Why Are The Leaves On My Philodendron Turning Yellow?

It is always upsetting when a houseplant shows signs of distress – even more so when they become unattractive whilst doing so!

For answers to “Why are the leaves on my Philodendron turning yellow” as well as other questions, read on – we’ve got you covered.

Why Are The Leaves On My Philodendron Turning Yellow?

why are the leaves on my philodendron turning yellow

There are a few things that can cause the leaves on a plant to turn yellow, and these are all stress related.

Leaves should be green, and if they are turning yellow or brown then it is your plant’s way of telling you that something is not right.


Overwatering is just about the most common cause for yellowing leaves on a Philodendron.

These plants don’t like to be kept too soggy; if they are left to sit around in water than the roots will start to rot and the plant may even die.

Low humidity

Low humidity is another potential culprit for yellowing leaves on a Philodendron – these plants like to be kept humid!

Misting the plant once in a while will help enormously with this issue; you won’t have to do it every day, but once in a while will do it good.


The wrong type of light can also cause your Philodendron some issues – they like it bright, but not too bright!

Indirect, bright sunlight is best for these beauties; they will thrive in these conditions but will not enjoy being too bright or too dark.


Pests can affect all plants, and although Philodendron is not too susceptible to pests, they can still affect the plant.

Sap sucking creepy crawlies can be attracted to these plants, and can cause them a lot of damage.

Here’s a great video explaining why your Philodendron is yellowing, and what you can do about it:

Should I Remove Yellow Leaves From Philodendron?

Not only are yellow leaves a little unsightly, they also won’t be doing your Philodendron much good either!

When a leaf starts to turn yellow, it is a sign that the plant is withdrawing resources from it, so it will almost certainly die.

If you remove these yellow leaves when they appear, you are giving your Philodendron a chance to put its energies into healthier leaves instead.

You will probably find that they will just come away from the plant very easily using your fingers, but you may also wish to remove them with shears or secateurs.

Yellow leaves can be simply a sign that the leaf is old and the plant is spending its energies in growing new ones, but if your Philodendron is constantly popping out yellow leaves then you may have a problem.

Check your entire plant for signs of disease or pest invasion if the leaves have suddenly started yellowing, or lots have appeared at once.

How Do You Fix Yellow Leaves On A Philodendron?

Yellow leaves does not have to mean the end for your beloved Philodendron, and there are many things that can cause them. Let’s look into the reasons, and how to fix them!

  • Normal growth. You can breathe a sigh of relief if your Philodendron is perfectly healthy but has one or two yellow leaves. These yellow leaves will generally be around the bottom of the plant while the rest is vibrant and green, so if this is your case then you’re laughing.
  • Overwatering. Philodendron are drought tolerant plants, so they really will not appreciate too much water! Limit watering your Philodendron to once a week at the most in the summer, and every couple of weeks in the winter.
  • Underwatering. Even drought tolerant plants need to drink, so make sure you don’t let your Philodendron’s pot turn into a desert. If it suddenly looks parched and yellow, give it a really good drink by allowing the pot to sit in a bowl of water, then drain away.
  • Low humidity. These tropical plants love a bit of moisture in the air, so you should mist them every couple of days to keep them happy. If you can’t be bothered to mist, why not get a humidifier? This is a great investment for those of us who like to keep tropical plants!
  • Not enough light. Although Philly likes indirect light, it still needs light. Move it closer to a source of indirect light, and you will hopefully see it bounce back! Just remember to keep it far enough away that it won’t burn – these plants are susceptible to too much sunlight and can even get sunburn.
  • Pest invasion. Philodendron are pretty resistant to most pests, but they can be troubled by common pests like spider mites, aphids and mealybugs. Check your plant over thoroughly for signs of insect damage, pick off any live ones that you see, and consider making a home made insect repellent.

Will Yellow Philodendron Leaves Turn Back To Green?

Sadly, the answer to this question is, probably not. You are better off simply removing the leaves as they start to yellow.

Yellowing leaves is a sign that the plant is withdrawing its resources from that leaf, so it is effectively dead.

If your Philodendron just has yellowing tips to its leaves then you can actually remove these – just trim the edges of your leaf back to the green part.

You don’t have to whip yellow leaves off straight away, although they may be unsightly – they may actually help your plant!

The plant will slowly withdraw from a yellow leaf, but it will reabsorb any leftover nutrients from it before it dies completely.

Leaving your Philodendron’s yellow leaves on for a couple of days may actually help the plant grow more of those lovely green leaves!

An exception is if the yellowing is caused by an invasion of creepy crawlies. Any yellow leaf with bugs on it should be removed and thrown away immediately!

Here is an informative article, telling you all about the causes and treatments for yellow leaves.

Once you have noticed that your Philodendron is struggling, it is important to get on top of the problem quickly.

A good plant care routine is crucial to helping keep your Philodendron healthy, and you shouldn’t have any issues with yellowing leaves as long as you look after it well.

2 thoughts on “Why Are The Leaves On My Philodendron Turning Yellow?”

    • Not necessarily. Your plant is telling you that it is seriously distressed, but there may still be hope. Your best bet is to remove all of the leaves, then follow our growing guide above to give it the conditions it prefers. You may well spot some new green growth sprouting up if you give it some real TLC.


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