Why Is My Peperomia Dying?

If you have peperomia is the case, then you’ve been blessed with one of the toughest and easiest houseplants. However, this plant can occasionally be susceptible to problems that cause it to look like a sulky, pathetic plant. This article will discuss the possible causes for the peperomia dying and ways to address them.

Problems with water, including in excess and underwatering is the main reason for peperomia dying. The plant may appear unhappy and eventually die if it is unable take in nutrients or water. Do not rule out other problems such as pests, disease or improper growing conditions.

While water-related issues can to cause peperomia to die however, it is easily remedied when you recognize the problem early and act immediately. Do not worry, I’ll guide you through the process.

How to Know If Your Peperomia Is Dying

Most likely, you have picked up a plant from the peperomia family due to its low-maintenance and attractive appearance. You may think it’s safe, but the indicators that your plant’s health is deteriorating could be missed by you.

However that, here are the most frequent signs to be aware of in the event that your peperomia is experiencing declining to the point of death:

  • If your leaves are burned, brown on the edges, and are crisping chances are that your soil has been allowed to dry completely. If this continues for a long time the leaves will turn slow, start drooping and eventually disappear. It is probably the most frequent issue among parents of houseplants who forget to take their care.
  • In the majority of cases that leaves become soft, wilt and then become loose. This could mean that you’ve excessively watered your peperomia. It could also mean that you’re staring at a serious case root rot. In any case the peperomia you have will shortly end up dying if you don’t perform an immediate, full-time rescue mission.
  • Other indicators of death because of overwatering are soggy, wet, or soil that is waterlogged. If the root rot disease has made a home for itself within your plant, there will be a spongy or rooting smell emanating out of the potting soil. If everything is fine and well, you’ll notice an earthy scent emanating out of the soil.
  • Roots are the ones that take the brunt burden of watering. If they’re not white and firm, you’ll see sad looking roots that look like black, and are mushy to the feel. Continue reading to explain how to treat the peperomia that is caused due to root rot.
  • The browning of leaves is another indication to be concerned about. If you have a fungal or bacterial infection that is ravaging your plant, you could observe brown or black spots that are surrounded by yellow-colored circles. Also, brown tips on leaves and edges aren’t good information about the health of your peperomia.
  • Growth that is stunted or deformed If your peperomia isn’t producing new growth or isn’t growing it could be suffering with a pest or disease infestation. Insects that sucking sap like mealybugs and scales can manifest as scabs on your foliage and then drain the life from the plant.
  • Yellowing of leaves: one of the first signs of a potentially fatal issue for your peperomia plant is yellowed leaves. It can be caused by excessive watering, critical light deficiency or deficiency in nutrients or root rot, diseases, and other diseases that could cause the death of the plant.
  • A spongy, microbially contaminated top of the mix is a indication of excessive watering or a lack of light. The growth of mildew or mold could be harmless, but it’s more likely to be a sign of a larger problem at hand. Consider root rot, a drained soil, etc.

peperomia in green pot

The majority of signs are visible on the leaves. If you’re observant enough, you’ll be able to recognize the majority of the symptoms without having to remove your plant. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to identify and fix the problem before damage has been done on the root.

[1] Underwatering

Problems with water are certain to be the most significant cause of decline, and even death in peperomia. It is essential to make sure that your soil is always moist, but not too dry or wet.

If you’re not familiar with caring for peperomia, it is easy to be confused by the symptoms and signs of overwatering and underwatering.

Signs of Underwatering

The first signs from an underwatered peperomia will appear on the leaves. Leaves will curl; change from grey to light brown and then become crisp. They’ll certainly appear dry and smudge-like due to the dry soil.

The peperomia leaves affected by the disease are likely to curl, then begin to droop and then may disappear. If you don’t take action quickly the peperomia could be completely naked and without leaves. This is how the majority of neglected peperomias end up dying.

The leaves may feel more dry, with more brown around the edges and tips of the leaves and more crisp if the humidity is too low. Direct sunshine and drafts of hot air can affect the underwater condition.

How to Revive an Underwatered Peperomia

Put your finger in the soil mix. If it’s dry for more than 3 inches beneath the surface, then you’ve let the plant dehydrate for an extended period of time. The best option is to give the plant a thorough soak.

Put your plant in at room temperatures water in the basin, sink or bathtub. The soil will absorb water into drain holes.

This process should continue for approximately 45 minutes. When the soil is saturated in moisture, take it off and let the excess water be absorbed completely. Be sure to empty the saucer each few hours.

If you’ve neglected your soil until it has lost its capacity to hold in water, the best solution is to plant a new peperomia.

Make use of a light, but well-drained and dense pots. Mix in perlite, sand, or even gravel to avoid the compacting.

