Why Does My Abutilon Have Leaves Turning Yellow?

Last Updated on November 19, 2022 by Stephanie

Abutilon (Indian mallow) is a wonderful decor for your home garden. Its vibrant flowers, lush green foliage, and a sense of mystery derived from beliefs makes the plant among the most loved.

The yellowing of abutilon leaves is a frequent issue you must deal with. This article youll discover the most common reasons why abutilon leaves turn yellow. In addition you will learn how to treat it.

Why are abutilon leaves changing color? The leaves that turn yellow indicate there is something wrong in the intake of nutrients. There are a variety of other reasons such as overwatering, deficiency of water, high temperatures inadequate lighting, low soil pH, deficiency of nutrients, or transplant shock. It is crucial to determine the cause prior to repairing the abutilon leaf yellowing.

Causes of Abutilon Leaves Turning Yellow

If youre a plant enthusiast, then you may be aware of how difficult it is to observe your plants leaves changing color. As I said earlier, there are various possible causes for the abutilon leaves turning yellow now it is time to understand the causes in greater detail.

Do not worry, Ill guide you through the process of identifying possible causes and ways to fix them.

Without further delay, lets get started.

Potential Cause: Overwatering

Unfortunately, many gardeners who live indoors fail to water their abutilon. In the end, the soil can become flooded and a deadly disease known as root rot may be developed. Root rot impedes intake of nutrients and the abutilon leaves begin to change color to yellow.

Conditions that are humid and wet are ideal for fungal diseases. Root decay can be caused by fungal pests, and it is extremely difficult to save the affected plant. If you are able to detect the problem before its too late, you could save the abutilon that is dying.

Abutilon yellow flower

Signs of an overwatering

How do you be sure that your abutilon is affected by overwatering? In fact, all indoor plants come with built-in indicators that signal a lack or over-supply of certain minerals, sunlight oxygen, water, or sunlight within the soil.

It is all you need to do is carefully examine your green pet. This is among the most crucial signs of watering too much your plant.

Abutilon leaves started to lose color and then began to yellow. This happens in the early phases of waterlogging. Even the most knowledgeable gardeners believe that the plant is indicating the absence of soil moisture and thats why they start to water it in a more intense manner.


If there is an absence of water, the abutilon leaves will first dry. Be aware of this and it can help your plant.

How to fix

The next question is what can you do to repair the abutilon that has been overwatered. It is essential to be cautious when working with an abutilon that has been overwatered. Heres what you can do take to correct it.

1. Try to Drain The Soil

The first step is to try and drain out the excess water out of the soil. Many gardeners suggest that the first step is to move the plant into a new pot with dry soil.

But, remember that if a plant is sick this procedure could be fatal. So, it is important to remove the soil.


Certain plants arent permitted to be transferred in any way.

For this, you must transfer the plant to a different place. It must be warm, the sun should be shining upon it. Abutilons love partial shade. Therefore, you should you can create a second source of shade.

Id suggest removing the leaves that are yellow from the plant. The plant will then use more water to produce new buds and leaves. But, dont place the pot of abutilon on the radiator or stove, so that you dont burn your root systems!

2. Transplant abutilon into a brand new substrate

It is important to be aware that transplanting is not harmful to the abutilon at all. But, you should consider that you will need to change the whole soil mix.

It is essential to eliminate not just the entire earth but also the parts from the root systems which are infected with root rot. It is also important to select the right container to plant in or clean the old one by boiling the water.

To help the roots grow quicker, you can apply growth stimulants to them. Be sure to add soil substrate in order to make it more breathable for the abutilon roots. For instance, you could make use of the sawdust and peat.

But, remember that following transplantation, you should not soak the soil for a few weeks. Additionally it is necessary to care specifically to protect your abutilon.

3. Proper Care for the Plant

If youve managed to keep your abutilon free of root decay, congrats! You have accomplished the most difficult part. Your abutilon now requires extra attention for a few days following the transplant.

What is the exact time when you begin to water the soil? This is the most frequently asked question that is asked by gardeners who live indoors. Experts advise starting this process only after the topsoil has been dry.

But, it is important to apply it in small amounts. For the application of fertilizers, it is best to apply them within two or three months. A possible exception is the time when a plant enters into the blooming stage.

Lets go to the other cause of excessive watering, which can lead to abutilon to yellow.

Possible Cause: Insufficient water

In the summer abutilon requires a lot of water. In this instance it is not necessary for a wait period until surface of the soil in the pot starts to dry out.

In the summer, insufficient water may result in the loss of buds, and make the entire plant look unhappy because of the loss of certain roots.

As with other plants, abutilon requires sufficient water to sustain its the physiological processes.

If your abutilon doesnt receive sufficient water supply, the plant will begin to show signs of yellowing leaves.

The yellowing of leaves and the shedding is a defense mechanism for plants against stress from water.

This way the abutilon attempts to conserve water by reducing the amount of leaves. The more number of leaves , the more transpiration (way of cooling down).

How to Fix

To restore your abutilons original green beauty in its leafy greens, its essential to water it regularly and in a moderate amount.

It is possible to determine the water requirements through a visual inspection of the soil and plant. It is essential to ensure that you have a regular supply of water for the roots. Make sure to water your abutilon whenever the topsoil begins to dry.

