Why Is My Air Plant Turning Brown 

Why Is My Air Plant Turning Brown

Despite their name, air plants require more than just air to thrive, so if you see yours is struggling and becoming brown, you should take immediate action. 

These lovely plants, also known as Tillandsia, are native to Mexico and South America. They come in a variety of hues and shapes and are delightful to have around the house. Although simple to care for, they do need a little attention, with access to air, light, warmth, and water being the most important factors. 

In recent years, air plants—whether kept in ‘aeriums’ or added to hanging planters—have risen to the top of the list of preferred indoor plants. However, withering leaves will quickly reduce these interesting, eye-catching plants to depressing examples. 

Table of Contents

A Number Of Reasons Why Is My Air Plant Turning Brown: 

Air plants require constant watering to remain alive, and if they do not get enough moisture, their leaves may begin to turn brown. Underwatering can be information of your subject why is my air plant turning brown. 

Water Quality: 

If you use tap water that has a high mineral content, it may cause salt to build up on the leaves, which will colour them brown. Water quality makes you ponder why is my air plant turning brown. 


Even though air plants need water, they can decay if they are left moist for an extended period of time. Blackened or brownish foliage may result from overwatering. 

Lack Of Humidity: 

Since air plants need humidity to flourish, they may not obtain enough moisture if the air is too dry, which can cause browning. Why is my air plant turning brown can be observed due to lack of humidity? 

Direct Sunlight: 

Indirect, brilliant light is preferable for air plants. Their leaves have the potential to scorch and become brown if they are exposed to too direct sunshine. It might be a possible cause of why is my air plant turning brown. 


Lower leaves on air plants may naturally turn brown and drop off as they get older. They go through this stage of growing normally. The aging process may be your answer to why is my air plant turning brown. 


Occasionally, pests or illnesses can harm air plants, which can lead to browning and other problems. An attack of pests may solve your confusion about why is my air plant turning brown.

To Solve These Problems You Should Take These Steps 

  • Depending on the size of the plant and your region’s climate, mist or immerse your air plant to ensure it receives adequate moisture. 
  • To avoid salt accumulation if your tap water has a lot of minerals, switch to utilizing filtered or rainfall. 
  • Make sure your air plant has enough humidity by spraying it more frequently or using a humidity tray. 
  • Relocate your air plant to a location with bright, indirect light if it is currently exposed to direct sunlight. 
  • If you see any brown and dead leaves, carefully remove them with clean shears to promote new growth. 
  • Check your air plant for any indications of disease or pests, then take the necessary action to resolve the problem. 
  • You may assist your air plant in regaining health and vitality by figuring out and treating the root of the browning. 
  • Keep in mind to provide it with the necessary care, and it should flourish and resume exhibiting its natural beauty. 

Characteristics Of Air Plant

Characteristics Of Air Plant

The Tillandsia species of air plants are fascinating organisms with special qualities that distinguish them apart from other types of terrestrial plants. The following are some essential traits of air plants: 

Epiphytic Growth: 

Air plants can grow without soil because these plants are epiphytes. Instead, they use their “holdfast roots,” which are specialized roots, to cling to other surfaces like trees, rocks, or even man-made buildings. They are able to take nutrients and moisture from the air because of their epiphytic development. 


The leaves of air plants are covered with specialized structures called trichomes. The look of the leaves is fuzzy or velvety thanks to these little hair-like features. Trichomes perform a variety of tasks, such as nutrient uptake, water absorption, and UV protection. 

Variety Of Shapes And Sizes: 

Air plants come in a broad variety of shapes and sizes due to the large number of species and types that they have. While some have more compact, rosette-like shapes, others have thin, extended leaves. 

Colour Variety: 

Air plants display a wide range of hues, from vivid green to silver, grey, and even red or purple tones. The species, growing circumstances, and age of the plant can all affect the hue.

No True Roots: 

Air plants do have roots, but they serve more as anchors than as true roots, which take up water and nutrients from the earth. These roots should be observed to find a solution to why is my air plant turning brown. 

