We absolutely love the lantanas because of their bright and beautiful flowers. However, when the lantana leaves are turning yellow they will look hideous and ruin the beauty of your whole garden. But this is not the end of the world. With your little effort, your lantanas can come around as beautiful as they were before.
Before starting to treat them we need to figure out what is wrong with them first. So that we can start the proper control measure before the situation gets out of hand.
Improper sunlight, cold weather, wrong soil, overwatering, nutrient imbalance, botrytis blight, and pest attacks are 7 major reasons why your lantana leaves are turning yellow. Sometimes several of these reasons can combinedly produce the yellowing.
Keep reading the article to find out exactly what reason is behind the yellow leaves of your lantana and how to treat them.
So, without any delay let’s get down to the business-
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Why Are the Lantana Leaves Turning Yellow?
1. Improper Sunlight
Lantanas are tropical plants and they need bright sunlight for their growth. So, if your lantana leaves are getting yellow the first thing you need to check is the amount of sunlight they are getting.
Let your lantanas get 6-8 hours of sunlight every day. Otherwise, the leaves won’t be able to produce enough food for the plant. Hence they will turn yellow.
But then again, if they are exposed to scorching sunlight for a long part of the day the leaves will get burned. And this will also cause your Lantana leaves to turn yellow.
This means you have to keep an eye on the plant and make sure they are getting optimum sunlight. When they are in a shady place, move them to a place where they will get plenty of sunlight. But if it’s too hot then move the plant under shade during midday. Because lantana prefers morning and afternoon sunlight.
2. Cold Weather
Since lantanas are tropical plants they prefer hot and frost-free climates. If your lantanas are experiencing cold temperatures then this may be the cause of their yellowing. Additionally, they will become dormant in freezing temperatures and start shedding leaves.
Since lantanas cannot tolerate frost they will soon start to die in this situation. You can bring your plants inside in warm temperatures to prevent them from winter injury.
But as the weather gets warmer these symptoms will start to disappear gradually. In warm conditions, new leaves will grow, and thankfully they will not turn yellow.
However, the already yellow ones won’t turn back to green. In this case, you can trim those dead leaves.
3. Wrong Soil
Lantanas grow best in sunny weather with well-draining soil. You can do a quick check of the soil of your lantana pot. If the soil is muddy and waterlogged then you have figured out why their leaves are turning yellow and dying.
The best thing about the lantanas is, they can grow in almost any kind of soil with good drainage. So when they are in the wrong soil, you need to change the soil of the pot immediately.
Remove the plant very carefully without hurting the root system. Then replace the soil with a good potting mixture and plant the lantanas. In the case of potted ones make sure to make enough drainage holes.
To make a potting mixture use vermiculite, sand, or perlite with the soil to improve the drainage. If you don’t want to go through making a potting mixture by yourself then you can easily buy it online (our pick: Burpee Premium Organic Potting Natural Soil Mix)
You can also mix a good amount of compost into the soil. This will help to improve the drainage.
Lantanas are drought-tolerant ones. But don’t expect them to be water tolerant too. Because too much water very easily leads their roots to rot.
When they are overwatered the leaves will turn yellow and get curled. After that, the leaves will wilt and drop off from the plant. Furthermore, overwatering will bring other deadly fungal and viral diseases to your plant.
If you figure out the root rot disease at an early stage then you can easily treat it. First, start by cutting away the diseased part of the roots and treat the rest of the roots with a good fungicide (our pick: Bonide 811 Copper 4E Fungicide). Then plant it in fresh and dry soil.
Always try to keep the soil dry by maintaining good drainage. Don’t water unless the soil is totally dry. And when you water, do it slowly and in less amount, just about an inch. Make sure the lantanas stay away from any waterlogged conditions.
5. Nutrient Imbalance
The deficiency of some nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, and iron can be the reason why your lantana leaves are turning yellow. On the other hand, if you have overdosed on them with these nutrients, then the same thing will happen. The leaves will get burned with yellow and brown patches.
The first thing you need to do is figure out if your lantanas lack nutrients or are overdosed. If the yellowing is just after the fertilization then this may be due to an overdose. In this case, flush the soil with water thoroughly and drain the excess water immediately.
