Monstera deliciosa, otherwise known as the Swiss Cheese, is a plant native to the tropics, frequently occurring in rainforests.
It experiences the most conducive growth in a warm, moderately humid environment. These plants have dark green, fan-shaped foliage that makes them attractive fixtures in indoor settings.
Caring for a Monstera is not exactly hard work but requires one to abide by certain stipulations. Specifically, the temperature requirements are crucial in determining growth, as is the amount of light the plant receives. The plant will grow in low light but show considerable improvement when exposed to bright light.
Monstera plants are known to turn yellow, sometimes. This article deals with why and how.
What are the reasons behind the Monstera turning yellow?
The leaves on your Monstera plant turning yellow could be the natural consequence of a variety of reasons. Most of them are biotic reasons.
Overwatering is one of the main causes behind why the Monstera turns yellow. A well-strategized watering schedule is imperative to maintain good plant health.
It is advisable to water the plant only when you find that the top inches of the soil you have potted your plant in is dry.
Monstera plants exhibit good growth in damp soil but do not confuse dampness with wet soil.
The latter stunts plant growth and cause the roots to rot.
Allow your plant to dry out in between waterings. While watering, make sure you make allowances for proper drainage to ascertain that no water remains trapped in the pot.
As is the case with most plants, it is wise to figure out an evenly-spaced watering schedule before you put it to the test. Alternating dry and wet soil periods is a stress inducer for the plant and will lead to yellowing leaves.
Being a native of tropical rainforests, Monstera plants are programmed to function better in conditions of moderate-to-high humidity.
As a result, low humidity coupled with dry soil can cause the plant to experience gradual withering. Yellow or yellowish-brown leaves are a symptom of the same.
As mentioned earlier in the article, light is one of the main factors that influence the well-being of a Monstera.
The plant requires an optimal level of light and does not perform well in either extremity of light.
If exposed to direct sunlight for considerable periods, the thin membranous leaves are liable to burn.
On the other hand, low light will lead to stunted growth and leaching of color, most noticeably observed in the plant’s leaves.
To combat this, you might want to place your plant on a movable Dias or a trolley. Place it out in the sun for a few hours( not when the sun is too strong), and bring it back in later.
An infestation of pests can cause yellowing in the Monstera.
As with infestations in general, the bugs drain the hosting plan of necessary nutrients and moisture, leaving it lifeless and dull.
Mealybugs and spider mites are among the bugs who burrow in Monsteras, moving quickly along the fronds if not killed early. They exhaust the resources available to the plant and greatly accelerate the yellowing.
A plant with a nutrient deficiency is naturally likely to exhibit signs of unhealthiness. If the soil health is poor, the plant health, too, will be poor.
Use organic manure to replenish the soil every once in a while.
Make sure to choose wisely- the quality of the soil greatly impacts future growth. If the soil in which you have potted the Monstera plant is deficient in certain essential nutrients/minerals, make sure to add them externally.
The Potting Container
Always use a potting container with the right number of drainage holes. These holes allow water to exit the container and prevent the soil from turning soggy.
Size also is a measurable factor when choosing the right container. Choose a container in scale with your plant. A too-large pot will make uniform watering a difficult task.
Temperature and humidity change with seasons. You might notice some changes in your plant as the season shifts.
For example, summer is best suited to the Monstera.
Your plant will likely flourish most during the summer months. Winter is equivalent to dry soil, which will most likely cause yellowing. The monsoon might cause accidental yellowing.
Sometimes yellowing is not a condition caused by an excess or deficit but simply the result of aging.
Older plants often have their leaves turn yellow as an indicator of old age. It is noticeable first around the bottom of the plant.
How do you get rid of yellow leaves on a Monstera?
Yellowing leaves on a Monstera are quite easy to fix. If it results from inadequate moisture, light, or nutrition, you can quickly deter the yellowing action by administering an antidote for its specific problem to the plant.
Ensuring that the soil mix is just right is an important criterion and has been very effective results.
Using the right fertilizer during the growing season boosts healthy plant development like nothing else.
Use a half-strength, water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing season. In case your fertilizer still happens to be too strong for your soil mix, dilute it with water before application.
In a pest infection, use a solution of soap and water to clean the leaves. ‘Cleaning’ implies a process where you apply the solution to the surfaces of the leaf.
The soap disperses mite growths. Once done, you can gradually restore the leaf to good health again.
Can yellow Monstera leaves turn green again?
A yellow leaf is not an irreversible condition. Most commonly, yellow leaves are external signs that the plant is not in its best health.
Once conditions for optimal health get back, you will find that the leaves are slowly regaining their natural color again.
It holds for almost every case causing yellow leaves, except age. Yellowing caused by age is not reversible. It is representative of a natural decline of the plant.
Why is my Monstera turning yellow after repotting?
Repotting, although theoretically simple, is a process that calls for a lot of precision. Monstera leaves turning yellowing due to transplant stress is a common occurrence and something that you can easily avoid by being patient.
The first thing to remember is that repotting is not suitable year-round. It is easier in some seasons than in others.
While repotting, make sure that you gently extract the plant to keep it from causing trauma to the plant parts. Ensuring that the soil mix in the new pot is suitable is necessary.
Doing a test beforehand is advisable. Finally, do not leave the roots exposed to the air too long before you repot the plant.
All of the situations mentioned above are undesirable and can cause the leaves to turn yellow quickly.
In conclusion, a Monstera plant can have yellowing leaves due to a bevy of reasons.
The silver lining here is that none of the causal conditions are indomitable. With a little research and timely intervention, the yellowing can be stopped and reversed.
What one must remember, however, is that maintaining an overall clean bill of health at all times is essential. The right amount of light, water, and nutrition go a long way in warding off disease and decay.