How to Save Your Overwatered Philodendron

Philodendrons require plenty of water in order to maintain their smooth and shiny leaves looking at their best. But, it is important to be cautious as the excess amount of water could cause the plant to die.

The majority of owners overwater their Philodendrons. Although it is essential to supply plenty of water to the plants however, there are methods to do this without compromising the health of the plants.

Philodendrons who have been overwatered display the leaves becoming yellow and soggy, and then, eventually, they fall over. In order to save your plant, remove the philodendron from its pot, and remove any roots that are decaying before planting it back in fresh pots. Make sure that the philodendron is receiving indirect sunlight.

If you think your philodendron is overwatered, here are some easy steps to help save the plant:

  • Do not apply water to the soil dry
  • Make holes in the pot to let out the excess water.
  • Plant the plant in the bright light
  • Treat with fungicide, then transfer in a different container
  • Reduce the humidity as well as stop the application of fertilizer

Underwatered vs Overwatered Philodendron

Overwatering and underwatering are both result of a mistake in the manner that water is supplied for your plants. It is undisputed that water is vital for every plant’s survival.

But, it is important to keep in your mind that there are different needs and considerations according to the species of the plant and the current environmental conditions.

Although the signs of water overflow and underwatering might appear like they do, the processes taking place at the physical level are completely different.

These are the basic explanations that will aid you in understanding the differences between these two types of phenomena.

In a philodendron that has been overwatered, the soil becomes excessively saturated, displacing oxygen from the air bags. Oxygen is a key input for the conversion of sugars into usable energy.

When the oxygen content in the soil decreases, roots will be unable to perform the process of respiration, which will affect the amount of energy that is produced to be used by plants.

When a person is underwater the soil suffers an extreme drought, that is a type of stress abiotic.

In the absence of water, root systems to put forth greater effort to find an water source. This causes the roots are overloaded and then die.

Overwatering and submerging can affect the health of the roots.

This limits its effectiveness in completing important tasks like water uptake or transport of nutrients.

So, you’ll see the symptoms of watering issues appearing on the upper parts of plants.

philodendron plant against white background

Signs of Overwatered Philodendron

The detection of signs of excessive watering requires skill and experience. Here are a few signs you can examine closely.

The symptoms you’d be able to observe will depend on the extent of the damage was in the system that is responsible for it.

Root Rot

The most evident indication of excessive watering is root decay. It is difficult to tell this until you take the plant from the container. The roots that are rotting will have a extremely soft feel and a dark brown or black colors.

They are easy to separate from the root of the plant as it becomes slimy. It is odorous too. Certain roots could be evidence of infection by pathogens.

Brown Spots on Leaves

A clear sign of water loss is the appearance of brown, large spots across the top of your philodendron’s leaves.

The spots will appear to be soaked in water. If you touch them, they will be squishy on your fingertips.

There are a good chance to spot brown spots that are caused by excessive watering on the leaves in the lower parts of the Philodendron. The margins and tips of the leaves could also show signs of browning.

Wilted and Mushy Appearance

Another thing to look out for is the mushy and shriveled appearance of the philodendron plant.

If the damage from overwatering becomes serious, the entire plant will begin to wilt and the majority of its leaves will become brown and mushy.

If this is the case it is a good likelihood that the majority of the roots are already damaged and decaying. The philodendron is likely to end up dying if it has already reached this point.

Molds Growing on the Soil Surface

A soil that is constantly wet encourages the development of fungi. If you notice mold appearing on the surface of the soil, it is an indication of excessive watering. The humid environment created a favorable environment for molds to flourish.

Molds appear like white powder that has been scattered over the the top of soil. They may appear like a thin layer of cotton. Some may show tiny growths.

Yellowing of Leaves

In addition to those brown spots water-logged Philodendrons will also exhibit signs of yellowing in the leaves.

The yellow leaves suggest that the plant suffers from nutritional deficiencies. This is due to an inefficient root system.

The presence of excessive water causes the roots to die. The function of transport is affected.

As a result, the leaves won’t get enough nutrients and water in the soil.

Related: causes and remedies for yellow spots on the philodendron.

Diseased Philodendron

If your plant suffers from excessive watering, it is vulnerable to disease.

Particularly, a philodendron that is overwatered is more likely to develop pathogenic illnesses. Pathogens multiply and grow in the presence of a constant humid.

The pathogens can attack the roots through the soil , or leaves and stems of the Philodendron.

Stem Rot at the Soil Line

Apart from root rot, an overwatered philodendron could also show stem rot at its base.

The portion of the stem which is closest to the roots could be affected by the rotting because it is near to the soil.

The stem that is at the line of soil will appear weak, limp, and slimy. If you attempt to remove it quickly the stem will quickly split and the root.

