Plumeria leaves turning black is one of the most common concerns of its growers. The issue stems from several reasons, and pinpointing the correct one will determine your success in getting your plant back on its feet.Plumeria Leaves Turning Black

In this article, we will explain the causes of blackening quickly and show you how to fix them in the most efficient way. Let’s get this thing going, and discuss the reasons they are changing color and the right ways to fix.

Why Does The Plumeria Have Black Leaves?

The plumeria has black leaves because of black tip fungus, or frangipani rust, due to pests, stem rot diseases, and spot diseases. The black leaves can also be due to improper fertilizing issues, and lastly, because of lighting and watering problems.

Plumeria is a beautiful species that often has issues with its leaves going black, which can happen for several reasons. Most prominent are the black tip fungus and so prominent with these flowering beauties, but it can also happen due to pest infestation, fungal diseases, or simply as a result of our plant care habits.

This tropical tree has some special needs; otherwise, it may be quick to turn black on you. But knowing why this happens will be the key to helping your plant in the long run, and if you do not know the right reason, and tackle it with that approach, the plant will weaken, and also it may cause fatal incidences.Black Leaves on Plumeria

– Black Tip Fungus

Fungus will often form on leaves attacked by sap-sucking insects, and one such disease is the black tip fungus, especially dangerous for these trees. This disease directly results from the honeydew left by pests on your leaves. If the secretion is left unchecked, it will soon become a breeding ground for fungal and sooty mold diseases.

Blacktip fungus is a common problem affecting Plumeria plants, characterized by blackened and curled tips of new growth due to high humidity. Blackness on foliage and stalks typically start on the tips and should be pruned immediately. To prevent further infection, dispose of affected leaves in a trash bag rather than compost.

You should be mindful because spring and fall are peak times for this disease, while Plumerias can recover on their own during dry summer conditions. The trees will shed leaves on their own, and new growth will emerge from below the dropped buds and stems.

– Frangipani Rust

Plumeria rust fungus or the frangipani mold can look like black-tip fungus, but it has distinct orange, yellow, and white spots that spread more slowly and tend to appear around the middle of Plumeria leaves. This is what will begin to change the color of th leaves and will let them grow and become brown as they grow further, and if you do not take care or it, they will also take of the rest of the plant just as they damage the health.

– Pests

Pests are the root cause of the black tip condition and other blackening dangers of the plumeria leaves. Pests like spider mites and aphids are drawn to the meaty leaves of the tree, where they like to suck on the plant’s juices and sap. In the process, they will release honeydew, a sticky and sweet substance that attracts ants.

Ants will come to the honeydew, feed on it and disperse black fungus pathogens inside the plant’s cells. All you need then is just a higher humidity than normal and fungal diseases may take their toll!

– Stem Rot Diseases

Unfortunately, rotting stems is a common problem caused by a sneaky fungus called Phytophthora that loves moist environments. If you suspect this rot, take a closer look at the stem. Is it turning black? This discoloration may extend down to the roots, which will also show signs of mushiness and discoloration if you remove the plant from its pot.

But that’s not all because if you look closer, you would see that the leaves on plants turning yellow and wilting are also symptoms of rot. Don’t let this pathogen take down your Plumeria – take action to prevent and treat it!

– Spot Diseases

Both fungus and bacteria can cause these diseases, and plumeria trees are particularly vulnerable. For this, the first sign of trouble is typically the appearance of spots on the lower branches, but the pathogens won’t stop there. They can quickly spread to leaves, carried by the wind or raindrops. The spots themselves can vary in shape and size, depending on the type of pathogen at play.

They might be angular or rounded, smooth, or with jagged edges, and if you notice black spots on your Plumeria, it’s time to take action. Wilting is also a common symptom of leaf spot diseases, and the key feature would be fading and dulling the color of the greens.

– Improper Fertilization

Let’s face it — fertilization is crucial for any plant, but it’s the ratio of nutrients that we often fail to take into consideration. If there’s a generally low pH of soil, you are probably experiencing low levels of phosphorus, the symptoms of which are red and black spots on leaves.

The abundance of potassium and deficiency of nitrogen will cause scorched leaves and the appearance of black dots. If this situation is left unchecked, the leaves will look wilted and may even fall to the ground. Too much copper can burn your leaves and will also cause discoloration and growth issues, and this is also an issue that would come from improper fertilizing.

