Prayer Plant Leaves Pointing Down: 9 Reason With Solution

I’ve always found my prayer plant’s behavior to be fascinating since I love plants. Their popular name comes from the magnificent leaves of these tropical beauties, which at night fold up like a pair of prayer hands. My prayer plant’s leaves sometimes start to droop and point downward, however, and that may be alarming.  After doing some research and experimenting, I’ve discovered several reasons why prayer plant leaves might point down, and I’m excited to share them with you.

Why is my prayer plant pointing down?

Prayer Plant Leaves Pointing Down due to several reasons, including underwatering, low humidity, overfertilization, low light, root rot, pest infestation, temperature stress, physical damage, disease, or aging. To fix the issue, you need to identify the specific cause and adjust watering, humidity, fertilization, lighting, or address any pest, disease, or physical damage issues accordingly.


Brazilian rainforest native prayer plants (Maranta leuconeura) are often cultivated as houseplants because of their rich, variegated leaves. Their oval-shaped, up to six-inch-long leaves have eye-catching patterns of green, red, and cream on them. The ability of prayer plants’ leaves to fold up at night, or nyctinasty, is one of their most distinctive characteristics. This action is supposed to aid in shielding the plant from extreme cold and dampness.

However, when prayer plant leaves start to droop and point downward, it can be a sign that something is wrong. In this article, we’ll explore the various reasons why prayer plant leaves might point down and how to fix the issue.

According to a blog post hosted on, these plants are often referred to as Prayer Plants due to their characteristic behavior of folding their leaves up and down throughout the day as they seek light. The leaves may also fold up at night or in response to stress.

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According to information from, these plant exhibits the behavior of opening and closing its leaves in response to changes in light and darkness.

Reason #1: Low Humidity

Tropical plants known as “prayer plants” do well in humid situations. Your prayer plant may begin to droop and its leaves may point downward if the air in your house is dry. Dehydration and wilting may result from the plant losing moisture via its leaves due to low humidity.


You may attempt a number of things to counter low humidity. Use of a humidifier in the space where your prayer plant is kept is one alternative. This will raise the air’s humidity and promote the growth of your plant. As an alternative, you might set a tray of water next to your plant or frequently sprinkle it with a spray bottle. This will contribute to making the area surrounding your prayer plant more humid.

Reason #2: Poor Watering Practices

Poor watering techniques are another frequent cause of prayer plant leaves that point downward. Your prayer plant’s soil may get soggy and the roots may rot if you overwater it. As a result, the plant may not be able to absorb enough nutrients, which may cause it to droop and have leaves that point downward.

On the other hand, if you submerge your prayer plant, it may get dehydrated and suffer from wilting and drooping leaves.


Make sure you’re watering your prayer plant properly if you want to repair bad watering habits. When the top inch of soil on your plant feels dry to the touch, water it. Make sure the soil drains effectively and that the pot has drainage holes to prevent overwatering. If the soil seems to be saturated, you may want to try repotting your plant in some new, fast-draining soil.

Reason #3: Too Wet Soil

In addition to improper watering techniques, too-wet soil may also make the leaves of prayer plants point downward. Too much moisture in the soil may smother plant roots and make it difficult for them to adequately absorb nutrients.


Make sure your plant is in a well-draining container with drainage holes if the soil is too damp. You might try repotting your plant in new soil with sufficient drainage if the soil is already saturated. Before repotting, be careful to get rid of any broken or decaying roots.

Reason #4: Too Much Sunlight

Although prayer plants enjoy bright, indirect light, too much direct light may burn and make their leaves droop.


You may relocate your plant to a location with more shade or use a sheer drape to filter the light to solve the problem of too much sunshine. If your prayer plant is in a window that faces south, you may need to transfer it to a spot with less direct sunlight.

Reason #5: Pests

Prayer plant leaves may also point down due to pests including mealybugs, spider mites, and scale insects. These pests have the ability to drain from leaves, causing them to wilt and droop.


Neem oil, a natural pesticide, or a solution of water and dish detergent may be used to treat pest issues. Follow the directions precisely and take care of your plant as soon as you see the pests.

