Yellowing split leaf philodendron - Knowledgebase Question

Stony Brook, NY
Question by marsidotesat
April 19, 2012
I have a mature split-leaf philodendron and my concern is that the leaves start to yellow. There is no infestation and I water it about every ten days. It is in my front foyer where there is good light from a skylight. Can you give me any clues as to what may cause the leaves to yellow

Answer from NGA
April 19, 2012


Sounds like you're doing everything right in terms of light exposure and watering. Good idea to check for insect pests, too. Since you've found no apparent problem, you might want to check the root system (just to make sure nothing is munching on the roots and the roots are not rotting or overcrowded). While philodendrons are evergreens, they do eventually lose their oldest leaves. It's normal for the older, lower leaves to yellow before they die. If your plant has healthy looking new growth and the yellowing is on the oldest, lowest leaves, I suspect it's a natural thing. If the newer leaves are yellowing, overwatering or lack of nutrients can be the cause. Deeply soak the root system when you water, then wait until the top inch of soil is dry before watering again. You can simply stick your finger down into the soil to check the moisture content before watering. Once you've eliminated the above possibilities for problems you may want to feed your philodendron. Use a half strength dilution of a liquid fertilizer. Hope the above helps you figure out what might be going on with your plant.

Name: Will Creed
Professional indoor plant consultan
Answer from WillC
August 24, 2017


Most skylights do not provide adequate light for a Split Leafed Philodendron unless it is very wide and not very high above the plant. Improper watering will also cause leaf yellowing. There is no apparent evidence of pests and it is inappropriate to fertilize plants that are not healthy and growing vigorously

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