Why do Schefflera Leaves Curl?

Are you noticing your Schefflera leaves curving? There are a variety of reasons why your leaves are beginning to appear dry or changing color, as well as curving.

I’ve observed this happening in my facility and have discovered precisely what I should look out for to bring it back!

The most likely cause would be that the plant is either underwatered or overwatered. Be sure that the plant is placed in a draining container and that it is watered after the top inch of soil has dried. Another reason could be inadequate lighting conditions. Schefflera plants prefer light to medium. ensure that it is placed close to a window that is well lit but not right within the window.

If you’re having trouble with similar plant issues You’re in luck as I’ll help you solve the issue.

Causes of Schefflera Leaves Curling

In this article, I’ll walk you through possible causes , and then show you how to address the issues so that you can start implementing them immediately.


The water you give your plant can cause the soil and plant to become dry. Without water, those leaves on your Schefflera begin to appear dry and curly. They’ll appear dry and crisp to the feel.

It is possible to determine whether your plant requires water in by using a variety of methods. The most effective method is to put your finger directly into the soil inside the plants. If you don’t notice any moisture, then the plant is not kept hydrated.

How to Fix

Regularly watering your plants will prevent the soil to stop drying out. If you’re not sure what amount to water your plant, you can use a lower the watering.

If your plants has drainage holes at the bottom, you can place it in a shallow , high side dish and add water over the dish’s bottom. The soil and the plant will only “drink” up what it requires.

After an hour , drain any remaining water in the dish. If the dish does not contain a drain hole at the bottom, then watering it from the top is the most effective solution.

Overfeeding with Fertilizer

Fertilizers can help your plants develop if it is used properly, but when you apply too much or apply it frequently, it could hinder growing your plants.

It could cause the leaves to burn which can cause the leaves to shrink and eventually die. It is also possible that the soil’s top appears to have an emulsion or crust the top. This could indicate that you have probably over-fed your plant with excessive fertilizer.

How to Fix

Be sure to use an indoor water-soluble fertilizer plants. Follow the directions for mixing the correct ratios. You can also use an indoor time-release fertilizer. plants. They look like tiny sticks.

In the event that your Schefflera is located in low to moderate light, you should fertilize it once every 3 months. If it’s in direct sunlight, then it is recommended to fertilize your Schefflera every two months.

If you think you may have recently overfed your plant , make sure that it’s in a pot that is well-drained and in the coming days, you’ll need to water the plant.

It is not a good idea for it to be sitting in water, but to drain out of the container like you are washing the soil of fertilizer that is too much.

If the plant continues that it is suffering from excessive feeding, it is possible to try repotting it with fresh soil. Make sure you wash the roots thoroughly before placing them in a new pot filled with fresh soil.

Schefflera and other plants

Lack of Nutrition

If your plant doesn’t receive sufficient Calcium (Ca) The upper leaves will be thin and irregularly shaped due to Calcium is the main ingredient that transports nutrients from the roots to the leaf.

Boron is a component of Calcium to provide nutrients to the plant . without it, you’ll notice leaves with yellow spots.

Insufficient Zinc can stop the growth of your plant and will cause them to turn become yellow. If you don’t have these nutrients, you’ll begin to notice curly and yellowing leaves.

How to Fix

To ensure that you’re Schefflera is growing in a healthy manner, be sure to give it sufficient fertilizer at the time of its greatest growth that is from April to September.

It is possible to fertilize your plants up to every two weeks for maximum growth, but you should every month during the peak growth times and every 2 to 3 months in the winter months.

Temperature Stress

Schefflera plants prefer temperatures of 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (15-26degC) (Source: Clemson University). They are not suited in the outdoors If you reside in an area where temperatures fall below 60 degrees (15degC).

It is possible to freeze your plant if you leave it outside in colder temperatures during winter.

If the temperatures in your region remain above 80degF (26degC) you could be causing dehydration to your plant due to increased transpiration which causes the leaves drying out, and become curled.

How to Fix

Be sure to bring any Schefflera plants that are outside in the event that temperatures fall below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (26degC) to avoid harm. The same is true on days when temperatures rise over 80degF.

In the event that you’re Schefflera was exposed to extreme temperatures and has dehydrated, bring it inside. Cut off any crispy brown stems and leaves.

Then, thoroughly soak the soil, ensuring the soil has adequate drainage so that the excess water drains.

Root Rot due to overwatering

Root rot occurs when roots are in excess water or in a soil that is too moist for a prolonged duration. It could also occur when the plant isn’t located in a drainage system that is well-maintained.

The leaves are affected by overwatering. They curled because the roots not carry nutrients anymore to the leaves , and they curled to preserve the nutrients that they already have in their bodies.

How to Fix

When you plant your Schefflera, you do not compress the soil excessively. The soil should be able to fill the container.

The compacted soil can cause soil to be difficult to drain correctly. Don’t allow plants to remain in water for too long, and ensure that the pot is equipped with drainage holes.

If you think your plant has root rot, you’ll need to plant it again in clean dry soil.

It is also necessary to get rid of the roots that are rotten by cutting them out of the plant prior to repotting it.

Water Quality

The quality of the water in your home could influence the health of your Schefflera plant. The plant may be sensitive to water from the tap due to the presence of chlorine, salt and fluoride.

They may harm plants by leading the tips of leaves to turn brown, and also by damaging the roots.

The minerals may build up in the soil, preventing proper nutrition, and can cause plants’ leaves to curled.

How to Fix

If you are able, try watering your Schefflera by collecting rainwater. Rainwater is the best option for plants since it’s what they’d get in their natural surroundings.

