How to Eliminate Brown Leaf Blemishes on House Plants

Unwanted brown spots on your attractive houseplants can be a cause for concern. While a few blemishes are generally harmless, taking steps to minimize them can enhance the overall appearance of your plant.

Let's now guide you through diagnosing the underlying problems.

Tiny Brown Spots

Small brown speckles, particularly with fine webbing, may indicate a pest infestation, such as spider mites. Refer to our pest management guide for effective solutions. Regularly inspecting your plants for pests can help prevent infestations from becoming severe.

Dry Spots on Leaf Edges

Brown, dry spots along the edges or tips of leaves may indicate underwatering, overwatering, or insufficient humidity. Check the soil moisture by inserting the Leaf Culture Moisture Meter. If it feels extremely dry, you might be underwatering. If it's excessively moist, overwatering is likely. For slightly moist soil, consider increasing humidity by misting the plant regularly.

Burn-Like Spots

Dark brown, dry marks or frazzled tips and leaves suggest your plant is receiving too much direct sunlight. Relocate the plant to a well-lit area that avoids direct sun exposure. Remember that sunlight intensity varies between seasons, so a location suitable in winter may become too sunny in summer.

Wet Brown Spots

Dark brown, slightly sunken, and moist-looking leaf spots may indicate bacterial leaf spot. Isolate the plant to prevent the spread of infection. Remove affected leaves, and allow the plant to dry out. Water only when the top two inches of soil are dry. Severe cases may necessitate disposing of the plant.

Growing Brown or Yellow Spots

Sunken brown or yellow spots increasing in size could be anthracnose, a fungal issue usually harmless but visually unappealing. Isolate the plant, trim affected leaves, and use a fungicide if necessary.

Spots with a Yellow Halo

Fungus-induced spots with a yellow halo often result from overwatering. Trim affected leaves and allow the soil to dry out. Water only when the top two inches of soil are dry.

White or Pale Yellow Spots

Extremely light spots may result from exposure to cold temperatures or watering with cold water. Maintain a consistent, warm temperature for your plants. During winter, keep them away from cold areas. If using tap water, allow it to reach room temperature before watering and try using a water dechlorinator which detoxifies harmful metals found in tap water.