What plant is on your mind?

An area of The Sill dedicated to conversations about plants and gardening in the form of posted messages and threads.

New Post


What plant is on your mind?

An area of The Sill dedicated to conversations about plants and gardening in the form of posted messages and threads.

New Post

Plant Troubleshooting

  • Sad Alocasia
    Have had this Alocasia from a nursery in New Jersey for a few months now, and can't seem to keep more than one leaf alive and healthy on it at a time! Is this normal? I don't mind it- but want to make sure I'm not killing the guy :) 

    What happened to the right leaf had happened to another leaf before- ended up dying, I hacked it off eventually, then a new one grew, and now happening again. 

    I keep it a few feet away from a large south facing window, and water about every 10 days when soil is completely dry. 
      • 1
      Pei Think could be spider mites? Did you see any webbing almost on the leaves? And I agree with [291176,Phoebe Cheong], maybe it's not getting enough sun...
      • 1
      Phoebe Cheong Mine is the same too!!
      I have a feeling its due to humidity and lack of light?
  • Birdsnest Silver Snake Plant
    HI there. I recently brought home a Birdsnest Silver Snake Plant (aka: Mother In Law's Tongue?) and the tips of the leaves are brown and crispy. Not enough water? Too warm? I had it on top of a bookshelf in our living room that we heat with a wood stove. I thought it got too hot or dried out? I put it next to the other one on a table under the window. The second one seems to be doing fine. Thank you in advance, Stacey
      • 1
      Pei I think it’s the dry heat that sucked out all the water. Snake plants are super easy and resilient though. Give it sometime and it will bounce back surely!
      • 1
      Erin Marino I think the dry heat from the wood stove could be the culprit. Now that you moved it, I'd keep an eye out and see if the new growth has less browning.
      • 2
      Nicole Not sure if this is the answer, but I think tap water can make the tips brown. Try letting your water sit out for 24 hours so the chemicals can evaporate before giving it to your plant.
  • Monstera
    About a year old, has been thriving so far. Just noticer this discoloration on just one of my leaves (one of the bigger leaves of the plant) its an otherwise very happy Monstera. Any ideas why this is happening?
      • 1
      Pei It looks like leaf fungal infection! You might want to trim the infected part to preven spreading.
  • Help With Dying Rubber Tree
    I am having some issues with my rubber tree that I received about 2 months ago. The leaves look like they are drooping, soft, and curling under. They are developing brownish splotches and then falling off (about 50% have fallen at this point). 
    It is in a warm sunny place and it has been watered approximately every 7-10 days when the soil dries out about 1-2 inches beneath the surface. 
    Anyone have any ideas why this is happening? Thanks for the help!
      • 1
      Kakiannna Looks over watered/ root rot. Also try removing frompot to dry out. Rubber trees are supper sensitive, when moved it’s normal to lose some
      • 2
      Paris Lalicata Hi Jake! It appears that your rubber tree is portraying signs of a fungal infection. I suggest checking the roots to see if root rot has set in. Trim any dead decaying roots, and if you're left with healthy roots I suggest dipping those roots directly into a fungicide solution and repotting in fresh growing medium. Hope this helps :)
  • Problem child pothos
    New-is plant parent here. Feeling encouraged that the rest of my babies are doing well, with the exception of this droopy, sad-looking pothos.

    I have a hunch that I was overwatering a bit (had to trim quite a few yellowed or wilted leaves), but also wondering if this needs a bigger pot?

    Incidentally, this guy also sits closest to my window and radiator, so it's likely a product of the cold weather of late. I've turned the pot and moved it a couple inches away from the window, so hoping that helps, too.

