Why Are My Peace Lily Leaves Turning Yellow, Brown, or Curling & Drooping?

By: Matt Slaymaker
January 17, 2024
Peace Lily Leaves Turning Yellow, Brown, or Curling & Drooping
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The gorgeous peace lily, with its aura of beauty and tranquility, is a popular tropical houseplant, which blooms into wispy white flowers against the backdrop of bright and shiny green leaves. But sometimes, the leaves can turn yellow or brown, or they may also start to curl or droop. These peace lily leaf issues can occur for many reasons, including water-related mistakes, incorrect light exposure, and more. So, it’s important to know your plant’s needs and care requirements to ensure its optimum growth and healthy appearance.

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll understand how to identify common peace lily problems, recognize their causes and learn how to fix them. Furthermore, we’ll share some expert preventative tips, which will help you adjust your peace lily care routine for a more vibrant and thriving plant.

Peace Lily Yellow Leaves: Causes & Solutions 

Peace Lily Leaves Turning Yellow

Peace lilies are generally pretty easy-to-care-for plants. But why are the leaves turning pale? Here are the top causes of your peace lily leaves turning yellow:

  • Inappropriate watering routine - Overwatering, which leads to root rot, as well as underwatering, can both cause yellowing leaves on peace lilies.
  • Poor water quality - Tap water contains chemicals, such as fluoride and chlorine, which may affect the soil pH levels and trigger yellowing leaves.
  • Mineral deficiency - Your peace lily may suffer from discolored leaves, due to depleted soil.
  • Temperature and humidity problems - Peace lilies grow best in a temperature range of 65F-85F, with a humidity level of 50%-60%. In the wrong conditions, the plant can exhibit yellowing leaves.
  • Sunlight issues - Overexposure to sunlight can scorch your peace lily’s leaves. 
  • Root-bound plant - If the peace lily becomes pot-bound, it won’t absorb properly moisture and nutrients from the soil, which will cause yellowing leaves. 
  • Transplant shock - After repotting your peace lily, it needs time to adjust to its new pot. Transplant shock can result in wilting, yellow leaves.
  • Age - Older, lower leaves naturally turn yellow before falling off. .

How Do I Fix Yellow Leaves on My Peace Lily?

Pruning your peace lily’s damaged, yellow leaves is your first course of action to fix the issue. Then, it’s vital to understand the true cause behind the problem so that you prevent it from happening again. Leave the plant to properly dry between waterings if you think the soil is waterlogged. Repot your peace lily if you suspect root rot or it’s outgrown its planter. Feed your beloved indoor plant once every two months to avoid overfertilization. Last but not least, do not expose the peace lily to bright, direct light to prevent burnt leaves.

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Why Are My Peace Lily Leaves Turning Brown? 

Browning Leaves on a Peace Lily
Source: Reddit

If you notice that your peace lily leaves, and even blooms, turning brown, . When the foliage starts to yellow, then, it usually turns brown before gradually dying and falling off. This could be due to the natural process of aging.

However, your green and healthy peace lily’s leaves may develop brown spots and blemishes sometimes. So, there could be other reasons behind the browning leaves on your peace lily, which are fairly similar to those causing yellow leaves. 

From poor soil drainage, root rot, or underwatering to excess sunlight, pests and diseases, or temperature fluctuations, your peace lily can quickly start looking worse for wear. Worry not, but take actions as soon as possible.

What to Do When a Peace Lily Turns Brown?

If you notice browning of the leaves, you should carefully remove these from the plant. In addition, proper care can prevent peace lily leaves from going brown. Here's a quick recap:

  • Watering: Water the plant once a week with purified water and ensure the top 1”-2” of the soil is moist. 
  • Light: Avoid placing your peace lily in direct sunlight or in a low-light spot for prolonged periods. 
  • Repotting: Repot your plant once every two years, unless the brown leaves are caused by root rot.  
  • Temperature/Humidity: Maintain 65F-85F temperature and 50%-60% humidity.
  • Treat against pests: Aphids, fungus gnats, mealybugs, spider mites, and bacterial infections should be addressed in a timely manner.
  • Nutrients: Feed your plant seasonally with a balanced fertilizer every 6-8 weeks in the warmer months. 

Peace Lily Leaves Curling: 7 Reasons and Solutions

Seeing your peace lily leaves curling can be a little frustrating. Let's see how different factors affect the plant and cause the leaves to curl. he most common reasons are:

  • Overexposure to light: You need to meet your peace lily’s light requirements and not place it in direct sunlight to avoid curling leaves, due to moisture loss. 
  • Temperature fluctuations: As mentioned above, extreme heat induces moisture loss leading to the leaf curling inward. Severe cold also triggers leaf cur, as well. 
  • Low humidity: Plants curl their leaves inward to preserve moisture for longer when humidity is low.
  • Nutrient issues: Overfeeding the plant with nutrient-rich fertilizers can burn the roots and prevent nutrient absorption. Similarly, a lack of nutrients in the soil can cause the leaves to deform and start curling down, especially at the tips.
  • Overcrowding: The leaves of an overcrowded peace lily plant may start to curl, due to poor nutrients and moisture absorption, as the pot has become too small.
  • Watering routine: Tap water and underwatering can also cause curling leaves on your peace lily.
  • Pests: Pests may eat at the plant leaves or inject toxins, causing them to curl or appear distorted.

