Why are my Pothos leaves turning black? (And How To Fix It) – ISPUZZLE

Due to the fairly simple growing requirements, pothos is a popular choice. However, certain problems can occur that cause the leaves of pothos to turn black and make the plant sick.

Don’t be afraid when this happens; you can follow simple steps to fix this issue. For this, you need to know why the leaves of pothos turn black.

Pothos leaves darken due to excess light and the use of fertilizers.. Another reason the leaves darken is because they are waterlogged. Other possible causes include poor drainage, high or low temperatures, insects or disease.

Below are several possible reasons why your plant’s leaves are darkening and how to fix the problems.


Causes of Pothos Leaves Turning Black

It’s very heartbreaking when your favorite pothos goes black and you don’t know how to fix it.

It is very important to know the causes before applying the solutions. No problem! Here are the possible causes and solutions for blackening pothos leaves.

excessive watering

As identified above, one of the main causes of your plant’s leaves turning black can be the result of overwatering.

Pothos tend to have greater drought tolerance and can take up less water than many other plants.

Too much water can cause the roots to rot, causing the plant’s leaves to darken and the plant to die.

Overwatering reduces oxygen in the soil, resulting in damaged roots that cannot absorb water properly.

are important visual signs The leaves are turning yellow or the formation of blackheads. To better understand the problem, you can inspect the roots of the plant to see if they have rotted due to overly wet conditions.

How to fix

  • Make sure your soil isn’t too damp or wet, which could rot the roots.
  • Let the soil dry completely before watering.
  • Depending on the soil of the pot, the growth phase, the type of pot, the temperature and the humidity, it is important to water the plant.
  • Often once a week or once every two weeks is enough to water your Pathos. However, this mainly depends on the temperature and humidity of your plant’s environment.

I wrote an entire article about this common problem, with easy to follow steps. save overwatering pothos and ways to water properly.

excessive light

Although Pothos generally thrives in bright rooms, problems with the plant can arise if placed in full sun.

When a plant gets too much light, it can get sunburn, which darkens and wilts the leaves.

Direct sun basically burns the cells of the plant, causing the leaves of the plant to turn brown.

How to fix

  • To avoid this, place your plant out of direct sunlight and make sure it is always in a bright room.
  • Pothos can thrive in dark conditions, so don’t be afraid to move him to another dark room. However, always make sure there is natural light in the room where you keep your Pothos.

poor drainage

Another common problem your Pothos is dying of is due to poor soil drainage. In general, the soil around the plant should be moist and cool.

Roots must have air to survive, so there must be effective drainage for the plant to breathe.

If the roots are not healthy, they cannot effectively absorb water to transport it to the rest of the plant.

How to fix

  • If the soil is too wet, be sure to remove any clods that may be preventing the holes from draining water.
  • Push the soil against the pot so water can reach the roots if the soil is dry or crumbling.
  • Be sure to loosen the ground if it has hardened on the surface.
  • Use a potting mix with good drainage for your pothos.

Under irrigation/drought

When your Pothos does not get enough water, the leaves begin to wilt. It is normal for Pothos to wilt for a short time during hot days.

However, if it persists for a long time, your Pothos is not getting enough water, which can cause it to die.

Pothos leaves turning black are a symptom of this. That is why it is important to water it regularly.

How to fix

  • To know when to water your Pothos, stick your finger/stick into the soil to feel if it is wet or not.
  • Less water is often needed during cooler seasons and more water during warmer growing seasons. So adapt the schedule to the seasons.

temperature and humidity

you should try it maintain the temperature of your Pothos between 60 and 85°F (15 and 30°C). If the temperature drops below 10°C, the plant may die.

Pothos generally thrive in normal, humid house conditions when lighting is adequate. However, during winter months when there is less humidity, Pothos leaves may turn brown and then black.

How to fix

  • If your Pothos is lacking in moisture, you can mist the plant to provide more humidity.
  • A humidifier or furnace can also help your Pothos thrive and grow.
  • The pebble tray method (amazon link) is a simple way to increase humidity around plants.
  • Grouping plants together is also another way to increase the humidity around them.


Pothos have often already received effective fertilization in a greenhouse and a supplement is not always necessary.

Like other plants, pothos need nutrients to thrive. But if you fertilize too much, it will damage your pothos. Leaves turning black are an indication of fertilizer burn.

Your potted pothos won’t need frequent fertilizing. Apply fertilizer once every 2-3 months from spring to fall.

How to fix

  • If your Pothos isn’t growing it doesn’t necessarily mean you need to add more fertilizer, it often means the plant isn’t getting enough light or water.
  • It is important to check the water and light conditions before adding additional fertilizer.
  • Avoid fertilizing during the winter season, as this is the dormant period for plants.

fungal diseases

Most of the causes of problems with houseplants are usually environmental issues.

However, in some cases, it may be due to certain diseases. One of the most common diseases that infect Pothos is Phytophthora.

The infection begins at the roots and eventually spreads to the leaves. This causes the leaves to blacken. These dark spots may indicate a mold problem. Read this article to know how to fix pothos brown spots problem.

How to fix

If your Pothos may have a fungal disease, remove any infected leaves and treat the plant with an appropriate fungicide.

Bacterial infections

Brown spots can also indicate a bacterial infection. Often there aren’t many remedies if the plants are completely infected, and in many cases you will have to throw them away.

How to fix

To avoid this, it is important to water your Pothos early in the day to allow the leaves to dry out. Also place your Pothos in areas where air can circulate, which reduces humidity.

Common Infections Your Pothos Might Have

bacterial wilt

This is common in the hottest times of the year. This bacterial disease causes the leaves of the plant to wilt and the leaf veins to darken.

Rhizoctonia root rot and airborne disease

One of the main visual characteristics are the dark spots on the leaves of the plant. If the infection spreads to the roots, the plant will die.

Try treating your Pothos with an effective fungicide. The Garden Safe brand fungicide (amazon link) gets my vote because it is very effective against fungal diseases of pothos.

However, if you are unable to treat it effectively, your Pothos may need to be eliminated.

insect plague

Another possibility could be insects that have infected the plant. Spider mites, mealybugs and scale insects are common insects that attack houseplants.

These are small white bugs that will cause your Pothos leaves to turn yellow and eventually die.

How to fix

  • Pothos bedbugs are often easy to treat, and a simple home remedy you can use is to apply rubbing alcohol to a cotton swab and then apply it to the bedbugs.
  • You should repot your Pothos with new soil and flush the leaves of any insects.
  • You can also use a houseplant spray to prevent future insects. However, you must discard your Pothos if it is badly damaged by insects.

frequently asked Questions

Why are the tips of my Pothos leaves turning brown?

There are several reasons why your pothos leaves turn brown. However, one of the most common reasons is due to environmental factors such as too much or too little watering, or too much direct sunlight. Other possible reasons may be due to overfertilization or disease.

How do you know if Pothos is dying?

If your plant’s leaves start to turn yellow or darken and wilt, it may indicate that your plant is dying.

The roots of the plant may also become soft and dark instead of white and firm. It is important to understand the root problem to try and revive your plant before it dies.

Should I spray my Pothos plant?

There is no need to mist your Pothos as they tend to thrive with little water and humidity.

However, if your plant is moisture deprived, or during the drier winter months, you can mist your Pothos plant, depending on the environment and the humidity of the room it is in.

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