    Any tips would be much appreciated!!
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata I also always suggest investing in a soil probe that measures moisture to assist with watering if you ever have a hard time!
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata Hello Annie! The symptoms of your plant indicate underwatering. I suggest watering the plant once the soil has completely dried out, but not bone dry. Considering your conditions it may need more frequent waterings.
      The cause of the previous yellow leaves could've simply been caused by the plant acclimating to its new environment!
      Also, that seems like a perfect sized pot for the plant :)
    • 3 more comments
  • Norfolk Pine
    I got this Norfolk Pine in a holiday tro from The Sill around November. The tips of the branches are turn gin brown. It is happening slowly, but it is spreading. It is kept in an East facing window that gets direct sunlight through the first part of the day, and indirect for most of the rest of the day. I have upped the watering a bit, but it hasn't changed. Any thoughts? Thank you!
      • 1
      Ava Norfolk pines do turn brown in some areas! If the humidity is ok just prune the brown area. This is a normal thing with norfolk pines!
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata Hey Emily! The crisping and browning of the leaves looks like a humidity issue. Since the Norfolk is a tropical pine it has high humidity requirements! You can prune any dead and crispy needles, and try to increase the humidity around the plant. You can do that by misting the plant heavily on a daily basis, keeping it the bathroom, or providing a humidifer nearby! Hope this helps :)
  • Calathea Help
    About a month ago, I purchased this Calathea Medallion plant at The Sill store in Chinatown. However, it doesn't seem to be very happy. The edges of the leaves are brown and brittle, and some leaves are yellowing. I know sometimes yellowing can be a sign of overwatering, so I haven't watered it in about a week.  Right now the plant is on a desk, so it doesn't get direct sunlight but also isn't in darkness. I asked one of my green-thumbed friends for advice, and she thought initially it might be spider mites or type of water, but I checked the leaves and they seem fine and also switched to only watering with bottled water (but again, I haven't watered it in over a week). Anyone have any similar experiences or have any idea what to do? 
      • 1
      Lauren Ugh Calathea are so hard to keep alive, the only kind ive vern able to keep thriving is the raddlesnake
      • 1
      Blake I've been having the same problem since receiving my Calathea plant. I've been trying to keep the soil moist, but not saturated. Similar to what [291033,Tara] mentioned - I think it's humidity related. I've purchased a small warm mist humidifier to keep near "needy" plants, hoping to help them get through the cold/dry midwest winter. Good luck, keep us updated.
      • 1
      Tara My Calathea looks JUST like this. It's been a really tricky plant and seems to always be unhappy no matter what I do. I got some advice recently about moving it into the bathroom to absorb the humidity, and that the moisture was more important than the amount of light. Hopefully we can both revive them!
    • 3 more comments
  • Philodendron Green and Bird’s Nest Fern Care
    Hi! I just recently ordered two plants for the first time! Unfortunately I accidentally ordered them right before the polar vortex, so the Philodendron Green and Bird’s Nest Fern are not looking great! I watered both of them when they arrived, but I was wondering if anyone has any advice on how to help them out, it would be greatly appreciated! (I am very new at caring for plants and not sure what to do!)
      • 1
      Janine G I ordered right before the vortex as well. I ordered 6 plants and 5 looked like yours. I trimmed them all down to nothing with my fingers crossed. The Sill was nice enough to credit my account so I could try again in warmer weather.
      • 4
      Eliza Blank Hi Megan, unfortunately the plants do look cold damaged - in which case you would have to trim back a majority of the foliage. Please reach out to [email protected] and we can get you replacements if you prefer.
  • Monstera location
    Hi! I just got a baby monstera from the sill. I’m super excited. Can anyone tell me if this is enough light for it? It’s a large northish facing window.

      • 2
      Stephiem3 Thanks everyone! I didn’t realize that the heater/ac vent blows right along that whole window so I moved the plant until I can get a huge ladder to adjust it 🙄
      Hopefully it’ll be happy :)
      • 3
      Erin Marino Great view!
      • 3
      Sam Storch Second Pei! it would help a lot to give it more height so it will be level with the window. maybe a stack of cute books?
    • 2 more comments
  • White Bird of Paradise sprouts?
    I recently bought a White Birds of Paradise tree and within a week of potting and watering, a ton of little white sprouts erupted from the soil. Are these seedlings? I can’t seem to find a picture anywhere of new growth to confirm. I just want to make sure I’m taking proper care of the new babies. 
  • Maranta help
    I noticed recently my maranta had mealy bugs so I treated it with hydrogen peroxide but when I was looking at the stems I saw little nubs on the stems..is that normal or from the mealy bugs?? Thanks!
  • Hopeless holly?
    My holly plant is losing leaves.  Thoughts on what is causing this?  They are turning brown and falling off 
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata Could be an indication of insufficient lighting? If a plant isn’t getting enough sun then that means not enough energy to sustain all its leaves.. which is why they start to drop them! Or if your leaves look more “scorched” before they fall it could be a sign of too much direct sunlight!
  • pilea peperomioides leaves turning brown and falling off
    I got a mini pilea peperomioides from the UWS Sill a few weeks ago and it hasn't been doing well. I initially had it near a north facing window but moved it to an unobstructed west facing window after reading that north facing windows provide lowest light levels. I may have over watered in that I didn't let the soil really dry out between waterings.

