You’re not alone if you’ve seen your orchid leaves turning yellow. As an orchid grower, this is one of the most typical issues you’ll encounter.
It can occur for a number of causes and might be alarming at first. However, this is generally a simple remedy, and you shouldn’t be too concerned about it.
Sometimes you don’t even have to do anything! The eight most prevalent causes of yellow leaves are covered in this guide. Here’s how to spot them and repair them:
Too Much Direct Light
Sunburn from too much direct sunshine is the most prevalent cause of yellow leaves.
Orchids want to be in a bright, but not direct sunlight, environment. Some people, however, are more sensitive to light than others. The appropriate amount will be determined by the genus (and, in certain cases, species) of your orchid.
How To Fix: To begin, determine what sort of orchid you have. The amount of light it requires will be determined by its natural environment. Some orchids thrive in densely forested areas and are used to a lot of shade. Others like to be out in the open and can endure higher levels of direct sunlight.
If you believe this is the problem, move your orchid to a more shady location. North-facing windows allow in the most light, so it’s better to avoid them.
Over-watering (Root Rot)
The roots of your orchid might rot if they are overwatered or have poor drainage. As a result, your orchid’s leaves will become yellow and it will be unable to absorb nutrients properly.
How To Fix: When the top inch of the potting media is dry and the roots are white, only water your orchid. Also, double-check the pot you’re using. To guarantee appropriate water drainage, orchids should be planted in containers with many of drainage holes.
If you think the yellow leaves are the result of overwatering, your orchid may have root rot. Examine the roots to check whether there are any healthy green roots left on the plant.
If this is the case, remove the rotting roots and repot your plant in new potting soil. For the first week after repotting, don’t water the soil; instead, gently spray the leaves to allow the roots to recuperate.
If the temperature in your room is too chilly, your orchid’s metabolism will slow down. This can wreak havoc on the plant’s biological processes, resulting in fading leaves.
How To Fix: Adjust your thermostat or relocate your orchid to a more appropriate location.
Temperatures between 65 and 80 F during the day and somewhat colder at night are optimal for growing orchids. So, if you’re at ease, your orchid will most likely be as well.
This, of course, is dependent on the sort of orchid you have. Your plant will expect to be in a setting that is comparable to its native environment.
Too Much Fertilizer
Excess fertilizer application is a typical mistake, especially among novices. It’s designed to speed up the growth of your orchid, so it’s tempting to apply it every time you water it.
However, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Orchids don’t require a lot of fertilizer, and excess nutrients might create absorption difficulties. This is comparable to the problem caused by hard water.
How To Fix: Make sure you’re following the directions for the fertilizer you’ve chosen. If in doubt, “weekly, weakly” is a decent rule of thumb. This will guarantee that you’re not overdoing it. You should also refrain from fertilizing your orchid while it is blossoming. Before feeding it, wait till it becomes dormant again.
The sort of water you use to water your orchid might not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, this can make a significant impact.
Many people live in places with hard tap water, which contains significant quantities of dissolved minerals such as magnesium and calcium. These can obstruct your plant’s ability to absorb nutrients. As a result, your orchid’s leaves may become yellow.
How To Fix: There are a few options for resolving this issue:
- Water your orchid using distilled water, which is extremely pure.
- Use bottled water instead of tap water since it is typically softer.
- Purchase a water softener to eliminate some of the minerals in your tap water.
Water softeners might be costly, but they’re really effective and a wise investment. They also assist with household duties like dishwashing and laundry because you’ll need less detergent.
Diseases (Yellow Leaves With Spots)
If the leaves of your orchid are becoming yellow with black dots, it might be a sign of a bacterial or fungal infection. Wet leaves or high humidity are the most prevalent causes. This extra moisture creates ideal conditions for illness to grow. To stop it from spreading, you’ll need to act quickly.
How To Fix: Remove the diseased foliage. Because it’s difficult to tell the difference between bacterial and fungal diseases, pruning is typically the best option.
Cut off the diseased tissue and roughly an inch of clean, green region with a clean, sharp blade.
Apply a fungicide to the cut site if you believe it’s a fungal infection. The illness will not recur as a result of this.
Lack of Nutrients
If the tips of your orchid’s leaves are becoming yellow, it might be a sign of nutritional shortage. Yellow dots or patches will appear around the leaf’s tip and margins.
Potassium, which maintains your plant’s metabolism and helps it produce roots, is the most commonly deficient nutrient. It’s especially crucial in the spring and summer, when your orchid is at its quickest growth.
How To Fix: Make sure you’re using a fertilizer that’s balanced. Choose one that has been specially prepared for your type of orchid. If you follow the directions, your orchid will receive the proper quantity of nutrients. Don’t use too much or your orchid may suffer.
Leaves Yellowing & Falling Off Naturally
Many popular orchids, such as Phalaenopsis, naturally develop yellow leaves as they grow older. There’s no need to be concerned if your plant is older.
These leaves will fall off and disintegrate over time. This is done by your orchid to make room for new leaves and to recycle nutrients from the old ones.
The best course of action is to just wait for the plant to lose these old leaves. If you prefer, after they appear to be ready to die, you may clip them off with a sharp blade. This, however, isn’t required and, if done incorrectly, might kill your plant. As a result, we advise waiting for them to fall naturally. Allow your orchid to flourish!
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