[2] Overwatering

The most serious mistake you could make as a person with peperomia, is giving excessive water. The soil will eventually be swollen and waterlogged, which will kill the roots.

Inability to absorb oxygen, nutrients, and the water in your body, you peperomia may be severely ill and die.

Signs of Overwatered Peperomia

In the beginning, you’ll notice a the leaves turning yellow, becoming wilted and soft leaves. The pot will weigh more, and the soil may be wet, and may emit an unpleasant smell. The leaves could also drop or limp and fall.

A water-logged peperomia is a refuge for pests and diseases. They appear as stem, root, and stalk decay. The smell of rotting emanating from these areas will surely annoy off you.

Mildew and mold that appear on the soil’s surface can suggest that you have overwatered. This is particularly true when your plant is under low light conditions. If you notice hard, black or slimy roots after you remove your plant from the pot the root rot may have already occurred.

How to Save an Overwatered Peperomia

The first thing to do is ensure that your plant isn’t sitting on a saucer that has run-off water. Make sure to verify that the pot is able to drain enough holes. If not, purchase one with more holes , or simply drill a few holes.

Many gardeners dispose of overwatered peperomias which have suffered from root rot. If you can spot the problem early it is possible to revitalize your peperomia.

If the issue of overwatering isn’t a problem, just stop watering it and let the soil dry. The peperomia will bounce back when this happens.

If the problem of water overflow is not sufficiently advanced it is likely the root-rot issue has developed. It is imperative to take swift and thorough action to revive the plant.

  • Then, take it off from the container and observe the extent of the root rot damage.
  • Scrape off as as much soil off the ball of root as you can.
  • The next step is to grab the scissors clean or shears to trim dead or diseased roots. The goal is to leave with healthy and firm roots that are usually white and soft to the feel.
  • It is important to let the root ball dry out slightly with a paper towel or on a magazine.
  • When it’s dry enough then take care to treat your rootball with a fungicide and then consider repotting it with fresh soil. Include hydrogen peroxide, and ensure that the soil is draining freely. A few pieces of shredded perlite, bark, and sand can help improve drainage and keep the soil from settling.

This new mix of potting soil is probably to be wet and therefore don’t be in a the rush to grab the watering container.

Watch for signs of growth, and also when the top 3 inches of soil have dried before you water again.

[3] Stem and Root Rot

Peperomia is usually a robust and dependable home plant. However, overwatering can leave it weak, malnourished and ineffective at battling many root and stem rots.

The most frequent most frequent Phytophthora Rot, which is caused by a variety of soil-borne fungi. In peperomias that are younger, the symptoms begin at the edges of leaves that touch the soil.

The black rot can eventually girdle the stems , and end up killing your plant. In peperomias that are older, Phytophthora rot begins with stems and leaves at the soil at the soil level. The leaves will turn black while the leaves below will begin to wilt then become floppy and drop. The peperomia of your body will be impaired, and then gradually shrink then wilt and fall down.

Pythium is primarily a problem with cuttings, however older and younger peperomias may also suffer. Dark brown or black water-soaked blisters can be seen on the affected stems and leaves.

The roots could also begin decaying. The peperomia’s leaves will begin to wilt and then shrivel up before it dies. Root rot is a different disease that is caused by excessive watering.

Since the majority of destruction occurs beneath the soil line The best way to prevent it is to be on the lookout for signs on leaves. They’ll be damaged, yellowed and falling.

The smelly soil and the rotting stalks are also sure signs of root decay. A few, if not all of the roots, will be soft, mushy and blackened or the soil will be rusty.

How to Resurrect Peperomia from Root Rot and Stem Rot

Stop watering immediately, remove your houseplant and eliminate the plant material that is affected. Utilize alcohol-treated shearers, scissors or pruners to trim off and dispose of any damaged leaves, roots, or stems.

If the rotting is far beyond redemption, simply eliminate it. Propagation could be the best option in this case.

If some of the leaves and roots are good, then you’re in good shape. Repotting is in the air!

  • The first step is to remove the peperomia from its pot and cut away any dead, diseased, or other unhealthy roots. Be sure to sterilize your cutting instrument after every cut.
  • Treat the remaining healthy roots with a good fungicide. Make sure to clean away all the soil that has been contaminated and allow the root ball to dry out before taking care of that.
  • It is best to use new potting mix as well as an entirely new container. Make sure you steam-sterilize everything from the container to the sand that you mix into.
  • Repot your peperomia and ensure the right conditions for growth. Do not water until the topsoil is only a few inches are dry. It is best to wait until new growth begins to emerge.

(source: University of Illinois)

[4] Peperomia Leaves Turning Yellow

The yellowing of leaves is usually caused by excessive watering, usually when it’s accompanied by low light. If the lower leaves appear yellow it’s a sign of overwatering. The general yellowing could be an indication of deficiency in nutrient, typically an absence of nitrogen.

