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Money Tree Leaves Curling? 9 Causes With Quick Fix!

The leaves of your money tree may start curling, signaling an issue. This article dives into why this happens and what you can do about it.

Money tree leaves curl due to low humidity, underwatering, or too much direct sunlight. Providing adequate water and placing the plant in a well-lit area helps fix this. Temperature changes and pests can also cause this issue.

The first step to fixing curly leaves in the money tree is identifying the problem. Only if you can identify the issue can you find a way to fix it.

If you have trouble uncovering the exact problem, keep reading as we explain each problem in detail and help you identify and fix it.

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) curling leaves

I have done my best to address all of your concerns in the article below. However, if you still have any questions or are confused about the article, you can receive personalized one-on-one assistance from me by leaving a comment below. I will respond to your comment within a few hours.


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What causes money tree leaves to curl?

There can be several reasons behind the curling of leaves on your money tree. We have listed the possible causes below. 

  • Underwatering
  • Low humidity
  • Pest infestation
  • Too much sun
  • Temperature fluctuations
  • Wrong soil mix
  • Improper fertilization
  • Root rot
  • Wrong pot size

Let’s discuss these issues in detail and figure out how to fix them.

1) Underwatering causes the Leaves to Curl Inward

Without enough water, the money tree will fail to perform daily activities or absorb nutrients from the soil. The money tree requires enough nutrition from the water and soil to keep itself healthy and for more growth.

When your money tree gets insufficient water, it dehydrates, and the leaves start curling and drying.

Although money trees can handle infrequent watering, but you should not neglect it. You can devise a watering regime, but never water without checking the soil.

It will help if you water your money tree when the top layers of the soil have become dry. Ensure that you water your plant thoroughly so the excess water starts draining out of the drainage holes.

Also Read: How Often Should I Water My Money Tree? (Money Tree Water Requirements)

2) Money tree leaves curls due to Low humidity

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) watering

The money trees are tropical plants that enjoy a lot of humidity. In their native land, they are exposed to high humidity levels, so the humidity level should be at least 50% for them to thrive.

If the money tree is exposed to low humidity levels, the plant will lose moisture and dry in no time. In addition, the plant leaves will start curling due to a lack of humidity.

Therefore, you must ensure that the humidity is not too low for your money tree. You can increase the moisture of your money tree in multiple ways. You can choose the one that suits you the best.

Humidifiers are the easiest way of increasing humidity levels in households. For example, if you place a humidifier near your money tree, it will increase the humidity of that area, which will help the plant. Humidifiers are a convenient and easy way of maintaining the correct humidity level inside your house.

If you don’t have a humidifier, consider using a Pebble tray by putting some pebbles on a tray and filling it with water. Then, place your money tree on the tree and let the water evaporate to give moisture and increase the humidity around the plant.

You can place your money tree in other rooms of your house with a higher humidity level, such as the bathroom, kitchen, or basement. Check that the plant gets enough light wherever you keep it.

3) Pest infestation causes the leaves to curl down

Pests tend to infest tropical plants, so the money tree is not an exception and can get infested by pests such as mealybugs, spider mites, aphids, and thrips.

Most pests feed on the sap of the plant and absorb all the nutrients out of the plant. Therefore, it causes a nutrition deficiency in the plant, which causes the leaves to curl.

If you have a pest-infested money tree, you must take it away from the other plants and treat it.

Place your money tree under running water or wipe the plant’s leaves with soapy water. You can also apply rubbing alcohol on the affected areas or use an organic miticide and neem oil to remove the pests.

If you plan on using a chemical pesticide, make sure it doesn’t contain toxic chemicals that can harm your money tree.

Also Read: Does A Money Tree Attract Bugs? (Common Bugs+How To Get Rid Of Them)

4) Money tree leaves curling due to Too much sun

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) turning white

The money tree requires a lot of light, but we are not talking about direct sunlight here.

If you expose your money tree to direct sunlight, its leaves will get scorched and curl. Therefore, keeping the money tree away from direct sunlight is best if you want to see it healthy.

Find a bright spot in the house with indirect sunlight and place your money tree there.

However, the plant will enjoy if you let your money tree remain under the direct sun during the morning and late afternoon. But make sure you bring it under indirect sunlight during the rest of the day when the sunlight is harsh.

You can place the money tree near a window with enough indirect light. If your house doesn’t get enough natural light, consider using artificial light, also known as grow lights, to provide sufficient light to your money tree.

However, do not deprive your money tree of light, as it can cause different problems in the plant.

Also Read: How Much Light Does A Money Tree Need? (Money Tree Light Requirements)

5) Temperature fluctuations can lead to curling of leaves

Temperature fluctuations can bring stress to your money tree. The money tree enjoys temperature levels between 65-80°F.

During winter, the temperature levels suddenly drop. If your money tree is exposed to low temperatures, its leaves will curl.