Potential Cause: Temperature Fluctuation

Abutilon is a good temperature range that allows it to thrive indoors. If you dont maintain the right temperature, it will react to the yellowing of leaves.

The ideal temperature for abutilon during summer is 22degC/71.6degF to 25degC/77degF. In winter, you must keep at 12degC/53.6degF up to 15degC/59degF.

If your thermometer falls below 12degC/53.6degF This could cause the yellowing of the abutilon leaves.

How to Fix

The change in temperature is important in indoor plants. Dont place your plants in areas that receive the direct cold air flow from the air conditioning.

The cold breezes can damage abutilon severely. Make sure your abutilon is kept away from the cold drafts of the window. Additionally the direct flow of the radiator during winter can cause the plant to shrink and become yellow.


Misting can aid in helping Abutilon flourish, especially if humidity is low during winter.

Potential Cause: Insufficient Light

The absence of light is among the main causes for abutilon leaves changing color. You may have noticed that the leaves are green because of being a source of chlorophyll.

The plants harvest sunlight to create food for themselves by the process of photosynthesis. Chlorophyll is the main component in photosynthesis by utilizing light.

If you do not provide enough light to your abutilon, the chlorophyll is going to begin to decrease. Thus, the leaves of abutilon begin to turn yellow.

How to fix

If your abutilon is located in an area that is dark or not receiving enough sunlight, it is time to reconsider the location of it. Put the plant in a spot that receives enough indirect sunlight.

If you put your abutilon in a sunny space that is lit then you need to shade it for a couple of days. In time, it will adjust to the changes in the environment. Be aware that direct sunlight can cause sunburn on the leaves.

If your home isnt getting enough sunlight you might want to consider artificial lighting for your abutilon. It can be grown under artificial light without problems.

You May Also Like: Can Plants Use Artificial Light for Photosynthesis?

Potential Cause: High Soil pH

Abutilon prefers soil that is slightly acidic. Therefore, if the soil mix for abutilon is acidic or has a high pH, then the leaves of your plants could change color to yellow.

Alkaline soils are not ideal for the availability of nutrients, as vital minerals like manganese, iron and zinc arent accessible to plants with high pH. This is why the leaves of abutilon begin to turn yellow before falling off.

How to Fix

The maintenance of the soils pH to ensure abutilon is essential to ensure growth and development. In soils that are slightly acidic ( less than pH 7.0) plants are happy. Because within this pH range, plants are able to absorb the necessary nutrients from the soil.

What is the best way to determine the pH of your soil? In the modern world, everything is so simple. Simply take an soil pH measurement device (Amazon hyperlink) at the local garden shop. It is very simple to use.

I frequently advise gardeners to water plants with abutilon with a small amount of lemon juice when the pH is too high. Citric acid or lemon juice aids soil in lowering the pH levels.

Potential Cause: Lack of Nutrients and How-To Fix

The plant requires micronutrients to grow and development. If your plant is deficient of these nutrients, your plant may show signs such as yellowing of leaves.

In the event of a deficiency in nutrients, abutilon leaves to turn yellow:

Iron deficiency

There is a uniform yellowing between the veins of abutilon leaves because of iron deficiency. The symptoms are most noticeable on leaves that are young. Veins remain green.

The color of upper leaves turns pale yellowish or green and sometimes even the leaves appear whitish. Then, the young leaves turn light green or whitish, with veins.

How to fix

Make use of chelated liquid iron for plants. Look up the chelated iron available on Amazon. It is possible to spray abutilon leaves or use water using it.

Magnesium deficiency

Magnesium is a moving element within a plant. Therefore, when its deficient, it shifts from old leaves to new ones.

Thus, the old leaves of abutilon begin to yellow. The leaves begin to turn yellow around to the edge of leaf plates. Gradually, the entire leaf turns chlorotic. The vein alone and the the adjacent region remain green.

If you dont take care of this problem, the edges of the blade of the leaf will turn downwards and the leaf appears curly, convex.

How to Fix

Topdressing using magnesium sulfate in accordance with the directions.

Zinc deficiency

The leaf leaves on your abutilon becoming yellow due to zinc deficiency.

There are also leaf spots , in addition to the leaves turning yellow. The leaves of young plants begin to grow tiny with yellow dots, and later develop a faded yellowish color.

The absence of sulfur

The signs of a deficiency in sulfur are similar the signs of a deficiency in nitrogen that appear on the young leaflets of the abutilon. The yellowing starts with the main veins on the upper leaves. Later, all of the leaf gets affected by the process. The veins appear more green when compared to the background of the yellowed leaf.

The absence of nitrogen

In the absence of nitrogen, the yellowing and lighterening of the color start with the veins and adjacent portion of the leaf plate of abutilon.

Without nitrogen, plants are unable to produce chlorophyll, which is why abutilon leaves become yellow. If abutilon leaves turn yellow because of a nitrogen deficiency there will not be veins of green.

The main difference between a leaf that has nitrogen chlorosis and an older one is that as the leaf ages the yellowing process is evenly distributed. While leaf veins are green but they begin to turn yellow before they fall off.

How to fix

Apply nitrogen fertilizer according to the directions.


You will now be able to recognize and repair your abutilon leaves that are turning yellow. I would like to find out if you have other ways to fix the abutilon leaves that are turning yellow. Please let me know by leaving an email below.



Went from an inexperienced gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. I cover anything from general indoor plant guides and lawn care, to succulents and flowers. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)