Peace lilies are one of the most beautiful and popular houseplants that can be grown to enhance the beauty of your house garden or office balcony. However, it is not easy to keep track of everything that a peace lily requires.
The problem of an overwatered peace lily is one of them. If you overwater your peace lily, many uninvited issues can damage your plant in ways that are hard to explain. Nevertheless, the problem can be prevented if we know what signs indicate the problem and practices that are amazing in helping us revive those beautiful and tiny plants.
So, without further ado, let us begin.
Overwatered Peace Lily
How do I know if my peace lily is overwatered?
There are certain signs and symptoms that can prevent your peace lily from damaging through overwatering if noticed timely. You know your peace lily is overwatered if:
- The leaves are drooping and limping one after another
- Prevalence of leaf edema. It occurs when the leaf tips start turning brown, supported with water blisters
- No visible sign of growth, or stunted growth from a long period of time
- Leaves begin to pale overtime, till they finally become yellow
- Presence of fungal and bacterial infections in the form of yellow spots across the leaf
- Root rot occurs. The roots release a foul smell, blacken over time and become mushy.
- Initial symptoms are easy to ignore. The yellowing of leaves begins from the lowermost part of the leaf.
- Untimely wilting of the peace lily plant leaf begins.
Also Read: How Long Can a Peace Lily Go Without Water?
Factors contributing to overwatering of the peace lily
While we have listed a few signs and symptoms that indicate that your peace lily is overwatered, we would also like to share some of the most prevalent contributing factors behind this issue.
Check if you are following these malpractices unknowingly and terminate them from your gardening habits immediately.
Analyze the size of your plant carefully, and now look at the size of your pot. Do you see any differences?
If you have installed a pot that is larger than the size of the plant, then there are chances that you might end up watering your plant more than it requires.
This is because the water holding capacity of the pot is greater than the plant.
It is important to identify between porous and nonporous pot materials. For example, glazed ceramic pots, metals, and plastics are non-porous pot materials because they restrict the loss of water from the soil. On the other hand, materials like wood and terracotta are porous pot materials that result in the loss of moisture through the pot walls.
Temperature, Humidity, Wind
When humidity levels are considerably high, the rate of transpiration reduces, thereby also reducing the amount of moisture that sits within the plant. Similarly, high temperatures are favorable for suiting the watering conditions of the plant.
Conclusively, high wind speed should be preferred while watering plants because it increases the rate of evaporation.
Increased watering frequency
This one is the most apparent yet common mistake that we all commit. Frequently watering the peace lilies leads to overwatering. Instead, one should wait for the uppermost layer of the soil to dry out before watering again.
Due to the absence of sunlight and other environmental reasons, peace lilies have a history of growing slower in the winter season. Therefore, they also have a hard time absorbing water during the winter season, making them more prone to overwatering.
Water in the drip tray
Once you are finished watering your plant, look at the drip tray in which the pot is sitting. First, check for any excess water. Then, lift it up and drain it completely. The tray should be empty after you are done watering, or there are greater chances of developing a root rot, which hampers the plant growth.
Also Read: How to Grow Chinese Cabbage from Cuttings?
Is my peace lily overwatered or underwatered?
It can be tricky to identify if the peace lily leaves turn brown due to overwatering or underwatering. Unfortunately, many people suffer this dilemma because they do not have adequate knowledge of what they are dealing with.
However, we can make the deal easier. We have carefully researched and extracted relevant data that would help you make an informed decision about your next watering session for your peace lilies.
Given below is a systematic comparison of how houseplants like peace lilies would react when they are underwatered or overwatered.
|Overwatered lily||Underwatered lily|
|Leaves start to become yellow. They also show early signs of limping and dropping.||Leaves change their color to yellow. They also become dry and crispy soon after they are devoid of enough water.|
|The soil becomes visibly wet and soggy.||You can observe the top few inches of soil getting dry and cranky|
|The plant becomes entirely water-soaked. Some signs that confirm this are visible brown spots on the leaves surrounded by a yellow halo||The leaves become dry and only have brown spots, not ringed by anything else|
|The roots start to turn increasingly wet, mushy, and abnormally heavy||The roots here are dry and brittle with lightweight properties.|
|In an overwatered peace lily, wilting becomes a common phenomenon impacting the leaves and overall plant health.||In an underwatered peace lily, leaves show signs of curling, wrinkling, and shriveling.|
How to revive an overwatered peace lily?
