Why Are My Avocado Leaves Turning Brown and Falling Off?

Avocado tree leaves turning brown and curling

If you’ve recently noticed your once lush and vibrant avocado plant leaves are turning brown and falling off, you’re not alone. Leaf discoloration and loss is a common issue that many gardeners face.

Although it’s a normal cycle for a healthy plant to shed leaves, this could also be a problem that needs attention. So, understanding why your avocado plant leaves are turning brown and falling off is important to maintain a healthy and thriving avocado plant.

Keep reading to discover why your avocado plant leaves are turning brown and falling off. Let’s dive in!

9 Possible Reasons Why Your Avocado Plant Leaves Are Turning Brown and Falling Off


Avocado plants need enough water, especially during the hot weather, because they use that water to cool down. So, if you don’t feed them enough water, they will not cool themselves down, leading to brown leaves.

If you touch the leaves of your avocado plant, you will feel it’s very dry and curly at the edges, and within a short time, it will turn brown and fall off.

To prevent your avocado plant leaves from turning brown, check if the soil around your plant is moist by dipping your finger. If it’s completely dry, water it deeply, especially during the hot weather. 


Indoor avocado tree leaves turning brown


Yes, overwatering your avocado plant can also cause its leaves to turn brown. Unlike other fruit plants, avocado plants don’t like excessive watering. Overwatering can cause your plant’s leaves to turn brown or yellow, eventually falling off.

Overwatering can also cause root rot, leading to poor plant growth and eventually killing the plant. 

To prevent overwatering, water only when the topsoil is completely dry. Check if the topsoil of 2 to 4 inches is completely dry. Also, avoid planting your plant on clay soil or soils with poor drainage. 


Avocado plants are native to the tropics, so they turn brown when exposed to excessive cold. If there is excess cold, they start to curl and finally turn brown.

To protect your avocado plant from frost, cover it with a bedsheet and add mulch around the soil to prevent the roots from freezing. You can also wrap the trunk with an insulating material like cardboard.

Salt Build-Up

Avocado plants are very sensitive, and excess salt in the soil causes the leaves to burn chemically and turn brown. Sodium chloride is present in purified and fresh water, so when you use it for irrigation, the water evaporates, leaving sodium chloride in the soil.

So, when the salt accumulates over time, its levels get high, and your plant leaves will turn brown and eventually fall off. 

To get rid of sodium chloride in your soil, ensure your soil has good drainage and water deeply and frequently to flush out the build-up of chlorine from the soil. 

Extreme Heat

Extreme heat can cause your avocado leaves to turn brown at the tips, and if nothing is done, the whole leaf will turn brown. Generally, avocado leaves are not affected by extreme heat; however, a young plant from a shaded nursery might be affected by scorching sun because it was not used to extreme heat. 

You can provide your plant with shade until it’s established. Moreover, you can plant your avocado with other plants to increase humidity and keep them cool or water them frequently only when the soil is completely dry. 

Transplant Shock

Why are my avocado leaves turning brown at the tips


If you recently transplanted your avocado tree, it might go through a period of adjustment, leading to brown leaves. This happens due to transplant shock. However, this is temporary as it will get used to the new environment.

Nutrient Deficiencies

Avocado plants require specific nutrients, particularly zinc, nitrogen, and Iron, to maintain healthy leaves. A lack of essential nutrients can lead to brown leaves.

Zinc deficiency is common in leaves, and it causes tiny brown spots and discoloration on the leaf’s margins. Nitrogen deficiency causes small and dark brown spots and yellowing of leaves, while Iron deficiency causes burnt tips and leaf veins to change color.

To correct the nutrient deficiency, apply organic or natural fertilizer. However, you must first test your soil to know the kind of fertilizer you need.


Edema is a disease that causes brown spots on avocado plant leaves. You might also notice swollen veins along the brown spots. This happens when the soil is saturated with water, but the humidity is high, so water can’t entirely evaporate out of your plant leaves. 

Fungal Diseases

Should I cut off brown avocado leaves


If you notice brown spots, especially on the leaf tips of your avocado plant, it could also be a fungal disease. One of the most common fungal diseases is verticillium wilt. It’s a deadly disease that grows in the soil and then progresses to the root system. 

The leaves start to wilt, turn yellow, brown, and fall off. This fungal disease is caused by overwatering or over-fertilizing. You can prevent further infection by pruning the infected branches and avoiding over-watering and over-fertilizing.

Summing Up

As there are many reasons why your avocado leaves might turn brown and fall off, avocado growers should monitor their plants and address problems that arise on time. Brown leaves can often be prevented if you maintain proper care practices.

Healthy avocado trees not only contribute to the overall well-being of your plant but also contribute to high fruit production and a vibrant garden.




Author Profile

🌿 Hello! I'm Mary, the nature-loving soul behind Serene Eden. Gardener, plant whisperer, compost connoisseur, sun-soaked plant enthusiast, and avid bee-watcher. Let's cultivate beauty, one bloom at a time. 🌱🌼