Minimal Maintenance: 

Compared to many other houseplants, air plants require very little maintenance. They require regular misting or soaking to maintain their moisture levels, and they do best in direct, strong light. Furthermore, air plants don’t consume a lot of food and typically don’t need to be fertilized frequently. 


Air plants are ideal for terrariums, mountings, and living art projects because they are highly versatile and can flourish in a variety of settings. Adaptability can cause your to think why is my air plant turning brown? 

Propagation Through Pups: 

Air plants reproduce by producing offsets, commonly referred to as “pups,” at the parent plant’s base. These young plants can be divided and multiplied to develop into new unique plants. 

Lifespan And Reproduction: 

Air plants often have a long lifespan and mature quickly. When they are fully grown, they create a center inflorescence from which flowers sprout. The parent plant may begin to

weaken after flowering and generating seeds, although it frequently produces new pups before passing away. 

Versatility In Display: 

Air plants can be imaginatively presented in a variety of ways due to their epiphytic nature, including being mounted on driftwood, placed in beautiful holders, or suspended in the air utilizing hanging arrangements. 

Because of these qualities, air plants stand out and provide interest in any indoor setting. They are preferred by both plant lovers and people wishing to add more greenery to their homes due to their capacity to flourish without soil and their striking appearance. 

You Must Know The Chemical Sensitivity Of The Air Plant

Chemical Sensitivity Of The Air Plant 

In general, chemicals, especially those included in tap water, fertilizers, and pesticides, can be quite harsh for air plants (Tillandsia species). Due to their epiphytic nature, air plants naturally take in nutrients, moisture, and water through the trichomes on their leaves. Although these trichomes are quite effective in capturing nutrients and water, they are also chemically sensitive. 

Water From The Tap: 

Particularly chlorine and fluoride, which are contained in tap water, are toxic to air plants. These substances can accumulate on the leaves and harm them, resulting in browning or yellowing. When watering air plants, it is recommended to use filtered or rainfall to prevent dangerous chemical exposure. 


Since they don’t need to be fertilized frequently, air plants are comparatively low-maintenance. Their health may suffer if conventional fertilizers with high nitrogen, phosphorus, or potassium concentrations are used. If you decide to fertilize your air plants, pick a mild, highly diluted fertilizer and use it sparingly. 


Chemicals in pesticides and insecticides are toxic to air plants. As they can readily be absorbed through the trichomes and injure the plant, avoid using these harsh chemicals in close proximity to your air plants. 

Avoid Soap Or Cleanser: 

Avoid using home cleaners or soaps to clean your air plants since they may contain hazardous chemicals. Instead, gently rinse the plants with water or, if necessary, use a gentle soap that is safe for plants. 

Use Organic Techniques: 

It’s best to utilize natural and organic care techniques to preserve the health of your air plants and avoid chemical sensitivity issues. To provide your air plants the essential moisture without subjecting them to dangerous chemicals, spritz or bathe them frequently with filtered or rainwater. 

Improve General well-being: 

In order to solve the problem of why is my air plant turning brown, you must improve their general well-being, make sure they have sufficient air circulation and access to bright,

indirect light. You can appreciate your air plants’ beauty and distinctive traits while protecting yourself from chemical sensitivity by adopting these steps. 

Knowledge Of The Parts Of Air Plant 

You should know very well about the parts of the plant so you can take care of it in a perfect way. To find a solution for why is my air plant turning brown, it is necessary to know first of all the parts of the air plant. So you can handle it properly. 


leaves of this plant have various sizes and colours, which depend on its species. Leaves play a vital role in nutrient absorption and to keep balance moisture. 


On the surface of the leaves of air plants, there are specialized structures called trichomes. They resemble microscopic hairs and give the leaves their fuzzy or silvery appearance. Trichomes are primarily responsible for taking water and nutrients from the air. 


Air plant roots serve largely as anchors rather than absorbing water and nutrients like those of more conventional plants. These roots, also referred to as “holdfast roots,” aid the plant’s clinging to substrates including rocks, trees, and other surfaces. 


