The Spider Plant will always hold a special place in our hearts as it was our starter plant way back! They tend to be quite easy to care for and can thrive in a range of environments. However, a common issue that you tend to find with Spider Plants is that they can become quite droopy or soft if something isn’t right. Usually, this is a pre-warning that more symptoms are about to arrive so it’s a good thing if you have caught it at this stage as it makes fixing the issue a lot easier. In this post, we will guide you through each of the factors that can lead to your plant drooping, as well as how to solve the issue and get your plant looking healthy again!
Overwatering is a common cause of drooping or soft Spider Plant leaves
If the drooping leaves are paired with dark brown spots but the leaves aren’t crispy, then overwatering is the most probable cause. These plants are pretty hardy and can deal with a whole range of environments, including waterlogged soil for some time. However, consistent overwatering will mean their leaves will start to look quite limp as their roots begin to rot and turn mushy. You should be watering your plant around once a week in the hottest months of the year, and less frequently in autumn and winter.
How do I know if overwatering is the cause of the soft droopy leaves?
If you think that you may have overwatered your plant it is best to replace any soggy soil straight away rather than just sit and wait for it to dry up over time. You’ll be able to tell if you have been watering too much as the roots will have turned soft and very dark in colour. You might also be able to smell the stagnant water in the soil as it can be quite poignant.
How do I fix an overwatered Spider Plant?
Make sure to check the moisture levels in the soil before you water your plant each time. This will make sure that you are only giving your plant moisture once the potting mix has had time to dry out.
We like to do this in one of two ways. Firstly, using either a moisture monitor or just our finger to check the water levels in the potting mix. If it is still damp then wait a few days before watering again. You can also lift up your Spider Plant as we mentioned before. Only do this if your plant isn’t that mature as you don’t want to hurt your back or anything whilst doing this.
Drainage issues can also cause droopy Spider Plant leaves
Sometimes it may not be your watering schedule that is causing your plant’s leaves to droop and fall off or your Spider Plant to turn soft, but it might actually be caused by improper drainage. This can either happen because of the soil or because of the pot.
Adding a small amount of perlite can really help to aid drainage and you should always check your pot has enough drainage holes as this will allow any excess water to flow out into either a saucer or planter.
You should also consider using clay or terracotta pots as they are permeable meaning some moisture is able to evaporate out of the sides of the pot. Chances are you bought your Spider Plant in a plastic pot, as they have a lot of advantages for plant shops but they aren’t actually the best for your plants as they keep in every single drop of water.
So sometimes it is worth investing a little more to make sure that the roots of your Spider Plant are not sitting in too much moisture. We love using these terracotta pots from Amazon.
A drooping Spider Plant can also be caused by a lack of water
Too little water can harm your plant in more ways than one and this goes for all plants, not just Spider Plants. It can cause dry leaves, lack of growth and nutrient deficiency. But one of the earlier signs of underwatering is drooping leaves so this is a good warning sign to watch out for.
If you find that the stems and leaves look a little lifeless, it could be because the soil has been dry for too long. Use the methods we outlined above to see how dry the potting mix is.
If you have been underwatering your plant, water it a little every other day for a week. Your first instinct might be to give it loads of water straight away but this can actually be harmful to your Spider Plant if its environment goes from one extreme to the other.
Drooping Spider Plant leaves can also indicate overheating
As well as watering issues, hotspots can also cause issues with your plants and might be the reason that your Spider Plant is drooping or turning soft. If your plant is very close to the window, then during summer that intense light can make that spot a lot warmer than the rest of your house which means you might not even realise a hotspot has formed.
If your plant is being exposed to a lot of heat, it will lose the moisture a lot quicker and will droop and become limp as a result. Using a digital thermometer is the best way to really know how the temperature is fluctuating around your plants and can help you find a better spot to avoid further damage to your plant.
Those are the main reasons why your Spider Plant has started to droop down or turn soft. If there are no other problems visible on your plant, then you should start to see the problem reverse in a few days and your plant should look healthy and happy again. Make sure to keep a close eye on your Spider Plant over the upcoming weeks to check that no other signs of distress are starting to develop and that there are no more drooping or soft leaves.
To learn more about how to best take care of your plant, check out our Spider Plant care guide.