Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum) is an indoor flower that is easy to take care of and maintain. But, one of the most common problems that you’ll come across with this plant are the spots of brown that show up on its leaves or on its spathe (white bracts that surround its spadix).
These brown spots speak about the overall condition of the plant, and is something you should not ignore.
Brown spots on the peace lily appear mostly as a result of environmental changes that make certain conditions undesirable for the growth of the plant. It could be caused by mistakes in the care of the plant. It could be caused by the damage caused from harmful microorganisms, pets or other pests that are a threat to the plant.
To determine the primary reason of your peace lily’s brown spots, here are thorough explanations of the possible causes and ways to solve each.
How to Identify Peace Lily Brown Spots
Brown spots may appear on the leaves or in the flowering plants of the peace lily. Sometimes, they show up in both.
The first step is identify the location where the brown spots are. Next, you need to describe how the dark spots look. If you do this you’ll be able determine the cause of the issue with a simple diagnosis.
Peace Lily Brown Spots on Leaves
It’s common to notice marks of brown on our leaves. Sometimes we tend to ignore it. As simple as it might appear, you must look at brown spots as an indication of danger.
Brown Spots And Streaks on The Leaf Surfaces
Brown streaks and spots on the leaves suggest that your peace lily is getting too excessive light. Exposure to light with high intensity may cause burning of the leaves.
The burned areas will result in brown spots. In the event that your peace lily has direct sunlight exposure and the coloration is evident, it must be the result of it.
Browning On Leaf Tips or Margins
This could be a sign the peace lily is deficient in humidity, water or is being over-fertilized. With only a tiny amount of water flowing through the plant cells, the most distant areas of the plant will do not receive any water.
When humidity is low the air becomes extremely dry, making it hard for your peace lily to take in more water in the atmosphere. The dehydration causes the cells to shrink and die.
A lot of fertilizer can lead to burned tips. The salt accumulates in the soil, creating an encroaching drought that affects your peace lily, making the water unavailable for the plants.
Peace Lily Brown Spots on Flowers
Brown spots do not just appear on the leaves, but also on the spathe too. The discoloration is noticeable due to the fact that the spathe of peace lily has a color of white.
Naturally the appearance of brown spots may cause you into a state of panic.
Browning At The Base of The Plant, Older Leaves Or Petioles
If the leaves at the bottom of the peace lily show brown spots, it could be due to excessive watering or root rot or fungal issues. Older leaves are more likely to exhibit these signs due to being near to the roots and soil.
Older leaves turn brown and squishy when squeezed due to excessive watering. If you attempt to take the plant from the pot, you’ll see it’s base has become weak, and decayed.
Root rot happens when there is a build-up of water within the soil. The roots are unable to breathe due to the lack of oxygen gas, leading to the death of the plant.
Another reason that could be responsible for the leaves turning brown could be a fungal issue. One instance is Cylindrocladium spathiphylli that causes petiole and root rot in peace the lily.
Browning of Mature Bloom in Middle Including Stem
The browning of this kind is the result from a process known as ageing. It indicates that the flower is nearing its limit.
In general, a peace lily flower lasts between five and six weeks. At this point you can expect to see brown spots to appear on peace lily blooms and think of it to be normal.
Browning of Young Bloom Cause It to Never Open
If your blooms are becoming brown but you don’t notice it opening, you could have an absence of humidity in your home. The less humid atmosphere can hinder the growth of a peace lily.
Brown Spots Appear On the Spathe As Lesions
If pests are found to be infecting the peace lily they may create brown marks on the plants. Certain unwanted organisms like to chew on the plant’s tissue to get rid of the sap.
In the end, they cause lesions on the surface. If you notice brown spots, make sure to look for insects in the plant.
What Causes Brown Spots on Peace Lily Leaves
Once you’ve determined the location of the brown spots and the way they appear in your peace lily, finding the reason isn’t difficult. The kind of spot and the location at which the spots appear is usually connected to the root cause.
Peace lily needs some indirect lighting. It is even tolerant of low levels of light. Therefore, you should be aware the fact that exposure to high levels of light can cause problems.
They’re quite sensitive to high intensity of light, so it’s essential to keep this in mind when choosing the perfect spot for your peace flowering lily. Here are some suggestions for ensuring that your lighting is adequate.
Remember the season
There are various light conditions throughout the year. In the summer months, there is a lot of light since the sun is constantly shining, whereas in winter, there is a lack of sunlight.
In the days with lots of sunlight, make sure you don’t put your peace lily in a location that is too bright. It should be placed about 10 to 15 feet from the window to ensure it gets moderate amounts of sunlight.
A shade of 80% is required to create the ideal lighting conditions for the peace flowering lily. This will result in an filtered light in the summer. Curtains can be used to block direct light.
