to different diseases like root disease, bacterial wilt as well as southern blight. If you believe your plant is suffering from something, you should take action fast.

To begin, determine what is causing the problem. Remove the affected part, wash the rest of the plant and plant it in fresh, healthy soil and a brand new pot. After some TLC, your Pothos plant will be able to recover.

What is the reason my Pothos stems split?

It could indicate that the Pothos is suffering. Review the conditions in the environment to ensure that everything is in line with the Pothos plant’s requirements.

It could mean it is experiencing temperatures shock or is overwatered. Check the content of water in the soil as well as the temperature in the space to determine which of these could be causing problems.

Do I have to trim off the brown leaves?

The removal of browning leaves can assist in ensuring that the rest of the plant remains healthy. If the brown leaves are still attached, they’re still getting nutrients from stems but are no longer alive.

If you take off the brown leaves, the nutrients can be transferred to healthful parts of Pothos that will improve the overall health of your plant.

Which place should I place the Pothos plants?

Pothos plants can be found wherever you want in your home so long as they’re not directly exposed to sunlight. They require warmth, and any room with heat will work well.

Many people use Pothos as a plant to hang at home, but it could equally be displayed on a desk counter or even a table.

Pothos plants are poisonous for both cats and dogs. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that they are in a place in your home where your pet’s friends aren’t in a rush to enter.

Do Pothos Plants a lot of work?

This article is packed with a wealth of information. However, when you think about it, the Pothos plant is an excellent low-maintenance plant.

It may take a little time to prepare; however, once you have your Pothos plant established and set up a regular care schedule, you will realize that it only requires a little.

A nicely lit room (out of direct sunlight), good drainage, regular watering/cleaning/health inspections, and you will be well on your way to a long and happy relationship with your Pothos plant!

If you enjoy this content, consider sharing it with others. if you have any questions, comment below, we are happy to answer you. thank you!

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Check Out Complete Hawaiian Golden Pothos Care Here

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