Swiss Cheese plants, otherwise known as monstera deliciosa, are tropical plants that get their name because their leaves have holes in them that mimic Swiss cheese.
This plant is easy to care for and propagate, but its leaves are supposed to be dark green in color. Sometimes, they can turn yellow. How do you fix this?
You can fix yellow leaves on a Swiss cheese plant by making sure you don’t overwater or underwater it. You should also avoid placing your plant in an area of the home where it will get too much light, which will burn its leaves and cause them to turn yellow.
In this article, I’ll explore what you need to know about why your Swiss cheese plant’s leaves are turning yellow and what you can do to bring them back to green health.
What Causes Swiss Cheese Plant Leaf Yellowing?
There are many reasons why your Swiss Cheese plant is experiencing yellow leaves, such as if it’s overwatered or not watered enough. Overwatering your plant is particularly bad for it as it can cause mold and fungus to grow in the soil.
Besides yellow leaves, signs of overwatering include droopy leaves that have brown spots.
With the above in mind, there are other common reasons why your Swiss Cheese plant’s leaves are turning yellow. Let’s explore them in greater detail.
Too Much Sunlight
Although your Swiss Cheese plant is a tropical houseplant, this doesn’t mean it wants a lot of light every day. Too much sunlight can damage its foliage, causing it to become yellow.
If too much sunlight is what’s causing your plant to become yellow, it will display other symptoms, such as yellow spots on the leaves instead of the entire leaf becoming yellow.
If left in a very hot area of the home that receives too much sun, your Swiss Cheese plant will display leaves that turn brown – by that stage, there’s nothing you can do, and the leaves won’t recover.
Not Enough Humidity
Your Swiss Cheese plant wants to be in an area of the home that gets moderate humidity. This is why you should mist your plant daily, especially if the indoor air is dry, such as during the cold months.
If a lack of moisture is what’s causing your plant’s leaves to turn yellow, they’ll also look dry and could start to become weaker before shriveling up. These are clear signs that the plant is dehydrated.
A Lack of Nutrients
If your plant isn’t getting enough nutrients, such as nitrogen, this will cause its leaves to get yellow tips. You’ll also notice that the plant is struggling to grow.
When adding potting soil to your indoor Swiss Cheese plant’s container, you should water your plants with rainwater instead of tap water. This is because it will regulate the nutrients for your plant to absorb them from the soil better.
Pests That are Attacking Your Plant
Pests such as spider mites can attack your Swiss Cheese plant, feeding on its sap and causing the plant’s leaves to turn yellow. Other pests that can also do this include mealybugs.
Although you can use insecticides to eliminate pests that are attacking your Swiss Cheese plant, it’s important to bear in mind that if your plant is lacking some care it will become more of a target for pests.
Take good care of your plant, and it will naturally repel pests and diseases.
Extremely Hot Temperatures
If you’ve placed your Swiss Cheese plant in an area of the home where the temperature is very hot, this can cause it to grow yellow leaves. You should never keep your plant in a spot where temperatures are higher than 90°F (32.2°C).
A Pot That’s Too Small
If you’ve planted your Swiss Cheese plant in a pot that’s too small for it, this can cause it to become rootbound, so it will struggle to grow. When this happens, the roots of the plant won’t be able to access water and nutrients from the soil. This can cause its leaves to turn yellow.
What Can You Do to Fix Swiss Cheese Plant Leaf Yellowing?
To fix your Swiss Cheese plant’s leaves that are turning yellow, you should ensure you water your plant without overwatering it. This means you should only water it when the top two inches (5.08cm) of its soil feel dry.
If you’re guilty of overwatering your Swiss Cheese plant, leaving its soil to dry out for a few days should help it to get better. However, if many of its leaves are turning yellow because of overwatering, you should repot the plant in fresh, dry soil.
If too much water isn’t the problem that’s causing your Swiss Cheese plant leaves to turn yellow, you should ensure it’s not in a spot where it’s getting too much heat or sun. Move it into a better location, preferably an area of low light where the plant gets a bit of morning sun.
This plant wants bright, indirect light because it’s used to living under the canopy of larger plants in forests. Make sure it gets about six hours of daylight every day.
You should also keep your Swiss Cheese plant away from extreme temperature fluctuations, such as by not placing its pot near drafts or fireplaces.
One thing you don’t have to worry about too much when growing Swiss Cheese plants is humidity. They can handle between 40 and 50% humidity, which is regular indoor humidity.
However, if your home humidity is too low and your Swiss Cheese plant is being exposed to dry air, you should remedy the situation by installing a humidifier and placing it within close proximity to your houseplant.
When it comes to treating pests that are attacking your plant, you can use neem oil. This is a safe insecticide that won’t bring harmful chemicals or toxins into your home. Spray it over your plant, being sure to cover all parts of it.
Is It Possible to Fix Soil Composition?
You can fix the soil composition of your Swiss Cheese plant, but you will have to repot it to ensure you give it enough soil nutrients it could be lacking. Your plant wants a peat-based potting mix. This will maintain the soil’s moisture, preventing the soil from becoming soggy.
You can make your own soil mix for Swiss Cheese plants by mixing together one part perlite, one part peat moss, and four parts pine bark.
This tropical plant wants slightly acidic or neutral soil, so aim for a soil pH that’s between 5.5 and 7.
If you’re repotting your Swiss Cheese plant, make sure you do this carefully to prevent adding extra stress to your plant. Here are some tips to follow:
- Repot your plant early in the spring so that your plant has enough time to adjust to its new pot and soil before experiencing a growth spurt.
- Choose a pot that’s about two inches (5.08cm) larger in diameter than its previous pot. Ensure it has drainage holes so your plant’s roots won’t become soggy.
- Avoid handling the plant’s roots too much. Be gentle!
- After transplanting your Swiss Cheese plant, water it well to ensure it can settle into its new soil.
How to Find the Optimal Swiss Cheese Plant Location
Choosing the ideal location for your Swiss Cheese plant is essential to make it thrive and keep its leaves lusciously green. Here are quick tips to follow when it comes to its light, temperature, humidity, and nutrient requirements.
- Light. Your Swiss Cheese plant wants to receive bright, indirect light – aim for between six and eight hours of sunlight per day. You want to place your Swiss Cheese plant in front of an east-facing window that doesn’t get too much direct or harsh light.
- Temperature. Ensure your plant gets between 60 and 85°F (15.5-29.4°C). This will prevent it from getting too much warmth, which can cause it to lose moisture.
- Humidity. Keep the humidity in the room at around 50%. This will prevent the plant’s leaves from becoming dehydrated. Consider putting your Swiss Cheese plant in an area of the home with good humidity, such as the kitchen or bathroom.
- Nutrients. You should feed your Swiss Cheese plant nutrients via fertilizer. I’d recommend Miracle-Gro’s Indoor Plant Spikes, which you can purchase from Amazon. These spikes nourish the plant’s soil for up to two months.
If you’re growing a Swiss Cheese plant, you’ll be pleased to know it is low-maintenance to care for. But there are some important tips to follow to ensure it gets the correct care so that its leaves won’t turn yellow. These include:
- Giving it bright, indirect light.
- Watering it when the top two inches (5.08cm) of its soil are dry.
- Giving it approximately 50% humidity.
- Ensuring its pot has drainage holes.