An inflorescence is a structure that air plants use to generate blooms. The blooms can be different hues and shapes, and they rise from the center of the plant on protruding long stalks or spikes. 


Offsets, commonly referred to as “pups,” are the smaller, younger replicas of the parent plant that air plants frequently generate. These pups develop at the parent plant’s root and can eventually be divided to become separate plants. 

Base Or Crown: 

Where the leaves and roots of an air plant converge is known as the base or crown of the plant. Given that it is in charge of creating new leaves and pups, it is essential for the plant’s development and health. 


You might observe protective coverings known as sheaths on some kinds of air plants. Sheaths are fibrous or papery coverings that cover the underside of leaves and shield the growing tips. 


You may take good care of an air plant and enjoy its special survival adaptations by being aware of its various sections. To preserve their health and lifespan, air plants must get specialised care that includes appropriate watering, exposure to light, and humidity conditions.

Causes Behind Your Air Plant’s Leaves Are Turning Crispy

Causes Behind Your Air Plant’s Leaves Are Turning Crispy

Crispy leaves on your air plant are often the result of insufficient watering or dryness. Air plants depend on receiving moisture from the air to be hydrated because they have special water-absorbing structures called trichomes on their leaves. Crispy leaves are an indication that your air plant needs more water. 

We will discuss here some causes and remedies that might apply: 


Underwatering is the most frequent reason for crispy leaves. To keep air plants properly hydrated, they require frequent misting or soaking. If you don’t give the leaves enough water, they’ll dry out and get crispy. Depending on the size of your air plant and the surrounding conditions, mist or soak it frequently. 


Although air plants need water, if they are moist all the time, they might rot. Crispy leaves can also result from overwatering since the plant finds it difficult to adequately absorb water. Make sure to give the plant adequate time between waterings to dry out. 


Humid settings are ideal for air plants. The leaves may not be receiving enough moisture if the air is too dry, resulting in crunchy edges. By spraying your air plant more regularly or utilizing a humidity tray, you can raise the relative humidity in the area.


Air plants can become stressed and develop crispy leaves in extremely hot or cold temperatures. Attempt to maintain the plant at a temperature that is agreeable to people, ideally between 60°F and 80°F (15°C and 27°C). 

Air Movement: 

For air plants to effectively absorb moisture, proper air movement is necessary. Ensure that your air plant is situated where there is adequate airflow. 

Modify Your Schedule: 

You should modify your watering schedule and the surrounding environment to handle crispy leaves. Provide appropriate humidity and air movement for your air plant by misting or soaking it frequently with filtered or rainfall. 

To encourage new development, remove any leaves that are seriously damaged. You can encourage your air plant’s growth and preserve its lush appearance by giving it the proper care. 

You Can Revive Your Air Plant By Following These Steps 

With the right care and attention, it is possible to revive an air plant that is displaying symptoms of distress, such as wilting or crispy leaves. Follow these methods to restore your air plant to its lively state: 

Assess the Plant:

Give your air plant a close inspection to determine the severity of its suffering. Look out for any potential bugs or infections, browning, or symptoms of dryness. You can choose the ideal course of action by comprehending the particular challenges. 

Soak The Plant: 

Give the plant a good soak if the leaves are crispy and the plant appears to be dehydrated. For around 20 to 30 minutes, submerge the entire plant in filtered or rainwater that is room temperature. Make sure the plant is completely submerged in water, including the base where the roots and leaves converge. 

Dry Thoroughly: 

After soaking, take out the air plant and carefully brush off any remaining moisture. To allow it to completely dry, place it upside-down on a towel or piece of paper, a towel in a room with good ventilation. Make sure the plant is not drying out in direct sunshine. 

Adjust Watering Routine: 

Review your watering routine and make the appropriate adjustments. Mist or immerse the air plant one to three times per week, depending on your surroundings and the size of the plant. A continually wet environment might cause root rot, so try to avoid overwatering. 

