Why is My Spider Plant Dying? (7 Possible Causes and Fixes)

why is my spider plant dying?

“My spider plant is dying, please help!”

We’ve all been there. You love your spider plant and want to keep it alive as long as possible.

Then one day, you notice that it has a slight yellow tinge. Or perhaps its leaves are starting to wilt or are falling off.

What could be causing this? 

There can be numerous reasons why a spider plant may die, even with proper care practices every day.

Some of the possible causes include water stress, chemical content in the water, too much sun exposure, pests, and diseases.

This article will go over some of the most common reasons why your spider plant may be dying or not thriving.

We will also talk about how to revive your dying spider plant to keep it alive and happy for many years to come.

Let’s get started!

Why is your spider plant dying?

Spider plants (Chlorophytum comosum)are loved by so many for their unique beauty and easy care.

They’re an excellent addition to any home or office space, but that doesn’t mean it’s always rainbows and cupcakes in the garden when your plant dies.

Unfortunately, spider plant care can be tricky for many beginners because they can be quite sensitive sometimes.

It’s frustrating when your favorite plant dies before it has time to grow and develop properly.

But you’re not alone; there are millions of people who ask this same question each year about their beloved spider plants dying too soon! 

Remember that spider plants are not easy to kill.

In fact, they can be very resilient in the face of certain conditions. Spider plant care is highly specific, and it’s important to understand what your plant needs for proper growth and health.

One of the top causes of spider plant dying is improper care, so make sure you’re providing a healthy environment for your plant.

Inspect them regularly, determine the cause, and take measures accordingly!

Let’s go over the most common reasons why your spider plant may be dying and how to prevent it.

Causes of spider plant dying

Spider plants are durable plants that go into decline very rarely.  This can be attributed to the low maintenance required, long lifespan, and many advantages they have over other plants.

They often turn yellow, brown, or drop leaves when they are declining, indicating their health state.

Here are some of the main causes of spider plants dying.

Stress from overwatering or underwatering

One of the top reasons why spider plants die is due to too much or too little water.

The plant requires enough moisture to survive, but you should not allow your spider plant to sit in water.

Excess water in the soil is toxic for the plant, and it will rot the roots of your plant.

If you see your spider plant’s leaves starting to change in color or shape, this indicates that your plant is struggling with the amount of water you’re providing.

Overwatering your spider plant can cause root rot while underwatering it might cause nutrient deficiency.

How to fix it:

The first step to solving this problem is knowing how and when to water your plants properly.

Generally, you only need to water your spider plant only once a week.

Keep in mind that your spider plant likes soil that dries out between waterings but doesn’t dry out completely.

You can use the finger test to determine whether or not your spider plant requires watering.

Stick your finger an inch or two into the soil to check the moisture level.

Wait a couple of days to do the finger test if the soil is still wet. The spider plant may want some water if the soil is almost completely dry.

Next, you want to keep the soil somewhat moist but not waterlogged, by not wholly submerging the plant in water.

To keep the soil from becoming waterlogged, choose a pot with drainage holes and potting soil that drains effectively.

Chlorine and fluoride in the water

A spider plant can be pretty sensitive to the mineral content of the water it’s given.

Chlorine and fluoride (both of which can be found in tap water) can negatively affect the health of your spider plant.

An excessive amount of fluoride in water can be toxic for plants and inhibit photosynthesis.

While it can tolerate the occasional dose of chlorine or fluoride, too much can cause damage to your plants.

How to fix it:

First, use rainwater or distilled water to water your spider plant, especially if you’re in an area that has hard water.

Next, you must flush out all of the soil with clean and fresh rainwater or distilled water before planting anything to avoid potential plant toxicity.

A common way to prevent toxicity in plants is by using soil with high calcium levels.

Overfertilizing causes salt to build up.

Spider plants are susceptible to salt buildup from overfeeding. Overfertilization can cause salts to accumulate, eventually killing the plant.

Don’t go overboard when feeding your spider plant!

Too much fertilizer with a high soluble salt content causes leaf tip burn on your spider plant.

How to fix it:

Overfertilizing plants can cause salt to build up. To avoid this, repot your plant in new soil and discontinue fertilizing for a few weeks.

