Is Your Bird of Paradise Drooping? Here’s How to Fix It
The most common reason your leaves may be drooping is underwatering. When plants lack water, the leaves are unable to support their own weight and droop as a result.
Temperature stress, incorrect lighting, humidity, or pests could all be contributing factors to why your Bird of paradise appears to be drooping.
Are drooping leaves normal in Bird of paradise?
Lower leaves drooping on your Bird of paradise may not be an issue if the drooping is reserved for the lowest, outermost leaves.
These leaves will be the oldest on your plant and might be torn or a bit ragged looking, depending on the age and overall health of the plant. These can be removed for aesthetic purposes if you so wish.
Reasons your Bird of paradise may be drooping
While the Bird of paradise does not like sitting in soggy soil, it also does not like having completely dry soil. In its native climate, the Bird of paradise is exposed to warm, moist conditions almost year round.
Prolonged underwatering may cause distress to your plant, resulting in the leaves becoming crispy. Edges may become brown, especially on older leaves.
To fix your drooping Bird of paradise, provide it with a drink of water.
Make sure all excess water drains first before placing it back in its spot. Be sure to check that the water has completely drained to avoid your plant suffering from root rot.
Lack of turgor pressure
Turgor refers to the force shared between the plant’s cell wall and the cell membrane. This is what is responsible for a plant’s firmness.
It is a physiological tool that helps one plant to maintain its shape and ability to hold up those large leaves that it is so well known for.
When a loss of turgor takes place, the leaves begin to wilt and droop. Turgor occurs when the plant is consuming more water than it is possible to absorb through its roots.
Additional reasons your plant may experience loss of turgor pressure can include low humidity, edema, root rot, over-exposure to sunlight, or overwatering.
As underwatering is usually the main reason behind the loss of turgor pressure, you should see your plant perk up after you have given it a drink of water.
Be sure to check that the plant does not sit in any excess water.
Monitor your plant’s soil. When the top few centimeters dry out, water your plant again. Avoid allowing the soil to dry out completely, as this puts a lot of stress on the plant.
To test the moisture levels in your soil, you can push a finger knuckle deep into the soil. If you find your soil remains damp, but your plant is still visibly drooping, then your plant may be suffering from overwatering instead of underwatering.
If you provide your plant with too much water, the soil will become soggy. In these situations, the roots are unable to absorb any oxygen to function properly. This causes the roots to become soft and mushy before they turn black and die.
Leaves turning yellow can also signal that your plant is being overwatered. Lack of any new growth or distorted growth can also indicate that your plant may be struggling to keep up with the water amounts.
Leaves that develop spots bordered by a yellow ring indicate that an infection may be present beneath the soil, caused by the damp conditions.
It is best to immediately stop watering your plant if you suspect it may be suffering from overwatering.
Checking your plants roots
You’ll want to check your plant’s roots. If they appear okay, phew!
Add some fresh soil to help the existing soil dry out quicker. Repot your Bird of Paradise and consider reducing watering slightly.
If your plant is discovered to have root rot, trim any infected roots. Leave the healthy light roots alone. These will appear light and firm to the touch. Damaged roots will be soggy and may disintegrate to the touch.
Dip the roots into a fungicide to kill any contaminants they may carry. Repot your Bird of paradise and allow it some time to recover.
Poor water quality
If your watering schedule is not the issue, then it could possibly be the quality of the water that is the issue. Tap water can be full of different chemicals and minerals. This can include chlorine, various salts, and fluoride.
The accumulation of these chemicals and minerals can negatively affect your plant.
Where possible, catch rainwater to offer your plant. If this is not possible, buying distilled water or fitting a tap with a water filtration system will help your plant.
Exposing your plant to both extremely hot and cold environments may cause your Bird of paradise to droop.
The Bird of paradise does not like strong winds. Being exposed to hot drafts or placed in line with a heating system will cause the plant to lose a lot of excess moisture through the plant leaves.
If the plant cannot replenish the water loss quickly enough, it may suffer turgor loss and even tissue damage.
Similarly, she also does not tolerate cold environments. Exposing the Bird of paradise to cold conditions, including cold winds and frost, can damage the plant. When exposed to temperatures below zero, the Bird of paradise may even die. Leaves can be seen drooping and may even fall off if exposed to prolonged cold conditions.
To keep your Bird of paradise happy, place it somewhere that is not exposed to strong winds. Places to avoid would be entrances, next to doors, air vents, or fireplaces.
Ideally, place them somewhere warm, where the average temperature hovers around 13°C or 55°F. This will allow their natural environment’s temperature to be mimicked.
Humidity is important to the Bird of paradise as it is considered a tropical plant. If there is a lack of humidity, the surrounding air will be dry.
This can cause your bird of paradise’s leaves to wilt and droop due to a lack of moisture.
If your plant is not well-watered, it will likely become dehydrated as it is unable to cope with the rapid water loss. Leaves may die from dehydration.
Leaves turning yellow can also be a signal from your plant that it is struggling with low humidity and a lack of water.
To increase your plant’s humidity, you can place a pebble tray filled with water below it, or place a humidifier somewhere near your plant. Your plant will also benefit and appreciate a good mist with a spray bottle once a week.
If you have a large collection of houseplants, consider grouping them all together to raise the humidity surrounding them.
Drooping after repotting
Most plants experience some form of shock after being transplanted, and the Bird of paradise is no exception.
To minimize your plants’ recovery time, work gently with your Bird of paradise during the repotting process.
Your plant should recover after a couple of weeks. One should wait to add fertilizer until new growth can be seen.