Anthuriums are pretty plants with shiny leaves. They enjoy a lot of light, but too much hot, midday sun can cause your plant to struggle. They may end up with burned, brown leaves or white, bleached leaves when they get too much sun, as well as problems like wilting and overall lack of color.
To fix a sunburnt Anthurium, it needs to be moved out of the sun immediately and placed where it gets six hours of bright, indirect light per day. While this doesn’t save the already damaged leaves, it can save the rest of your Anthurium.
With proper care, patience, and suitable habitat, your plant should be able to bounce back without a problem. If you want your plant to heal faster, you can also cut off leaves that are damaged by more than fifty percent. This allows your Anthurium to focus on new growth and healing rather than trying to keep damaged and dying parts alive.
Why Do Anthurium Leaves Burn?
Anthurium leaves are known to burn when they are exposed to the sun. If they get too much direct sun, then your Anthuriums are likely getting sunburned. This is especially true if all leaves exposed directly to the sun start to turn yellow and brown all at once.
What Does Sunscald Look Like?
Sunscald doesn’t often happen to Anthuriums. It is a problem usually found on ornamental and fruit trees, though it can also occur with tomatoes.
Sunscald generally affects the bark of flowering trees when it gets hot and then freezes shortly after in the winter. It can leave permanent damage on the bark, which usually looks white.
However, sunscald is often used to define any plant damaged by too much sun. Sometimes, there are underlying conditions such as lack of water or moisture in the soil, but hot weather and bright, direct sun on plants that can’t handle it can also cause sun-scald.
Plants like Anthurium will usually have its leaves affected the most. The tops of the leaves that are directly in the sun will often turn white. However, the parts of the plant that are shaded will remain green and relatively healthy.
Do Plants Recover From Sunburn?
While your Anthurium can recover from a sunburn, the damaged leaves cannot be repaired. These leaves will have to be removed or left to die on their own. With enough care, though, your plants can easily recover from sunburn.
How Do You Revive a Sun Damaged Plant?
The first thing to do to revive sun-damaged Anthurium is to move it out of the light. Unfortunately, this can be difficult because Anthuriums need a lot of light, usually up to six hours of sunlight a day.
If you keep your plant indoors, this is easy enough to do. You simply put your Anthurium somewhere they can receive bright but indirect sunlight for most of the day, such as near a south-facing window.
To prevent your Anthurium from burning in the light, you can put a thin cover or a sunshade over the window. This allows the room to stay bright without allowing the sun to damage your plant. They can stay in a room like this all day without any problems.
Outside, it can be a little harder. They don’t like the shade, but how else do you keep your plant out of the direct sun? The best option is to put them in a place where they get early morning sunlight. Light in the morning isn’t as harsh, and your Anthurium should be able to handle it a lot easier.
Even early evening light is alright, but not midday sun. Your Anthurium will burn easily in the mid-day sun. Additionally, placing them in the right light will produce more vibrant colors and sizes on their flowers.
Once your plant is out of the sun, you want to ensure they are healthy otherwise so that it can heal. Like people, you want to reduce stressors to the body when you are sick to focus on healing faster.
The other biggest stressor besides light is water. You don’t want your Anthurium to be overwatered or underwatered at this time, or your plant might become more sickly. While it is always bad to overwater and underwater your plant, they will be more susceptible to rot or be unable to bounce back if left without water for as long.
Anthuriums need to have their soil mostly dry between waterings. This means that when you go to water them, first check the soil. The first 2 inches (5 cm) should be dry. Then, you will water the plant until water comes out of the drainage holes.
Check every few days to ensure the soil hasn’t dried out. Once the top layer is dry again, you can water it.
Additionally, you will want to ensure the humidity around your plant is high enough. Anthuriums tend to do better with humidity. They can handle having about 50% humidity but do best with 60% or more. Making a pebble tray or buying a humidifier is an excellent way to boost the humidity in the air easily. You can also use a spray bottle to mist your plants every few days.
Finally, you will want to make sure the temperature is ideal. Usually, around 70 to 90°F (21 to 32°C) is best for your plant and what you should aim to reach while your Anthurium is recovering. While they can handle lower temperatures, anything below 50°F (10°C) is dangerous for your plant.
Should I Cut off Brown Anthurium Leaves?
It isn’t necessary to cut off the brown leaves of your plant. Eventually, the leaves will die and fall off by themselves. However, many people choose to cut off brown and dying leaves, allowing the plant to focus its energy on regrowth.
Plants will continue to expend energy on dying leaves to keep them alive until they fully die. This reduces their ability to form new growth, get bigger, or even flower. This is why most people decide just to cut off brown Anthurium leaves and leaves that are dying. By cutting them off, your plant can focus solely on growth.
Should I Remove Sunburned Leaves?
Sunburned leaves may not die immediately. However, they will often bleach to white. The white color means that chlorophyll is no longer present in the leaves. Chlorophyll is what a plant needs to convert energy from the sun into something the plant can use.
Without this, the leaves are pretty much useless to the plant. Instead of producing energy that the plant needs, it just takes energy. This is why it is usually best to cut off any sunburnt leaves so the plant can grow and thrive as it should.
A good rule of thumb is that if more than half of a leaf is damaged in a way that allows it only to hinder the plant and not help it, then it should be removed. This improves the look of your plant, its health, and how it delegates energy.
How to Clean Anthurium Leaves
Speaking of energy, cleaning your Anthurium leaves is also important if you want to maximize the amount of light they are getting. Dust can settle on plants, especially those kept indoors, without proper air circulation. Giving your plant’s leaves a quick wipe-down occasionally can remove that dust and make the plant’s leaves gather energy better.
For Anthuriums, all you have to do to clean the leaves is wipe them down with a damp cloth. A sponge, washcloth, or microfiber cloth all work well. You don’t want the rag to be soaked, just slightly damp. Using lukewarm water works best as well.
This can also improve your plant’s appearance, as the leaves will be shiny and vibrant instead of dulled by a layer of dust and grime.
Sunburn on plants is no joke. It can either cause your plant to have burnt or bleached leaves, leaving them useless to the plant and a waste of energy. It also makes your plant look unattractive and reduces its growth in general.
Thankfully, it is an easy fix if you suspect your Anthurium is burning from too much sun. Sunburnt Anthuriums need to be moved out of the sun immediately and placed where they get six hours of bright, indirect light or early morning light per day.
It’s important to check the top 2 inches (5 cm) of soil to make sure it’s dry before you water. Anthuriums do best with 60% humidity and enjoy temperatures between 70 to 90°F (21 to 32°C). Providing these conditions for your Anthurium, will ensure it recovers from its sunburn and thrives in your home or garden.