Calathea Brown Leaves

Calathea Brown Leaves

Calathea brown leaves is a species of houseplant that is prized by gardeners and plant enthusiasts alike for its striking foliage.

This tropical evergreen, native to the jungles of Brazil and South America, features large deep green leaves with distinctive, dark-brown feathery patterns and stripes.

The undersides of the leaves are a deep maroon hue and their texture is slightly fuzzy.

Calathea brown leaves are known for their air-purifying qualities and being relatively easy to care for.

They prefer medium indirect light and moist soil, but can tolerate low light environments if taken care of properly.

With adequate humidity these plants can also produce tall showy flowers in shades of white or pink in summertime.

These flowering plants make an attractive addition to any home or office space, adding a touch of color, texture and fresh oxygen to your environment.

Brief Overview Of Calathea Plants And Their Popularity As Houseplants

Calathea plants are a type of tropical, evergreen perennial with an impressive selection of varieties.

These plants, which are native to Central and South America, feature bold green and purple foliage that is often vividly patterned or variegated.

They are highly sought-after as houseplants due to their stunning appearance and low maintenance needs.

Calathea plants thrive in indirect sunlight, warm temperatures, high humidity levels and regular watering.

Generally, they require very little pruning and are generally pest-free when given the right environment and care.

In addition, they have a variety of health benefits – they can help reduce indoor air pollution by filtering out harmful toxins as well as improving air quality by releasing oxygen during the night.

All of these factors make them ideal for any indoor living space.

What Causes Calathea Leaves To Turn Brown?


Calathea plants are tropical plants that require frequent watering and moist soil, but too much water can cause the leaves to turn brown.

When overwatering occurs, the plant’s root system is unable to access oxygen in the soil, leading to a process called root rot.

This causes the leaves to become discolored and eventually die off.

Too much water can introduce fungi and bacteria into the soil which further damages the roots, resulting in brown spots on the plant’s foliage.

To prevent this from happening, it is important to use well-draining potting soil and allow it to dry out between waterings.

It is also beneficial to fertilize your Calathea regularly with a liquid fertilizer formulated for house plants.


Calathea plants are sensitive to their environment, and one of the most common causes of their leaves turning brown is due to underwatering.

When a Calathea plant is deprived of water it starts to show its distress by wilting and eventually its leaves will become discolored and dry.

Other signs of underwatering include yellow or pale green leaves, crunchy leaf tips, drooping stems, and even entire sections of the plant becoming brown.

The best way to prevent this from happening is by keeping your Calathea adequately watered – make sure the soil is always moist but never soggy.

If you notice the leaves starting to turn brown, give your plant a thorough watering right away in order to restore it back to health.

Poor Lighting Conditions

Calathea leaves tend to turn brown when they are not getting enough light. Poor lighting is one of the main causes of browning in these plants.

Without adequate access to sunlight, the leaves may become yellowish, gradually turning brown at their tips before making a complete transition to a shade of brown.

This can be due to improper placement in a room with too little natural light or insufficient artificial lighting sources.

In addition, inadequate watering can also cause the leaves to turn brown and brittle as it prevents them from receiving the necessary nutrients that keep the leaves healthy and vibrant.

To avoid this issue, it is important to provide your Calathea with plenty of bright, indirect sunlight each day and make sure you do not overwater it.

Pest Infestations

Calathea leaves can turn brown for a variety of reasons, but one of the most common and devastating causes is pest infestations.

Pests such as insects, mites, and nematodes can wreak havoc on Calathea plants.

These pests are attracted to the plant’s lush foliage and can quickly begin to feed on it and spread further throughout the plant.

In addition, some pests lay eggs on Calatheas that hatch into larvae, which can cause even more damage to the leaves. If left untreated, pest infestations are capable of killing a Calathea plant.

There are ways to mitigate pest infestation damage; this includes checking your plants regularly for signs of pests and using appropriate treatments such as insecticidal soap or horticultural oil if an infestation is detected.

Some preventive measures can be taken to reduce the risk of having a pest infestation in the first place.

Good air circulation around plants by spacing them out properly and avoiding over-watering will go a long way towards keeping pests away from your Calatheas.

Lack Of Humidity

Calathea leaves are sensitive to humidity levels in the home. If the humidity is low, it can cause their leaves to turn brown and become dried out.

Browning can be especially common for Calathea varieties that prefer high humidity levels, such as Calathea orbifolia or Calathea makoyana.

This is because they need regular misting or a humidity tray with water in order to stay healthy.

Low levels of humidity will cause their leaves to turn brown, curl up, and even drop off the plant.

To keep your Calatheas healthy, it’s important to maintain a level of humidity between 50-70% in your home as much as possible.

