Why Does My Money Tree Have Brown Spots?

Last Updated on November 12, 2022 by Stephanie

Brown spots on a Money Tree leaves are the way to tell you that something is not right.

Consider them to be your plants alarm system. There are a variety of reasons why the Money Tree might be exhibiting these signs.

Each shares one thing They inform you that there is something going on that needs your intervention.

Since there are many options, Ill break them into smaller pieces so that you are better equipped to recognize and tackle each issue.

Direct sunlight exposure, overwatering and pest infestations are the most frequent causes of brown spots appearing on Money Tree leaves. Most of them can be easily overcome by prompt actions. Keep the humidity at between 50% and 60% in the summer and spring and apply neemoil or a fungicide for the fight against the fungal and pest-borne diseases.

In this article, well examine each issue individually and discuss ways to solve it.

Causes of Brown Spots on Money Tree Leaves

Below are probable causes for spots of brown on your money tree leaves. There are similar symptoms in the majority of instances. It is essential to be cautious in determining the cause before taking any action.

Septoria Leaf Spot

It is a fungal infection however the symptoms are different. The first signs appear as botches that are yellow, but they gradually change to brown.

The issue will usually begin in the lower leaves, and will then spread across your entire money tree. As the infection gets more severe the leaves will begin to fall.


  • The positive side is that although you might not know what fungal infection the plants is suffering from The treatment is exactly the same. Spray the plant with a fungicide that is specifically designed for it.
  • Fungal illnesses are worsened due to a lack of air circulation therefore make sure that the air inside the room isnt too stagnant. This can be done by opening the windows for a couple of hours every day during the time when it is pleasant.
  • Get rid of the affected leaves. If you cut the damaged leaves, be aware that you have infected the tools. It is essential to sterilize them prior to making use of them again in order to avoid the spread of the infection. A quick wash with bleach can suffice.


This issue could occur when the plant absorbs more water than can be lost due to transpiration of the leaves of the plant.

The reason for this is the excessive water that is trapped within these cells triggers them to break. There are blisters on the surface of the leaf that turn brown, and then harden like a tiny scab.

If the issue isnt treated, the leaves could fall and affect the overall health of the plant.


  • The first step is ensure that the soil drains quickly enough. There are many things that can slow the drainage. This may sound simple, but make sure that the pot is equipped with drainage holes to ensure that water is able to escape.
  • Do not leave your plant in a pot that is that is filled with water because this can slow down the rate of the water draining away.
  • Follow the right watering regimen (see the section below) as well as be ready to cut down on the amount you offer your plant in times that are more humid or when it is not in the growing season.
  • Use free-draining potting soil.

money tree in sunlight pachira aquatica

Money Tree Foliar Blight

The cause is the fungus Phytophthora palmivola. Do not be concerned if it does not disappear off your tongue as quickly.

You can detect the issue by looking for brown spots appearing on leaves which spread quickly. They appear to resemble the ink is brown and has fallen onto the leaf.

The illness is usually brought on through transmission during the infant years and could have been an issue that was triggered there, and not due to an mistake on your part.


  • The fungus can be spread quickly, so the first thing you need to do is separate the Money Tree from your other plants to prevent cross-contamination.
  • Then, you can apply a specific fungicide that is available from your plant manufacturer. The fungicides typically comprise copper sulfurate.
  • Remove any fallen leaves off, and do not include them in your compost. Prior to purchasing the Money Tree, check its leaves carefully to make sure that the issue does not already exist.
  • The fungus thrives in moist and humid conditions, so make sure not to splash any water on your leaves while watering. Instead, you should apply water to at the very top potting soil. A healthy plant can overcome this issue more quickly than a weak plant.

Direct Sunlight

The most crucial aspects of keeping your house plants healthy is finding a location that is suitable for the plants. They do not appreciate excessive direct sunlight as they can get sunburn.

It may sound odd, but keep in mind the fact that many of these houseplants thrive naturally in the forests understory in shade from taller trees. The most common thing that happens is that the leaf edges get dry and turn crispy and brown.

The leaves, before turning brown, might be covered in streaks of white because of sunburn.


  • If you notice these signs you should immediately relocate your plant to a location that isnt in direct sunlight. When you have found the ideal location, the plant will be able to recover itself over time.
  • A few people prefer cutting off the burned areas from the leaves. The leaves material that is brown and dead has no value to the plant.
  • The removal of the branch serves only aesthetic reasons, however. It wont aid in the recovery of the plant faster, so youll need to determine the extent to which it will detract from the look the appearance of your Money Tree.
  • Pick the location in which you will place your plant with care. Window sills facing south are typically too bright in the northern hemisphere.
  • Choose an east or west-facing windowsills instead. If south-facing is the only option to choose, you can try placing the plant far away from the window itself.