The temperature must remain constant for the money tree to stay healthy. Therefore, you should avoid exposing the plant to cold drafts during winter and keep it away from heating sources such as a fireplace or furnace.

If you want to check the temperature inside your house, you can use a thermometer. Avoid placing it in an area where the plant gets exposed to temperature fluctuations or low temperatures.

6) Wrong soil mix can make money tree leaves wavy

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) leaves drooping

Using the wrong soil can have a detrimental effect on the health of your money tree. Therefore, you should understand the soil requirements of the money tree and choose a soil that suits its needs.

If you are using soil that does not suit the money tree, it will retain too much water or not hold enough water.

Too much water in the soil will keep the roots wet for a long time and invite pests. Your plant will start suffering from root rot if this condition continues.

On the other hand, soil that does not hold the required water will make the plant dry and weak. These will lead to the curling of leaves.

Choose a well-draining soil that allows air to flow between the roots. Ensure the soil contains all the nutrients your money tree needs.

Also Read: What Kind Of Soil Does A Money Tree Need? (+Best Soil Mix)

7) Improper fertilization can lead to curly leaves in a money tree

If your money tree is not getting enough fertilizer, it will not get enough nutrition for its growth. The plant might also become weak due to lacking nutrition, and its leaves can curl.

The soil loses its nutrition over time, and it is essential to add nutrition with the help of fertilizers. You can opt for a well-balanced fertilizer(I prefer Jack’s classic fertilizer on Amazon), dilute it to half-strength, and apply it on the money tree once every two weeks.

Remember to fertilize the money tree during the growing season and not during the dormant period, which is winter. Fertilizing in winter can burn the roots and curl the leaves as well.

Also Read: Does Money Tree Need Fertilizer? (How Much, How Often & Best Pick)

8) Money tree leaves curling inwards due to root rot

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) leaves turning yellow

One main reason behind root rot is overwatering. This problem can occur in all plants and is a common one as plant owners often fail to understand the water requirements of their plants.

Root rot is when the roots remain wet for an extended period and become brown and mushy. The leaves of the plant can curl due to root rot.

The money tree requires a lot of water as it is a tropical plant, but it does not like to sit in the water for a long time.

If you don’t have a sound drainage system for your money tree, that can also lead to overwatering.

If you doubt that your money tree has root rot, check its roots.

If you want to treat root rot, you must repot the plant and eliminate the damaged roots, leaves, or stems.

To prevent root rot, you can follow a watering schedule after assessing the water requirements of the money tree. However, it would be best not to water mindlessly without checking the soil first.

If you want a sound drainage system for your money tree, you must use well-draining soil and pot with proper drainage holes.

9) Choosing the wrong pot size can make your leaves curl

If you are using the wrong pot size for your money tree, it can lead to many problems for the plant.

If you use a pot that is too small for the plant, it will become rootbound. When a plant is rootbound, its roots fail to function well and don’t get the required nutrition.

So, if you notice the leaves of your money tree curling, a wrong-sized pot might be the reason behind it.

In the case of a larger pot, it will retain a lot of water, leading to overwatering and root rot. It will also cause curling leaves.

Therefore, you should use a pot that is neither too big nor too small for your money tree.

If your money tree has outgrown its current pot, you need to repot it in a pot larger than the previous pot.

It would be best to repot your money tree at least once every three to four years to keep it healthy and prevent it from becoming rootbound.

Also read: What Happens If You Put A Plant in A Pot Too Big?

How to prevent curling leaves on the money tree?

Money Tree (Pachira Aquatica) New leaves

If you take care of the money tree’s requirements and make sure not to do something that can cause damage to it, you will be able to avoid the curling of leaves. 

Here are a few points that might help you. 

  • Place your money tree where it gets bright and indirect sunlight throughout the day. 
  • You can place the money tree under direct sunlight only in the morning and late afternoon when the sunlight’s intensity is the lowest.
  • Figure out a watering schedule after assessing the water requirements of your money tree. The water requirements might vary depending on the size of your plant and other external factors.
  • When the humidity gets very low for your money tree during the winter, don’t neglect it and use a humidifier or place it on a pebble tray to add moisture to your money tree.
  • Fertilizing is vital for the growth of the money tree, so do not keep it. Instead, use a well-balanced fertilizer to fertilize the money tree during the growing period. Avoid fertilizing in the winter, as it can be harmful to the plant.
  • Spray neem oil solution on the money tree every month to keep the pests at bay. If pests have already infested the plant, you can use the same remedy but spray it every day for two weeks.
  • Instead of using regular tap water that might contain harsh minerals, use filtered water or rainwater.
  • While repotting, use the right-sized pot that is 2″ bigger than the size of the plant.
  • Use well-draining soil to keep the money tree healthy.
  • Avoid exposing your money tree to sudden temperature changes.

Reference: WIKIPEDIA.


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