Why does my Aluminium Plant have curling leaves?

Last Updated: February 8, 2023

If you notice that your Aluminium Plant’s leaves are curling then this may be signalling that something isn’t quite right. The issue may be caused by something in your plant’s environment or something in the care routine.

Luckily, however, curling leaves are often an early sign that something is wrong so it can mean you have caught the issue early which is great! This makes it a lot easier to treat and revive your plant. 

In this article, we will be going through each of the different causes of curling leaves on an Aluminium Plant so that you can get straight to diagnosing and treating the problem.

Underwatering is a common cause of curling leaves

Issues with watering are the number one cause of plant problems, and curling leaves are no different. Consistent underwatering will mean your Aluminium Plant’s leaves will begin curling as this is one method plants use to reduce moisture loss through their leaves.

As the problem progresses and the root system becomes damaged, Aluminium Plants can also begin curling even further. It’s at this stage you might notice some other issues developing such as brown leaves.

Check the moisture levels in the soil as well as inspect the root system to confirm if underwatering is damaging your plant. 

To prevent the issue, you want to adjust how you are watering your Aluminium Plant. You either want to increase the amount of water you give your plant or the frequency at which you are watering. You just want to make sure that the potting mix doesn’t dry out for extended periods of time. 

You also want to make sure that you increase how much you are watering your plant in summer to prevent curling leaves due to underwatering. Not only will the potting mix dry out quicker in warm weather but your plant will be actively growing. 

Low humidity can also cause leaves to curl

Although slightly dry air won’t immediately kill your Aluminium Plant from one day to the next, it can cause curling leaves and brown leaf tips if the issue goes on for a while. This is because curling leaves is one of the mechanisms Aluminium Plants use to prevent moisture loss.

You’ll be happy to hear that there are several different methods you can use to increase the humidity for your Aluminium Plant:

  1. Mist the leaves every few days

    This is something you should build into your regular Aluminium Plant plant care routine as it’s really great for their overall health and can prevent so many issues.

    Not only will it help the fight against brown leaf tips and curling leaves, but it can also be great at removing dust from your plant’s leaves.

  2. Shower your plant for an instant boost 

    This is a more short-term solution but is great for overall plant health as it gets rid of dust and pests that might be secretly living on your plant as well as boosts the humidity at the same time.

    Just make sure not to have the shower on full water pressure as this can damage the leaves or stems on your plant.

  3. Invest in a good humidifier

    Humidifiers are a must-have for any plant parent and are a great investment in the long-term health of your plant!

    They will raise the humidity level to a nice stable level and your worries of brown leaf tips and curling leaves will be a thing of the past.

Heat stress could be causing the curling leaves

Another factor that can cause curling leaves on an Aluminium Plant is exposure to high temperatures. This links in with some of the other issues above as if your plant is exposed to a lot of warm air, it will dry up quickly and your plant will curl its leaves to reduce the amount of moisture that it is losing through its leaves. 

Using a digital thermometer is the best way to spot any changes in temperature in the air around your plant. It may be that hot air formed around sunny windows or cookers, radiators or heating vents are damaging your plant and this is a nice and simple way to check that. 

Digital thermometers can also help you check for cold drafts too which can be pretty damaging to your plant so are a real worthwhile investment.

Curling leaves on an Aluminium Plant can indicate pests

This isn’t such a common problem compared to the others we covered in this article but it’s probably the most worrying and hardest to treat. 

Even if you think you’ve diagnosed the problem as being one of the factors above, we highly recommend that you check for pests anyway. You want to use a magnifying glass to look for actual pests on the leaves, stems and in the potting mix.

You also want to check for signs of pests which include brown or yellow spots, very small holes in the leaves, white powder or webbing across the stems and stagnant or small new growth. 

If you find bugs (of signs of them), wipe each leaf with warm soapy water to try and remove as many as possible. If there are a few parts of the plant that are particularly bad, remove those to cut the size of the infestation. 

We recommend giving your plants a shower and replacing the potting mix. After this, you need to start treating your plant with neem oil and an insecticide to fight the issue. 

It’s important to say that pests can be successfully treated but the chances of doing that are higher the sooner you catch the issue. If the pests have fully taken over your plant then you might need to think about getting rid of it.

Although it can be emotional, there is a high risk of the pests spreading to your other houseplants which you want to avoid at all costs.

You’ll be pleased to know that curling leaves are often an early warning sign and if you can’t spot any other issues, it means solving the problem shouldn’t be too tricky and there shouldn’t be any permanent damage to your Aluminium Plant. 

Check out our Aluminium Plant care guide for more information on other common problems and general care tips to help your plant thrive!

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