Well, well, well. It looks like your peace lily has started to get yellow leaves. Today, I want to take a look at some of the reasons why this has happened and offer some solutions so you can get your leaves back to green.
Peace Lilies having yellow leaves can be caused by various factors, including not enough sunlight, not enough water, too much water, lack of nutrition or inconsistent temperatures.
To solve this, you will need to either give it more sunlight, water it more/less, fertilize it more/less, cut off the yellow leaves, or keep it at a more consistent temperature.
What it looks like
Before we can start talking about the causes and solutions to the problem, we will need to look at the problem.
Of course, anyone with eyes can tell you that the problem is the leaves are going yellow. This will be due to the fact they’re not getting the chlorophyll that turns them green.
You will likely also notice a difference in texture. A healthy Peace Lily will be soft and slightly spongy. When they turn yellow, they will turn dry and crispy.
Knowing what to do in this situation can help save your plant. And that is what I want to talk about today.
Not enough sunlight
One of the first causes is that your plant is not getting enough sunlight. As animals, we get the energy we need from the food we eat. But, the cool thing about plants is that they get theirs from the sunlight. In a photosynthesis process, plants take the sunlight and use it to grow and become bigger and healthier.
However, in a lack of sunlight, this process is slowed down or even stopped. Unable to revive it’s beautiful green leaves, your plant will just stop producing this pigmentation and turn yellow.
Too much water
Of course, sunlight is important. But nutrients and water are also vital. Often, the reason why a plant can’t absorb any water is that it has too much.
And yes, I know that sounds counter-intuitive. But it’s a problem known as root rot.
When there is too much water hanging around the roots of a plant, it will be physically unable to absorb any of it. Not only will this mean it can’t take in any more water, but it will also be unable to take up the precious nutrients that exist in the soil.
Not enough water
Although you can easily overwater a Peace Lily, you can just as easily underwater it. Remember that most cells, be they plant or animal, are made up mostly of water. To perform their basic functions (such as duplication), they will need a source of water.
If you forget to water your Peace Lily for several months at a time, the plant will not be able to repair itself or take in the nutrients from the soil. When this happens, it will just be a matter of time before the leaves start drying up and going yellow.
Lack of Nutrition
You may have noticed that this article has mentioned “nutrients in the soil” a few times. There is a chance that your Peace Lily is going yellow because there is a lack of nutrients in the soil.
Plants will absorb the nutrients (such as magnesium) that they find in the soil and use them to replenish their cells. This involves the membrane, organelles, and all of that good stuff you learnt about in biology. However, when there are no nutrients, they will be able to undergo this process. Think of it like how you would die if you didn’t eat.
Generally speaking, Peace Lilies are very tolerant plants. Anything from 55-85F and they will be fine. However, although they can easily adapt to new temperatures, this is not to say that they can do so quickly.
When a plant is constantly adapting to a new temperature, it won’t be able to keep updated with the constant changes. As a result, the leaves will start to go yellow. This is similar to how we might feel uncomfortable when the weather decides to go from snow to sun in a matter of minutes.
Put it in the sun
Of course, no matter what kind of plant you have, you will need to make sure it’s getting enough sunlight. So, this will, of course, mean putting it somewhere where the windows are almost always open. Preferably somewhere North facing, but that doesn’t matter all that much.
If you live somewhere scorching hot, you might want to consider filtering the light by using net curtains or lining your window with other plants.
The important thing is to make sure the Peace Lily lives in a (naturally) well-lit room, and you keep the curtains open.
Water it enough, but not too much
Earlier, we spoke about how two potential problems could be that you’re overwatering it or not watering it enough. This does, of course, mean that there is a golden middle.
Some people will make the mistake of watering their plant on a schedule. But this might not be the best approach. During the hot months, your plant will need watering more than during the cold months.
Instead, make sure the soil is dry before you water it again. Just stick a finger in there. If it comes out dry, it’s time to water. If it’s still wet, better to wait for a bit longer.
Put it in the right pot
Making sure your Peace Lily is potted right is also an essential part of preventing yellow leaves.
The first thing is to make sure you have the right kind of soil. Generally speaking, most general potting soils will be fine as they are well-draining. You will also need to ensure that the pot it’s in has drainage holes at the bottom where excess water can escape.
The size of the pot is also important. Too small, and the water will stagnate around the leaves. But too big, and they will sit surrounded by moist soil.
Know how often to feed it
Knowing how often to feed your plant can also help prevent yellow leaves. Remember how we spoke about too much water preventing its ability to absorb any of it? The same can be applied to leaves.
When the concentration of nutrients is too dense, they will clog up the roots, and none of them will be able to go in. The best time to feed your plant would be during the spring and summer months. But even then, you only need to do it about twice a month.
And make sure the fertilizer you use isn’t too potent.
Cut off the bad leaves
Sometimes, the best solution is pruning. When one leaf turns yellow, this is a sign that there are not enough nutrients/water for the whole plant. So, the best thing to do is to make the “whole plant” smaller.
When you remove the leaves, make sure to do so with sharp and clean tools to not cause an infection. With the yellow leaves removed, the rest of the plant will have more water and nutrients to go around.
If you want to clone your Peace Lily, you could even use the cuttings to grow a new plant.
Get the temperature right
Earlier, we mentioned that the Peace Lily will be okay if the temperature is anywhere between 55-85F. Still, it doesn’t like sudden temperature changes. But how do you avoid them?
The first step is to keep them away from drafts. This could be faulty windows or doors. You should also avoid keeping them next to heating or cooling units such as heaters or air conditioners.
An excellent way to tell that a room is at a consistent temperature is to keep a thermometer in the room. When you notice a problem, you can start thinking about the best solutions. Be that fixing the draft or moving the Peace Lily.
This is a common problem
Some of you may be looking at your yellow leaved Peace Lily and think you have just failed as a plant parent. But let me assure you, this is not the case!
Firstly, all plant parents make mistakes. And the great thing about Peace lilies is that they don’t’ die just because you make one mistake. But more importantly, just because the plant isn’t picture perfect doesn’t mean it’s doomed.
Just make sure you find out where you went wrong and think about the best solution.
The Peace Lily is a beautiful plant, and we totally understand why you would want to keep it in your house. And, of course, seeing your plant turn yellow can be rather upsetting and distressing for a lot of reasons. But the critical thing to remember is not to panic.
You will need to figure out why it has gone yellow. Could it be related to the environment, the amount of water, nutrients, the pot?
Once you know the source of the problem, you will be able to start thinking about the best solutions. And then your plant will be back to being green and beautiful very soon.
Hopefully, you found this article useful, and you will now be able to solve the problem of your Peace Lilies leaves going yellow.