Prayer plant leaf curling can be caused by a variety of issues. This can range from neglect to over-caring for the Maranta species. It is often considered a minor problem that can be reversed. But, you would have to spot it on time.
The exotic tropical plant is native to South America. It can be found growing in tropical rainforests. And it is regarded as a low-maintenance species with few requirements. Here are a few reasons for what causes prayer plant leaves to curl.
Why is my prayer plant curling?
Reason 1. Lighting
Maranta leuconeuras enjoy tropical rainforests. This is because they provide enough canopy from direct sunlight. The leaves of the Maranta variety might get scorched when exposed to direct sunlight. As a response, the leaves might curl up to prevent losing moisture.
If this happens, you would need to move the plant. Select a north or east-facing window to provide the needed shade. If you can’t relocate the plant. Consider using a light cloth or curtain to filter the sunlight. Also prune the scorched leaves to prepare for new ones.
Reason 2. Watering
Neglect can also be cursing the prayer plant’s curled leaves. One attribute of being in tropical regions is frequent rain. They need regular watering to stay healthy. If you do not provide this, you risk the plant’s health. In response, the Maranta leaves curl inwards and dry out.
Ensure you water the potted plant every 4 days. Before doing this, check that the pot drainage holes work well. This is because the roots don’t do well in soggy soil.
They prefer moist soil. And you can achieve this by letting the top part of the soil dry. Feel the soil with your fingers to be sure they are moist or use a moisture meter.
Reason 3. Type of Water Used
The type of water used can also cause leaf curls on plants. Using water filled with chemicals like chlorine is bad for the Maranta species. Because they contain soluble salts. And this can cause leaves to curl down with brown tips. This can cause the prayer plant leaves to turn brown and droopy.
Try to use rainwater, by collecting it in a jar. If you don’t have access to rain, use a filtering system. Never water the plant with cold, tap water.
Reason 4. Temperature and Humidity
Prayer plants love high humidity. They thrive in areas with excess moisture in the atmosphere. This is what makes them tropical plants. In addition to this, they enjoy high-temperature levels.
An ideal temperature range would be between 65-80 degrees Fahrenheit. When they lack these requirements, their leaves curl up.
Try misting the plant often to maintain a humidity level of 60%. Using a humidifier is an expensive but good option. You should also keep the plant away from vents or radiators. They can cause a loss of moisture from the plant.
Reason 5. Pests
The Maranta leuconeura is prone to a few insect infestations. Some include mealybugs, scale and aphids are common with the plant. They feed on the sap from the leaves. This can lead to the leaves curling downward. Another symptom would be white residue on the leaves.
In this case, you must spray the plant with neem oil. Using insecticidal soap would also work. Prevent pests by rubbing alcohol on the leaves. Frequent misting is also recommended.
Reason 6. Potting Problems.
Using the wrong pot can have damaging consequences for the plant. A small pot would stress the root, causing low water intake. In response, the leaves could curl up and go limp. While a large pot can hold too much moisture.
Be careful when selecting the right pot. Make sure it has enough drainage holes at the bottom. Also, use good potting soil that is well-draining. The pot size should be a little bigger than the nursery pot used.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are over 40 different prayer plant species. Each with different growth habits and appearance.
Prayer plants have a long lifespan. They can live as long as 30 years.
On average, prayer plants need a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight. It should be bright but indirect.
The black maranta is the most popular maranta plant. It is known for its unique foliage.
Yes, they can uncurl if you solve the problem causing the curling. This is a slow process that can take a while.