In winter, the shading can be adjusted up to 70% as the level of light is lower. Shades act as a barrier to protect your peace lily from intense light sources.
Use Artificial Light
Peace lily can also work great even if your space does not have windows. All you have to do is create an artificial lighting source.
In general, a fluorescent light can be enough to support the development of plants. However, if you wish to stimulate blooming, you need to make use of a plant-growing light which has the red wavelength.
Put your peace lily in front of the light source at the distance being at least 12 inches.
Temperature and Humidity
The humidity and temperature are other reasons why peace lily blossoms with brown spots. Dry air and high temperatures could cause plant dehydration. This can cause curlying of the leaves of your peace lily.
Dehydration severe can cause cells of the plant to shrink, and you’ll notice the peace lily’s bud wilt. Then comes drying out on the plants, and eventually browning and finally, death.
Tips for How to Cope with Humidity and Temperature Changes:
Be Aware of Drastic Temperature Changes
It’s not hard to predict the temperature for the following day therefore it is better to know in advance. Are you going to find it too hot the next day?
This way you’ll have time to get ready and move your plants to a safer location. The temperature varies between days, so there will be times that you’ll need to move your plants in order to avoid too many heat.
Avoid Hot or Cold Drafts
Glasses with windows emit the heat. When your plants are situated close enough to touch the glass, the heat could cause burns to the leaves or flowers.
Extreme cold can also cause rapid browning and brown spots on the leaves. Be sure to place your peace lily away from the drafts.
Increase Humidity At Home
A tropical plant, peace lily needs an extremely high level of humidity. To keep it in this state, you must make an extra effort to raise the humidity by using a few tricks.
Misting is among the methods. Make use of a spray bottle to spray your plant every day to dampen the air. It is possible to use an humidifier to accomplish this.
Another option is to put your peace lily in a group with others tropical plant species. This can be beneficial for both plants because one plant could absorb the moisture released from the plant next to it.
Finally you could utilize pebble tray. Place your plant pot on the top of the tray which is half-filled with water, and let it evaporate.
Another reason that the peace lily develops brown spots is due to the presence of insects. Common unwanted visitors include mealybugs and scales. While peace lilies aren’t susceptible to pests, it is not safe to ignore the danger they pose.
Tips on How to Get Rid of Pests:
If the amount of pests is low You can use natural methods to eliminate the pests. It is possible to introduce beneficial predators that eat the pests.
Lady beetles feed on the scales therefore having them around can stop the spread of the pest. Ladybugs, lacewings, as well as the ladybug mealybug ( Cryptolaemus montrouzieri) are the main predators of mealybugs.
A simple method to get out of the pests by eliminating them from plant components one at a time. This is the first choice when the pests are minimal, and manual eliminating them is a simple job.
Another method of dealing with insects using mechanical methods is to cut them down. It is possible to cut off affected areas like flowers and leaves to prevent the insects from spreading.
The final option is to use chemicals to eliminate insects. Organic and inorganic pesticides on the market.
A different option would be to make a DIY solution by mixing a mixture consisting of insecticidal soaps, neem oil and water. Spray this solution on the affected areas of the peace lily.
Cleaning off your peace lily leaves using cotton balls that have been treated with alcohol is a easy method to get rid of scales and mealybugs.
Bacterial Leaf Spot Disease
Leaf spot caused by Bacterial is disease that can be transmitted that affects peace lily flowers, which is typically seen on leaves. It can be caused by the bacteria Xanthomonas Campestris pv. dieffenbachiae, Pseudomonas cichorii, Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora, and E. chrysanthemi.
Infection occurs when soil is contaminated by debris that was previously affected. The bacteria may also be transmitted via water splashes, or air.
Tips to Prevent Diseases Caused by Bacteria:
Use Sterilized Soil
Sterilizing soil can help eliminate the pathogens that cause disease. A healthy soil will lead healthier plants. Through sterilization, you’re reducing the amount of harmful bacteria that are present within it. Check out this article about peace lily soil to find out more.
Sterilized soil can be found in gardening stores, however, you can also make it yourself. You can bake, microwave, or even steam your soil to at least 30 mins at temperatures of 82 degrees Celsius (180degF) or higher. (Source: ScienceDirect)
Avoid Watering At Night
A humid environment is ideal for the development of pathogens. This can cause organisms and fungi to multiply rapidly. To prevent a long-lasting moist atmosphere, it is important be careful not to water in the evening.
Avoid Overcrowding of Plants
Bacteria can travel a small distance by air. When your plant is located close to one another and the transmission is quick. If you’re not certain about the condition of your plant is best to keep them from other plants.
Disinfect Your Tools
The transmission of pathogens is also possible via tools. Be sure to treat your tools following use of them. The cheapest option you could apply is a bleach chlorine solution for the tools.
