Monstera leaves turning yellow | 5 Causes and easy solutions

Monstera leaves will turn yellow in water if they lack nitrogen, water or light. Monstera leaves can also turn yellow if they get too much sun where they can burn and yellow. Monstera leaves will also droop and turn yellow if they lack water. To help monstera leaves to recover and turn green give them a dose of a balanced liquid fertilizer.

This article will explore why monstera leaves turn yellow water and how to fix it.

Top 5 reasons why monstera leaves turn yellow and solutions

Here are the top reasons why monstera leaves will turn yellow in water and what to do next.

1. Lack of nitrogen

Monstera plants that lack nitrogen will start to turn yellow. When there is not enough nitrogen the plant will not have the chlorophyll in the leaves that it needs to photosynthesize and look green.

Nitrogen is key to bright green leaves. Give the monstera a dose of liquid nitrogen fertilizer or a balanced organic liquid fertilizer to quickly deliver nitrogen. Repeat this again in 3 weeks and this will help your monstera to recover.

You should start to see the color return to the leaves within 2 weeks if the damage is minimal.

2. Lack of water

Monstera leaves can turn yellow if the plant is lacking water. While monstera plants can survive easily for 4 weeks without being watered, they will turn yellow if they get too dry. The leaves start to droop if they are not getting enough water and then turn yellow.

To fix this problem take the plant over to your sink or outside and thoroughly wet the soil. Water all around the base of the plant until the water starts to come out the bottom of the pot.

If the soil is very dry you can soak the whole pot in a bucket of water with a dash of seaweed solution. Leave the pot to soak until you no longer see air bubbles rising up to the surface of the water.

3. Sunburn

Monstera leaves are sensitive to very hot sun and can burn and turn yellow. Reflected sun that comes through a window in the afternoon can be too much for delicate monstera leaves.

If you notice patches of yellow and brown this could be sunburn. Move monstera plants into an area that gets afternoon shade or filtered light. Shade outdoor monstera plants with other shrubs or move them into a shady area. Water the plant deeply and it will recover.

4. Not enough light

Lack of light can cause yellowing leaves on monstera plant. While they will survive a full shade position but if they are kept in a dark corner inside they can turn yellow. A lack of light can prevent the plant from photosynthesizing and it can turn yellow and eventually die.

Move the monstera plant to an area that gets filtered light. Move the plant onto a bookshelf near a window that gets morning light.

You can also try a grow light which shines UV light and will help the monstera plant to grow green leaves.

5. Too much water

Too much water can turn monstera plant leaves yellow. Too much water will wash away water soluble nitrogen and turn the leaves yellow. Monstera leaves will turn yellow, black or brown if they are overwatered.

To fix this problem give the plant some slow release fertilizer and slow down your watering schedule. Monstera plants only need water every 3-4 weeks in the cooler seasons of the year of spring, winter and fall. You may need to increase watering in summer if the weather is warm to prevent the leaves from wilting.  

How to fix monstera plants with yellow leaves

Here are the top ways to solve the problem of yellowing monstera leaves. There are easy steps to help the plant grow green leaves.

1. Check the soil

To work out if the plant is over or underwatered check the soil moisture. You don’t need anything fancy just use your finger or a chopstick to move the soil and see if it is moist 2 inches down. If the soil is wet or moist it won’t need more water. If it is dry the plant will need a thorough soak.

Overwatered monstera often have a wet soil surface which can even grown mold. This can also happen if the plant is left to sit in a pot tray full of water or an outer pot without drainage holes.

2. Add fertilizer

Adding some slow release fertilizer in spring and fall is a great way to keep monstera leaves green and avoid yellowing. Add a balanced liquid fertilizer to the monstera plant to give it an initial nitrogen boost the slow release fertilizer will help to feed the plant over 3 months.

3. Position in a bright position with afternoon shade

Move monstera plants into a position that gets bright morning sunlight and afternoon shade. This will give it enough light to photosynthesize but protect it from sunburn. Outdoor monstera plants can be surrounded by taller tropical plants like palms to protect them from the harsh sun.

Indoor monstera love a position near a bright window that gets morning light. Finding the perfect spot in your house is key to bright green leaves and a happy plant.

Can you save a yellow leaf on monstera?

Monstera plants with small amounts of yellow on their leaves can recover. Once the plant is given enough nitrogen, water and light it will return the chlorophyll to the leaf and it can turn green again. If the damage has gone too far and the leaf starts to turn brown it is usually best to remove the leaf and let it be replaced with new ones.

Monstera leaves turning yellow | Summary

Monstera leaves can turn yellow if they are not getting enough water, nitrogen or sunlight. Strangely enough the leaves can also turn yellow if they are overwatered, sunburnt or have damaged roots.

Check the soil and if it is dry add liquid nitrogen fertilizer and water regularly. If the soil is soaking wet, let it dry out add some slow release fertilizer and slow down your watering schedule.

Monstera are an easy care plant once you sort out the watering schedule and find a position that gets morning bright light and afternoon shade.

Happy growing.