Ask a Question forum: Spider plant keeps browning

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Frederick, MD
Dblue1
Oct 1, 2017 7:29 AM CST
Hi. I’m new to the site so hopefully I have asked this in the right area... I recently bought a spider plant (about 3 weeks ago) and it was a little brown in spots when I bought it. I cut off those leaves and have been watering once a week. It was in a room with low light but kept drooping and the leaves would crack horizontally and make it look more droopy. I since moved it in a brighter room (still not full sun). The leaves have been turning brown pretty rapidly and I have kept cutting off those leaves but it doesn’t seem to be helping. Any ideas?
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Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
Oct 1, 2017 7:43 AM CST
There;s a good possibility its root bound or your not giving it enough water, does the water run out when you water it? If you put your finger down into the pot can you feel compacted soil? Other member's will have answer;s for you too.
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Frederick, MD
Dblue1
Oct 1, 2017 8:23 AM CST
Soil doesn’t feel compacted. The water doesn’t run through the bottom. Should I be watering it more so that it does? It does look like it might be too big for this pot though. I can try reporting it too.
[Last edited by Dblue1 - Oct 1, 2017 8:27 AM (+)]
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Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
Oct 1, 2017 9:24 AM CST
Your Spider Plants needs lots of sunlight. The all-green variety can get by with less, but yours definitely needs to be in a sunny window. Direct indoor sunlight is fine for this plant.

After moving it to a brighter location, the older leaves will not improve, but new growth will be thicker, sturdier and more upright as well as not discolored. In good light, it will use more water and the roots will expand quite rapidly. When you water, always water thoroughly until some water runs through the drain holes. If your tap water is hard, use filtered or distilled.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
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Name: Zack
Upstate NY (Zone 5b)
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TheWitchBoy
Nov 3, 2017 8:41 PM CST
In your third picture, it looks like you have multiple plants in the same pot, here. You could divide them into their own, individual pots (come warmer weather, that is). Your little monster is otherwise incredibly charming!

I would suggest a north- or south-facing window for your friend (as these directions seem to best get along with my own spiderplants, of which I have seven or eight mature plants -- one of them is on the line of maturity -- and 3x - 4x as many juveniles, currently).

As to watering -- I water, personally, when the dirt is dry to the touch. I'll usually push my finger into the dirt a bit, so I'm not just feeling the topmost layer. Dry? Then that plant gets some water. I'm also a fan of spritzing plants, every so often. If nothing else, this seems to help keep spideys a bit cleaner and happier.

Spiderplants are pretty sensitive to flouride (and a few sources have suggested they're not happy with boron, either). If you can, I'd avoid watering with city tap water. Some folks claim flouride doesn't effect spideys, but I've noticed that tip burn on my own spideys lessens significantly if I water with filtered water instead of city water. Granted, this doesn't solve tip burn, but my plant pals tend to have less of those dead tips if I'm following this guideline.
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Name: Laurie b
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
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lauriebasler
Nov 3, 2017 10:12 PM CST
I had one start to pull this sort of fit too. I adjusted watering but it continued. It all improved when I repotted. It's pretty again. These plants recover nicely, you will have it looking good again in no time.
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Nov 4, 2017 12:33 AM CST
I had a spider plant basically fail until there was just a few leaves. I took the plant out of the pot and there were few roots.

Cleaned the pot and set in new potting soil, stuck the failing plant into the dirt with a landscape staple, and 6 months later the plant is reaching the floor with babies, happy as a clam in wet sand.



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