Why Are Your Pothos Leaves Curling? - Backyard Boss
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Why Are Your Pothos Leaves Curling?

Pothos is a popular houseplant known for its low maintenance, as it can survive in a wide range of environmental conditions. However, small mistakes while growing this houseplant may lead to problems like curling of its leaves. 

Take a look at the possible reasons why your pothos leaves are curling and find out what you may be doing wrong. 

Causes of Curling Leaves in Pothos 

Image credits: Cottonbro studio via Pexels

Watering Issues 

If the leaves of your pothos houseplant are curling downwards, it could be a sign that you are overwatering them. Look for symptoms like blackening of leaf margins and root rot, which also happens due to overwatering to ensure that this is causing its leaves to curl. 

Sometimes, the curling of leaves could be because of a lack of water. Check the leaves of your plant for curling and crisping up. If yes, then you are probably underwatering your plants. In this case, your plant will seem wilted and droopy because it lacks enough water to flourish. 

Light and Heat Issues 

Are you providing too much light to your pothos? Check for leaves curling upwards and getting yellow. These are the signs that your plant is receiving too much light. Remember, pothos always thrives in filtered or dappled light, not direct rays. 

Heat stress can also be a cause of curly leaves. If you have kept your plants close to heating vents or in direct sunlight, the extra heat will stress them out. Sometimes if the room where you keep your precious plants is too hot for a long time it will affect the health of your plants. 

Pest Problems

If you are watering the plant right and providing it with the right environment, and it still has curved leaves, checking for pests could be your last resort. 

Pests like aphids lead to curling and distortion of leaves as they suck the plant juices. Aphids also excrete a shiny, sticky sap called honeydew which often attracts ants and leads to sooty mold. So, if you have aphids, you will see these signs along with curling leaves. 

How to Fix Curling Leaves in Pothos 

Person watering pothos plant
Image Credits: Dan Jones via Flickr

Now that you know why the leaves of your pothos plant are curling, it is time to fix the issues. The following tips will help you keep your pothos healthy. 

Allow Soil to Dry Between Waterings 

Pothos grow best when the soil is allowed to slightly-dry between waterings. Generally, watering them every one or two weeks is best. As a thumb rule, water your pothos whenever the top two inches of soil becomes dry. Otherwise, wait a few days until it dries to prevent overwatering and root rot. 

Always Use a Pot With Drainage Holes 

Using a pot with drainage holes will prevent soggy soil which leads to root rot. Water your pothos until you see water flowing through the holes. Then, allow all the excess water to flow out of the drainage holes within ten minutes of watering. This process will ensure that your plant receives the required amount of water without rotting the roots. 

Ensure Adequate Humidity for Pothos 

The problem of overwatering will vanish once you start providing the correct humidity levels to your plants. Pothos love humidity (above 40 percent) and cannot thrive in low levels! So, occasionally misting your plants or keeping them in the bathroom will compensate for their moisture requirements. 

Avoid Keeping Pothos in Direct Sunlight

Pothos thrive in bright, indirect light and a temperature between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Some varieties can also survive in low lights. Never keep them close to fireplaces or heat drafts, as it will affect their growth. It is best to keep pothos in a west or east-facing room, about 2 to 3 feet from a window. 

Treating Pests 

In case of any signs of pests like aphids, trim the majorly affected parts of the plant and spray pesticides all over. You can also use insecticidal soaps regularly to prevent insects like spider mites from affecting your plants. 

Treating Root Rot

If you see your pothos leaves curling and there is mold or a foul smell in the soil, it could be root rot. Remove the plant carefully from the soil and check if any roots have become dark and mushy to identify how much damage has occurred. If some roots are still strong and light in color, leave them as it is and cut the rotten ones using scissors. 

Clean the pot thoroughly with mild soap and hot water, or use a new one. Also, discard the wet and moldy soil and add fresh potting mix to the container. Replant your pothos in the fresh potting mix and let it recover. Cut the dead and discolored leaves to allow the plant to focus its energy on growing stronger roots and leaves. Do not water the plant for a week. 

Point to The Problem!

You might get worried after seeing your pothos all sad and curling. But relax, you can save it! Taking care of your plants is a skill that you gain over time. You will figure out the type of light, temperature, and watering setting that works best for your pothos. Meanwhile, you know what to do if you see some leaves curling.

Do you have some tips to revive curling leaves of pothos? Share in the comments below.