Why Are My Calathea Leaves Drooping? - TasteCatcher

Why Are My Calathea Leaves Drooping?

Calathea is indeed one of the most beautiful indoor growing plants and a source of enthusiasm for beginners. These plants are particularly native to Colombia and Venezuela. 

These plants are best known for their beauty that’s why mostly seen growing indoors. Calathea plant is known for its beautiful leaves. Its foliage is broad and wast with beautiful color contrast.

Its foliage has a dark green color with a contrast of light green strips. These contrasts create a fantastic look of calathea.

Along with its beauty, this plant is also known for its leaf activity and movement. Calathea leaves usually fold themselves inside showing the inner surface. They bend in such a way as human being folds their hands during prayer. That’s why this plant is also known as a prayer plant.

If you notice that calathea leaves keep dropping during the daytime, then it is quite normal since calathea keeps dropping during the daytime. At night calathea leaves fold themselves inside, then let them close at night. Moreover, calathea leaves close at night if they are not closing they must know the solution to this.

But if the dropping is insignificant, something else is causing this problem. Usually, calathea droops their leaves in the daytime and it is not a worry but when dropping is insignificant and more than normal, there must be a problem.

Without wasting any time let’s dive into the solution!

Table of Contents

Why are my calathea leaves dropping? (Reasons)

Dropping leaves may be a sign of overwatering or underwatering. Whenever your calathea is dropping cut down the water supply. Water your plants only when the upper soil is dry. Supplying 2 inches of water every week to an underwater or overwatered plant is a good idea. Also, rootbound is causing the dropping of leaves. Repot your plants when it is rootbound to save them.


  1. Watering stress

  2. Dry Air

  3. Change of temperature

  4. Improper repotting

  5. Lack of nutrients

  6. Infestation or any disease

  7. Overfertilization

  8. Root Rot

Watering stress

  • Underwatering: The most common cause is that your plants are underwater. In this case, check the soil. If it is completely dry, then schedule the watering session. If it is not dry then improve the aeration of the soil so that roots receive proper moisture and water.
  • Overwatering: cause more risk to calathea plants. If the soil is wet and you have overwatered the plant, this will lead to leaves wilting. Overwatering can lead to root rot.

Signs of calathea suffering from water stress

The most symptoms occurring with leaves due to water stress are

  • Yellowing of leaves

  • Brown tips at the edges of leaves.
  • Loss of crunch in leaves

  • Dropping of leaves

  • Dry soil

  • Curling of leaves

  • Yellow and brown spots

  • Limp and rotting stem

Dry Air

Calathea is a humidity lover plant. They usually love to thrive in a humid environment. They don’t feel any problem in high humidity. Calathea, survive well at 50% of humidity. The more the humidity, the better growth. Most of the calathea species can tolerate up to 80% of humidity.

On hot summer days when there is low humidity and the air is dry, plants usually need more humidity for their survival. If your home is low in humidity then you can buy a humidifier. Dry air is a serious problem for calathea leaves as it can decrease their humidity level. 

Signs of calathea suffering from a dry air situation 

  • Crispy edges

  • Brown leaf edges

  • Plants begin to wilt and drop

  • Leaves begin to turn yellow

  • foliage becomes crispy to touch

Change of temperature

Calathea plants are native to humid environments. They survive well in hot and humid environments. Any sudden temperature change can alter the biological process of these plants. Low temperatures make them turgid. Calathea plants require a temperature range of 60 degrees.

High temperatures can also increase the transpiration of the plants. In higher transportation, plants try to cool them so release water into the air.

Signs of calathea suffering from Temperature stress

  • Yellowing and browsing at the margins

  • Wilted leaves

  • Dry foliages

  • Increase transpiration rate

  • shriveled leaves

Improper repotting

Sometimes repotting become necessary for plants and it also helps them in the root-bound situation. A big pot provides more room for growth and also more nutrients for growth.

