Hydrangea Leaves Turning Yellow – 6 Causes

Why is my Hydrangea leaves turning yellow? I know it’s normal for Hydrangea leaves to have a green colour; it’s their natural colour. They tend to appear attractive in this colour, which means they’re healthy. But sometimes, the leaves turned yellow, making you wonder what the problem might be. Why is my Hydrangea leaves turning yellow?

To make it easy for you, we made a full detailed guide on Hydrangea leaves turning yellow out of the blue. The problem with most people is they have no idea what they did that resulted in this. One thing you should know is; that it’s not normal for Hydrangea to have yellow leaves. This is caused by overwatering. Now that this has been established, it’s best to look at what went wrong and how to fix it.

As mentioned above, Hydrangea leaves will turn yellow if given too much water. Not only this, other things caused them to act this way. If there’s too much sunlight or the plant doesn’t get all the needed nutrients. When this happens, it’s essential to be vigilant and find a solution immediately. The plant may die if care is not taken. Follow the steps in this guide to learn more about solving the yellow leaves problem in Hydrangeas.

What causes Hydrangea leaves to turn yellow?

Hydrangea Leaves Turning Yellow - 6 Causes

Hydrangea has gorgeous flowers, and they are very attractive. These flowers go well with the green leaves, and it’s sometimes strange to see them apart. But when the leaves turn yellow, it disrupts the natural decorative feeling the plant gives. The entire garden may seem somehow if the leaves don’t appear like they used to. It’ll give you the feeling that something is not right. Trust me, you’ll know it.

The possible causes of Hydrangea leave turning yellow are discussed detailed below.


Eight out of ten Hydrangea yellow leaves are caused by overwatering. Most garden homeowners tend to water their plants every day, especially beginners. They think just because the plants need water to survive, and then they should give as abundant as they want. But this is not always necessary. Plants need water, but not in a stupor. Too much of everything is bad. When you water a plant too much, there are consequences.

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At first, you’ll notice the leaves turning yellow; then, they’ll start to droop. It’ll seem like something is pulling the leaves downwards. The plant’s strength will finish, and you’ll immediately know it’s malnourished. The leaves are not the only things affected, what of the plant itself. It’ll become soggy with the root drenched as it can be. During this time, the plant will find it difficult to breathe and start to die.

Some of the risk attached to this is the plant’s growth being stunted, leaves falling off, and the root developing the fungal disease. The fungal disease causes the root to rot, leaving the plant with no life support. Hydrangea loves water but is not in abundance, just enough to keep it alive. That’s why you don’t see them in wetlands or riverine areas. They can’t exist in that habitat. Once you notice these signs, you’ll need to take proper steps to halt the deterioration and bring your plant back to its natural form.


This may surprise you, but underwatering can also cause the leaves to turn yellow. The signs you’ll see are similar to overwatering, so you may have to keep a good note of this. To name a few, the plant will experience yellow leaves, leaves wilting, and drooping. Please keep in mind that irregular watering also has the same effect on plants. Some people will water their Hydrangea five days in a row, then leaves it for weeks thinking the water will be stored somewhere and used gradually. This is not so; if you continue to water it unstop, the water will become too much. And if you go on a hiatus, the soil may become too dry.

A way to get out of this is to water the plant every week, one time a week, to be precise. Make sure you use a draining pot with holes that release excess water. The best state for the soil is to be moist with moderate water keeping it elegant.

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Fungal Disease

Sometimes, the first sign you see when there’s a fungal infection is the leaves turning yellow. It’s common for indoor plants to get infected; although this can be treated in no time, the real work lies in discerning the symptoms and taking the right steps as soon as possible. Yellow leaves on Hydrangea can be a sign of fungal disease. The same thing goes for the drooping of leaves, which can lead to the death of the plant.

One of the common symptoms that most people often overlook is leaf spotting. If you detect spots on leaves, it may be a fungal infection. The spots may appear purple or brown scattered around the leaves.

Too Much Sunlight

The leaves may turn yellow if Hydrangea is exposed to too much light, especially sunlight. This shows the sun is beating the leaves too much, and you need to change the plant’s location. Many a time, direct sunlight is not needed to grow a plant. All you need to do is provide shade to reduce the direct scorching while the plant still gets the amount of light needed to grow. Hydrangeas, on the other hand, don’t require much light. They function with half-day sunlight, so keeping them under the sun for the whole day is not necessary and may cause real harm.

Another way to know when there’s scorching is to check the leaves for brown spots.

Iron Deficiency

Yellow leaves in Hydrangea may also be caused by iron deficiency. Iron is why the leaves have the green colour in the first place. So the absence of this will cause the leaves to turn yellow, and the views will remain green. The solution is to sprinkle some fertilizer richer in iron around the root to provide the nutrient in real-time.

Nitrogen Deficiency

Just like iron, nitrogen can also be absent in the intake of a hydrangea plant. And this may cause yellowing of the leaves. The significant difference is that older leaves turn yellow in nitrogen deficiency, and the plant will be stunted in growth. Plants get iron and nitrogen from the water; the only way there might be a sense of if the draining holes on the pot are too large. Too much water may be drained, leaving the plant with insufficient nutrients to live on.

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Check the holes’ size; if they’re too big, change the pot and water your Hydrangea at the right intervals.

How to Fix Leaf Yellowing in Hydrangea

Hydrangea Leaves Turning Yellow - 6 Causes

Hydrangeas are not grown because of the foliage but the flowers. Most people are growing the plant long to see the blossoms, and that’s when they’re satisfied with their work.

If you’re in a situation where your Hydrangea’s leaves start to turn yellow, there are some things you could do to reverse it.

1. Provide Partial Sunlight

As discussed, one of the causes of yellow leaves is extreme sunlight exposure. In this case, all you should do is shift the direction of the plant or change its positioning completely. The best sun hydrangea needs are the morning sun; anything after that time will be scorching, which is bad. You can start by placing it in a well-lit spot in the morning and moving it after three to six hours.

Hydrangeas should never be exposed to direct afternoon sun as it’ll be too much for them. Even when there’s a cloudy sky and the sun isn’t scorching, don’t put your Hydrangea in the sun for the whole day. Continue with the routine.

2. Iron Supplements

Once you’re sure the cause is a lack of iron, you should immediately provide it as a supplement to the plant. Ensure you’re not watering it too much at this time to prevent the nutrients from washing away.

3. Maintain Proper Water Moisture Level

If the cause is underwatering, you’ll need to schedule your time and water it once a week to provide the right moisture it needs. Don’t ever let the soil dry up before watering. Watering once a week is alright if you have a good pot with the right hole size.

4. Use Mineral Fertilizers

Fertilizer acts as a boost for plants. It supplies every needed nutrient in proportion, ensuring the plant grows well. To apply fertilizer, sprinkle some on the soil and mix them. Also, when planting, add some manure to the soil and prepare your Hydrangea for a healthy journey.

Conclusion On Hydrangea Leaves Turning Yellow

Hydrangeas are beautiful plants with attractive flowers, but one thing that may make it disturbing to see is if they have yellow leaves. Not to worry, this article has addressed the real issue and provided ways to battle it. Follow the steps and get your Hydrangea back to normal. Come back to get more tips regarding gardening here, best of luck.