Proper Light: 

Give air plants the perfect kind of light; they grow in direct, bright light. The proper amount of light should be provided for your resurrected air plant, but it should not be in direct sunlight, which can harm it.

Increase Humidity: 

Boost the relative humidity since air plants enjoy it. By periodically spraying your plant or positioning it close to a humidity tray, you can raise the humidity level in the area. This will facilitate the trichomes’ ability to absorb moisture. 

Trim Damage Parts: 

Trim off badly damaged or dead leaves with clean scissors or pruning shears if they are present on your air plant. The plant will be able to focus its energy on new growth as a result. 

Monitor And Be Patient: 

The process of reviving an air plant takes time, so be patient and keep an eye on it. Follow its development and alter the care as necessary. Your air plant should begin to regain health with regular maintenance and attention. 


You may assist your air plant in recovering to its healthy and vibrant form by adhering to these instructions and giving it the proper care. Keep in mind that every air plant is different, so pay attention to its particular requirements and make adjustments as necessary. Check on your plant frequently for any indications of discomfort or improvement, and keep giving it tender loving care. 

Follow These Steps To Make Sure Your Air Plant Has Proper Air

  • Put your air plant in a location with good airflow. Stay away from placing it in airless or tightly sealed containers. 
  • Don’t cram your air plants too tightly make sure there is enough space between any air plants you have in the same area so that air may circulate freely. 
  • To gently move the air around your air plants, think about using a tiny fan. This is particularly useful if they are kept in an enclosed environment with little airflow. 
  • Make sure there are tiny apertures or vents to allow fresh air to enter and circulate if you’re keeping your air plant in a terrarium or other enclosed container. 

How You Can Remove Dead Leaves Of Air Plant? 

It is simple to remove dead leaves from an air plant, but caution must be used to protect the plant’s healthy areas. Here’s how to properly remove dead leaves from your air plant, step by step: 

Examine The Plant: 

Pay special attention to your air plant and note any dead or broken leaves. Dead leaves might be brown, dry, or shriveled, and they can typically be distinguished from healthy leaves by their appearance. 

Gentle Touch: 

Hold the plant firmly yet carefully to prevent harming the air plant’s live components. The plant’s base or crown, where the leaves meet the roots, can be handled with one hand.

Locate The Leaves: 

It is simple to remove dead leaves from an air plant, but caution must be used to protect the plant’s healthy areas. Locating the leaves may reduce the cause of why is my air plant turning brown. 

Examine The Area For Any Lingering Dead Leaves: 

Verify the plant once more to make sure you didn’t overlook any dead leaves. Repeat the cutting process if you find any. Why is my air plant turning brown can be examined by the area of dead leaves? 

Monitor The Plant: 

After removing the dead leaves, keep an eye on the plant to look for any indications of new growth or potential problems. The plant will prosper if the proper care and attention are given to it. 

Points To Ponder: 

Keep in mind to be gentle when handling the leaves and refrain from pulling or tugging as this could harm them. Check your air plant frequently, and cut any dead leaves as soon as you see them. In addition to enhancing the plant’s look, removing dead leaves encourages greater air circulation and enables the plant to concentrate its energy on healthy.

Read also: Do Moth Balls Keep Squirrels Away

Benefits Of Air Plant In the Medical Industry


Benefits Of Air Plant In the Medical Industry

There are a number of potential advantages and uses for air plants (Tillandsia species) in the medical industry, particularly for enhancing indoor air quality and fostering well-being. Despite the fact that they may not directly possess medicinal qualities, air plants’ presence and traits provide a number of benefits in medical settings: 

Air Purification: 

Some air contaminants, like formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), can be absorbed and metabolized by air plants. Utilizing air plants indoors can help to cleanse the air, possibly lowering the risk of respiratory disorders and other health issues linked to indoor air pollution. 

Stress Reduction: 

It has been demonstrated that indoor plants, including air plants, have a beneficial effect on stress reduction and mental health. According to studies, having plants around can help reduce stress and foster a calmer, more relaxed environment in hospital facilities, which is advantageous for everyone involved—patients, visitors, and healthcare staff. 

