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Why is my umbrella plant losing leaves?

Wondering why your umbrella plant is losing leaves? Here are the top causes and solutions to get your umbrella plant healthy again!

I love our umbrella plant. It started as a small bonsai-like plant and has grown into a nice, bushy plant.

We have propagated a lot of cuttings from it and just in general enjoy it perching on a shelf in our guest bedroom.

These are very easy to care for plants, but they can still have problems. Any time that a plant is dropping leaves, it is sending you a warning that something is wrong.

So, let’s talk about why umbrella plants drop leaves and how to fix it!

potted umbrella plant on a table

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Umbrella Plant plant care guide
why is my umbrella plant dropping leaves

Why is my umbrella plant losing leaves?

Wondering why are leaves falling off my umbrella plant? Here are some of the top reasons:

  • Overwatering
  • Underwatering
  • Temperature problems
  • Over fertilizing
  • Lighting problems
  • Potting issues

Watering issues

There are 2 main causes for your umbrella plant to be dropping leaves: overwatering or under watering.

If the leaves appear withered and drooping, it is under watered.

If the leaves appear sagging and mushy, the plant is over watered.

How often do you water an umbrella plant?

Water your umbrella tree when the top 2 inches of soil feel dry to the touch.

Be sure that your pot has drainage holes to prevent water from pooling, which can lead to root rot and leaf drop.

How can you tell if an umbrella plant is overwatered?

Overwatered stems will look limp and mushy. Pull the plant out of the soil and examine the roots – if they are turning black and mushy, the plant is severely over watered and has root rot.

Should I mist my umbrella plant?

These plants don’t need to be misted, but they will tolerate it.

umbrella plant leaves

Temperature problems

Big changes in temperature can also cause houseplants to go into shock and drop leaves. Keep them away from drafts and always keep indoors in the winter.

Over fertilization

Applying too much fertilizer can shock your plant, which can sometimes lead to leaf drop.

Lighting problems

If your umbrella tree gets too much direct sun, it could get sun burned and drop leaves.

Does an umbrella plant like sun or shade?

These plants do best in partial shade or indirect light. Direct sun will burn the leaves.

How much sunlight does an umbrella plant need?

Umbrella plants do best with at least 6-8 hours of bright, indirect light.

new growth on an umbrella plant

Potting issues

If your plant has outgrown it’s pot, it might start dropping leaves to conserve energy.

Do umbrella plants like to be root bound?

Umbrella plants will slow or stop growing when they become root bound. Eventually, it could even kill them. It’s much better to repot when needed.

Should I repot my umbrella plant?

In general you should re-pot once every year or two. Try to stick to repotting in the growing season – spring or summer.

Your plant might not need a larger pot, but could benefit from new nutrients in fresh soil. Gently pull it from the pot, knock off as much soil as possible, and repot in the same pot with fresh soil.

close up of umbrella plant leaves

Is it normal for umbrella plants to drop leaves?

No – dropping leaves is indicative that your plant is in some sort of distress.

Why is my umbrella plant limp?

A limp umbrella plant is probably either over or under watered.

How do you rejuvenate an umbrella plant?

To get your umbrella plant healthy again, first identify the problem. Then, stop or reverse it. I know, easier said than done. But, in most cases, it really is fixable!

Any more questions about umbrella plants?!

Thanks for reading!

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