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How to Treat Brown Tips On a Peace Lily

I have come across various issues with my peace lilies. One of the most common problems that I have faced is brown tips on the leaves. Brown tips can be unsightly and can indicate an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. In this post, I will discuss the possible causes of brown tips on peace lily leaves and provide tips on how to prevent and treat this issue.

  • Possible Causes of Brown Tips
  • Prevention of Brown Tips
  • Treatment of Brown Tips

Why Does My Peace Lily Have Brown Tips?

Possible causes of brown tips on peace lily leaves include overwatering, underwatering, exposure to direct sunlight, low humidity, and buildup of salts and minerals in the soil. Overwatering can lead to root rot, which can cause the leaves to turn brown and wilt. On the other hand, underwatering the peace lily can result in dry, brown-tipped leaves due to lack of adequate moisture. Exposure to direct sunlight can scorch the peace lily leaves, causing them to turn brown. Low humidity can also cause the leaves to dry out and turn brown. Finally, a buildup of salts and minerals in the soil can cause the tips of the leaves to turn brown.

It is essential to ensure that the plant is not overwatered or underwatered to prevent brown tips on peace lily leaves. It would help if you waited to water again until the soil surface feels somewhat dry when touched, not continually soaked. The plant should also be placed in a location where it is not exposed to direct sunlight. If you need to increase humidity, the plant can be misted regularly or placed on a tray of pebbles and water. An excellent way to prevent the buildup of salts and minerals in the soil is by flushing the soil with water every few months.

Here is a table summarizing the possible reasons. Continue reading as I will discuss each of these causes in detail and provide tips on how to treat brown tips on peace lily leaves.

Possible Reasons for Leaves with Brown Tips on a Peace Lily
Irregular Watering
Low Humidity
Excessive Light
Temperature Fluctuations
Normal Aging
Water Quality Issues
Pests and Diseases
why does my peace lily have brown tips

Irregular Watering

Peace lilies require consistent watering to thrive. Overwatering or underwatering can cause brown tips on the leaves. If the soil is too dry, the plant will start to wilt and develop brown tips. On the other hand, if the soil is too wet, the roots can become waterlogged and start to rot, causing brown tips on the leaves.

Low Humidity

If the air in your home is too dry, the plant can develop brown tips on its leaves. Peace lilies are native to tropical rainforests, where the humidity is high. You can increase humidity by placing a humidifier near the plant, misting the leaves with water, or placing a tray of water near the plant.

brown tips peace lily low humidity

Excessive Light

Peace lilies prefer bright, indirect light. If the plant is exposed to direct sunlight, it can develop brown tips on the leaves. To remedy excessive light, relocate the peace lily to a brighter but indirect lighting situation, out of direct sun.

Temperature Fluctuations

If the temperature fluctuates too much, the plant can develop brown tips on its leaves. Peace lilies prefer warm temperatures between 65-80°F (18-27°C). It is best to avoid temperature fluctuations by keeping the plant out of the path of air conditioner drafts.

brown tips peace lily temperature fluctuations


Overfertilization can cause brown tips on peace lily leaves. Too much fertilizer can burn the roots and cause the plant to develop brown tips. Follow the instructions on the fertilizer package and avoid fertilizing the plant too often. Get tips on soil types that will keep your peace lilies strong and vibrant.

Normal Aging

Brown tips on peace lily leaves can also be a sign of normal aging. As the leaves age, they start to turn yellow and then brown. You can prune off the brown tips to keep the plant looking healthy.

brown tips peace lilies normal aging

Water Quality Issues

Peace lilies are sensitive to chemicals in tap water, such as chlorine and fluoride. If the plant is exposed to these chemicals, it can develop brown tips on its leaves. You can use distilled or filtered water to avoid this problem.

Pests and Diseases

Brown tips on peace lily leaves can also be a sign of pest or disease problems. Watch for small spider mites, fuzzy white mealybugs, or flat, immobile scale insects that afflict peace lilies. Diseases such as root rot and bacterial leaf spot can also cause brown tips on the leaves. If you suspect a pest or disease problem, isolate the plant and treat it accordingly.

brown tips peace lilies pests diseases

How To Treat Brown Tips on a Peace Lily?

As a houseplant lover, seeing brown tips on your peace lily can be concerning. However, there are several ways to treat brown tips and prevent them from happening in the future.

Firstly, it’s essential to identify the cause of the brown tips. Overwatering, underwatering, and exposure to direct sunlight are common culprits. Once you’ve identified the cause, you can take the appropriate steps to treat the brown tips.

If the cause is overwatering, reduce the frequency of watering and make sure the soil is well-draining. If the cause is underwatering, increase the frequency of watering and make sure the soil is moist but not soggy. If the cause is exposure to direct sunlight, move the plant to a shadier spot.

In addition to adjusting watering and lighting, there are a few other things you can do to treat brown tips on a peace lily. Here are some tips:

  • Trim off the brown tips with a pair of clean, sharp scissors.
  • Mist the leaves regularly to increase humidity.
  • Fertilize the plant with a balanced fertilizer to promote healthy growth.

To summarize, treating brown tips on a peace lily involves identifying the cause, adjusting watering and lighting, and taking additional steps such as trimming, misting, and fertilizing. Refer to the table below for a quick summary of these tips.

Gardening TipSteps
Identify the causeDetermine if the cause is overwatering, underwatering, or exposure to direct sunlight.
Adjust watering and lightingReduce the frequency of watering for overwatering, increase the frequency for underwatering, and move to a shadier spot for exposure to direct sunlight.
Trim off brown tipsUse clean, sharp scissors to trim off brown tips.
Mist leavesIncrease humidity by misting the leaves regularly.
FertilizePromote healthy growth by fertilizing with a balanced fertilizer.
how to treat brown tips on a peace lily

Should I Cut the Brown Tips Off My Peace Lily?

When brown tips start to appear on peace lily leaves, it can be frustrating. The question is, should you cut them off?

In short, the answer is yes. Cutting off the brown tips will not only make the plant look better, but it will also help it to grow healthier. The brown tips are a sign of dehydration, which means the plant is not getting enough water. By cutting them off, you’re removing the dead tissue and allowing the plant to focus on healthy growth.

However, it’s important to note that cutting off the brown tips is not a permanent solution. If the plant continues to be dehydrated, the brown tips will come back. So, it’s important to address the underlying issue by adjusting the watering schedule and ensuring the plant is getting enough moisture.

To summarize, cutting off brown tips is a good idea for the health and appearance of your peace lily. But it’s essential to also address the root cause of the dehydration to prevent the issue from recurring.

Remember to always keep a close eye on your peace lily and adjust its care as needed to keep it looking its best.

should i cut the brown tips off my peace lily

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About Henry Morgan

Henry Morgan is an agronomist horticulture founder of The Garden Style Company and The Garden Style Website. He previously worked for Mondelēz International as an Agronomist Engineer specializing in agricultural products management in highly populated areas. In 2000, Henry started working with farmer-producers in agricultural businesses selling wholesale fresh produce and retail plants in Van Buren, Arkansas. Nowadays, Henry lives in California, where he offers expert consulting services for organic vegetable gardening. As a science writer working with his wife, Julia, Henry shares his passion for gardening and farming, trying to reach and teach as many folks as possible.

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