I’ve been growing three Monstera plants for over ten years now, and the most common reasons they droop, in my experience, are issues with watering, soil, light, temperature, and humidity. If you notice your monstera’s leaves are drooping, don’t panic. Instead, work to figure out the cause and make necessary adjustments. In this guide, I’ll share the common causes of drooping Monsteras and what I do to fix the issue at home.
Common Reasons For Drooping Monstera Plants:
While we wish there were only one cause of a drooping monstera plant, figuring out the cause of this issue is a bit trickier. Read through the list of possible causes and see if one of them aligns with your monstera.
1) Lack of Water
One of the most common causes of drooping monstera leaves is underwatering. If your leaves are limp and droopy and your soil is dry, a lack of water is likely to blame.
If this is the case, water your plant more regularly. Aim to water your monstera when the top two inches of soil is dry.
You should also investigate the potting mix to ensure it holds enough water. If it becomes dry only a few days after you water, you may want to repot it in a soil mix that holds more moisture.
If your soil is extremely dry, you may find that water quickly runs out of the soil when you water. If this is the case, place your planter in a dish filled with a few inches of water. Leave the pot in the water for about an hour so the water can work its way up the soil.
While monstera plants are just as susceptible to overwatering as other plants. It’s true that plants need water, but too much water can cause problems such as root rot.
Remember to only water your plant when the top two inches of soil is dry.
3) Poor Drainage
Even if you’re watering your plant on a proper schedule, poorly draining potting soil can lead to saturated soils. A container without any drainage holes can also cause problems.
Remember to choose a well-draining potting mix. Larger particles like pine bark fines, perlite, and sand can help improve drainage.
Additionally, ensure your monstera’s planter has drainage holes to allow excess water to escape.
4) Root Rot
Root rot refers to a group of fungal diseases that attack plant roots.
While root rot can occur in various conditions, it is more common when the soil is wet. Therefore, poor drainage and overwatering can encourage the development of root rot.
As the fungi attack the roots, they will become slimy and eventually begin to disintegrate. As you may suspect, these roots have difficulty taking up water. In turn, drooping leaves occur.
The best way to fix root rot is to remove the plant from the pot and inspect the roots. Trim off any dead or damaged portions.
Next, repot your monstera using a well-draining potting mix – and don’t forget to check that the pot has drainage holes! From this point on, make sure to water only when the top few inches of potting soil are dry.
5) Lack of Nutrients
While this isn’t a common cause of wilting monstera leaves, it’s not beyond the realm of possibilities.
One nutrient to take a close look at is potassium. This element is crucial to water uptake as well as water transplant within the plant.
6) Root Bound
When your monstera plant outgrows its container, and its roots have nowhere to go, it will become root bound. When this happens, the plant becomes stressed.
As a result, drooping leaves may occur. If your plant is root-bound, repot it in a larger container. You can also consider propagating your Monstera plant.
7) Low Humidity
Monstera plants prefer moderate to high humidity, or between 40-80%. If your home is dry, your plants may become unhappy. One of the most significant signs of low humidity is drooping leaves.
The best way to increase humidity is by using a humidifier. You can also regularly spritz the air around your plant with water, but this is only a short-term solution.
8) Cold Temperatures and Drafts
If temperatures dip below 65ºF, monstera plants may begin to pout. Therefore, aim to keep the air temperature between 65ºF-85ºF.
Even if your house is warm, your plant may still suffer due to cold drafts. Ensure your monstera is located away from exterior doors, poorly-insulated windows, air conditioning vents, and any other sources of cold drafts.
9) Poor Light Conditions
While monstera plants don’t like direct light, they still need plenty of bright sunlight. If you place them in a dim area, they will not thrive (yellowing monstera leaves or brown spots are also a common sign).
Ensure your plant is in an area that receives at least six hours of bright light each day.
10) Sap-Sucking Pests
Small pests, including spider mites, aphids, and thrips, sometimes attack monstera plants. These tiny pests use their sucking mouthparts to drink up monstera sap.
While a few of these pests generally aren’t a problem, larger infestations can lead to a wilting plant.
You can use a soapy rag to remove small numbers of pests. However, if you’re dealing with a larger infestation, you may need to spray the pests with neem oil, insecticidal soap, or horticultural oil.
How to Fix a Drooping Monstera Plant
While it probably goes without saying, the cure for your drooping monstera will depend on the cause. If your plant lacks water, you’ll want to water more, not less! And if your monstera is overwatered, you’ll want to decrease the amount you water.
With that said, sometimes, the best course of action is to go through the list of monstera plant care requirements. This way, you’ll make sure everything is in line with where it should be.
All types of monstera plants prefer well-drained and well-aerated potting soil. However, this mix should also be able to hold moisture between waterings.
If you use a potting soil that doesn’t drain well, your soil may remain saturated. If this happens, your plant will be at greater risk of developing root rot.
On the other hand, soil that contains too much sand or perlite may drain too quickly. This may prevent your monstera plant from having access to enough water.
When you want to make your own potting mix, you can combine four parts pine bark fines, one part perlite, and one part coco coir.
Alternatively, you can buy a peat-based potting mix and add in some extra pine bark fines or perlite.
For more, see our in-depth guide to the best soil mix for monstera.
Monstera plants prefer bright yet indirect light. Direct light can damage their leaves, but full shade may cause an overall lack of vigor.
Try placing your monstera a few feet away from a south-facing or west-facing window or in the interior of a bright room.
Temperature & Humidity
Remember that monsteras are tropical plants! That means they like it warm and humid.
Aim to keep the temperature between 65ºF and 85ºF and the humidity between 40-80%.
While these plants like it warm, they don’t like direct heat sources. Therefore, keep them away from heating vents, fireplaces, and radiators.
If your air is dry, boost the humidity using a humidifier. This will help your monstera, but it will also benefit any of your other tropical houseplants.
As we mentioned above, both underwatering and overeating can cause drooping leaves. Therefore, you need to find the perfect balance of watering enough but not too much.
A good rule of thumb is to water when the top two inches of soil is dry. Simply poke your finger into the soil to check the moisture level.
When you water, thoroughly soak the soil. Also, make sure to empty any excess water that collects in a drainage dish.
For more, see our in-depth guide to watering monstera plants.
While monstera plants aren’t heavy feeders, they will benefit from regular fertilization.
Choose a balanced houseplant fertilizer and dilute it to half strength. Aim to fertilize once in the spring and once again in the summer.
You do not need to fertilize during the fall or winter.
Pests & Diseases
The most common monstera plant pests include sucking pests such as aphids, spider mites, and thrips. If you notice these pests on your monstera, you can spray them with insecticidal soap, neem oil, or horticultural oil.
Now that you know the most common causes of drooping monstera plants, it’s time to take a look at your plant’s environment. You can prevent and reverse wilting leaves by optimizing the soil, light, temperature, and other factors.