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Marijuana Leaves

Marijuana Leaves Turning Yellow – How to Fix your Plants

One leaf turning brown or yellow may not be something to be worried about, but a couple more turning lifeless and yellow is surely something to be taken care of. Perhaps, this is one of the most common problems when growing marijuana plants. It might get confusing, especially when you’ve already made sure you’ve got everything done and followed. What is the reason behind this great horror? 

Growing marijuana perfectly can be hard to achieve especially for a beginner. Growers are allowed to make mistakes. Still, these mistakes can be prevented. You just need to be equipped with the best techniques to limit the number of dead and yellow leaves. Soon, healthy and green leaves will start growing.

The Science behind marijuana leaves turning yellow

A little review about science will help you understand why leaves will turn yellow. A leaf is composed of plant cells such as organelles called the chloroplast. The chloroplast absorbs light and heat from the sun. The dominant color of the chlorophyll is green, and the non-dominant colors are the yellow and the orange attributable to the carotenoids. Through photosynthesis, the chlorophyll consumes light. If the plants are healthy, the chlorophyll will flourish, but when the plants are stressed out, the chlorophyll diminishes, leaving only yellow carotenoids. This is responsible for the yellowing of the leaves. Thus, if your plant has a yellow color, it means that it is in dire stress and it needs your immediate help. Or else, it will die sooner or later.

Correct Diagnosis

The first thing you may want to do is pluck the yellow leaves off the plant. Well, this works if you see one or two yellow leaves. But if there are more, it is better to keep those scissors out and check the plants. Yes, you can see yellow leaves, but that doesn’t mean it is the end of it. You can only save it once you know why the leaves are turning yellow. So, the first thing to do is to correctly diagnose the condition of your plant. Seeing two or more yellow leaves during the growing phase is normal, as well as during the final week of the flowering phase. All you need to do is water the plant to remove any organic nutrients sprayed on it which might have caused the yellowing of the leaves. If it is not yet in the flowering stage, then you have to immediately identify the problem to provide the right action and solution.

Marijuana leaves turning yellow – Reasons and Solutions

There are a lot of common reasons why your marijuana leaves are turning yellow. Take this blog as a guide to help you determine the best way possible for your plants to grow healthily again.


This case is very common. You might think plants need as much water as they can to grow. But marijuana plants don’t work that way. They only need the right amount of water, with enough interval to let the topsoil get dry and the roots absorb all the moisture before watering it again. That’s why it is important to wait for the topsoil to dry before watering it again. 

Ensure that the pot is the right size for the plant and that it has holes where water can drip through. Small plants need only a small amount of water, so make sure to estimate correctly. When plants droop after watering them, you’re overwatering. If plants are perking up after watering, then you are underwatering them.

Low or High PH level

The medium you use for growing marijuana will also affect the leaves. It would be hard for the plants to absorb the natural nutrients without the right level of pH in the medium, thus ending in nutrient deficiencies. Aside from having yellow leaves, they may have a burnt look on the edges and spots or stripes on them. When using soil, keep your pH level to 6 or 7. You can control the pH level by combining an acid or base to the water.

Light burn

Another reason why marijuana leaves are turning yellow is light burn. There is a greater possibility of leaves located closer to the source of light to turn yellow. Light burn happens when the leaves are too close to the light source. 

You can move your light away from the affected leaves or follow the instructions on how to properly install them. If possible, you can enclose your plants in a clear glass so that the light won’t be too harsh on the plant.

Nitrogen Deficiency

When the yellow leaves are prevalent at the bottom part of the plant near the roots and they are soft and easy to pluck, then it must be due to nitrogen deficiency. If you did not spray enough cannabis nutrients, then this can likely happen.

This is easy to fix. Just make sure to give the necessary organic nutrients to the plant to supplement its healthy growth. It is also a good idea to transfer the plants to a new pot with fresh and healthy soil.

Bud rot

If your buds suddenly have yellow leaves, then you need to take a closer look at the buds. There might be mold forming on the insides, making the leaves come off quickly. This can be attributed to the cold temperature and the lack of airflow. Bushy plants are most likely to suffer bud rot.

So, you need to keep the right temperature and make sure there is enough airflow in your grow space. The ideal humidity is below fifty percent and the ideal temperature is between sixty-five to seventy degrees Fahrenheit.

Pests and Bugs

The most annoying and deadly cause of yellow leaves are pests and bugs. These bugs and pests will suddenly appear and continuously attack and eat the plant. Watch out for any of these common pests and bugs. Some are moderately easy to find since they also leave marks and shimmering spots. Overwatering, uncleaned space and bad airflow attract these bugs and pests.

Identify the bugs right away and get rid of them. There are organic insecticides, soaps, and sprays that could help you get rid of them. You can also enclose the plants in a screen. Make sure also that you are not the carrier of these pests and bugs. If you find some bugs and pests, your plants will now need extra care and attention. Make sure to check once in a while if the pest and bugs return, else, your efforts will be put to waste.


Seeing marijuana leaves turning yellow may cause you to panic a little, but don’t. There are solutions available to keep your plants happy and healthy. The marijuana industry is continuously innovating to make sure every grower will have excellent quality yields at the end of the planting period. Though prevention might not work well with this kind of problem, knowing the immediate cure will make all the difference. Once you familiarize yourself with the essentials of cannabis cultivation, it would be easier for you to identify the problem and the solution right away.

Growing marijuana plants is a wholesome experience. But before trying out this journey, be sure that you are ready for any challenges ahead. Nonetheless, it is very rewarding in the end. The good quality yields you will get will be worth all the trouble.

Marijuana leaves turning yellow is not something to be afraid of. It is just your plant’s way of communicating to you its problems. You have to listen to it in order to give it what it needs the most. Make the most out of your marijuana experience and don’t let a yellow leaf take the fun away.

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