If I had a dollar for every time a reader asked me, “Why does my aloe Vera plant have white spots,” I’d be typing this article from my private island. So what could be the cause for this unappealing phenomenon?
What most plant parents forget is that aloe vera is one of the few houseplants that will not mind if you miss a watering or two. Like most of their succulent counterparts, these plants are drought tolerant.
On the flip side, aloe veras do not appreciate sitting in soggy soils. If, like my sister, you’re more of a serial over waterer who tends to drench their houseplants regularly, that could be why you have an unhappy aloe vera plant on your hands.
Why Does My Aloe Vera Plant Have White Spots?
Before listing the reasons, note that a few aloe vera variations are naturally variegated. For such varieties, white areas on the plant might be part of their natural pigmentation. If this isn’t the case for your aloe vera, however, read on.
Like most houseplants, aloe vera plants belong to tropical and subtropical climates. This implies they won’t enjoy heat stress or cold drafts in any sense of the word. They, instead, tend to enjoy moderately warm weather.
With that in mind, if you notice that your home’s aloe plant is developing pale white spots or turning yellow, it could indicate that it’s facing temperature fluctuations. This will usually happen if you keep your plant close to devices like radiators, heaters, or air conditioners.
Another reason could be you’ve been keeping your aloe vera plant near windows or doors that are frequently opened or closed.
Too Alkaline Soil
Most houseplants like aloe vera enjoy growing in neutral to slightly alkaline soils. The soil will usually become alkaline when the PH levels start to increase. If the PH goes beyond the recommended level for your aloe vera, it could start turning white as a result.
Why does too alkaline soil give aloe vera plants white spots? It’s because it makes it extremely hard for the plant to absorb the nutrients it requires even if its planted in a soil rich in nutrients.
With that in mind, if you notice that the PH is too high where you’ve planted your aloe vera plant, you can decrease it by adding coffee grounds or sphagnum moss to the soil.
You can also add a small amount of acid fertilizer to the soil to rectify the situation. As a general rule of thumb, when dealing with high PH levels in soils, try some home and organic remedies. Only when all those fail should you go for a commercial solution.
Poor Water Quality
If you water your aloe vera plant using tap water, be warned. Tap water contains a wide array of hard minerals like chloramines, fluorine, chlorine, and other bicarbonates.
If you repeatedly water your aloe vera plant using tap water, these minerals usually get accumulated in the leaves and soil, causing white spots on your plant.
The solution? Simply avoid using tap water as much as possible. Rain and filtered water are the best kinds of water for houseplants since they’re usually free of any hard minerals. That said, there are cases when all you have is hard water.
If that’s your current state, either filter the tap water or keep it aside and let it sit overnight or for at least 2 hours before using it to water your aloe vera plant. Letting it sit aside allows the minerals to evaporate and leave behind mineral-free water.
This brings me to the next possible reason your aloe vera plants have white spots.
Salt or Fertilizer Build Up
Over time, heavy use of salt and fertilizers can cause a buildup of the two around the top layer of soil and the aloe vera plant. If a salt buildup is the issue, you needn’t worry, as this rarely leads to a more serious issue.
Anyway, as aloe vera plants excrete these excess salts through their leaves, it often results in white spots forming all over the plant’s leaves. And if the salt accumulation isn’t regulated or corrected, the white spots increase and eventually turn entire aloe vera leaves white.
Regarding the best solutions you can employ, start by rinsing the plant and wiping the white spots using plant wipers or a wet cloth. This should effectively remove these white spots from the leaves. If the salt accumulation has been caused by over-fertilization, the safe choice is to flush the soil.
To do this, wait until the soil completely dries up, thoroughly water it, and only allow approximately 20 to 30 percent of water to drain out of the potting hole. Doing this will allow the salt, along with the water, to come out.
After flushing the soil, let the water dry out completely before resuming your regular watering sessions.
Lack of Nutrients
We talked about why an accumulation of minerals in your tap water can be bad for your aloe vera. Note, though, that this doesn’t mean that your plant doesn’t need them.
Along with macronutrients like Potassium, Phosphorous, and Nitrogen, plants also need micronutrients such as Copper, Manganese, Magnesium, Calcium, and Iron.
If your aloe vera plant lacks iron, this can result in an insufficient production of chlorophyll in the plant, which can, in turn, cause white spots to start popping up on the aloe’s surfaces.
If the white spots have appeared on the upper portion of your aloe’s foliage, it could indicate that the plant is deficient in manganese. To avoid this issue, check the labels on the fertilizers you pick to ensure they contain all the micro and macronutrients an aloe vera plant needs to thrive.
>> Related Posts:
- What Does An Underwatered Aloe Plant Look Like? (7 Obvious Signs)
- Why Does My Aloe Plant Not Stand Up (With 5 Reasons)
- Why Are The Tips Of My Aloe Plant Turning Brown? (With Solutions)
Your aloe vera plant’s leaves ought to be upright, firm, and plump, with an even green color. As such, if you notice that your plant’s leaves look shriveled, droopy, or have developed white spots and dead parts, you’ve got an unhappy plant.
Lucky for you, using the guide above to narrow down the possible issue (and solution) should be sufficient to get your aloe’s progress back on track.