Purple Passion Plant Dying

Purple Passion Plant Dying? (Here’s Why & How to Fix It!)

Overwatering/Root rot is the most common reason behind a dying Purple Passion plant. Overfertilizing can also kill your Purple Passion. Fungal diseases like Botrytis Blight and Fusarium wilt can also kill your Purple Passion plant.

The purple passion plant is also called the velvet plant or Gynura. The plant is grown for its beautiful foliage which is purple and hairy.

The purple passion plant is grown indoors passionately by many. It is easy to grow the plant but it does run into some issues.

Purple passion plant leaves turning brown

Purple passion plant turns brown when the plant gets too much sunlight. Purple passion plant also turns brown if you overfertilize the plant. Purple passion leaves turn brown if the plant is suffering from root rot. Botrytis and Fusarium wilt can also turn the leaves brown in the Purple passion plant.

Purple Passion Leaf Scorch

Purple passion plant experiences leaf scorch when the plant gets too much sunlight. Direct sunlight is harmful to the Purple passion, especially in summer.

Affected Purple passion leaves curl slightly and turn brown. Try to shade your Purple passion plant if it’s getting too much direct sunlight. It grows well in partial shade.

Move your Purple passion into a shadier place if it’s growing indoors. If it’s growing in the garden, give the plant some shade using a shade net.

Overfertilized Purple passion plant

Remember that the overfed Purple passion plant shows the same signs of a scorched plant. Too much care can also harm your plants.

Purple passion leaves curl and turn brown if the soil gets too much fertilizer. Overfertilizing can kill your Purple passion plant.

Indoor plant

Dilute houseplant fertilizer to half the strength to use on your Purple passion. The plant will thrive if you fertilize the plant once monthly.

Purple passion becomes less active in the winter so it doesn’t need as many nutrients. Fertilize once in the whole winter season.

Garden plant

If you grow Purple passion in the garden, it just needs to be fertilized once a year. Feed your Purple passion in the spring.

A slow-release, general-purpose fertilizer works wonders on your Purple passion. Use a fertilizer that has a higher amount of Potassium than the other elements.

Get the soil tested before you add any fertilizer to the soil. Add only if the plant is deficient in certain nutrients.

Overwatered Purple Passion plant

Purple passion leaves turn brown when the plant is overwatered. Overwatering creates waterlogged soil which damages the roots greatly.

Waterlogged conditions often lead to root rot if you do not respond early. Root rot can be caused by various types of fungi.


Leaves of the Purple passion plant turn brown if the plant is infected by root rot. Leaves droop(not dry) but turn brown.

Affected roots turn brown, slimy, and mushy. Brown spots/blotches develop on the leaves. Leaves become distorted/curly.

Control root rot in Purple passion

  • Take your Purple passion plant out from the soil and let the roots dry for a couple of days. Plant your Purple passion in fresh, drier soil.
  • If you grow the Purple passion in a pot, de-pot the plant and wash the rootball thoroughly. Cut off any infected rootlets/mushy roots and re-pot the plant in fresh soil.
  • Only water your Purple passion when the soil is dry up to 3 inches. Check the soil with fingers if necessary. Get a soil moisture meter if needed.
  • Make sure the soil is light and drains excess water. Add Perlite to the potting mix to increase the drainage. Also, make sure that the pot has drain holes.

Why is my Purple passion plant wilting

Purple passion leaves wilt, turn brown and die when infected by Botrytis or Fusarium wilt. Purple passion plants are resistant to many diseases but they are not completely immune.

Botrytis blight and Fusarium wilt can affect Purple passion plants. Purple passion plants are mainly grown indoors, how then these diseases affect the plant?

These diseases infect indoor plants via contaminated tools/gloves. That’s why it is important to sterilize your tools after working on infected plants.

You can use fungicides to prevent/treat your Purple passion. Potted plants are easier to treat as they can be removed from the pot and cleaned efficiently.

Get the plant tested and find out which pathogen has infected your plant. Find the appropriate fungicide and spray it on the infected plant.

You may want to dip the infected plant in the fungicide before planting in fresh soil.

Why is my Purple Passion plant turning yellow?

Purple Passion plant leaves turn yellow when the humidity is lower than needed. Spider mites and other sap-sucking insects like Aphids/Mealybugs cause yellow spots on Purple passion leaves.

Low humidity

Purple passion leaves turn pale/yellow when the humidity falls below the optimum. This is not a common problem with Purple passion.

This only becomes a problem in dry areas. If you live in dry areas and it’s summer, keep a bowl of water near the plant.

Purple Passion Insect Pests

Insect pests never bothered my Purple Passion, but I’ve heard people complain about the issue.

Aphids, Spider mites, and other sap-sucking insects cause yellow spots on the affected leaves. Check the lower sides of such leaves to find the insect pests.

These insect pests hang around the leaves of Purple passion and suck the plant sap through the foliage. These insects secrete honeydew as they feed.

Honeydew attracts various types of fungi and they form a black, sticky substance called Sooty mold. You need to respond as soon as you see these signs.

Here’s how you treat pests on your Purple Passion

  • Hang yellow, sticky cards around your Purple Passion plant to detect insect infestations early.
  • Spray the infected branches with a forceful stream of water to dislodge the insects. This works in the case of a smaller infestation.
  • Drench the affected branches/plant in Neem oil to eliminate these pesky pests for good. Spray multiple times if needed.
  • Spray insecticidal soap on the affected Purple Passion if the plant is there’s a severe infestation.

Happy Growing 🙂