Why are my Arrowhead’s leaves turning brown?

Last Updated: June 21, 2022

If you notice that your Arrowhead is starting to develop brown leaves or brown leaf tips then it can be quite worrying. However, there are only a couple of things that cause this which makes it one of the simpler problems to fix. Below we will go through the main reasons why Arrowhead plants develop brown leaves.

Dry air can cause brown Arrowhead leaves

A good tip to remember when caring for houseplants more generally is that brown leaf tips are often caused by a lack of humidity in the air. Although you cannot reverse the brown tips that are already on your Arrowhead plant, there are a few things you can do to increase the humidity level and stop any more from developing.

Mist your plant

Use a spray bottle to mist the leaves on your Arrowhead a few times a week. This will dramatically increase the humidity around your plant. It’s also a great way to keep the leaves clean and remove dust that builds up on the leaves. Arrowhead plants are quite susceptible to dust as their leaves are quite flat and large. Therefore, you need to ensure they stay clean so it doesn’t prevent sunlight from hitting the leaves.

Shower your Arrowhead

By giving your plant a shower you can instantly increase the humidity. However, this is quite a short term solution so best paired with another one of our methods for long term effect. Put your plant in the bath or sink and wash down the leaves with lukewarm water. It’s also a great way to get rid of any pests that might be lurking around on your plant.

Use a pebble tray

This one requires a little bit of DIY. Fill up a tray with small pebbles and add water so it reaches about halfway up the tray. Place your Dragon Tree on top and throughout the day the water will evaporate around the plant. You need to make sure that the roots of your plant are not touching the water (which is why we say to fill up the tray halfway). If the roots are sitting in the water then it will very quickly lead to root rot and a whole range more problems!

Use a humidifier

Humidifiers are a real game changer when it comes to tackling brown leaf tips. They just do what it says on the box – increase the humidity in the room. You can get really affordable ones from Amazon (this is the one we use which is great) but if you are willing to spend a bit more they come with fancy setting such as scheduling and auto turn on/off. Your Arrowhead plant and other houseplants will LOVE it!

Not enough water can also cause brown leaves

Underwatering is also a common cause of brown Arrowhead leaves. Although they won’t die on you instantly if they have to go a little longer without water, consistent underwatering will dry out the plant and the leaves causing them to turn brown.

You want to be 100% confident that there is an issue with watering before you change anything about your routine. If you switch to giving your plant too much water when it didn’t need it, this can cause a whole range of further issues. Always check the soil moisture before altering your watering routine. If the soil is really dry and powdery when you take your Arrowhead out of its pot then this is probably the issue.

You want to slowly reintroduce watering by giving your plant a bit of water once a day for a week and your plant should slowly begin to recover. Underwatering causes less damage to the root system than overwatering so your plant should begin to bounce back after a few weeks. Keep an eye on how moist the soil is so you don’t go the other way and overwater accidentally.

Should I trim away the brown leaves on my Arrowhead plant?

We always recommend trimming the brown leaves off the plant if the dried patches are all over the leaf. If it is just the tips that are brown then they can stay on. Once the leaves have turned brown there is no going back so it is better to trim them away so your Arrowhead can focus on producing new, healthy and green growth. You don’t want your plant wasting vital energy on trying to save the dead or dying leaves. Plus aesthetically your plant will look better and healthier if you cut away the brown parts.

So those are the main two reasons why Arrowhead plants develop brown leaves. If you want to find out more about caring for your plant, or solving other common problems, visit our Arrowhead Plant Care Guide.

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