It’s devastating to see your aloe plant turn yellow. It can happen to any aloe vera plant. Aloe leaves yellow for many reasons. This article will explain the causes and solutions for yellowing aloe vera.
Overwatering, a lack of water, and nutrient deficiency are the most common causes of aloe turning yellow. If the roots are rotting, repotting is the only option. Water only when the top 1-2 inches of soil are dry. During the spring, fertilize with a liquid houseplant mix.
Excess Watering Promotes Fungal Growth
Overwatering aloe vera keeps the potting soil moist most of the time. This moist environment promotes root rot disease.
The issue with root rot is that it is initially undetectable. When the root rots, the aloe vera shows symptoms of yellowing.
Rotting roots can’t absorb nutrients, causing yellow aloe leaves.
Aloe Leaf Dries Out And Yellows Due to Lack Of Watering
Aloe vera plants can go for 2-3 months without water. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t water.
Now, what if you don’t water for a long time?! Of course, the soil dries and the roots cannot absorb food.
The essential elements for plants remain soluble in soil water.
Without water, the plant cannot use the nutrients. So your aloe vera shows symptoms of yellowing.
So, How Do You Water An Aloe Vera Plant?
This is a common method for determining the water needs of houseplants. In aloe vera,
- First, loosen the upper part of the earth and dry it out 1-2 inches.
- Then you can water it without flooding. It is critical that excess water drains from the pot.
- Water once every ten days. Reduce watering frequency in the winter.
- Also, remember that young plants need more water than mature plants.
- Keep in mind that irrigation frequency is linked to lighting intensity, humidity, and plant size.
Aloe Plants Turn Yellow Due to Nutrient Deficiency
Nitrogen deficiency is indicated by aloe turning pale or pale green. You might also notice yellowing of the sharp leaf tips and thinned leaf plates.
In the aloe plant, chlorophyll content is proportional to nitrogen content. When there is a lack of nitrogen, there is less chlorophyll and eventually yellow leaves.
A single application of liquid succulent fertilizer in the spring is all that is required to meet your aloe’s nutrient needs.
Important! After transplanting, wait six months before fertilizing aloe. New soil feeds it, and young plants don’t need extra fertilizer.
Aloe Turning Yellow Due to Diseases
Root rot has the potential to kill your plants before you have the opportunity to save them. There are, however, ways to save the plant from root rot if you detect it before it’s too late.
Excess moisture in the potting soil, or overwatering, is the primary cause of Phytophthora fungi growth. This fungus rots the root system, preventing your aloe from absorbing nutrients and water.
As a result, the entire plant suffers from a lack of nutrients and other supplies to function physiologically.
Here are some symptoms of aloe vera root rot:
- The leaves thin out, appear watery, and wither.
- The color progresses from juicy green to yellow.
- The aloe stem appears thin and fragile, and it easily breaks off at the base.
- The soil in the pot begins to smell bad.
- The plant’s growth slows.
Here’s an article on how to save your aloe vera from root rot.
If the aloe has dry rot, the picture will be slightly different. The disease advances rapidly. Almost always, the plant dies.
Initially, only the tips of the medium-sized leaves dry out and start to turn yellow. After drying and curing, the leaf dies.
The disease spreads from leaf to leaf. There’s not much you can do. A fungus destroys aloe from within, drying it out. Only propagation can save the plant from dry rot.
Aloe Turns Yellow Due to Insect Infestation
A real disaster for your indoor aloe is pests. Now and then pests attack your plants. Since they can not only damage but also destroy green leafy areas. As a result, aloe leaves turn yellow.
If you find yellowing aloe plants and dead leaf spots, it is proof that the plant is attacked by spider mites.
The dead spots will unite and make the leaves turn yellow. Slowly all the leaves will be affected. With such a tiny size – about 1 mm, the insect causes a lot of damage.
They settle in a colony on the underside of young leaves. Then the insect sucks out its gentle juice and exhausts your plant.
If yellowness turns into brown, and then the leaf dies. You should act immediately:
- move the plant away from others, isolating and preventing infection;
- treat the plant leaves with Insecticidal Soap or neem oil which is designed to control pests;
- repeat the treatment of all leaves twice with an interval of 5 days.
It’s important to do it on the balcony or in an open space. The insecticidal soap is not as dangerous as chemical insecticides. But still, it can irritate your eyes and skin. So, wearing gloves and protective eyeglasses can protect you from the possible effects of the insecticide.