Temperature Stress

Youll be happy to know the fact that your Money Tree is very tolerant in the temperature range that it is able to accept.

Any temperature between 50 to 90degF (10 32degC - 10) keeps the plant healthy. This is among the main reasons why it is the perfect house plant.

When things go out of your comfortable zone, or when the temperature fluctuates between high and low it is when you could have issues.


  • The majority of people who experience anxiety due to temperature are experiencing it due to the fact that they put the Money Tree outside during the summer months, and neglect to take it indoors once the temperature drops. When the ambient temperature drops to 28 degrees F (-2degC) The leaves begin to fall also.
  • Prior to falling, the leaves change from dark brown, then black and begin to droop.
  • If your plant is moved outside in summer, bring it inside before the beginning of autumn. In the meantime you should reduce the frequency at the frequency at which you water your plant.
  • When putting the Money Tree indoors, consider things like radiators and other heating systems that could create extreme temperatures changes.

Pest Infestation

There are a handful of bugs that can happily infest the Money Tree. Two of the most common culprits that you may encounter are mealybugs and aphids.

Both of these are sap-sucking insects that extract the juices of plants by using specially-designed mouthparts.


  • Both of these pests is difficult to control if you dont let the pests to establish. If you spray or wipe your plants with an insecticide or vegetable soap, the issue is quickly removed. Neem oil is another well-known pesticide that is not chemical.
  • Both of these pests depend on disguises to keep them from being discovered easily.
  • I believe that a thorough inspection on your plant life is among the most effective methods to avoid not just pests, but to identify other health issues too. Many people are unaware of the signs of these issues until its too far too late.
  • Make it a habit of checking your plants on a regular basis. One method to do it is by keeping your plant in good condition by wiping the leaves using a damp cloth. This will reduce the number of insects and make it more difficult to look at the plant in the process. Clean leaves can flow more easily.

Fertilizer Problems

There are two problems there. On one side, potting soils can only hold a small amount of nutrients, so it is essential to supplement the soil with additional fertilizer.

On the other hand, it is easy to feed your plant hoping that it will increase growth.

Insufficient nutrients can cause a weak and drained plant that is vulnerable to attack from pests or diseases. Over-fertilizing can result in a decrease in growth and burnt leaf edges similar to a sunburn.


  • If you think that your soil is depleted of nutrients, it is recommended to apply a general-purpose fertilizer to home plants.
  • Give your money plant a feed only in the spring, summer, and the autumn season. I apply a fertilizer that has a little more Nitrogen in the spring and summer and then cut back to an even fertilizer in autumn. Nitrogen is a great fertilizer for growth that is leafy and green.
  • I feed my plants once a month, and the plant stops feeding completely during winter. If you adhere to this simple routine, feeding wont be a problem you face.
  • Take a smaller dose than what the manufacturer suggests. Money Trees dont need to be fed a lot.

Poor Air Circulation

This is one aspect that a lot of people do not think about, yet its crucial that the air surrounding your plant of money circulates freely.

If not, the stagnant air could cause fungal illnesses. This is something that you must keep in mind when you are in an indoor space.


  • If youre experiencing fungal issues, try opening the windows for a few hours every day. Try this when its hot outside.
  • Being aware of the general circumstances should make this issue simple to avoid. While considering circulation, keep in mind that you dont want your plant to be placed that it is in the regular flow of water.

Low Humidity

Every plant requires to have a minimum amount of moisture as well. The Money Tree is no exception to this rule.

There are a variety of humidifiers for homes in the market, however for this particular model there is no need to buy one.

If the humidity is to a low level, the plant will show similar symptoms as the ones that occur when youre underwater. There are the leaves of the money tree curving and changing color from brown to yellow.


  • Make sure to water the plant thoroughly and place it in an area in which the humidity is high.
  • Plants are grouped together to create tiny microclimates in which the collective respiration of plants creates more humidity.
  • In the event that grouping plants are not feasible You can cover the saucer of your plant with pebbles or grit , then add water to it. If the pot is set on the gravel, the roots will remain free of water, but the plant will benefit from the increased humidity because it evaporates the moisture. Make sure you fill the saucer with water each and every so often.
  • Another method that utilizes the same concept is to put the pot inside of another pot that is slightly larger. The gap between two containers using Sphagnum moss, and keep it moist. As the water evaporates slowly it will increase the humidity.

Improper Watering

Well now look at the most frequent cause of the death of your house plant and it is the one that is most likely at the root of the majority of the Money Tree problems.

Too little or excessive amounts of water can trigger very similar symptoms. Brown spots on leaves.

The issues stem from the inability of the dry or damaged roots to carry nutrition to leaves. This can cause brown spots, and eventually the leaves to wilt in both situations.

The key distinction is that too many gallons of water and leaves will become spongy. Too little and they turn crisp.