As we promised you, it is completely possible to fix or revive your peace lilies once you have ensured that they are being overwatered. Here are some tried and tested tips as to what you should follow.
Changing the watering routine
The first step in changing the water routine involves eliminating the watering schedule that you have been following all this while. Watering according to a schedule is the major contributor to overwatered peace lilies.
One should check the texture of the soil before watering the plant. One of the most trusted methods to do so is by plunging the finger inside the soil and feeling if it is wet or dry.
If you feel that the dryness is perpetuating till 1 or 2 inches at the soil depth, that is your cue to water the plant again.
Since the evaporation rate differs for each day, it is difficult to water according to a fixed schedule. If you go by the rule we described above, you would be surprised to see how sometimes you need to water only once a week, while at other times, the frequency extends to three times a week.
Relocating plant: lighting and temperature
If your plant is diagnosed with overwatering, you need to pick the container up and relocate it to a place that suits the lighting and temperature needs of an overwatered plant.
This is simple science. The greater the sun exposure your plant gets, the more is the rate of evaporation. So, if you have overwatered your plant, it would be ideal to relocate it to a place where the sun shines the brightest. It can either be indoors or outdoors.
Similarly, if you are considering relocation of your overwatered peace lily, nothing will be best than a spot that receives the maximum sunlight, has the highest temperatures, and low humidity.
With technology occupying almost every arena of human life, there is something invented for those who face problems while living in highly humid conditions. This machine is known as a dehumidifier and it effectively acts to eliminate all the humidity from the surroundings. Humidity in the atmosphere does not allow excess water from the plant to evaporate, thereby making it difficult for your peace lily to lose excess water.
Therefore, it is important that you select a place for your lilies that does not account for humid conditions or install a dehumidifier for best results.
Your plants need energy, food, and sunlight to grow. But, what does its feeding requirements have anything to do with the problem of overwatering?
A primary source of plant food is fertilizers. Fertilizers are significant for the proper growth and development of your peace lilies. However, they can also turn dangerous under certain circumstances.
If your plant is waterlogged and overwatered, the last thing you want to initiate is fertilization. In this case, it will definitely do more harm than good. Once you have repotted your plant, keep the fertilizers away from it till a good amount of 3 months.
Fertilizers are vital for plant growth, but only if used in the right situations. Once your plant looks healthy, green, and fine, should you continue fertilizing it with nothing other than organic materials.
Repotting means changing the container of the plant with the potting mixture. But, if we are following the steps that are mentioned above, then what is the need for repotting?
Well, here it is. If you wait for your waterlogged plant to dry up following the natural process of evaporation, then it might induce risks on your plant to develop fungal infections and root rot.
You should not waste time as it will only do more harm than any good. Carefully extract the plant out of your existing potting mixture. Prepare a proper bed in a new container of the same size, with the help of fresh and porous soil. Next, place your plant into the new pot and give it time to adjust.
As the plant roots get more oxygen to breathe, the root rot restores itself to a healthy position on its own. Therefore, repotting becomes an emergency go-to technique to solve the problem of overwatering.
Additional watering tips
Apart from what we told you earlier, there are some additional watering tips that need to be present in mind, which only enhance the position of your overwatered peace lily plant.
- Every peace lily plant has different leaves. However, the key to remember is that if your plant has more leaves then it will also need a greater amount of water to thrive.
- If you are choosing a pot of non-porous material, then do not water frequently, and reverse the situation if the potting material is porous.
- Don’t water your plants in the winter season. Instead, when the plant undergoes a flowering period or period of vegetation growth, it requires more water.
- Whenever you water the plant, let it settle down overnight. It will make the plant happy, more than you can imagine.
The bottom line is if you find that you have accidentally overwatered your peace lily, do not worry. While we decide to take care of this houseplant, the problem of overwatering is most common. The good news is, it isn’t that big of a deal. You can prevent and fix your plant by following the tips mentioned earlier.
If you are growing a peace lily for the first time, then we guarantee you there is a lot more learning to do.