How to Save My Ivy When Its Leaves Are Turning Yellow

The leaves of ivy turn yellow due to excess water surrounding the roots caused by excessive irrigation slow draining soils, slow draining soils, or pots with no drainage holes in their base. Ivy leaves that are yellow could be a sign of a deficiency in nitrogen in the soil , or the roots of ivy are pot bound and unable to get the nutrients they need which causes the leaves to change color to yellow.

Read on to find out the reason your ivy plant’s leaves have turned yellow and the best way to keep the Ivy ….

Ivy Leaves Turn Yellow Because of Saturated Soil

The Ivy plant is indigenous to the forests and forests, where they thrive in moist but well-drained soil.

The most frequent reason that ivy plants change color is excessive moisture in the root ball since they are not tolerant of the slow draining, damp and boggy soil surrounding the roots for prolonged periods of time.

If the soil surrounding those roots on ivy plant is sloppy, this blocks oxygen from the soil which hinders the root’s respiration. It also hinders the ability of the ivy to absorb nutrients and water, causing the leaves to become yellow before dropping off, causing the plant to die to come back.

A lot of water around Ivy’s roots could be the result of:

  • It is not recommended to water the ivy plant too frequently.
  • The soil is compacted or slow draining, that prevents water from draining efficiently.
  • Pots that do not have drainage holes in their bases result in water pooling within the root.
  • The use of trays, saucers and decorative pots keep the water from draining and causes the soil beneath the ivy’s potting soil to stay damp.

When you find that the Ivy is in soil that is saturated for long periods of time, it can cause fungal diseases like root rot, which could result in the plants dying back. To keep the Ivy plant, it is essential to recreate the well-drained soil conditions of the plant’s natural woodland habitat.


Save Ivy by removing the yellow leaves Due to Saturated Soil

  • Reduce the amount of watering. Ivy thrives in well-draining soil, and thrives to be watered when the top inch of the soil is dry between watering sessions. Make use of your fingers or a gauge of moisture to determine the amount of moisture in the soil to determine the best time to watering your ivy plant to prevent the onset of root rot and yellowed leaves.
  • Replant the ivy into new pots. Ivy requires soil that is porous and light with an aerated structure in order to let water drain efficiently instead of accumulating within the root system of the plant. Utilize a ratio of 3 parts potting soil with one part perlite to create a an ideal soil structure that creates the ideal amount of moisture needed for the growth of Ivy. It also avoids the negative effects caused by damp soil, like yellowing leaves or root rot.
  • Make sure to plant Ivy in pots that have drainage holes at the bottom to avoid water from pooling around the roots that can cause root rot. To ensure that the drainage hole isn’t blocked by roots or soil put a layer of gravel at the bottom of the pot so that the water drains effectively.
  • Trays and saucers are helpful to stop water from spilling out of the pot at home however they could keep the soil in the bottom of the pot wet if they’re not regularly empty. Make sure that there isn’t any water pooling in the bottom of the pot. You can use containers, saucers or outside pots for prolonged time periods, and then empty them frequently to maintain an ivy plant that is healthy.
  • Make sure that the potting soil isn’t terribly compacted before you plant up your ivy plants because it deprives roots of oxygen and may result in the soil becoming wet for long time within the root zone.

After the proper balance between drainage and watering is achieved, the ivy will begin to recover. The time it takes to recover is contingent on how long the plant was subjected to excessively humid soil conditions.

In the spring and summer, new, healthy growth will begin to emerge. However , prolonged periods of soil that are saturated can result in root rot, after which it becomes extremely difficult to revive the Ivy plant.

(Read my article on on how to water Ivy plants to find out how to determine the ideal frequency of watering for Ivy plants in your house or garden).

Save Ivy Plants that have yellow leaves due to a lack of Nutrients

To keep ivy plants that have yellow leaves, you should transfer the ivy into larger pots or containers filled with fresh soil. A bigger pot will have greater capacity for soil, to allow the roots more accessibility to nutrients they require.