Re-Balance the soil with water once every week or so and use balanced fertilizer diluted by half when feeding your spider plant.

The optimal pH range for spider plant growth is around 4.5 – 7.5, with a range of 5 – 7 being the most ideal.

Too much sun exposure

We know that spider plants thrive in a bright lighting environment, but too much sunlight can actually harm your spider plant.

Spider plants, like many other houseplants, require natural light for photosynthesis.

However, excessive exposure to sunlight can cause some damage to your spider plant.

Spider plants don’t like the scorching sun – it gets too hot, and the soil dries up completely.

They need to be in a moderate amount of light. Otherwise, they will burn their leaves and turn yellow.

How to fix it:

Avoid placing your spider plant under direct sunlight

While we know that your spider plant thrives in bright sunlight, it can be harmful to the plant if you leave it outside without a break in full sun.

If your plants show these indications, try relocating them to a more sunny, well-lit location.

You can move the plant inside during the day to a darker space or keep it out in a shaded area if you’re concerned about the amount of light it receives.

Even though your plant appears to be dead at first, such adjustment may be able to help it come back to life.

You can also give them indirect light by using an artificial light source, such as an incandescent bulb or a fluorescent lamp. 

Also read: Do Spider Plants Need Sun? (Explained)

Low humidity levels

Spider plants need high humidity levels to thrive and bloom. In low humidity environments, their leaves will dry out and turn brown.

Spider plants are most susceptible to succumbing to a lack of humidity in wintertime when the air is dry.

How to fix it:

Spider plants need a humidity level of around 40 – 60% to thrive. In the winter, it’s best to place them in high humidity rooms such as the living room or the bathroom.

During summertime, misting spider plants with water will help regulate their growth and ensure they don’t dry out too quickly.

You can also group spider plants together and fill your house with a humidifier to increase the relative humidity level of your space.

Also read: Why is My Spider Plant Turning Brown?


One of the most common causes for a spider plant to die is bacterial leaf blight, indicated by black dots on the leaves.

If you are unsure what type of fungus is growing on your plants, it starts with light spots on the tips and slowly turns brown and then black.

If this happens to be a plant that has been in contact with soil or other areas where fungi can grow, they may have contracted the disease from these sources.

Bacterial leaf spot and tip burn occur in hot, humid conditions and are characterized by yellowing in the leaf margin and browning edges.

Plants need superior care to withstand the stress of disease so that they can survive.

How to fix it:

If you are dealing with a diseased plant, the first thing to do is remove all damaged foliage.

This will prevent the spread of disease and further damage to your plants. If it has progressed so far that the stems have been affected, dispose of it immediately for other areas not to be infected.

Other diseases that can affect your plants include leaf spot, tip burn, bacterial spot, and leaf curl. 

You can also make sure that you clean your spider plants thoroughly and thoroughly rinse them with water to eliminate any dirt that may be causing the disease to progress.

Also read: Why is My Spider Plant Turning Yellow? (Causes and Fixes)


Pests may be the last cause of your spider plant’s demise if it hasn’t already tragically died.

Spider plants, as we know, are incredibly hardy and tolerant against pests in general.

However, pest infestations can harm your spider plants just like any other houseplant.

Here are some of the most frequent pests to look out for on your spider plant: Aphids, Whiteflies, Spider Mites, and Measlybugds.

These pests can quickly lead to the plant’s death if they are not treated immediately.

How to fix it:

It is critical to remember that the first step should always be to remove any other houseplants from the same location while treating your spider plant.

Pests are known to move from one plant to the next, and they may infest your entire collection.

Most experts recommend using as few chemicals as possible when treating a spider plant.

Next, if your spider plant is overrun with pests, one of the most effective methods to get rid of it is to use warm water.

You can also use rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab to get rid of the pests.

This is very beneficial for dealing with bugs that leave a sticky residue.

You may also spray the plant with insecticidal soap or neem oil.

In addition, switching out all the soil may help reduce insect infestations.

Finally, to prevent pests from becoming an issue, you should regularly check for them to see what type of pest it is and how much damage has been done.

You could also use your hand to feel the leaves around the joints to detect bugs that reside there.

Further reading: How to Get Rid of Bugs on Spider Plants? (6 Common Bugs and Solutions)

How to save a dying spider plant?

