Why Are My Hibiscus Leaves Turning Yellow with Brown Patches?

Fellow gardeners I need your help, please.

The leaves on my hibiscus are not only turning yellow but have brown patches and the veins in the leaves are exposed. I’ve checked the moisture level and it’s fine so I doubt it’s overwatering. I must also mention that another hibiscus is also showing similar signs of distress but not as advanced.

Pictures save a thousand words. Any advice appreciated as this has never happened before. I wondered if it was a nutrient deficiency – what do you think?

Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre
Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre

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Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre
Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre

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Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre
Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre

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Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre
Yellow Hibiscus leaves with brown centre
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23 thoughts on “Why Are My Hibiscus Leaves Turning Yellow with Brown Patches?

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      1. Not that then. Might it need repotting? I had a rubber plant where the leaves yellowed and died but fresh soil and a bigger pot seemed to ‘cheer it up’ and it grew to five feet in height.
        I confess pantts usually tend to die on me as green fingers are not my forte.

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          1. Maybe work through things in a process of elimination?

            To illustrate. We have a young quince tree and someone commented on a photo that the leaves looked diseased.
            I was very worried but after relentless Googling I gave up and said what would be etc …
            Turns out it was simply Autumn!
            It’s Summer down here, and the tree is full of healthy, green leaves and looking super.

            Liked by 1 person

  1. If they had not been there for so long without problems, I would say that the symptoms look normal for this time of year. They naturally drop a few leaves as the weather gets cooler, and then replace them when weather gets warmer. Such defoliation and the preceding discoloration would be more noticeable if the temperature changed suddenly. The browning around the veins looks scarier than normal defoliation. Whatever happened, it affected both at the same time. Did they happen to get any fertilizer recently? If not, do NOT give them any.

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    1. If it is an magnesium deficiency, or some other sort of nutrient deficiency, the lacking nutrient may actually be there, but unavailable until the pH is corrected. Such symptoms tend to develop during cool weather when nutrients are less soluble. Too much fertilizer changes pH and can become toxic. Toxicity typically causes the edges of the leaves to get dry and crispy, but there is a variety of possible symptoms, depending on the sort of toxicity. Application of gypsum might help. It would need to be watered in, then left to drain for a while, then watered generously again. The soil should not be kept too damp.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. HOWEVER, it may not be a deficiency so much as an unavailability of something. I mean that some nutrients become less soluble as pH changes, either by increasing or decreasing, or as the weather gets cooler. If it is a problem with pH, and more fertilizer is added, it could become toxic. If you decide to fertilize with something, you should do so mildly at first.

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  2. Hey.. I’ve experienced the same with my hibiscus plant. My husband sprayed a solution of magnesium sulfate on to the leaves for a couple of weeks and has helped the plant grow more nicely and healthily. Epsom salt might also help. Do try them!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It was interesting reading the comments on what was wrong with your hibiscus. I live in Florida and one of mine looks like yours. Hopefully both of ours will get through the problem.

    Liked by 1 person

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