Spider Plant: Common Problems and Easy Fixes

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The spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum) is a popular indoor hanging plant in many homes because it is so easy to care for. And while the spider plant is certainly a very low maintenance plant, there are a few common problems growing spider plants.

Spider plants can grow limp and droopy, you might notice the leaves turn yellow, or brown tips appear on the spider plants leaves.

All these things can be fixed. Let’s figure out what’s wrong with your plant.

Indoor spider plant common problems and quick fixes!

What’s wrong with your spider plant?

When you got all the general spider plant care covered, but are still experiencing problems, let’s troubleshoot.

Don’t see your spider plant problem listed? Leave a comment with your question down below, and I will try to answer it asap. Let’s talk plants!

Why do the tips of the spider plant leaves turn brown?

It is very common for the leaves of indoor spider plants to turn brown at the tips. When this happens, it usually means one of three things:

  1. Your spider plant wants more humidity.
  2. There are high levels of chlorine in the water it gets.
  3. It is getting too much direct sun.

If the air in your home is very dry, mist your plant regularly or put a humidifier nearby.

It could also be due to high levels of chlorine in the tap water. Switch to distilled or purified water. You can also use rainwater or leave tap water out for 24-hours before using it on your plant.

Is your plant hanging somewhere where it gets a lot of direct sunlight? If so, the brown spots could very well be sunburn. Move your plant to a location with less direct sun.

You can use sharp scissors to carefully cut off the brown tips.

Why are spider plant leaves turning pale or yellow?

When the leaves of your spider plant turn pale or yellow, it is most likely because your plant is not getting enough light.

Variegated spiderplants can even lose their white stripes entirely and revert back to solid green when in low light for too long.

The easy solution is to move your plant somewhere where it gets plenty of bright, indirect light.

Or treat yourself and your plant to a grow light. In the past, these were often very large and expensive. Nowadays there are plenty of small, affordable plant lights available.

Why is spider plant looking limp?

When your spider plant is looking droopy and the leaves are wilting, it is probably a watering issue.

It might have not been watered in a while or is overheated by too much time in the sun. Give it a good watering.

On rarer occasions, but also possible, your spider plant is wilting because it got too much water (stop watering, let it dry out completely first), or because it received too little light (move your plant to a lighter location).

Spider plant and succulents on table.
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

What to do with spider plant babies?

If your spider plant enjoys the right care and conditions, it may grow long runners from the center of the plant. Delicate white flowers will grow from these runners. After blooming, small baby spider plantlets will form where the flowers were.

As long as the flower stems are healthy and not dried out, you could leave the spider plant babies attached to the mother plant if you like. They will get their water and nutrients through the runners.

You can also choose to make new full-grown plants by removing the spider plant babies and propagating them.

Why are spider plant leaves turning black?

If you notice the leaves of your spider plant turn black or dark brown, this almost always is a sign of root rot because of overwatering.

Two things to do: First, make sure the soil you use is fast-draining, and second, watch that you are not watering your spider plant so often that the roots drown in all that water.

Remove the damaged leaves and let the soil dry out before watering again. And it might be a good idea to read up on the basics of how and when to water your indoor plants.

Small spider plant with spider plant baby in plastic pot.

When to repot a spider plant?

You know that it is time to repot your spider plant when roots are either growing from the drainage holes on the bottom of the pot or when you see roots coming up from the soil.

This is a good time to divide a large spider plant and create new plants, or just repot in a new planter one size larger.

Are spider plants toxic to cats?

Spider plants are not poisonous to cats or other pets. But the spider plant has slight catnip-like hallucinogenic effects on cats. So most cats are very attracted to the spider plant leaves.

Your cat could throw up after eating the spider plant leaves like it would after eating regular cat grass.

Read more on the risks of toxic plants and your pets and if you should be worried or not.

What to do when your cat ate your spider plant?

If your cat ate your spider plant, don’t worry. A few eaten leaves won’t do any harm to your cat, and your plant can usually still be saved.

Cut off all damaged leaves. Your plant will grow new leaves from the center. Put what’s left of the plant in bright, indirect light to give it the best conditions to regrow.

Where to buy spider plants?

Spider plant are sold in most plant nurseries and garden centers. They shouldn’t be too hard to find.

When you go out to buy your plant, choose a healthy-looking one, maybe you can even find a spider plant that is already growing some babies. Multiple plants for the price of one!

If you can’t find a spider plant in a plant shop near you, get yourself a spider plant on Amazon.

Chlorophytum comosum spider plant common problems

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