Caladium Leaves Turning Yellow (6 Causes And Solutions)

Caladium is a beautiful tropical plant famous for its colorful heart-shaped leaves. To achieve optimal growth, this plant needs a precise amount of light, water, humidity, and other factors, the failure of which causes multiple issues like yellowing of leaves, drooping, dying, etc.


The most important causes for which the caladium leaves are turning yellow are overwatering and underwatering. Apart from these issues, other conditions that add to the problems are overexposure to sunlight, low humidity levels, temperature stress, and pest infestation. Natural aging also can turn the caladium leaves yellow.

The key to reviving a caladium from turning yellow is by understanding the distress and then administering the right cure. And that is precisely what we will be telling you. Here are a few indicators that might be helpful. Let’s get started with the reasons and remedies.

1. Improper Watering Habits

It should be appropriate to say that watering is essential for any houseplant’s development. And caladium is very specific about its water needs. Thus, this is important to understand the need for proper watering of these plants.

In moist soil, caladium plants thrive the best. The soil should be neither too wet nor dry. Very little water in the soil will dehydrate the plant. As a result, your plant will turn yellow due to poor watering practices. Let’s check the two common watering problems-


Overwatering occurs when there is too much water present in the soil. That excess water is not required by the plant. This can cause a variety of unhealthy habits, the most common of which are given below-

Overwatering causes the soil to get congested which leads to obstructing airflow. Because roots need air to survive, these waterlogged conditions eventually suffocate them. This can induce root rot as well as open on to fungal diseases. These leaves begin to turn yellow and droop as a result of this.

The most frequent mistake one ends up doing which left the soil soggy are

  1. The potting soil is not well-drained.
  2. There aren’t enough drainage holes in the pot.
  3. You’re putting your plants in a shaded spot with insufficient light.

This causes the soil to stay damp for lengthy periods. Better potting soils should be used to avoid this issue.

How to prevent overwatering in caladium

You can take the following measures to prevent the issues related to overwatering.

  1. Make sure that the pot you’re using has a lot of drainage holes. If your pot has not have enough, then get a new pot with a good amount of drainage holes.
  2. Only water the plants when required. Check the water requirement by dipping your finger onto the potting soil.
  3. Planting should be done in well-drained soil. You can make your potting soil well-drained, by adding some perlite or pumice.
  4. Use a moisture meter to keep track of how much water you’ve given the plant on a given day.

Only by taking some precautionary measures, you can stop overwatering your caladium plant, and prevent its leaf yellowing.


Underwatering is the reverse problem of overwatering. When the soil does not receive the minimal amount of water required for the plant’s optimal growth then this occurs. As a result, the foliage begins to lose its allure occurring in the yellowing of your plant’s leaves.

The primary reason behind this is the plant remains in direct sunlight, this causes the water in the soil to evaporate faster than it should. Another reason contributing to this issue is, that watering practices are not regular or the soil used is incapable of holding the appropriate amount of water.

How to prevent Underwatering in caladium plants?

This issue can be easily avoided, by only following some simple steps.

  1. Try pushing your finger into the potting soil to see whether it’s dry. The soil doesn’t need watering if it feels cold and moist to the touch and u can easily press your finger in an inch or so. However, you should water them if this is not the case.
  2. Keep the plant out of direct sunlight to avoid excessive water evaporation.
  3. If the soil is dry, fully water it and allow the surplus water to drain via the drainage system.
  4. Add some coco peat to your potting soil. It will improve the water holding capacity of the soil.
  5. You can also use self-watering pots and planters to avoid the issues.

2. Overexposure to sunlight

Caladiums prefer to grow in shady places. To grow the better, make sure that, you are planting them in a shadier area of your garden if you are planning to grow them outside.

The main reason for this is that when these plants’ leaves are exposed to direct sunlight, they get sunburned. This makes the plants lose their colors and eventually kills the foliage. Blotches will appear on the leaves if this occurs. This is an adding problem to plants becoming yellow.

How to prevent overexposure to sunlight?

These plants don’t have a hard time adapting to the right lighting conditions. The key to preventing overexposure to sunlight is –

  1. Keep them a few feet away from the window if you’re growing them indoors.
  2. Place a sheet or cloth between them and the direct sunshine source.
  3. Make sure they only get 4 hours of filtered sunshine every day.

3. Temperature Stress

The temperature is one of the most important deciding elements in Caladium growth. These tropical plants turn yellow at the slightest fluctuation of temperature. To grow properly, the temperature around must be between 65-900F. This generally coincidences with the temperature of your house.

However, this is not sufficient. You may encounter many issues with temperature with these plants. One of them is translucent areas appearing between veins. A short duration of exposure to extreme cold will result in outright browning of leaves or pale or yellowing.

To cope with this problem, move your plant to a less turbulent location. If it’s near an air conditioner vent in the summer or a draughty window in the winter move it to some bright place.

4. Low humidity levels

Caladium plants need a high amount of humidity in the surrounding air to thrive. Caladium requires proper light as well as wet surroundings and air to thrive. Caladium requires proper light as well as wet surroundings to grow. Thus typical room humidity will not be enough. Low humidity also causes the plant to transpire more, which dehydrates it.

The humidity level must be higher than 50% for caladium to display normal green, healthy leaves. If the yellow humidity level goes below 50%, you’ll see yellow leaves and brown margins on the leaves. And the plant as a whole begins to droop.

5. Natural Aging

As many plants age, caladium also ages naturally. As they grow older, the leaves will turn yellow and fall off. This is just a natural aspect pf their development. This is more or less out of your hand. But you can protect your caladium in a way till the next spring by storing the tubers.

6. Natural Deficiency

Plant leaves can also become yellow if they don’t get all the nutrients they need. This can be caused by a nitrogen deficit or too much calcium in the water if you use hard water. Caladium leaves may turn yellow because of the absence of Manganese or Zinc. Caladium also requires iron and nitrogen.

To avoid this problem, you might use a balanced liquid fertilizer or ready-to-use all-purpose balanced fertilizer.


Can yellow leaves turn green again?

The yellow leaves can regain their color again, providing they are not mature and old. If the leaves have turned yellow due to some physiological stress like overwatering or underwatering, or temperature stress, etc. they can again turn green when an ideal condition is provided to them.

If the leaves have turned yellow as a process of natural aging, they will never turn green again. They will turn yellow and dry up and then gradually die.

Can removing yellow leaves help?

Remove yellow leaves as quickly as possible from your caladium. Cut them only if they are more than 50% damaged. Yellow leaves should be removed to avoid the yellowing of other leaves. It sometimes becomes immense necessary as the remaining healthy foliage receives more nutrition. By removing these yellow leaves, the beauty of the plant improves and the nutrient efficiency will increase.

Final Thoughts:

I am able to recover my plant from yellowing leaves. Shoot me in the comments if you are able to recover.


I love and passionate about gardening. All these started a few years back, planting, watering plants, and helping the plants grow without any diseases. I enjoy spending time with plants, greenery which gives me peace of mind.

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