But sometimes repotting can be a cause of some problems for plants. When you are repotting your plants, must take care of the soil. The soil should be well-drained, must have enough air pockets, and should not be dense. Sometimes dense soil can cause the plant to suffer from problems like root rot.

Calathea repotting can cause the dropping problem. It happens just because of a change in pH of soil or soil having no proper aeration features. All these things can create a serious shock on the plant.

Signs of improper repotted calathea

  • A sudden change in plant health and appearance

  • Leaves drop suddenly after repotting

  • Wilted leaves

  • Yellow tips of foliages

  • Thin branches

  • Dryness of branches

Lack of nutrients

Nutrients are a quite necessary source of growth. There is a need for nutrients when the plants are in a growing stage or planting stage. Otherwise excessive nutrients can alter the growth rate.

Calathea leaves dropping can be a sign of malnutrition. Plants suffering from malnutrition can result stunt growth and damage to leaves. Take a notice of nutrition that either your plant is malnourished or not.

Excessive nutrition can also be dangerous for plants when they are in the growing stage or planting stage. Excessive nutrition can cause the burning of leaves. Most of the nutrients contain excessive salt concentrations that cause the burning of leaves. Sometimes leaves become droopy due to excessive salt concentration.

Signs of calathea suffering from lack of nutrients

  • Droopy foliage

  • Burnt leaves

  • The yellow edges of the leaves look like sunburnt

  • Lack of shine

  • Leaves losing any luster

  • Weak branches

  • Discoloration of leaves


This is a serious problem for sensitive plants like calathea. House plants are too delicate in the case of pests. In the same way calathea species are also susceptible to pests.

Pests infestation can be dangerous for plants as it drains out the nutrients of plants as well as their water content. This lack of nutrients and water can cause the leaves to turn yellow and saggy. Lack of nutrients can turn the leaves saggy and yellow. Hence take serious care about protection from pests.

Signs of calathea suffering from pests infestation

  • The sticky appearance of leaves

  • Leaves develop scale appearance

  • Gum residue released from leaves called honeydew

  • Tiny dots over the leaves

  • White webbing

  • Discoloration


Fertilization is indeed necessary for the healthy growth of plants. Plants need a little more amount of fertilization when they are in the growing period or planting stage. Calathea leaves also need fertilization when their leaves are showing new growth. But excessive fertilization is also a danger for plants.

Excessive fertilization can burn the leaves of plants. Overfertilization can increase the nitrogen content of plants resulting in the burning of leaves. Excessive nitrogen increases the salt content in roots and leaves hence leaves look burnt.

Signs of calathea suffering from overfertilization

  • Droopy leaves

  • Yellowing of leaves

  • Brown spots at the edges of leaves

  • Bacterial infection

  • Lose of crunchiness

Root rot

Calathea usually loves to live in a humid and hot environment. They need proper watering for their survival. water your calathea when you notice that the upper soil is dry. Only 1 to 2 inches of water per week is ideal for these plants.

Overwatering these plants can lead to serious problems like root rot. Root rot in plants stops the supply of oxygen to the roots and leaves. Hence leaves turn yellow and become droopy.

Signs of calathea suffering from root rot

  • Wilting of leaves.

  • Yellowing of leaves

  • Leaves look burnt

  • Browing of the tips and edges of leaves

Why are my calathea leaves dropping? (solutions)

  • Make a schedule of watering per week.
  • Overwatering can lead to root rot.
  • Hence water your plants only when the upper soil is completely dry.
  • Water your calathea one to two inches per week.
  • In case of underwatering, rehydrate your calathea with plenty of water for a few minutes. 
  • Fertilize your calathea once every six months or after a year when they are in the growing or planting stage.
  • Try to avoid too long exposure to the sun.
  • Provide your calathea adequate amount of sunlight.
  • In the case of root rot, change the location of your plant also the potting mix.
  • Before changing the position or place of the plant also replace the soil.
  • Wash the roots before the replacement.
  • In case of pest infestation thoroughly spray your plants with insecticides and pesticides.
  • Spray your plants with neem oil.

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