Specific Houseplants

Troubleshoot and Fix Dieffenbachia Yellow Leaves

Keep a watchful eye for yellow leaves on your dumbcane

Dieffenbachia, also known as dumb cane, is one of the most common houseplants since it’s easy to take care of. However, the leaves of this plant can turn yellow in color if it is not being taken care of properly.

Most of the time, you can easily tell what’s wrong and fix it before things get worse but sometimes, it is harder to tell where the problem lies. If your dieffenbachia plant has yellowing leaves, no need to panic.

Read more to find out why your plant has yellow leaves and what you can do to fix it.

6 Reasons for Yellowing Leaves on Dumbcane

Keep a watchful eye for yellow leaves on your dumbcane
Keep a watchful eye for yellow leaves on your dumbcane. Source: narin

Moisture Stress

The leaves may change color because of underwatering or overwatering your plant. Since dieffenbachia is a potted plant, it is vital to give your plant the amount of water it needs because it’s not getting it from rain, in-ground soil, etc.

If the leaves are not green anymore, check the pot to see if the soil is soaked or dry:

  • If the soil is wet, reduce the number of times you are watering your plant since too much water can cause the roots to drown and leaves to yellow.
  • If the soil is dry, start watering it more regularly or your plant will die, leaves turning yellow and then brown.


Dieffenbachia is one of the most popular houseplants because it lives for a long time. But like all living things, it eventually starts aging. The green leaves turn to yellow leaves…this process is completely normal. Eventually, the leaves will simply fall off when the time comes. When all the leaves fall off, it is a good idea to trim the stems and cut back foliage to spur new growth.


Another common reason why your dumb cane houseplant might be turning yellow is the weather. Houseplants prefer warm temperature and if it gets really cold, the leaves of the plant are affected. If your houseplant is on a window ledge or near an air conditioner during the winter season, make sure to place it somewhere where it gets bright light but doesn’t get too cold or drafty.

Insufficient Sunlight

Unlike plants in your garden, a houseplant does not get the same amount of sun during the day, even if exposed to bright indirect light. Exposure to too much sun can cause a plant leaf to turn yellow and droop. Before you know it, all the leaves will turn yellow.

If your plant is placed in the middle of the room away from a light source, it’s best to move it to the window sill, where it can get direct sunlight during the day. If it is already on the sill, check if something is blocking the light. During the winter season, you can give addtional artificial light to make sure your plant leaves don’t change color.


Yellow patches on the leaves can also be a result of an infection. An infection will not only make the leaves yellow, but it will also discolor the flowers and deform the stem. If the infection has spread throughout the plant, it is best to move the plant container away from other plants or change the pot entirely. Make sure to cut the leaves that have turned yellow and sterilize the tools before using them on other plants.

Nutrient Deficiency

This one may be a little hard to crack since you might not even realize this is happening. Your dumb cane plant may be changing color because it is not getting enough nutrients, especially nitrogen. Make sure to fertilize your plants with a diluted houseplant fertilizer regularly to prevent the leaves from yellowing.


Does overwatering affect dieffenbachia?

If you water the plant too much, your plant can suffer. It may become hard for the roots to absorb all of the water, which can lead to the death of your plant via root rot.

Can brown or yellow-ish leaves turn green again?

Once your dieffenbachia plant is dry and the leaves change color, they will not turn to their original color again. Simply cut them off so they don’t affect others.

If you don’t give your plant immediate attention when the leaves start changing color, you will stunt the growth and health of your dumbcane plant, so keep an eye on it!

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