    Leaves have been going brown and falling off. Is this due to over watering? If so, how can I revive my mini pilea peperomioides? :(

    Any thoughts and comments would be incredibly helpful! thank you!
      • 2
      Paris Lalicata Hi Selena! The colors of the leaves can be an indication of overwatering. Are any other parts of the plant soft and mushy to the touch? After removing all dead and brown leaves it would be a good idea to investigate the roots and see if root rot has set in. If this isn't the case I've seen leaves brown like this due to cold damage. If you leave a window open for too long cold drafts can do bad damage to your plants.. hope this helps!
  • Wilting Monstera :(
    I got this Monstera from the UWS Sill location a few weeks ago. I initially had it in my room near a north facing window, but then I read that north facing windows provide the lowest light. I moved in right next to my unobstructed west facing living window after about a week or so. I may have overwatered it at some point, I think I was watering the recommended 1x/week but I might not have waited until the soil was dry enough. I've since been really cautious about watering.

    Several leaves are wilting a lot and one small leaf is very yellow. I noticed another larger leaf (not shown well in this photo) is getting a yellow around one edge. I'm confused because the information card the Sill gave me about Monstera plants said that wilting is a sign of under watering while yellow leaves are a sign of over watering - but I have leaves that are in both categories so I'm not sure what's going on.

    I've also just moved my plant again yesterday about 2 feet away from the unobstructed west facing window on top of this mantle. One leaf was getting a little brown and "crispy" looking at its edge and I wasn't sure if this was due to too much light (though it's winter so I'm not sure if the light is too much at this time of year). Also, I noticed that one of the stems feels "loose" near the soil, like it's not anchored properly, and all the leaves coming off that stem are super wilting. But that stem was "loose" like that at the soil when I got it from the Sill. Unfortunately, I can only attach one photo (don't know why it's sideways)

    Any thoughts and comments would be much appreciated! Really hoping I can improve this plant's situation!
      • 3
      Eliza Blank Selena, I recommend you cut out the yellow leaves and situate the Monstera in direct light (so long as it's warm... ie not touching a cold or drafty window) and really let it dry out. It should make a full recovery! You can also clip out that one "loose" stem. The plant will put all its energy into the healthy leaves and new leaves soon too!
  • Pothos problems
    First off, I am a new plant owner! I studied basic agronomy for years in high school, so I'm not entirely starting from zero knowledge... I understand the basics and get the gist when it comes to terminology, soil, etc. However, I have never had houseplants. I got all of these plants about a week ago and have watered most of them once. None have been repotted yet, and all are doing fine except my Pothos suddenly has yellow leaves at the bottom. 
    Normally, I keep my Pothos in the bathroom. 2 of 6 of my vanity bulbs are 5000 lumens/daylight LED bulbs, so it's pretty bright, but I don't keep those lights on while at work or sleeping. The past couple of days, I have been putting all of them in this windowsill which receives indirect light. However, because I have dogs, I would prefer to grow the Pothos in my bathroom so that I don't have to keep them locked out of the bedroom or forget to and end up with sick dogs.
    So first question, did I overwater, is my Pothos not getting enough light, is it just adjusting, etc? Second question, is this window enough light for my other plants? Third, do I need to repot any of these babies yet? Thanks so much!
      • 1
      Al Hi Paige,

      I would prune the plant and get rid of anything yellow and dried up. Make sure to check that at least 2in of your soil is dry before you water again. Also check your window sill- sometimes in the winter placing a plant by a window is actually cold- touch your windows and the sill you have it on and make sure its warm to touch. Typically you should get plants out of their nursery pots as soon as possible as plastic is not so porous and the roots will need to breathe. Best to repot them in terracotta when they are next due to be watered (easier to repot with drier soil).
      • 1
      Paris Lalicata Hi Paige! Sorry to hear about your pothos. Yellow leaves can be a sign of overwatering. Did you check the soil before you watered to make sure it needed it? Pothos like to dry out in between waterings (not bone dry though). If you pick off all the dead or yellowed plant material it'll be a good way to keep monitoring your plants health from here on. What kind of window are you placing the plants? Good to know to see how many hours of light you're getting and the intensity of it. Lastly, you don't need to repot your plants unless they become pot bound or need to freshen up the soi which is usually only once or twice a year! Hope this helps!
      • 1
      Paige Whitis Here is another photo!