Reason #6: Root Bound

The roots of a prayer plant may soon cause it to overrun its container. When this does place, the roots may constrict and tangle, which may impair the plant’s ability to adequately absorb nutrients and water.



You may repot your prayer plant in a bigger pot with new soil to free any root-bound plants. Make careful to gently pry out the roots and cut any that are broken or twisted before repotting.

Reason #7: Temperature Fluctuations

Prayer plants may be sensitive to temperature changes and like warm temperatures between 65 and 80 °F (18 and 27 °C). Your prayer plant may begin to droop and its leaves may point downward if your house is too hot or too chilly.


You may relocate your plant to a space with more stable temperatures to eliminate temperature changes. In order to provide additional warmth during the winter months, you may also utilize a heating pad or a space heater.

Reason #8: Nutrient Deficiencies

Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are three nutrients that are essential for the growth and health of prayer plants. The leaves of your plant may begin to yellow and droop if it is deficient in certain nutrients.


Throughout the growth season, treat your prayer plant every four to six weeks using a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer to correct nutritional shortages. Follow the directions precisely and steer clear of overfertilizing, which may lead to root burn.

Reason #9: Aging Leaves

The leaves of prayer plants naturally begin to yellow and droop as they become older. There is no need to be concerned since this is a typical phase of the plant’s development cycle.


Simply cut off old leaves from your plant using clean, precise scissors or pruning shears to repair them. This will promote new growth and maintain the healthy, vivid appearance of your prayer plant.

Prayer Plant Leaves Pointing Down

Reason Description Solution
Underwatering Soil is too dry, causing the plant to conserve water by reducing transpiration Water the plant thoroughly and regularly
Low humidity Air is too dry, causing the plant to not get enough moisture Increase humidity around the plant through misting, humidifier or placing a tray of water nearby
Overfertilization Too much fertilizer or fertilizing too frequently, causing a buildup of salts in the soil Follow instructions on fertilizer package and fertilize only when the plant is actively growing
Low light Not getting enough light, causing the plant to not produce enough energy through photosynthesis Move the plant to a brighter location or use artificial light
Root rot Soil is too wet, causing the roots to rot Check the roots for signs of rot and adjust watering habits accordingly
Pest infestation Pests such as spider mites or mealybugs are present Treat the plant with an appropriate pesticide
Temperature stress Exposed to extreme temperatures Avoid exposing the plant to extreme temperatures
Physical damage Moved around too much or damaged in transit Avoid moving the plant around too much
Disease Infected with a disease such as fungal infections Remove any affected leaves and treat with a fungicide
Aging Natural aging process of the plant No action required

Prayer Plant Leaves Pointing Down at Night

Don’t be alarmed if you’ve observed that your prayer plant’s leaves are facing downward at night; this is just how the plant naturally behaves. In order to capture sunshine throughout the day and protect themselves from decreasing evening temperatures, prayer plants fold their leaves downward at night. Nyctinasty, which goes by the name of this activity, is an indication that your prayer plant is strong and healthy.

Prayer Plant Drooping and Leaves Curling

If the leaves of your prayer plant are curling and drooping, you may have overwatered or underwatered it. Overwatering may lead to the rot of the roots, which prevents the plant from absorbing nutrients. On the other side, underwatering might result in the plant being dehydrated and having its leaves droop and curl.

Prayer Plant Leaves Pointing Up

It’s a positive indication if your prayer plant’s leaves are pointing upward! It indicates that your plant is robust and healthy. The leaves of prayer plants often bend and point upward when they are joyful, displaying their lovely patterns and hues.

Overwatered Prayer Plant

As prayer plants like well-draining soil and may be sensitive to too much moisture, overwatering can be a regular concern. Yellowing leaves, root rot, and drooping foliage are indications of overwatering. Try repotting your prayer plant in new, well-draining soil and cutting down on watering if you think it’s been overwatered.