– Lighting or Watering Problems

Even if your plumeria looks healthy, overwatering and water clogging can still be an issue, even if you have the perfect loose and aerated soil! Be careful not to water plumeria in a tray or saucer that sits underneath it, as excess water can accumulate and cause the roots to suffocate.

Aside from proper watering, your plumeria also needs plenty of sunlight to thrive. Without adequate light, your plumeria will wilt and lose leaves, and it may develop unsightly black spots.

How To Prevent Plumeria Plant Leaves to Turn Black?

To prevent Plumeria plant leaves to turn black you must first treat the black fungal diseases, and then try to battle the pests that it may have infested upon it. And lastly, you should also provide the plant with the right care so that it grows well.

Black fungus is the most common culprit behind the blackening discoloration of your plants. However, many other things can appear similar and have the same effect. Among the most prominent are other diseases, but it can also be due to how you care for your plant.

– Treating Black Fungal Disease

Black fungus is a dangerous infection that can quickly spread throughout your plant, leading to stem and root rot. To stop the infection from spreading, prune affected leaves and branches and treat the plant with fungicides every other day. Cut away any affected parts until you find healthy wood with white sap, which will heal the cut and prevent further infection.

Spray liquid seaweed on new branches to revive the plant’s appearance. Repot the plant with better drainage after two or three weeks of treatment and place it in a brighter location, watering only once every two weeks to avoid over-humidifying.

With frangipani and any other disease, the procedure will look quite the same — isolate the plant and clean and remove all the infected plant parts. The leaves that can be cleaned should be wiped with rubbing alcohol. You can also deter ants by sprinkling some cinnamon on leaves.

– Battling Pests

Pests will likely lead to all sorts of fungal issues, which is why it is crucial to fight them as soon as you spot them, and if possible, include some prevention methods too. Spider mites are the culprits behind rust disease, and they can easily be dealt with through the use of rubbing alcohol or fungicide. However, neem oil is an excellent treatment as it eliminates spider mites and prevents the fungus from developing.Prevent Plumeria Leaves to Turn Black 1

The most effective solution is to handpick the bugs off your plant, so you must try to check thoroughly and often for any remaining insects, as they can quickly multiply. If you’re not keen on touching them, try using a water jet or a mixture of water and rubbing alcohol to shoot them off.

After cleaning, mist your plant with a mixture of water and horticultural or neem oil to keep those pests away for good. Insecticidal soaps are also welcome. Your plants will thank you for keeping them bug-free.

There are some insects you’d want to bring in, though. If you see any ladybugs or lacewings around your plants, give them a warm welcome by planting some flowers all around. These beneficial insects won’t only keep your garden fruitful, but they will also eat those sap-sucking bugs with quite an appetite.

– Provide the Right Plant Care

These tropical beauties thrive on good ventilation, aeration, and drainage, all of which are vital for their health. Just like you need to breathe the fresh air to stay healthy, your plumeria needs aerated soil to grow and flourish.

To keep your plumeria supplied with fresh air use well-draining soil — this allows water to seep through easily and prevent waterlogging, which can be detrimental to the plant’s growth. But soil alone isn’t enough to make your plumeria thrive.

It also needs plenty of sunlight, so choose a bright spot with minimal shade, preferably in the afternoon hours. This will give your plumeria the energy it needs to produce its stunning blooms.Plumeria Plants Care

Watering is another thing you should be looking at if you’d like to keep fungal diseases at bay. Only water the soil after it has gone dry for a day, so your plumeria won’t die from having any water for a few days, and it will welcome a hefty drink when it’s thirsty, rather than just keep making it constantly moist. Providing your plumeria with the right conditions’ll help it grow into a healthy and beautiful plant that will bring joy to your home or garden.


Are you perplexed as to why your plumeria leaves are turning black, and it is not as straightforward as you might assume, so there are several potential causes for those pesky black spots on your leaves:

  • Carefully inspect your plant before jumping to conclusions. It’s easy to blame it all on fungal diseases, but if that’s the case, you should act fast and rigorously.
  • If your plumeria is experiencing low humidity or poor water drainage, it can have the same effect as low fertilization. However, the actions needed to remedy these problems are quite different.
  • The good news is that ensuring your tree is living in a happy environment is easy when you remember these three factors: excellent soil, high humidity, and plenty of light will help your plant thrive and stand tall.
  • So make sure to give your plant plenty of light, and it will reward you with beautiful blooms!

With this newfound knowledge, we’re confident that your tree will live a long and joyous life!

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