How to Fix Overwatered Philodendron

There are a variety of methods to save the philodendron that has been overwatered. The solution you choose will depend on the extent and extent of damage.

Sometimes, it is necessary to combine solutions to solve the issue of water overflow.

Most times you’ll be required to conduct your own experiments until you get results that are positive. Be prepared to take chances, however.

Limit the Application of Water

Reduce the amount of time between water applications to allow sufficient time to allow the water evaporate before it gets absorbed. If the soil is soggy and wet don’t apply water. Give your plant time to dry.

After your soil is depleted of the majority of the moisture that is in the soil, you can continue to water it. However, this time, you must be careful to do so in a controlled manner.

Dry the Soil

Soggy and wet soil is not beneficial to your plants. The best thing to do is flip the soil upside down using a shovel in it. This will speed up the transpiration of water.

A potting mix that is well-drained is easy to dig due to its an open texture.

But it is the case that the potting mix is made up of more clay, it will stay wet for longer.

Poke the Holes in the Pot

A lack of drainage is a major reason excessive watering occurs. To get rid of stagnant water, be sure to make holes in the base of your pot. This will facilitate your water flow, making the drainage process more efficient.

You can make use of sticks for this. If the drainage is still inefficient, you could consider adding additional drainage holes by digging up new ones.

Place the Philodendron Under Bright Light

The sun’s rays emit heat, which accelerates the process of evaporation. Put a philodendron that has been overwatered under intense light to ensure that the soil is able to dry out.

It is possible to use artificial light sources if the sunlight is not available, making use of a mixture of incandescent and fluorescent light. (Source: University of Connecticut)

Be cautious when placing the philodendron in direct contact with the sun’s heat.

They are extremely sensitive to intense intensity of light. They can develop scorching of the leaves when exposed to intense sunlight for prolonged periods of time.

Trim Off Dead and Damaged Leaves

Cutting off dead and damaged leaves can help preserve the appearance and appearance of your plant.

In addition this will help stimulate the development of younger and new leaves. Be sure to get rid of the dead parts too, as they will no longer serve their purpose.

When pruning leaves, be sure to wear gloves to safeguard your hands. Philodendrons have toxic components that can cause irritation to the skin.

Always make use of sterile tools and clear cuts to stop the spread of disease.

Repot the Philodendron

The next step to protect your water-saturated Philodendron is to repot it. This will let you be able to assess the degree of root damage.

Plants affected by overwatering should be removed.

Here are the fundamental steps to repotting a philodendron:

  1. Make sure the soil is slightly dry. It can be difficult and difficult to plant again when the soil is too saturated and wet. Place your plant in bright lights to speed up the process.
  2. Remove the philodendron gently from the pot in which it is currently. It is possible to make the soil looser through pressing it to both sides. Make sure you keep the plant in a gentle position. Be aware that the stems could have already become weak.
  3. Get rid of the soil that has been accumulated around the roots. This can be done by gently shaking off the ball of roots. Make use of your hands to separate your roots and root ball.
  4. Examine the roots for signs of decay. Cut off dead, rotten, and old roots. You can also clean the roots so that you are visible clearly.
  5. Let the roots dry in the air and then calloused for several minutes. You can also wipe it dry with either a tissue or newspaper. Be cautious not to break your healthy root.
  6. If your philodendron is affected by a fungal illness Apply a curative fungicide to stop the development of pathogens. If there is no need, apply an anti-fungicide to ensure that pathogens don’t be able to multiply and infect the plant.
  7. The philodendron can be planted in an entirely new container by using already sterilized and sanitized soil. Make sure to use only the mix with a good drainage capacity. Perlite, sphagnum peat moss and vermiculite make an excellent soil-less mix for philodendron.
  8. Soak the soil in water thoroughly and allow it to drain. The repotted philodendron should be placed somewhere that is partially shaded. Gradually, you will be able to transition the philodendron to bright lighting.

Treat plants with disease using Fungicide

Fungicides fight fungi, and help to kill, block or stop the spread of disease.

If your philodendron has developed an illness due to overwatering it is recommended to apply an insecticide to stop the spread of disease.

However, before applying any fungicide to your philodendron plant, there are essential facts to be aware of regarding this chemical. The following are important:

Contact Vs. Mobile Fungicides

This is referring to the fungicide’s capacity to move inside the plants. Contact fungicides don’t stick to the surface of the plant and therefore are not effective.

Its purpose is to form an outer layer of protection around the plant, which stops pathogens from infecting it.

Mobile fungicides are those that are able to penetrate the organs and systems of the plant’s internal organs. They also move from one place to the next within the structure of the plant.

