Monstera Brown Leaves

Monstera plants are becoming popular house or office plants because of their evergreen nature and peculiar split-leaf appearance. As with all plants, if Monstera is not in their optimum environment, they can start to show signs of stress on their leaves. One of the main signs is the leaves turning brown. So what are some of the reasons your Monstera leaves are turning brown?

There are several primary reasons why your Monstera leaves are turning brown. These include over and under watering, fungal diseases, fertilizer issues, temperature stress, lighting issues, and low humidity. All of these issues have their accompanying symptoms and solutions to fix the problems.

Brown leaves on a Monstera plant are an indicator that something is wrong with your plant. Although the leaves will never heal and turn green again, you can sort through this article’s list of possible causes to find out what the underlying issue is. Fixing the problem will hopefully prevent any further damage from happening to your plant.

What Causes Monstera Leaves To Turn Brown?

Monstera Leaves turning Brown

There are seven primary reasons as to why your Monstera leaves are turning brown:

  1. Over-watering
  2. Under-watering
  3. Fungal Diseases
  4. Fertilizer issues
  5. Temperature stress
  6. Lighting Issues
  7. Low humidity

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Over-Watering

A primary cause of your Monstera’s leaves turning brown is over-watering. Plant owners often over-water their indoor plants, not realizing they don’t need as much water as their outdoor plants. A primary issue here is that over-watering can lead to root rot. Root rot can ultimately cause the death of a Monstera if not treated accordingly and in time.

There are some other signs that your Monstera plant is suffering from over-watering. These include:

  • Yellowing leaves
  • Rotting stem
  • Drooping leaves
  • Soggy soil

The Solution

Make sure that the top 2- 3 inches of your soil is dry before watering your Monstera. These plants are tropical and love being watered but only when they need it. So if the ground is still wet in those top few inches, hold off on watering.

If you suspect that your Monstera might be suffering from root rot, you will need to remove your Monstera from its container to inspect the roots. White or light-colored roots indicate healthy roots with no deterioration. But if your roots are brown, black, or sludgy, you know your plant is suffering from root rot.

To fix this problem, you will need to take a pair of scissors and remove all of the decaying roots from the plant. Afterward, it’s best to leave your plant out of the pot for a while so the roots can dry. In the meantime, wash your pot with soapy water. For good drainage, refill it with potting soil rich in perlite and some gravel.

Make sure that the pot you plan to use has suitable drainage holes, as this will aid in the prevention of further root rot in the future. Replant your plant in the new mixture and place it in an area that receives good indirect sunlight.

Also Check: How To Prune Monstera

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Under-Watering

Monstera leaves can also turn brown if the plant is not receiving enough water. To absorb nutrients from the soil, plants need water, so if your plant is not getting enough water, it will be unable to absorb enough nutrients, and the leaves will start to turn brown.

Another standard indicator of an under-watered plant includes the leaves getting a bit crisp on the edges, indicating an overall too dry soil.

The Solution

In this case, the first step to take is to give your Monstera a good soaking. You can do this by placing the Monstera’s pot into a basin or tub of water for around 20 minutes or until the pot’s soil is thoroughly soaked.

Overall, a Monstera likes to have a good soaking once every 1 – 2 weeks. Breaks between watering will vary depending on how hot it is and how much light the plant receives during the day. Monstera living in hot and sunny areas will need more water than those living in cooler, more shaded areas.

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Fungal Diseases

Fungal infections can cause your Monstera leaves to turn brown. Often the fungal infections will start as yellowing between the veins on the leaves, which eventually turns brown; this browning will spread from one area to another.

The primary fungal infections on Monstera are anthracnose and eyespot disease. If you suspect that your Monstera has a fungal infection, it’s best to begin treatment as soon as possible to prevent the spread to other plants.

The Solution

There are a few steps that you can take to halt the spread of fungal infections, these are:

  • Removing the infected leaves should be done over time as the removal of large portions of the plant can send it into shock
  • During leaf removal, you should disinfect the scissors that you use between each leaf to prevent the spread of the disease
  • You can change your plants’ soil to remove any fungus that might have been increasing in there and prevent further spread
  • Avoid watering your plant from above as this can spread fungal infections
  • Remove any dead plant material from your Monstera’s pot
  • Make sure there is airflow through your plant
  • Spray your plant with a homemade fungicide or a shop-bought chemical fungicide
Monstera plant

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Fertilizer Issues

Brown leaves on your Monstera can also be due to nutrient deficiencies, and the main culprits here are nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus. Monstera plants like to get a good dose of fertilizer every so often to give them a nice nutrient boost.

If your Monstera leaves have turned brown after recent fertilization, this could be due to over-fertilization, resulting in some slight fertilizer burn to your roots, which will show up in the browning of your leaves.

The Solution

If you haven’t given your plant any fertilizer in recent months and notice some browning of your Monstera leaves, give your plant a fertilizer boost. Remember not to fertilize in the winter as growth is slow, and the extra nutrient boost is unnecessary.

If you have found that your Monstera leaves are turning brown after recent fertilization, hold off on any further treatments until your plants’ growth slows down again.

Brown leaves On Your Monstera Due To Temperature Stress

Monstera leaves will turn brown if the plant has undergone any temperature change that has occurred too quickly. The optimum temperatures for Monstera plants are between 68 – 86 °F. If their usual temperature changes suddenly, this will cause a reaction in the plant, resulting in the browning of leaves.

Extreme temperatures will also cause the plant to react.

The Solution

To keep your Monstera happy and its leaves green, you should avoid placing your plant anywhere where temperatures fluctuate. Technically you should keep your plant away from drafty or cold places.

Try to make sure that the temperature in your house doesn’t drastically fluctuate for any reason. If your Monstera lives outside, you might consider bringing it inside if average temperatures drop below 45 °F.

Related: Monstera Albo Node

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Lighting Issues

Your Monstera’s leaves can turn brown from too much or too little light.

Too much light can cause your Monstera’s leaves to burn. Monstera prefers bright indirect sunlight or 3 – 6 hours of direct sunlight a day. If in direct sunlight, acclimatization to this environment will need to occur before your plant can be comfortable there. You might experience some leaf browning during the acclimatization process.

In the case of your Monstera not receiving enough light, it can also result in the leaves turning brown. If you have placed your Monstera in an area that does not receive enough light, it will not produce enough chlorophyll resulting in the leaves turning brown and dying.

The Solution

For excessive light, you can rectify this problem by moving your plant into a shadier area or reducing your indoor lighting.

For too little light, you can rectify this by moving your plant to an area where it will receive brighter indirect sunlight, or if this is not possible, you can consider getting some white or fluorescent lights for your home.

Brown Leaves On Your Monstera Due To Low Humidity

Your Monstera leaves can also turn brown if there is not enough humidity in the air around your plant. When this happens, your Monstera loses moisture through its leaves stromata, causing the leaves to dry out, curl and then go brown.

The Solution

The best method to prevent this is by ensuring that there is enough humidity in the air around your plant. If you cannot achieve this naturally, you can look into getting a humidifier that you can place near your plant.


Seven primary factors could be involved in a Monstera’s leaves turning brown. Each of these factors has its causes, and luckily, all of them have easy enough solutions if you can catch them in time. In most cases, your Monstera will bounce back to its usual healthy self in no time.