  • If the plant is dry, youll need provide it with a thorough soak, however if it is wet, youll require the soil in the pot to dry out. It is important to reach an equilibrium in which the soil is damp but not soggy.
  • Both of these issues are easily avoided by monitoring your plant and the soil it is potting frequently. There is no need to purchase sol probes that cost a lot of money. Simply dip your finger inch deep into the soil, and youll soon be able to tell if its too wet or dry. It is important to water the soil at the point that the top one to two inches are totally dry.
  • To avoid it from getting waterlogged, make sure that the plant is placed in the right pot that has drainage holes, and that the saucer is not overflowing. This will stop drainage, and also that the soil is draining freely. (See below)

Potting Mix

It is said that the Money Tree is very forgiving in the kinds of soil it can tolerate.

To make the most of your plant, however it is important to have your plant to be growing in soil that drains easily and also able to hold water.

A mix that is free draining like a cactus mix will simply drain too fast to this particular plant. The plant will soon show signs of underwatering.

However should the soil be able to hold too much water, it will become soiled and that is among the main reasons behind brown spots and, eventually, the dying of plants.


  • Ive found that the potting mix that is very effective for me is made up of normal indoor plant potting soil , with approximately 10% coconut coir added into it.
  • Coconut coir provides the mix that tiny additional water retention youre seeking. It holds in water, but not to enough that the soil is flooded.
  • It reduces drainage enough to keep the soil moist, without becoming saturated. A lot of growers choose to use the peat option instead of using coconut Coir.

There are numerous implications for the environment when you use peat. If you prefer peat then you have to make sure that youre sourcing from a sustainable peat source.

Potting On

There will be a point when your plant starts to grow out of the container it is placed in. This is normal and is a sign the Money Tree is thriving under the care of your.

Root bound conditions reduce the effectiveness that the root system can perform. This is why you might notice brown spots on the leaves of your money tree.

Here are three indications that its the time to transfer your plant into a bigger pot.

  • Youll be able to determine when you should plant because it becomes difficult to get your finger into the soil for the regular moisture test.
  • The roots begin to protrude out of the drainage holes, or by climbing up the edges of the container.
  • In the event that your container is made of plastic and the roots begin to expand, it will eventually bulge.


  • Remove your plant from its pot and inspect the roots for any signs of root decay. Healthy roots are fleshy and white. Roots that are decaying turn brown and become mushy. This is a clear indication that youve been overwatering.
  • Remove any root rots until you are back to a healthy, clean plant material. Make sure you clean your face after youve done this.
  • Then, put some of your potting soil mix into the container youve chosen for.
  • The new pot shouldnt exceed one inch or two bigger than the previous one and, most importantly be spotless to avoid any transmission of disease.
  • The topsoil on the Money Tree to end up just a few inches below the surface of your pot. You can add or remove soil from the base until youre capable of reaching this level.
  • The additional inch lets you to water your plant without flooding the edges. After you have the plant at the right depth, fill it gently all around the container.
  • Then, you should firm your soil surrounding the root ball to ensure you can be sure there arent any air pockets.

After youve replanted the Money Tree, water thoroughly and allow all excess water to evaporate. This will make sure that there arent any air pockets.

It is tempting to put your plant in a bigger container than the one which it was originally in.

The issue with this method lies in the fact that roots will be covered by soil which absorbs water , and you run the risk of retention of water similar to the one experienced when the plant is in a water-logged state.


As you may have observed throughout this post the importance of watering just as it is easy to make mistakes. If you have a bit of knowledge its equally simple to do it correctly. This is the most effective way.

  • Make sure that the drainage is sufficient with the correct mixing mix, a pot with drainage holes, and ensure that the saucer isnt filled with water.
  • The plant should be watered only as needed. Make a small hole in the soil. If the top inch or two inches of soil is dry, its time to give it a good watering.
  • Soak the soil to the top, but without soaking the leaves. Let the excess water evaporate before putting the pot back into its saucer.
  • Do not water according to an established timetable. Instead, water whenever you think that your soil is in need of it.
  • The water should be soaked in the morning to ensure that the soil gets time to dry out throughout the day, which can aid in preventing fungal infections.
  • Make sure to use distilled or filtered water since chlorine builds into the soil over the course of time.
  • Make use of tepid water instead of cold water to ensure that you dont shock the Money Tree.
  • Be aware that youll need to water less often in the winter months than in the summer season.

Learn this step-by- guide to find out how to stop and save money from being soaked by a tree.

Final Words

It is known as the Money Tree can be a very well-known houseplant. One reason for this is because it is easy to maintain for the gardener.

Although the appearance of brown spots might frighten you, you have the information you need to identify the cause and then take action.

If you pay close on your money tree, youll be able to spot issues early and act and make sure that those gruesome brown spots dont gain the upper hand.



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 :)