Preventive and. Curative Fungicides

The fungicides that prevent prevent the pathogens from infecting the plant. They must be applied to the plant over and over again.

The curative fungicide is effective only in cases where the infection has already started.

It is essential to ensure that the initial diagnosis of the illness is accurate. This will assist you in finding the right fungicide to use.

If you are unsure, consult a plant pathologist.

Always follow the directions on the label. Use the chemical with extreme care. The chemicals they contain are harmful and could cause harm to your health.

Reduce Humidity

While Philodendron species enjoy high humidity however, it’s not the best way to keep such conditions when the plant is being overwatered.

The high humidity can make the plant hold more water. This can increase the amount of duration at which water is expelled through the plant’s philodendron.

It is recommended that you put your philodendron in an area that is dry. This will speed up the rate of transpiration.

If you noticed that you were constantly misting on your plant you should avoid it for a few days until the philodendron has recovered.

Withhold Fertilizer Application

If your plant is being overwatered the roots will be suffering damage. It is not advantageous to continue adding fertilizer if the roots aren’t functioning properly.

The salts build up in the soil, and it causes stress on the roots, causing more harm.

It is best not to fertilize at this time. Give your philodendron the time it needs to recover its roots.

How to Water Philodendron?

To avoid watering too much, you must know the right techniques for watering your philodendron.

The requirements for water in your philodendron will vary based on the conditions of temperature, humidity and light.

Here are some crucial suggestions on how to correctly water a philodendron plant

Watering Rules

There are two methods to water your Philodendron. The first is the conventional method of watering the plant from the top. But, this doesn’t mean that you have to water your leaves.

If you water from above, be sure to only water the soil and not the vegetation.

If the leaves are constantly wet, they will encourage the growth of undesirable organisms like pathogens. In the end, the philodendron is more vulnerable to disease.

Another method of watering the plant is to water it from to the bottom of the pot. It is necessary to place the pot on the top of a tray that contains water.

Allow it to sit for a couple of hours, until the water drains out and the soil is filled with water.

The method for watering takes some skill. It is possible to put additional water to the tray to ensure the water reaches the top.

But, do not put the pot in the water pool for too long as it will promote root decay.

Watering Frequency

Philodendron likes regular watering, but it is important to consider the time of year.

In winter, the weather is cold and temperatures are low. The rate of water evaporation tends to be slow in this period.

The best thing you could do is to lower the frequency of watering in winter, so that the soil doesn’t stay wet for long. In summer, you should reverse the process when the heat can be quite extreme.

Take into consideration the temperature and humidity levels. Low humidity and high humidity will require less watering.

On contrary there is a need for more water when temperatures are high and the humidity is low.

In essence, you need to be aware of the state of the surrounding environment prior to you apply water to your plants. You must be flexible at all times. You can’t stick to one set of rules.

I’ve written a second article about the frequency of watering your Philodendron It will assist you to identify and calculate the frequency of watering for your philodendron.

Water Quality

When the process of watering, it is important to take into account how the water is treated being utilized.

Tap water is contaminated with chemicals like fluorine and chlorine that can build up in soil in time. This can cause damage to the roots as well as the leaves of your philodendron.

It is recommended to filter tap water prior to use. If you don’t have a filtering system in your home, you can keep the water in your home for at minimum 24 hours. This will allow the chemicals to be evaporated from the water.

It is always recommended to make use of rainwater as often as you can. You can conserve the water in the time of rain so that you have enough to plant your garden.

Make sure to conserve the water during the rainy season to prevent acid rain.

How Much and When to Water

The philodendron should be watered early in the morning, or prior to 10:00 am. This is recommended as it allows sufficient time to let the rain evaporate throughout the day.

Do not water in the middle of summer or at night. How much water you need you need depends on how large your plant is.

It is all you need to do is ensure that the potting medium is well-drained and saturated. The roots need to have access to water.

In the summer your philodendron might require additional watering during a day. If your philodendron is showing signs of wilting, you must to water it right away. This means that they are easily dehydrated because of the rapid process of transpiration.

Common Mistakes in Watering Philodendron

Here are some typical mistakes that people make when the watering of the philodendron. It is possible that you are guilty of one or more of these actions. However, this is your chance to put things right.

In each row, you will find suggestions for avoiding blunders. It might take some time to master the art to water your plant, but you’ll eventually be able to master it. Be patient!

The practice of watering philodendron is certainly one of the practices that is very difficult each time.

If you’re a novice We understand that you are a bit frustrated about this. However, as a piece advice, stay patient and you’ll soon master the art.

When it comes to watering, you need to be aware of the exact needs of your plant. Certain plants require more water, such as the philodendron, while some will manage with just only a small amount.

However, it is important to keep things in check to prevent the dangers of watering too much.



Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)