Why does my Ficus elastica have brown spots on the leaves?

Ficus elastica may have brown spots

You ficus elastic Do you have brown spots on the leaves and you cannot determine the cause? Don’t worry: although there are several possible reasons why this is so, there are also several possible solutions. So if your tree starts to get sick, if you follow our advice you can try to recover it.

That’s why I want to explain to you why do brown spots appear on the leaves of ficusand also what you can do so that the problem not only doesn’t get worse, but can be fixed.


Sun burn

Ek ficus elastica may have brown spots due to the sun

Image – Wikimedia/Mokkie

Although the ficus elastic It is a tree that needs direct sun, It can happen that if you take it outside after having had it indoors for a while, the leaves will burn, because they are not used to it.. Likewise, it is also very common that if inside the house is next to a window through which the sun’s rays penetrate more or less directly, the leaves closest to the aforementioned window will burn.

But these brown spots will appear very quickly, within a few hours. Also, the tree will not have more symptoms than this; that is, he will be healthy except for those burns. For this reason, it is easy to prevent the problem from getting worse, since it is enough to change its location if it is indoors, or to begin to gradually accustom it to the sun if it is outside. outdoors, first putting it in partial shade for a while, then gradually exposing it to direct sunlight. .

He was sprinkled on it

This is really related to the previous cause, since nothing happens to the plants if they are wet, as long as the sun does not hit them directly at that time. It means that If you water your ficus from above during the central hours of the day, for example, when the sun is high on the horizon, some leaves will surely burn..

That is why it should not be wet unless the king sun is already low and the plant is no longer exposed to it. And if for some reason we have already done this and some leaves have burned, it will be enough just not to do it again. These leaves will eventually fall, but the important thing is not to endanger others.

Do you have parasites or a disease?

Plants can have scale insects

Image – Flickr/Katja Schulz

Another possible cause for your ficus elastica to have brown spots on the leaves is none other than it being affected by a pest or suffering from a disease. From my own experience, I can tell you that it is a plant that resists both quite well, since it contains a very toxic latex inside. But when it is watered excessively or if, on the contrary, it is very thirsty, the leaves will begin to spoilbecause it is then that insects or pathogenic micro-organisms will wreak havoc.

But what problems could he have? Good, As for pests, the most common are scale insects and aphids.. Both hide behind the leaves to feed on the sap they extract from them. And on the disease side, alternaria or Phyllosticta can cause the appearance of spots on the foliage.

How is it treated? Well, the pests can be controlled with environmentally friendly insecticides like diatomaceous earth (available here), or even by cleaning the leaves well with water and a little diluted dish soap. As for diseases, a systemic fungicide should be applied and determine whether or not watering is done with adequate frequencybecause excessive watering can be very detrimental to ficus elastica.

The frequency of watering is not the most suitable

You have to think that the ficus elastica is a tree that cannot go long without receiving water, but it also would not withstand flooding. For him, It is important that, in case it does not rain, or you have it indoors, you water it from time to time so that the roots do not suffer and, therefore, to prevent the leaves from ending up with brown spots.

And it is that If, for example, you water a lot more than necessary, the older leaves will turn yellow first., then the others. In addition, you will see that the earth is very humid and weighs a lot. In this case, you should stop watering for a while until the said soil dries out a little, and also apply a systemic fungicide (on sale here) so that the fungi do no more damage.

On another side, if what happens is that the ficus is thirsty, the leaves that will start to struggle will be the new ones, then the rest. You will also see that the earth is very dry, and that it weighs little. Fortunately, this is quickly corrected because it is enough to water more often. If you are not sure when to water the ficus elastica, check the soil moisture by inserting a stick all the way; if you saw it came out with lots of clinging soil, you wouldn’t need to water, but if it came out practically clean, yes.

As you have seen, there are several causes. I hope your plant recovers soon.

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