And then again, if you haven’t fertilized them in a long time you should consider feeding them a little. Use a balanced lawn all-purpose fertilizer for your lantanas and check the manufacturer’s label for the dose and directions (our pick: Miracle-Gro Water Soluble All Purpose Plant Food). Well-decomposed manure and compost will also add a good amount of nutrients in the soil.
Sometimes change of pH results in the yellowing of leaves. Lantanas usually prefer pH around 6-7. Check your soil with a pH meter (Our pick: Atree Soil Soil Tester Kits with Moisture, Light, and PH Test for Garden) and neutralize the soil by adding acidic or lime fertilizer. Once the nutrient status is balanced, the lantanas will go back to their lush green form very soon.
6. Botrytis Blight
Botrytis blight is a serious fungal disease which is also known as gray mold. This disease happens very easily in humid regions. Botrytis blight turns the leaves yellow. Moreover, the flower and foliage start to rot. This disease gets even worse if you water your lantanas too much.
At first, prune off all the diseased parts to stop the disease from further spreading. Then get a good fungicide for your lantanas that won’t harm their blooming. Apply according to the label direction of the manufacturer.
Keep the diseased plant away from other healthy ones. You can dig up the diseased lantana and plant it away. And to prevent this disease, always use clean and disinfected garden shears while pruning.
Here are 2 amazing homemade fungicide recipes for you:-
#Recipe 1:- Vinegar Spray Recipe
- 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
- 1 liter of water
- 1 teaspoon of liquid dish soap
- Mix the ingredients in a bowl
- Pour it into the sprayer
- Spray on the infected lantana 2-3 times a week
# Recipe 2:- Epsom Salt Spray Recipe
- Half tablespoons of Epsom salt
- 1 liter of water
- Mix both ingredients and spray on your lantana leaves every week.
- Do not store the leftover solution.
7. Pests Attack
Aphids and whiteflies are very small insects that feed on the leaves of lantana and cause yellowing of the leaves. If the infestation is severe then the leaves will start to curl and drop.
Also, these pests excrete a sticky substance known as honeydew that causes sooty mold disease to your lantanas. In addition, these insects are the vectors of many viral diseases that are deadly to the lantanas in most cases.
Whiteflies can be difficult to control because they are very tiny and they easily fly away. It’s a good way to start with removing the heavily infested branches. You can wash them off with a strong blast of water but the problem here is they can come back again after some time.
Pick a good pesticide that is completely safe for human or other animals. Don’t overuse the pesticide. Apply the pesticide as foliar spray only when you notice whitefly infestation on your lantanas (our pick: Natria Neem Oil Spray for Plants Pest Organic Disease Control)
You can free some natural predators such as lacewings, ladybugs, and parasitic wasps in the garden. These insects will prey on the aphids and whiteflies and provide a natural control.
Also, you can apply neem oil and other homemade pesticides every 2-3 weeks to get rid of them and to prevent them as well. Here are some easy recipes:-
#Recipe 1:- Neem Oil Recipe
- 1 tablespoon of neem oil
- 1 liter water
- Mix neem oil and water together and spray 2-3 times every week on your lantanas to treat these pests and prevent them
#Recipe 2:- Tomato Leaf Spray Recipe
- 1 cup of tomato leaves
- 1 liter of water
- Chop up the tomato leaves
- Let them soak overnight in a cup of water
- Now strain the leaves from the water
- Spray this water on your lantana leaves every week
Note: When you make homemade pesticides, try a small amount in a lantana leaf and wait for some time. If the leaf burns then dilute the solution and try again on another leaf. If the pesticide doesn’t burn the leaf, start applying on the whole lantana plant.
Lantanas can become sick from time to time. If you leave them untreated they will die bit by bit. But if you take a little care of them they will reward you with lots of beautiful blooms and fill your garden with butterflies.
Yellow leaves on lantana can be a result of many causes. You have to give them the right treatment otherwise your efforts will go in vain.
I hope this article has helped you to figure out what’s wrong with your lantanas and guide you through their treatment process. Take the necessary steps and continue to treat them with fungicides and pesticides. The yellow leaves on your lantanas will be luscious green soon.