This will help in addressing the issue and the Ivy will begin to grow new green leaves after it is established in the soil of the pot. The leaves that are yellow might not necessarily turn green however, once the new growth begins to emerge from the ivy, you can trim the vines that have yellow leaves to encourage more growth and aid in the recovery of the plant.

It is recommended to fertilize potted ivy plants every month using an all-purpose fertilizer for plants in the spring and summer during the time that Ivy is growing vigorously.

A balanced liquid fertilizer that ensures Ivy plants gets accessibility to the essential nutrients that it needs to be healthy and green, to prevent the leaves from becoming yellow.

Utilizing a balanced fertilizer is always more effective than trying to address individual deficiencies because the excess of one nutrients can make be more difficult for Ivy’s roots to absorb another nutrients.

(Read my article on ways to replenish an Ivy plant in the event that your ivy plant appears unhealthy).

Lack of Nutrients Cause Ivy Leaves to Turn Yellow

Ivy is a plant that produces abundant leaves, which implies it needs a fertile soil that is rich in nutrients to produce healthy, green (or differentiated) leaves that help fuel its growth.

If the Ivy has been growing in this same container for a number of years, then the roots could have used up all the nutrients available in the potting soil that makes the leaves yellow..

Pots that are smaller have less capacity for soil, and consequently less nutrients, which could be the reason that your ivy leaves turn yellow and appearing unhealthy.

The foliage of the ivy plant to change color because of a deficiency in magnesium, iron, or nitrogen within the soil.

The specific nutritional deficiency the reason for your ivy’s leaves changing color is hard to pinpoint, but the treatment is identical regardless of reason.

Spider Mites Can Causes Yellow Spots on Ivy Leaves

Ivy is a tough plant that is not often susceptible to diseases and pests. If however, the ivy is unhealthy due to inadequate watering or over-watering, or a nutritional deficiency, it can cause the plant to be more susceptible to attack by spider mites that create tiny pin-sized yellow dots to appear on leaves.

Spider mites are more common on indoor Ivy plants since the indoor climate is typically less humid than outdoors, which creates conditions that allow spider mites to flourish.

The best way to stop and fight spider mites is fortunately very simple. Spider mites thrive in areas of low humidity, whereas ivy likes some humidity, so spray the leaves once or twice a each week in order to make a moist micro-climate in the ivy leaves, which repels spider mites, and also creates ideal conditions for Ivy.

To tackle the issue of spider mites immediately the best solution is to apply an insecticidal soap made from neem oil. While it kills spider mites it doesn’t harm animals or other wildlife.

Neem oil can be applied across the ivy leaves using an ivy-covered cloth to stop future yellowing or discoloration of ivy leaves in as little as one application, but it may require 2 or 3 applications in the case of a large infestation.

After the spider mites are gone, you can cut back the yellowing leaves that are badly affected and the ivy will recover very well.

Key Takeaways

  • The reason that ivy leaves change color is due to excessive water in the roots as a result of excessive irrigation slow draining soils, or pots with no drainage holes in their base. The yellow ivy leaves could be a sign of a deficiency in nitrogen and iron, as well as magnesium within the soil.
  • Ivy plants require well-drained soil since they cannot take well to boggy soil around the root ball, which causes the leaves to turn yellow and cause root rot.
  • Spider mites may leave pin-sized yellow spots on the ivy leaves. Spider mites are common in homes that have low humidity. spraying your leaves in mist to avoid spider mites. You can treat infestations using Neem oil.
  • To bring back ivy plants that have yellow leaves, make sure the soil is draining well and reduce the amount of watering to ensure that top inches of the soil is dry between watering sessions. A balanced home plat fertilizer can help prevent deficiency in nutrients that turn leaf color to yellow. Ivy plants can be planted in potting soil combined with perlite to improve drainage and to create an soil structure that is aerated, mimicking the native habitat of ivy plants.


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