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anthurium plant

Anthuriums are one of the most common house plants. They are preferred by many because they are easy to maintain and grow! Though plants are essentially a part of our garden or indoors, these days, they are becoming a part of home interiors as well. Anthuriums look lovely when placed in corners near the window. They also look lovely in your terrace garden.

However, one of the issues faced by anthurium plant owners is the brown spots on the leaves! The reason for leaf spot or leaf blight is bacteria that infect the leaves. But nutritional deficiency, as well as too much sunlight, can also cause brown spots.

Let’s have a look at how to take care of these issues and restore Anthurium to health:

Whether it is a bacterial disease or nutrient deficiency, it can be treated if you catch the reason early on! If the brown spots are minimal and limited to the leaves, it is not too late to save the plant. Let’s have a look at the symptoms of Bacterial Leaf spots.

The leaf blight in Anthurium leads to:

  • Yellow lesions that darken into brown spots
  • Bronze coloured leaves
  • Guttation droplets on the leaf margin
  • Spotted and faded flower

In some of the cases, it might take months for the plants to show symptoms! Once the leaves get infected, it spreads fast to the entire plant.

What causes leaf spot?

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The bacteria infect the plant as it enters the pores along the leaf edges. It may also enter the leaves if they get damaged during pruning. Harvesting the flowers can also lead to bacteria entering inside. Bacteria also spread fast on wet surfaces! Keep the leaves dry in plants like Anthurium that are vulnerable to bacterial disease. It is best to water anthurium plant by placing six ice cubes on the soil.

How to treat bacterial leaf blight?

If the entire plant has been infected, you will need to destroy the plant! This will prevent the further spreading of the disease to other plants. Only when the leaves are infected, known as foliar infection, can the plant be saved. It’s because the bacteria is yet to make its way to the vascular system.

The best way is to remove and burn the infected leaves! Instead of cutting with shears, break the petiole near the leaf blade. This will prevent bacteria from spreading further.

Tips to prevent bacterial leaf spots:

  • Keep Anthurium leaves dry
  • Keep humidity between 70-80 percent
  • Water directly into the soil using ice cubes
  • Increase air circulation around plants
  • Sterilize shears and scissors used for pruning or harvesting plants

Leaf spots due to nutrient deficiencies

If the leaf blights are caused because of nutrient deficiency, it is a better situation than bacterial leaf blight!

Symptoms of nutrient deficiency are:

  • Decrease in the growth of a plant
  • Decrease in flower production and size
  • Younger leaves smaller than older leaves
  • Light green coloured new leaves with deformity
  • Short and drooping stem

If you suspect a nutrient deficiency in your Anthurium, start fertilizing it with high phosphorous fertilizer like 15-30-15. Feed your plant fertilizer once a month during the active growing season. In case of major deficiency, you can feed the plant once in 3 weeks! Then you can cut it back to once a month. However, avoid over-fertilizing the plant.

Leaf blight due to too much sunlight

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If you place your Anthurium under direct sunlight, it can cause discoloured and brown spotted leaves! Anthuriums are tropical in nature. They are native to South America. Therefore, Anthuriums need bright and indirect sunlight as they can’t take the direct sun.

It is better if you place Anthurium in the west-facing window so that it can get bright sun in the afternoon. While a South-facing window might be too harsh, a north-facing window won’t offer enough sunlight.

If you start witnessing brown leaves or brown spots on Anthurium leaves, you need to determine the cause of the spots. Once the underlying reason is clear, you can choose the treatment and practice preventative steps. Anthuriums are lovely plants! You can enjoy their full bloom just by practicing simple maintenance measures.