5 Reasons Your Houseplants Are Dying And How To Save Them


We live our whole lives surrounded by square edges and big buildings. That is the reason why we crave our little slice of nature, houseplants.

However when they start to die it can take away that escape you got from the real world. No, it is not just your “bad luck” and that everything you touch slowly dies, there is most likely a very simple reason behind why your houseplant is dying.

Today we will go through 5 reasons why your house plants are dying and also explain the easy fixes you can do to stop it from happening again.

Reason #1: Not enough light

Sunlight is so important to plants. A lot of people think that the lights inside their homes are enough to sustain the plants. In actual fact, sunlight is hundreds of times brighter than that of the ambient light within your home. It may not seem like it but our eyes are so adaptive to our surrounds that it can seem brighter than it really is.

Remember that light is the food source for our friends and that if you stave them from this, they will die.

A plant that isn’t getting enough light will show clear signs, it will get floppy, begin to look pale and even shed leaves. If a plant still has new growth but its coming in flimsy and pale, chances are that it isn’t getting enough light.

How can you help in this situation?

– The obvious answer is to put the plant in a more well lit area of your home, next to a window with plenty of natural sunlight.
– Keep blinds open in your house, not only will your plants thank you but it will be beneficial for your own health too.
– Try to move your plants as little as possible. They’re very smart and they get into habits. They know where the sun is and when it will come through, to make the most of this they orientate their leaves to collect as much sunlight as possible. If you constantly are moving plants around they can lose this rhythm and grow less efficiently.

If you really can’t get enough light into your home or are unable to move your plant into a suitable position, don’t worry! Maybe you just got the wrong plant for your house. Instead look for plants with big leaves, think about what would be on the floor of a rain forest. With the canopy restricting light to the floor, these plants have big leaves to take in as much as they possibly can. These types of plants would be ideal for a home which receives less light.

Reason #2: Watering in the wrong way

Yes, you can indeed water your plants too much. You can turn a completely healthy plant into one that is dying by watering it too much.

If you water your plant every single day it has no reason to grow stronger roots. These weak roots that develop will not be able to absorb the water as well and can lead to your plant shedding its leaves and dying.

Most people who get their new plants overwater at first and when the novelty wears off and they water less and less, because these week roots have developed the process of the plant wilting and dying is only sped up. You don’t have a brown thumb, you’re just not watering your plants in the right way.

How can you help in this situation?

– Firstly, stop watering your plants every day. When you do water them however, soak them thoroughly in a sink, this wet/dry cycle will improve root growth and prevent root rot.
– When you get your plants they’re often in tiny pots. Move them to a bigger pot as soon as possible. A bigger pot with more room will hold more water and encourage greater root growth.
– If soil gets extremely dry it wont hold water, the water will just pass through to the bottom. To fix this, put the pot in your sink and leave water slowly running for about 10-15 minutes. This constant supply of water will re-hydrate the soil and it will be able to hold the water for a much longer time.
– If you expect you’ll frequently forget to water a plant, avoid clay pots and use porcelain or plastic ones instead. Clay pots allow water to evaporate out of the sides of a pot in addition to the top, so they dry out much faster.

Reason #3: You’re adding too much fertilizer

In an ecosystem nutrients are gained from fallen leaves and twigs, we remove these in our houseplants and replace the nutrients with fertilizer. If you use too much however it can burn the roots and damage your houseplant.

A plant that has been given too much fertilizer can wilt even when watered, its leaves may get soft and feel like cloth with the tips turning brown.

How can you help in this situation?

– Firstly, just use less fertilizer. If it for a new plant, remember that the potting soil originally used contains plenty of nutrients. You shouldn’t need to use fertilizer for a long time.
– If you must use fertilizer, choose one which is a slow release, this is much less likely to burn your roots.
– You don’t need to fertilize your plants until it is showing signs of actually needing it. These signs can include lack of new growth, pale leaves with green veins or new leaves that never grow to the same size as old ones.
– Houseplants that shedd a lot of leaves will need more fertilizer than those which shed less to replace the nutrients that will be lost. Keep this in mind.

Reason #4: The air in your home is too dry

Plants generally don’t like low humidity, it increases heat stress. In an area with low humidity plants can dry out, with more evaporation they become less resilient. This can pathetically ferns, palms and orchids. Your home is the most dry in winter, this is when plants can often stress the most.


How can you help in this sitution?

– If you cannot change the humidity in your home then possibly look at different plant options. Succulents, bulbs and most plants with woody stems will fair much better in an environment with low humidity.
– Keep plants which love a humid environment in your bathroom with plenty of light. Every time you shower the air will get steamy Also being a small room there is less chance of it getting drafty.
– Cluster plants together when you can. They will raise the humidity around each other and be better off.

Reason #5: Your plants are not actually dead

Plants are very tough, they may look dead but they can come back from immense trauma. Plants can also go dormant to protect themselves. Even though they may look dead they can regrow and thrive.

What can you do in this situation:

– There isn’t a whole lot you can do in this situation apart from giving the plant some love. Trim off the dead leaves and stems so there the plant can focus more on the healthy parts left.

Recent Posts