Fungal Leaf Spot Disease
Fungal leaf spot can also be due to pathogens. The most common pathogens responsible for this condition include Alternaria alternata, Cercospora species, Colletotrichum species (anthracnose) Myrothecium roridum. Fungal leaf spots look identical to the bacterial leaf spots. (Source: University of Massachusetts Amherst)
To prevent infection by the pathogens that cause disease, follow the same strategies we’ve listed in the previous paragraphs.
Rust can also be an infection caused by fungal organisms. The affected leaves initially display the appearance of chlorosis but when they develop spores, affected areas may appear as brown spots.
The process of treating rust is nearly similar to treating other fungal diseases. Be sure to follow the guidelines mentioned in the previous.
As we’ve previously mentioned, excessive fertilizers cause the browning on leaves tips. Fast-release fertilizers make nutrients available to plants, but excessive amounts of them can cause salts to build up within the soil. Peace lily doesn’t require much fertilizer, so it is important to be careful about its use.
Tips on How to Fertilize a Peace Lily:
Timing Of Application
Apply fertilizer in the summer and spring in intervals of six weeks. The growth of your plants is active in these seasons, so your peace flower will be able to use the nutrients that you feed it.
Types of Fertilizer To Use
Make sure to use a balanced fertilizer for your home to ensure that your peace lily plants are healthy. You can pick between organic and inorganic fertilizers.
To promote blooming, choose fertilizers with more phosphorus. Whatever fertilizer you choose to use ensure that you adhere to the directions on the product.
Incorrect watering can be the cause of numerous problems in plants. Insufficient or excessive water could cause the peaceful lilies to grow brown leaves and brown spots. To avoid these issues it is essential to keep your peace lily hydrated in a way that will keep it content.
Tips on How to Water Peace Lily:
Keep The Soil Moist But Not Soggy
This means you have to water your plant prior to when the soil is completely dry. However, you should not allow the pot to sit in it for too long.
Adjust Watering Needs Depending On The Season
The hot seasons demand more water. The colder seasons will mean lower intake of water. It is important to alter your water intake based on how cold or hot the climate is.
In addition to improper watering the quality of water is another reason your peace lily has developed brown spots. The water that is high in fluorine and chlorine can cause harm to your plant.
In the end, the leaves will be covered with necrotic veins and hot tips. Peace lily is sensitive fluorine, so be cautious with the water you drink.
Tips on How to Avoid Water Toxicity:
It’s still the best alternative for plants. If you are able to you can collect rainwater, put it in a barrel or other large container. This will allow you to meet the water requirements for your plant.
Let The Water Sit For 24 Hours Before Using Them
The municipal water supply is the most common alternative when we don’t have rainwater. It is safe to use however, you must give it a full day of time to let the chlorine evaporate. Then, you can use it.
You May Also Enjoy: Cactus Soil for Peace Lily (And How to Make Your Own)
How Do You Treat Brown Spots on Peace Lily?
The treatment of brown spots on the peace lily is the next task you’ll have to tackle. There are a variety of methods to prevent these brown spots from harming your plants. Each method depends of course on the root cause.
Remove The Infected Leaves
In certain cases, the getting rid of the affected areas can be enough to rid the plant from the spots that are brown. For older flowers and leaves it is definitely essential. This is also true for ones that are severely infected by pests.
Maintain Proper Growing Conditions
This means that it has to adjust to variations in humidity, light, and temperatures. These variables are usually not controllable, but there are strategies to assist your plant in dealing with them. The aim is to keep the conditions as close to the conditions of growth as possible.
Adjust Water And Fertilizer Application
A lot or not enough of these can cause harm to the peace lily. It is important to know when your plant is hungry and thirsty. Provide fertilizer and water in the correct time and with the correct quantity.
Treat With Fungicides, Bactericides
Pathogens that cause disease are hard to eliminate once they’re present. In this instance, treatment of the soil or the peace lily itself might be required. If you are using chemicals to treat the disease, make sure to adhere to the guidelines on the label.
What is it about that the peace lily flower changing brown?
Browning peace lily flowers can be a sign of a variety of things. It could be the result of age, deficiency in humidity or pests, or pathogens that cause disease. Finding the root cause of the problem would necessitate careful examination of the symptoms.
Do I need to cut off the brown flowers from my peace Lily?
It’s all about what triggers the browning. If it’s due to aging you should be patient until the flowers have stopped being pleasant before removing them. If the reason why your plants are browning is due to a disease It is recommended to remove them immediately.
Do I need to cut the brown tips of my peace Lily?
In general, you can safely remove the brown edges on your peace lily, if it’s not due to an illness. But, you need to think about your personal style. If you want to remove them and then, absolutely do it.