In addition to the long-lasting effective pesticides, you can also use homemade recipes. You can make a very easy and simple pesticide using laundry soap and onion peel.
Mix them together and carefully wipe each leaf of the plant. Easy, cost-effective, and safe method to fight against plant-insect.
The influence of scale insects
The scale insect looks like a small bump on the stem or leaf of a plant. They settle in a colony and sucks out the juice. Thus, it deprives the aloe leaves of growth and development.
The leaves in the damaged areas dry out. In severe lesions, the leaves turn yellow and then dark reddish, later brown spots appear on them. Then the leaf dies off.
Immediately isolate the plant from the rest. Thoroughly treat the place where it stood, and the plant itself with garlic tincture.
You can use alcoholic solutions to wipe the leaves and as well as the whole plant. This will help save your plants from pests.
You may also notice that the aloe plant has yellow tips. And the plant is suddenly covered with pieces of wax.
Then you can be sure about the attack of mealybug. The areas covered by this pest begin to rot as there will be a lack of oxygen.
Mealybug does not like moisture. So sometimes it is enough to treat the plant with special formulations of alcohol or a little apple vinegar to control it. Use it carefully so as not to burn the aloe.
After thoroughly wiping every centimeter of the succulent, you will need to put it in the shade for a few days.
This will increase the chances of getting rid of the mealybug. Within 10 days you should repeat the treatment 3 more times using normal wet wipes.
How To Prevent Insects
Now, the prevention of diseases and pests is much simpler than fighting them and their consequences. To protect the plants, you just need to carefully monitor them, observing all the changes.
And also take precautions when transplanting or introducing a new indoor plant near it. Transplant, fertilize and treat at the right time. Supply filtered water on time and do not violate the temperature preference of the plant.
It is important to adhere to these requirements when caring for an aloe vera plant:
- If you are using old pots for transplant, you must treat them with disinfectants.
- When you aloe pulling out new branches, make sure to choose a larger container. So that the roots have enough room for growth.
- If you want to use garden soil, you should warm it up in the oven or pour it with boiling water to destroy pests.
- Wipe aloe leaves weekly and inspect the stem. Not only will you be able to recognize the warning signs in good time, but also you can prevent the occurrence of diseases and pests.
A strong, healthy aloe plant can easily withstand both stress factors and various diseases. You can keep your aloe plant healthy only by naturally taking care of them.
With proper care, monitoring the condition of the soil, providing favorable conditions, your aloe vera will delight all year round.
Temperature Fluctuation Causes Aloe Vera Physiological Problems
Aloe Vera prefers temperatures of 50-80°F. However, sudden temperature changes disrupt normal physiological processes, causing aloe to yellow.
If the temperature drops below 50°F, aloe vera may show signs of stress by changing color.
On the other hand, aloe heats up and changes color as a result of being exposed to the sun for a long time (more than 3 hours) in hot weather (above 80 °F).
How to Keep Your Aloe Healthy And Happy
If you do not want your aloe turning yellow, you need to follow the recommendations. Here are some common best practices to keep your aloe vera healthy and happy:
- Aloe needs good lighting, so you should keep it on the south or east windowsill with shading from direct sunlight.
- You can use both clay and plastic pot for the aloe vera plant, make sure the pot is large enough to support the vertical and horizontal root growth.
- Water your aloe vera when the potting soil dries along the edge of the pot. You can use your finger to check the soil moisture. And always use settled water at room temperature.
- The potting mix must be loose, full of plant nutrients, and have good air permeability.
- If your aloe plant is under five years of age then consider transplanting it annually in spring.
- You should apply fertilizer when it is in an active growth period. Winter is the rest period for aloe, so do not use fertilizer at this time.
- Do not let the dust settle on the leaves. It will interrupt the photosynthesis process. Regularly clean the leaves with a soft cloth.
- You can spray the leaves in summer to help your aloe maintain its temperature.
- Inspect your aloe vera each week to detect any disease or insect attack. If you find any take the necessary actions as I described above.
Aloe vera does not mind minor care mistakes. But if you continue to ignore its requirements then the aloe will lose immunity to disease and pests.
And that’s why it will turn yellow or brown. If you follow the care tips stated above you can enjoy the beauty and use its medicinal properties. (Source: Cooperative Extension; The University of Arizona)