Enhance Recoveries: 

Greenery and other natural features have been associated with quicker patient recoveries. Utilizing air plants in hospital rooms or recovery spaces may improve the environment’s ability to promote healing and may speed up the healing process. 

Enhancing Indoor Environments:

By raising indoor humidity levels through transpiration, air plants can contribute to a better indoor environment overall. This may be especially helpful in places where the air is dry because it can cause respiratory discomfort and other health problems. 

Biophilic Design: 

To help people feel more connected to nature, natural features are incorporated into indoor settings. Air plants can promote a sense of connection to nature, fostering a good and therapeutic environment in medical facilities as part of biophilic design. 

Reducing Noise: 

Plants, including air plants, may absorb sound and lower noise levels in enclosed areas, making the environment more tranquil and relaxing for patients and medical personnel. 

Useful Addition To Healthcare: 

They can be a useful addition to healthcare settings to improve the general well-being of patients and employees due to their complementing roles. To guarantee that air plants survive and continue to have a positive impact on indoor surroundings, proper care, and maintenance are also necessary. 

Diseases Of Air Plant 

When given the right attention and an appropriate climate, air plants (Tillandsia species) are relatively resilient and disease-resistant plants. They can, however, contract certain illnesses, just like any other plant, especially if their maintenance needs are not satisfied. Diseases may solve your problem of why is my air plant turning brown. The following are some prevalent ailments that might damage air plants:

Root Rot: 

A fungus called root rot is brought on by either excessive irrigation or insufficient drainage. The plant’s roots are impacted, which causes them to rot and finally causes the plant to wilt and turn brown. Avoid overwatering and be careful to give the air plant enough time to dry out in between waterings to prevent root rot. 

Leaf Spot: 

This is a bacterial or fungal disease that results in the development of tiny, black patches on the leaves. These blemishes have the potential to spread and converge, browning and decomposing the damaged leaves. Leaf spots can be avoided by increasing airflow and avoiding overhead watering. 

Powdery Mildew: 

Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that affects the leaves and manifests as a white, powdery substance. It may prevent the plant from absorbing nutrients and light, which may restrict its growth. Powdery mildew can be avoided with proper air circulation and a reduction in humidity. 

Bacterial Soft Rot: 

Bacteria enter the plant through wounds or damaged areas to generate bacterial soft rot. It makes the plant’s tissues mushy and soft, which frequently results in an unpleasant odor. This cause can handle your thought why is my air plant turning brown? 


On the leaves and stems of the air plant, anthracnose creates black lesions or cankers. Affected areas may turn brown and eventually die as a result. Anthracnose can be avoided by keeping the plant dry and ensuring adequate air circulation. 

Point To Remember: 

The best way to prevent infections in air plants is to provide them with the proper care, which includes regular watering, mounting material or soil that drains effectively, and the perfect amount of light and humidity. The risk of bacterial and fungal illnesses can be reduced by avoiding overwatering and maintaining dry leaves. 

To look why is my air plant turning brown it is compulsory for the general health and well-being of your air plant. It can also be improved by routinely checking it for symptoms of distress, pests, or illness and swiftly treating any problems that are found. 

Final Words 

There are a number of causes for the browning of your air plant, but poor watering is perhaps the most frequent one. Trichomes, unique organs found in air plants, are capable of capturing moisture and nutrients from the atmosphere. Lack of moisture can cause the plant’s leaves to dry out and turn brown, producing crispy or wilted foliage. 

Why is my air plant turning brown can be known by overwatering because it can cause root rot, which in turn causes the leaves to become brown. Finding the ideal watering balance is essential to resolving this problem, ensuring that the plant receives sufficient moisture while permitting it to dry out between waterings.

The air plant may also turn brown as a result of other elements like poor air circulation, excessive sunshine exposure, or nutrient imbalances. To find the answer to it why is my air plant turning brown you may assist your air plant in recovering and regaining its vibrancy and health by carefully assessing the plant’s conditions and modifying its care regimen accordingly. Explore the site for more useful articles.

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