The yellowed central leaves indicate excessive moisture that was settling on the leaves. Poor lighting and air circulation can cause this. Maybe you prefer to use an overhead irrigation system and let the water splash onto the leaves.

How to Revivify Peperomia by introducing Yellow Leaves

It is essential to trim away the dying or yellowing leaves. This will help your plant to grow more healthy and robust leaves.

Make sure there is plenty of air circulation and do not water from above. It is best to water early in the morning. Be sure to place your plant located in a well-lit but protected space.

[5] Peperomias Drooping, Wilting, and Dying

The peperomia leaves that are drooping typically due to a range of reasons, from drowning or low levels of humidity. But, general drooping that is that is followed by withering and death is usually caused by a fatal fungal infection called Verticillium Wilt.


Dieback of stalks and stems is typical of Verticillium wilt. The leaves curl up and turn red or yellow and then wilt, before turning brown before falling away.

How to Revive Drooping Peperomias

In the most severe instances, you might not be able to save your peperomia. This is because Verticillium wilt can be an extremely fast-growing and incurable fungal illness.

Therefore, you must isolate your affected plant as soon as you notice it. If you notice it early, take out and dispose of affected areas of the plant immediately.

[6] Low Humidity

If the edges and tips of leaves become brown and the leaves feel dry and dry, your peperomia might not have enough humidity. The plant requires air moisture to keep its leaves soft.


It could be due to the combination of too much light, underwatering, or low humidity. Therefore, you should remove your peperomia from direct sunlight. Soak in water to ensure that the soil remains moist, but not saturated.

Create a humidity tray using pebbles or an air humidifier to create a moist atmosphere. Peperomias may also benefit from regular misting in dry and hot conditions.

[7] Pest Infestations

Although it is extremely resistant to pests, peperomia can be infected by some insects. This includes the most common suspects, including sap suckers such as whiteflies, scales, spider mites and mealybugs. It is usually the case when your peperomia is drained or is unhealthy.

Pests can suck sap from the leaves, depriving the leaves of moisture, nutrients, and vitality. Certain pests can also create favorable conditions for the spread of diseases. The leaves typically develop brown spots, turn brown and may even fall.


It is essential to implement treatments as soon as pests begin to appear. Spray regularly with Neem oil, insecticide soap or any other oils for horticulture. Clean the leaves frequently with alcohol-dipped cotton swabs.

[8] Incorrect Soil pH

If the pH of your soil is low, it affects the supply of vital nutrients within the soil. If the pH levels of your soil are too basic or acidic, the ability of your peperomia to absorb minerals and nutrients is hindered.

For instance, a low pH can lead to low absorption of iron. Therefore your peperomia may have the veins of your leaf that are yellowed.


It is important to note that peperomia is able to tolerate alkaline , neutral, and acidic soil pH. It’s most comfortable when the pH is between 6.0-6.6.

It is better to have an instrument for testing soil pH in your bag. Utilize sulfur or lime sulfate to adjust soil pH down or up according to. (source: University of Florida)

[9] Peperomias Dying in Cold Temperatures

Peperomias dislike cold and, actually, they will react with a ferocious shed of leaves when struck by frost or a cold drafts. The browning of the tips of leaves as well as edges are a sure indication that cold breezes are blowing.

Temperatures that fall lower than 50degF(10degC) can spell disaster to your peperomia. It can be further aggravated by dry air and frostbite.


The peperomia is likely to become upset and could die if you expose it to temperatures below 50degF(10degC). For best growth, make sure ambient temp stays in the range of 65-75degF(18-24degC). Keep it away from cold areas such as close to windows, doors that aren’t insulated, as well as cooling outlets.

[10] Not Enough Sunlight


If your peperomia is suffering from a severe light deficiency it will cause the leaves turning yellow, discoloring, and even leaf loss.

The leaves will be less and appear weak and sluggish, which is followed by stunted growth and dropping. Low light conditions can also cause the symptoms of excessive watering stem rot, stem rot, as well as root rot.


Move your peperomia to an appropriate spot that gets sufficient medium-to-bright indirect light. Light that is diffused or filtered can also help your plant thrive provided it’s bright.

How Not to Kill Your Peperomia?

  • Make sure you have a regular schedule for watering Make sure to water whenever you feel that 2-3 inches of soil are dry. Do not allow the soil to dry out completely or let it overwater.
  • Create a lot of humidity. Use an air humidifier, humidity tray, or use misting.
  • Set it in a sunny area that has indirect, filtered and diffused light. Beware of direct sunlight.
  • Remove plants that are sick — as well as treat pests or illnesses promptly.
  • Make use of a light but dense, well-drained mixing of potting mix and vermiculite, sand, or perlite.


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