Prayer Plant Problems

Numerous issues, including insect infestations and nutritional deficits, might affect prayer plants. It’s crucial to keep an eye on your plant and handle any problems as soon as they arise to stop them from becoming worse. Leaves that droop, fading foliage, and insect infestations are typical issues. You may support the growth of your prayer plant by determining the root of the issue and taking the right response.

Prayer Plant Praying

The capacity of prayer plants to “pray”—that is, to fold their leaves upward during the day and downward at night—is one of their distinctive characteristics. The plant’s development cycle naturally includes a trait known as nyctinasty. Your prayer plant is healthy and flourishing when it is actively praying.

Prayer Plant Drooping After Repotting

After repotting, if your prayer plant is drooping, this can be an indication of transplant shock. Root disturbance during repotting may cause stress in the plant and drooping leaves. Your plant should recover in a few days to a week since this is a typical side effect of repotting. Water your plant sparingly, and keep it out of direct sunlight to let it get used to its new home.

How to Remove Dead Leaves from Prayer Plant

Use clean, precise scissors or pruning shears to trim away any dead leaves from your prayer plant. In order to preserve the surrounding foliage, trim the leaf stem just above the plant’s base. Your plant will appear nice and healthy and will promote new development if dead leaves are removed. Make careful to remove the dead leaves from the soil and place them in a compost bin or the trash rather than leaving them where they may attract pests.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are My Maranta Leaves Pointing Down?

Maranta leaves may point downward for a variety of causes, including low humidity, improper watering techniques, excessive or insufficient sunshine, pests, root-boundness, nutritional deficits, and temperature swings. Your Maranta will flourish and show off its stunning leaves if you take care of the underlying problem.

Why are My Plant Leaves Looking Down?

If your plant’s leaves are drooping, it may be an indication of stress or a problem with the environment, such as overwatering, underwatering, inadequate light, low humidity, pests, or disease. Finding the source of the issue is the first step in assisting your plant in healing. Be careful to modify your maintenance schedule as necessary, for as by watering less or more regularly, raising the humidity level, or using pesticides or fungicides.

Why Won’t My Prayer Plant Stand Up?

If your prayer plant won’t stand up, it can be because of a support problem or a more serious problem like overwatering or underwatering, a lack of nutrients, or pests. You might try staking your prayer plant or giving it a support structure to help it stand erect. Taking care of any underlying problems can also aid in your plant’s growth.

How Do You Revive a Drooping Prayer Plant?

Identifying the source of the issue is the first step towards reviving a drooping prayer plant. Drooping prayer plants are often brought on by overwatering, underwatering, low humidity, nutritional shortages, and pests. Take the required action after you have determined the problem, such as modifying your watering schedule, raising the humidity level, feeding your plant, or using pesticides or fungicides. To promote new development, you may also remove any damaged or dead leaves by pruning.

What Does an Underwatered Prayer Plant Look Like?

Dry soil, withering or drooping leaves, brown or yellow leaf tips or margins, and poor development are a few signs of an underwatered prayer plant. Additionally, the plant can become more vulnerable to disease or pests. If your prayer plant has been submerged, make sure to give it plenty of water and change your watering schedule as necessary. To keep the plant from getting dehydrated once again, it’s a good idea to boost the humidity in the area surrounding it.


Prayer plant leaves pointing down can be a concerning issue, but it’s important to remember that there are several reasons why this can happen. You can support the growth of your prayer plant and ensure that its lovely leaves continues to enchant you by determining the root of the issue and taking the necessary steps. Your prayer plant will repay you with magnificent, vivid leaves that fold up at night like a pair of praying hands if you remember to keep an eye on the humidity, watering techniques, sunshine, pests, and other elements that might impact your plant’s health.

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Amelia Clark

I'm Amelia Clark , a seasoned florist and gardening specialist with more than 15 years of practical expertise. Following the completion of my formal education, I dedicated myself to a flourishing career in floristry, acquiring extensive understanding of diverse flower species and their ideal cultivation requirements. Additionally, I possess exceptional skills as a writer and public speaker, having successfully published numerous works and delivered engaging presentations at various local garden clubs and conferences. Check our Social media Profiles: Facebook Page, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Youtube, Instagram Tumblr

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