  • How Do I Fix Curled Leaves on My Peace Lily?

    The good news is that curling may be reversed, unlike yellowing or browning of the leaves. Follow these basic plant care steps to revive your peace lily’s leaves: 

    • Keep the plant in a spot that receives filtered, indirect  light, or in partial shade. 
    • Provide consistent temperature and humidity within the recommended range and level.
    • Don’t overfeed your peace lily, and refrain from fertilizing it in the winter.
    • Divide an overcrowded plant - the perfect way to propagate a peace lily, or repot it into a bigger container.
    • Water your peace lily once a week to every ten days with purified water and allow the soil to dry completely. 
    • Use an insecticide against insect infestations to remedy curling leaves.

    Peace Lily Drooping Leaves: The Most Common Causes 

    Peace Lily Drooping Leaves

    If you find your peace lily leaves drooping, it could be due to extreme heat, lack of moisture in the air and excess direct sunlight; underwatering or overwatering (and root rot); transplant shock or pot-bound roots; cold temperature, and more.

    Again, it’s not hard to fix the problem and revive your beautiful peace lily.

    How Do You Revive a Droopy Peace Lily?

    You can revive the droopy, wilting leaves of a peace lily and rejuvenate the plant with proper care. Make sure to follow our helpful tips:

    • Ensure that the top soil layers are neither dry nor overly wet. For that, water the plant no more than once a week with purified water.
    • Your peace lily should receive indirect or dappled sunlight. You can rotate it occasionally so that all parts receive sunlight uniformly. 
    • Give the plant a balanced houseplant fertilizer in the growing season only.  
    • Do not allow for the plant to become root-bound or overcrowded. Devide it into smaller plants that you can give away to friends as gifts, or repot it into a bigger pot. 
    • Bring your peace lily indoors in the winter, if it was kept on the porch during the summer months.

    Peace Lily Leaves: Care and Prevention Tips 

    Even though peace lily plants are fairly easy-going and low-maintenance, they may develop visible problems. These naturally show in the leaves, as they become yellow, brown, droopy, and bent. All these leaf issues have some common causes that can be easily prevented by applying proper care. Follow the tips below to ensure that your peace lily looks healthy and vibrant:

    • Soil: Peace lilies grow best in aerated, well-draining soil with some moisture retention capacity.
    • Fertilizer: A regular diluted NPK fertilizer with an equal balance of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium works best. 
    • Pot size: The pot diameter should be about 2” larger than the plant’s diameter. A pot too large can cause waterlogging, while a small pot will cause overcrowding. 
    • Watering: Peace lilies should be watered when the top layer of the soil feels dry. Poor tap water quality may affect the plant’s health. 
    • Sunlight: Place the peace lily in indirect sunlight. Rotate the plant every few months.
    • Pest and disease prevention: Remove old and damaged leaves and blooms. Repot after cleaning the roots in the case of root rot. Watch out for insect issues and act accordingly.. 

    Peace Lily Leaf Problems: FAQs

    Q: How long does it take for a peace lily to perk back up?

    A: If you see curling or drooping peace lily leaves, it's possible to rejuvenate the plant. With proper and timely care, the plant can perk back up in 2-3 weeks.  

    Q. Should you cut brown leaves off peace lily?

    A: Yes, you should cut brown leaves off a peace lily plant. Brown leaves could be a sign of age, pests, poor nutrition, or other problems. Removing them will help prevent energy waste and will rejuvenate your plant.

    Q. How do I know if my peace lily is overwatered?

    A: If your peace lily is overwatered, you will notice that the leaves are turning yellow or droopy. The soil of such a plant is likely always wet. The plant will look overall unhealthy.   

    Q. Should I remove yellow leaves on peace lily?

    A: Yes, you should remove your peace lily’s yellow leaves. The plant will then start to direct its energy to its healthy parts. Trying to revive yellow leaves is a futile effort, as they’ll never turn green again.

    Conclusion 

    Enjoying a vibrant and healthy peace lily is an easy task, as long as you meet all its needs and prevent it from having any pest problems. You can grow it together with many other houseplants to enhance the aesthetics of your indoor green space and benefit from their air-purifying properties

    For instance, a variety of ferns can form a beautiful contrast against the white flowers of peace lilies. Other companion plants that go well with a peace lily are butterfly gingers with delicate flowers, caladiums that add a pop of color, and crotons with their vibrant, contrasting leaves. So consider adding these varieties to your your plant collection to create the indoor greenery of your dreams.