why is my geranium plant dying

Why is my Geranium Plant Dying? (Here’s How To Revive It!)

Geraniums also called Cranesbills are grown for their wonderful blossoms. The blossoms arise as a bunch. The plant is a great addition to any house.

The plant thrives with good care. Some people mail me saying their Geraniums are run into issues and are dying. Let’s see how to fix such issues in Cranesbills.

Why is my Geranium Plant Dying?

If you see brown leaves, your Geranium is dying due to Geranium rust or Bacterial leaf disease. If the plant is being eaten away, the culprit is Geranium budworm. If the leaves are turning yellow and dying it is due to overwatering. If you see white, powdery dust on the leaves, the plant is suffering from Powdery Mildew.

Geranium plant has holes in leaves

Do you see holes in your Geranium plant’s leaves? Holes in the Geranium leaves are caused by Caterpillars of a moth. These caterpillars are called Tobacco budworms/Geranium budworms.

Geranium Budworms

After closely inspecting your plant if you confirm that it is a Geranium Budworm infection, then you need to act immediately.

No fungicide is efficient to treat these pests. The best way to get rid of these pests from your plant is by replacing the soil with fresh soil.

These caterpillars are the larval forms of a nocturnal moth. These caterpillars are also called Tobacco Budworms as they love to eat tobacco leaves.

Adult moths are not at all harmful to the Geranium plants. Bats love to eat the adult moths.

Tip: If you have time, sit in a chair and observe the plant. The leaves that appear to move have caterpillars in them. Collect them with your hand and throw them in a solution of soapy water.

Geranium plant brown leaves

Does your Geranium plant have brown leaves? This can happen due to many reasons. Let’s see what are those and how to fix them.

Geranium rust

This is a rust disease that causes yellow spots on the upper side of the leaves. The yellow spots turn brown eventually.

You can see brown pustules on the lower side of the leaves. The leaves fall off in severe cases. This is a fungal disease.

How to treat Geranium rust

There’s no reliable treatment right now. The best way is to avoid this disease altogether. Only buy plants from reputed dealers.

Thoroughly inspect the leaves of the plant before bringing it home. Fungal spores thrive in cool, damp conditions.

Keep the plant at a place where it gets good circulation. Look for the symptoms early and cut off the affected leaves.

Spray the rest of the plant with a fungicide. If the plant is severely infected, you may just need to dispose of the plant.

Brown leaf edges

Do you see the Browning of leaf edges on your Geranium? This happens due to a lack of sufficient water. How often do you water the plant?

The rule of thumb is to water the plant when the top inch of the soil goes dry. Check the soil weekly with fingers and water when needed.

Bacterial leaf disease

Bacterial leaf disease occurs in the case of overwatered plants. Bacterial infection of Geraniums causes black-brown spots on the leaves.

These spots look like lesions that are yellow moving outward. The center of the lesion is brown. These lesions increase in size eventually.

How to treat Bacterial leaf blight on Geraniums?

Once you see the first signs of the disease, prune off the infected leaves. Dispose of the infected plant carefully. Replace the soil with fresh, sterile soil.

After using the tools properly sanitize them using a disinfectant. Plant a new plant as there’s no way to treat infected plants.

Why do Geraniums stop blooming?

Geraniums are mainly kept for their awesome blossoms. What if the plant doesn’t bloom? This may happen in two cases.

Too much fertilizer

Did you recently overfeed your Geranium plant? Feeding the plant with more fertilizer than needed results in blossom failure.

The plant will grow bushy with leaves but no flowers will be seen. If you are a beginner it’s better to underfeed your plants than overfeed.

Feed the plant with a liquid fertilizer once in 3-5 weeks if it’s grown in pots. If the plant is grown in the soil, feed the plant once in 4-6 weeks.

Too little light

If the plant gets too little light it’ll fail to blossom in the season. Geranium plants like abundant light. They like to get at least 4-6 hours of bright sunlight every day.

Make sure the plant is near a south or west-facing window for best results. This plant grows leggier in places with less sunlight.

The number of blossoms is directly proportional to the amount of light the plant gets. So, make sure your plant gets abundant light.

How to encourage Geraniums to flower?

Water your Geraniums abundantly. Give them sufficient light. Look for any pests/diseases that may deter blossoming in Geranium plants.

Geranium plant leaves turning yellow

If you are seeing yellow leaves on your Geranium plant, there is something wrong with your plant. The most common reason is watering.


Overwatered plants show signs of yellowing foliage. You need to act quickly and fix the problem at the earliest.

How do you know if your geraniums are overwatered?

This yellowing is usually seen near the bottom of the plant. Such plants also develop water spots.

You need to make sure the soil in which your Geranium plant is has good drainage. Like most plants, Geraniums don’t like waterlogged soil.

Geranium plants are drought-tolerant plants and don’t need much water to thrive. Let the overwatered plants dry for a week or two.

Cold snaps

Yellowing of the foliage is induced by cold weather too. These plants hate to be in cold. Their leaves turn yellow if the temperature goes too low.

Geranium plants are warm-weather plants. Take care of the plants accordingly in winter.

Lack of nutrients

Geranium plants’ leaves turn yellow when they don’t get sufficient nutrients. You can fix this by giving them some liquid fertilizer.

Feed them with liquid fertilizer once a month. If you do this regularly, you’ll see that the plant’s also producing healthy blossoms.

Geranium leaves turning white

Do you see white-colored leaves on your Geranium plants? This is probably due to a disease called Powdery Mildew.

Powdery gray to white coating is seen on the upper side of the leaves and stems. If the disease progresses, the leaves become yellow and fall off.

Dealing with Powdery Mildew in Geranium plants

  • Plant disease-resistant varieties if possible.
  • Cut off infected leaves and dispose of dead leaves carefully.
  • Mix 40% milk and 60% water. This mixture works to prevent Powdery Mildew infection. Spray twice a month for best results.
  • Apply Sulfur or Copper-based fungicides to counter the disease efficiently.

Why are the leaves on my Geranium curling?

Curled leaves are seen in the cases of Root rot. Make sure your plant isn’t infected by this disease. This can also happen due to stem rot called Blackleg.

Aphid Infestation

This is one of the common reasons why leaves curl. Aphids cause the leaves to curl and hide in the curls for safety.

Open up the curled leaves and you should see aphids thriving in them. If the infestation is in the early stages, you can wash them off with a garden hose.

You can dust the plant with flour. Doing this constipates these pesky pests. Neem oil and Horticulture oil is quite effective against aphids.

Nutrient imbalance

Too much Nitrogen causes leaf curling in Geranium plants. Curling of the leaves also happens due to a lack of Potassium in the soil.

You can fix this by carefully adding a 15-30-15 fertilizer to the soil.

Happy Gardening 🙂