How to Get Rid of Black Spots on Schefflera leaves[Causes]

Are you worried about black spots on Schefflera leaves instead of having beautiful umbrella-shaped green leaflets?

The problem is very common in cool regions. The environment and weather of those regions are not adaptable properly for Schefflera plants. But if you help a little, you can definitely keep a Schefflera plant as your houseplant.

Sometimes, cold attack or pathogen susceptibility leads to black spots on the Schefflera leaves. As a victim, you should have the idea to resolve it and so we are taking the solutions to you.

Fresh Leaves vs Black Spotted Leaves

Among the houseplants, you may find a beautiful umbrella-shaped houseplant when you go to Schefflera. Actually, the umbrella shape is formed because of the structural variations in the leaves.

The Schefflera leaves are not like usual leaves having small petiole, leaf blade, clean margins, etc. There are some differences as it has a long stalk and 14-20 leaflets are arranged in that leaf stalk. These systems form an umbrella shape.

Whatever, these leaves are of gentle green color and smooth surface. The green leaflets are smooth and oval-shaped in the margin.

But the black leaves can be said to be the opposite of these leaves. There is some lack of colored spots seen on the leaf surface that deteriorates the whole color superiority of the leaves.

Causes of Black Spots in Schefflera Plant

1. Cold Attack

Cold or frost attack is a severe term for Schefflera leaf. Schefflera is that kind of houseplant that doesn’t require so much caring or attention. But some particular environments are needed for their proper growth.

15.5 to 26.6 degrees Celsius ( 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit) temperature is appropriate for the betterment of the Schefflera plant. But in the winter, sometimes the temperature decreases drastically.

If you don’t take proper care of your plant, the lower temperature will affect your plant which is named a cold attack or frost attack. This may create black spots on the Schefflera leaves of your plant.


The best solution for the cold attack is to take your plant to such a temperature where the plant will get the optimum temperature.

You may keep the plant in such a room where the heater is placed which is in a hanging basket or pot. The room should be definitely well-heated, not over.

If your plant’s height is more and that is cultured outside the room, create such barriers which will not allow the excessive temperature to your plant. The idea of greenhouse gas is practiced in many countries and that can be implemented if you want to take the best and aristocratic care to your plant. 

2. Fungus Attack

Alternaria and Phytophthora fungus are notorious fungi that are the causes of many disasters.

These fungi are grown in a cool temperate region where the Temperature is almost 12 to 18 degrees Celsius. Because of the cold temperature, a perfect environment is created for the reproductive cycle and the plant becomes more susceptible to the pathogen. These fungi create black spots on the leaves.


In the case of fungal attacks, fungicide is the way to control them. You can make use of industrial fungicide. At the same time, homemade fungicides are also helpful.

If you don’t get commercial fungicides quickly at your hand then add 4 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 gallon of water and spray it as a fungicide. (Our Pick: Bonide Copper Fungicide)

Removing leaves is also an important aspect of this factor. If you keep the affected leaves, it will again affect the others. To remove the affected plant parts as early as possible.

3. Molds

Molds are the forms of insects and pests. Sooty mold is the main pathogen affecting these plant leaves. Normally, Schefflera plants don’t get attacked by insects easily. But virulent pathogens and a suitable environment can make insects like spider mites and aphids susceptible to them.

Aphid is a very small kind of insect but it can cause severe harm to the plant. Besides these, bugs also attack the plant and mix other bacteria or viruses into the cell sap. They can cause hazards at the same time themselves too.


Molds are formed because of favorable conditions for their growth. So make sure to keep a comfortable condition for your plant.

To destroy molds you can go for insecticidal soap as it would be the best solution without causing harm to your plant. More chemicals will cause risk to your plant.

4. Bacterial Attack

Pseudomonas leaf blight can be caused because of bacterial attacks. Like fungus and other insects, bacteria also create the problem of having black spots on the Schefflera leaves.

Xanthomonas campestris is a species of bacteria that may harm your Schefflera plant. They attack the cells of the plant and take nutrients from the cell sap. Consequently, the plant can not get proper nutrients and that leads to severe problems.


Bacterias can be removed by spraying bactericide or using insecticidal soap. 

Black Spots on The Underside of Schefflera Plant

The main two causes of black spots on Schefflera leaves are cold attack and pathogen attack. But if you see that the spots are remaining on the underside, you can be sure that it is because of a pathogen attack.

Insect-like lace bugs are responsible for this in various aspects. They affect the vascular bundle system of plants and create barriers to conducting necessary things to all of the plant parts that create mismanagement. 


You can use insecticidal soap to remove the pathogens as it would have no more risk to your plant of destroying with chemicals. 

Green Leaves Drop Off and New Leaves Are Black

A Schefflera plant may drop off its tender green leaves. But this might have happened because of overwatering. At that time, if new leaves come out, they may have a blackish irritating look.

Growing black leaves instead of gentle green are really disappointing when you want a charm from your houseplant. If the plant faces overwatering, the roots become rotten. The plant parts can’t get proper nutrients and gradually the leaves drop off which later leads to black leaves.


The actual solution to this problem is to stop watering your plant. The Schefflera plant doesn’t need as much water as other flowering plants. 

Watering once a week in summer and biweekly in winter is enough for Schefflera plants. You may check the soil humidity with a humidifier. 

On the other hand, you can check by pinching the soil. If 50% of the soil is dried, then you should water your plant.

The other solution is repotting. Sometimes plant roots are too rotten to support a plant. In that case, you have to go for repotting. 

Risk to The Plant

Black spots on plant leaves indicate severe harm to your plant. If it is for a disease attack and you don’t pay attention to the problem, gradually your plant will die.

The fungal or bacterial attack is done first in any of the stem or leaf cells. Before showing symptoms, the fungus starts reproduction. That means when you are having black spots, the fungus has already gotten its favorable condition. 

If it is for a frost attack, the plant is still expressing that it is not getting its proper environment to be nourished. So the growth will be restarted and the overall plant systems will be damaged.

Final Thoughts

Schefflera plants are always well treated as houseplants for their beautiful shape. But black spots on Schefflera leaves are the obstacle to the exposure of their beauty. 

It is not so time-consuming to take proper care of your Schefflera plant. At the same time, it doesn’t include much expenditure. So pick up a holiday for passing time with your cherishable plant.

The plant will get benefit from your care and at the same time, it will help you to remove your monotony.

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