Either through misting with water or placing a tray filled with pebbles and water near the plant.

Chemical Pesticides Or Fertilizers

Calathea leaves may turn brown due to chemical pesticides or fertilizers being used in the environment. This could be caused by direct contact with these chemicals, such as when sprayed onto the plant or its soil, but also from indirect contact, such as fertilizer runoff from nearby areas.

While some chemical applications are necessary for proper plant growth, incorrect amounts or types of chemicals can cause a build-up in the soil and surrounding air, which can lead to damage such as leaf discoloration.

In addition to this, overfertilizing and not providing enough water can also contribute to browning leaves.

The best way to prevent this is to use natural pest control methods and natural fertilizers that are safe for your specific plant type, and ensure adequate water and sunlight exposure.

How To Fix Calathea Brown Leaves

Check Soil Moisture Levels And Adjust Watering Accordingly

It is important to check the soil moisture levels of your Calathea plant when diagnosing brown leaves.

If the soil is too dry, this can cause dehydration and wilting of the leaves. It is important to ensure that the soil stays consistently moist – not wet or soggy – for optimum health.

To achieve this, water your Calathea plant when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, and then add enough water that it begins to slightly drain from the bottom of the pot.

This will help ensure that all parts of the root system are adequately hydrated.

You may want to invest in a moisture meter if you don’t already have one; this will help you more accurately gauge how much water your plant needs at any given time.

Move Plant To A Location With Proper Lighting

Calathea plants can be extremely sensitive to lighting and need to be placed in a location that is not too dark or too bright.

If the leaves of your Calathea plant have started to brown, one of the first things to check is the amount of lighting it is receiving.

The ideal lighting for a Calathea plant is indirect, bright light from a east- or west-facing window.

Too much direct sunlight can cause the leaves to start yellowing and eventually turn brown.

If this is the case, move your Calathea further away from the window, as well as ensuring that blinds are closed during peak sunlight hours.

On the other hand, if Calatheas do not receive enough light their growth will stagnate and the leaves will start turning brown from the tips downwards.

If this is what you are seeing, increase the distance from where you have placed your plant to any light source so it receives adequate illumination.

Make sure that your plant also has humidity levels above 50% – using a humidifier or misting frequently can help with increasing relative humidity levels around your Calathea.

Inspect Plant For Pests And Treat Accordingly

When it comes to fixing Calathea brown leaves, the first step is to inspect the plant for pests. Common pests that could be causing this problem are mealybugs, scale, spider mites and aphids.

The best way to identify if these pests are present is by inspecting both the underside of the leaves and near the stem for any small insects or sticky residue that would indicate a pest infestation.

If an infestation is found, treating it with a suitable pesticide will help eradicate most common pests from your Calathea plant.

It is also beneficial to provide adequate ventilation around your plant and keep it away from drafts or excessive heat sources which can weaken its health over time.

Make sure to feed your plant with fertilizers specific for Calatheas regularly as this will help keep them healthy and strong so they can better fight off any potential pest attacks.

Increase Humidity Around Plant (E.G. By Using A Humidifier Or Placing Plant On A Pebble Tray)

Increasing humidity around a Calathea plant is an effective way to fix its brown leaves.

Humidity can be increased by using a humidifier or by placing the plant on a pebble tray filled with water.

To use the pebble tray, you need to make sure that the base of the pot is raised slightly above the top of the tray, and then pour enough water into the tray to almost cover the pebbles.

If a humidifier is used instead, it should be placed close to the plant but not too close so as to avoid getting it wet.

It is also important to monitor the humidity levels regularly and adjust accordingly; if it gets too high then some ventilation may be required.

Try misting your Calathea regularly with lukewarm water and taking care not to over-water it.

This will help maintain appropriate moisture levels and prevent brown leaves from developing in future.

Avoid Using Chemical Pesticides Or Fertilizers

When it comes to fixing Calathea brown leaves, one of the most important steps is avoiding the use of chemical pesticides or fertilizers.

These products can contain ingredients that are extremely toxic to plants, and they can cause damage to even healthy foliage.

They have the potential to disrupt the delicate balance of nutrients in the soil, leading to further deficiencies.

To maintain a healthy and vibrant Calathea plant, it’s best to opt for organic fertilizers and pest control methods.

Such as introducing beneficial insects like lady bugs or using natural deterrents like garlic extract, cinnamon powder and/or neem oil.

Ensuring your Calathea has plenty of access to sunlight – along with providing adequate drainage – is key for staving off browning leaves from root rot or too much watering.

Misting or providing humidity will also help keep your Calathea happy and lush.