The spider plant is a hardy plant that can survive almost anywhere.

Sometimes, your spider plant may appear to be dead due to its appearance, but you may revive it in only a few easy steps.

In general, it is usually a good idea to try everything before abandoning your houseplant.

When you realize your spider plant is dying, the chances are that it needs better environmental conditions. 

Consider whether you’re already doing too much for your spider plant before you believe you need to nurture it back to health.

Spider plants can thrive with a little bit of neglect. So, to save or revive a dying spider plant, you can try one of the following tips:

Change your watering routine

If your spider plant is dying for no apparent reason, it might be because of the water stress.

If the cause is not too severe and you still want to save the plant, try pruning back some leaves and adjusting your watering routine.

Remember that you want to avoid overwatering and let the soil dry out between waterings. Soak the leaves regularly with water and allow them to dry out before giving them another drink.

Also, you don’t need to water your spider plant every day.

Once a week is enough to get a spider plant through the harsh winter months.

You can also adjust the frequency of your watering if the weather has been unusually dry.

This helps reduce the water stress on the plant, which should help the plant survive. 

Further reading: How Often to Water Spider Plants? (Tips for New Plant Parents)

Check and treat root rot immediately

You should also check the roots to see if there is any sign of root rot; even if you don’t notice an odd smell, it could still be present.

Your spider plants should have strong, healthy roots that are not mushy or rotten in order for them to grow properly without suffering from any disease or pest infestation.

Root rot is one of the most common causes of houseplant death.

Repot the spider plant

Repotting your spider plant is an easy process. Remove the current pot, place it in a bigger planter with fresh soil and move the plant to this new home.

The roots will grow stronger and extend even further when moved to a larger pot.

Repotting time depends on how long you let the spider plant stay in its old home before repotting it into a larger one.

Adjust the light

Bright, indirect sunshine is ideal for spider plants. They’ll struggle to grow, reproduce, and even stay healthy if the lighting isn’t perfect.

On the whole, indirect lighting is best because it’s more forgiving. It can also be helpful if you’re trying to make a spider plant bloom.

You want to make sure you don’t shine any bright sunlight directly at the plant. If you do, your spider plant will get too much light and may burn.

However, you don’t want your spider plant to be completely dark because that won’t help it to grow properly.

Also read: Can A Spider Plant Live Outside? (Explained for Beginners!)

Frequently Asked Questions about dying spider plants

Can I cut the brown tips off my spider plant?

Yes, you can cut the brown tips off your spider plant. Cutting the brown tips off your plant is perfectly acceptable and actually beneficial for your spider plants.

As soon as spider plants start to yellow or turn brown, it’s time to remove the yellow or brown leaves growing on top of the main leaves to encourage new growth.

How do you save a drowning spider plant?

Well, just stop watering for a while and see what happens. The plant can survive without water for a couple of days.

If the problem is caused by too much water, take your spider plant out of the pot and let it dry out for a few days.

If the roots have been stressed by too much water, then repot your spider plant into fresh new soil and pot. Make sure you use a pot that’s a good size for the spider plant.

Spider plants like to be kept in well-drained soil that has lots of air pockets. So, keep your soil slightly moist but not wet.

It should be fine if you keep your soil moist and allow it to dry out between waterings.

How do you keep a spider plant looking good?

The spider plant is an attractive, low-maintenance plant that can be grown in just about any type of planter.

With proper care, your spider plant will last for years and look great in your home or office.

Take a look at our houseplant care guide for beginner if you want to learn how to give proper care for your houseplants.

Final Words

If you notice that your spider plant has started to die, you should probably know the root cause so you can quickly treat the problem.

The following are possible reasons for the death of your spider plant: water stress, the chemical in your tap water, sun exposure, overfeeding, low humidity, pests, and diseases.

Even if you see signs of withering or yellowing on your plant, don’t give up hope. There’s always a way to revive it and bring it back from the dead!

Most of the time, repotting, changing the watering schedule, and moving your plant to a more well-lit area are simple ways to save your dying spider plant.

Now I’d love to hear from you:

Are there other tips and tricks for keeping spider plants alive?

Please share them in the comments section below.

And if you liked this article, please share it with your friends and family on Facebook and Twitter!

Until then, happy gardening!

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