Q: My peace lily is starting to have brown edges on the leaves. Why?

Q: My peace lily is starting to have brown edges on the leaves. I have been watering it with tap water which goes through my water softener. Could that be the problem?
A: I am glad you called with this question; it is one we often get in the winter because people bring plants in during cold months and will water them with softened water. Brown edges on plant leaves can be caused by over watering, over fertilizing or even under watering. However, once you told me you were watering with softened water I suspected an accumulation of salts from the softener is causing the burn on the leaves. For house plants it is best to use bottled drinking water to avoid salt build-up. You can recognize the salt build-up by checking out the pot or surface soil for a white, flaky substance. In addition, this salt build-up can also occur when watering with hard water which will accumulate a calcium deposit. You may be able to flush out the excess salts by allowing clean bottled drinking water to run through the soil several times. Be sure the water is able to run out of the bottom of the flower pot to prevent the roots from getting too wet and causing root rot. You might consider repotting the plant in a new container and replacing the soil with clean potting material. The damage done by softened water is not limited to house plants; turf grass can experience the same symptoms of salt burn if softened water is used on lawns

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Posted: June 21, 2017


Category: Home Landscapes
Tags: Brown Edges, Container Plant, House Plant, Peace Lily


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