If this is not feasible, you can use distilled or filtered water as they have less contaminants than water from the tap.

Too Much Direct Sunlight

Direct sunlight may cause too much stress to your plant , and it can start drying it out. The dehydration of the plant caused by sunlight can cause leaves to dry out and start to curl because of a lack of water.

How to Fix

Schefflera plants prefer medium light. The Schefflera plant prefers to be surrounded by a lot of light, but not directly shining at it.

The best place to put it is close to a window that gets lots of light, but don’t put it directly into the window.

Set it just only a few feet from the window. They can be planted in a shaded area which only gets sunshine for a portion of the day too.


The two most frequent ailments of Schefflera plants are leaf blight as well as leaves spots (Source: University of Florida).

Both have small black spots on the leaves which grow quickly and eventually kill the leaf. Both of them are result of the plant being excessively moist for a prolonged period of time, making it easier to contract fungal or bacterial diseases.

Leaf Blight is a bacterial infection that creates small black spots of water on leaves. It can eventually lead to the loss of leaves and reduce the overall appearance of the plant.

Fungal leaf spots may be seen in large black spots of water soaked in the leaves of plants. Both of them affect all of the plant in contrast to root rot, which begins at the bottom and then spreads upwards.

How to Fix

If you are noticing any of the hallmark symptoms of illness, Follow these steps:

  • Remove any damaged or dying stems and leaves
  • Take your plant out of the pot in which it is currently placed.
  • Make use of a brand new pot or clean a previously used one.
  • Be sure to use fresh soil to ensure that you do not transmit the disease.
  • Take as much soil off the roots prior to the repotting

Be sure to follow the correct methods of watering to avoid further destruction. Clean or dispose of all containers or soil that is exposed to the disease, so that it does not propagate.

Find a different article about the reason why Schefflera leaves turn black, and the best ways to stop it.

Lack of Light

When your Schefflera is under low-light conditions, the leaves begin to shrink. In the absence of sunlight, it to be deficient in nutrition, and it no longer is strong enough to produce strong leaves . They are more inclined to curl rather than being flat.

How to Fix

Set your Schefflera close to a window that is bright. Be sure that it gets plenty of light from the window , but don’t place it directly in the window.

If it’s located in a semi-shaded area, move your home closer to your light source, or to an area of your house that gets the morning sun.

Insect Infestation

The most frequent pests are gnats, aphids, mealybugs, and mites. Each of them can cause serious destruction to plants.

Aphids are often overlooked until a smudge appears in the plants. Gnats can be spotted due to their flight and they can leave the plant and fly around your home.

Mealybugs are found on stems and leaves. The mealybugs give the plant fluffy white appearance. Mites can make your plant appear like spiderwebs.

How to Fix

Be aware of your plants as you water them. Do a an inspection of the leaves to check for insects.

If you find it, the first step is to wash all insects from the plant. If there is an infestation, you could apply neem oil for treating the plant. Follow the instructions on the label.

Low Humidity

Leaf curling is caused by low humidity due to the fact that it starts drying the plant too quickly.

The Schefflera is likely to lose excessive amounts of liquid through the leaves, and is unable to draw more water from its roots, so it will curled its leaves to stop excessive loss of moisture. Schefflera plants prefer environments with humidities of more than 50%..

How to Fix

Be sure to keep Schefflera plants out of the drafty air vents and areas of your home to avoid drying out.

You can also place the plant in a tray made of pebbles that are filled with water to maintain the humidity.

Try spraying your Schefflera using the spray bottle every day to keep it moist and stop curving of the leaves. It is also possible to install a humidifier in your home to boost the humidity to 50% or more.

Leaves Curling After Repotting

If you plant your Schefflera leaves, they may become curled. The roots are adapting to the change and could have difficulty to absorb sufficient nutrients or water.

How to Fix

Drink plenty of water at least a couple of days prior to when you repot to ensure you’re beginning with the most optimal nutrition. Repot and then allow the Schefflera the time it needs to adapt to the new pot and develop an entirely fresh root structure.

Repot only lightly to avoid curving of the leaves due to excessive watering as the roots aren’t able to effectively utilize all the water immediately.

How to Prevent Schefflera Leaves Curling

  • Create a proper routine for watering and examine the soil on top to ensure it’s dry prior to watering. This will stop excessive and under watering.
  • Make sure to keep the Schefflera in a bright window, but not directly in the window to avoid excessive direct sunlight.
  • Make use of rainwater or water that has been filtered to avoid the build-up of nutrient within the soil.
  • Maintain humidity at or at or above 50%, or include to the methods of increasing humidity
  • Allow it to rest and reestablish its root system following the repotting process.
  1. What is the reason my soil appears like it’s crusty?

It can appear as if that it’s got a crust over it if it’s been fertilized too much. To avoid overfertilization, make sure you follow the guidelines for plants in indoor environments and dilute them using water in the right proportions.

Don’t fertilize too often to avoid the accumulation on the soil. In the summer and spring you can fertilize your Schefflera regularly, as often as every two weeks. In colder months you should fertilize your plants every few months instead.

  1. What is the reason my Schefflera leaves drying out and turning brown?

The leaves that are drained of water can appear dry, crisp beginning to curl, and then turn brown. Make sure to water your Schefflera once the soil on top is dry. Create an irrigation routine to avoid the leaves from getting submerged.

If the humidity of your home is less than 50%, it could cause the leaves to dry and brown. You can increase the humidity of your home by installing humidifiers and misting the Schefflera plant every day with water.

  1. What’s causing the black spots in my Schefflera leaves?

Black spots may be caused by fungal or bacterial disease. It is necessary to plant the Schefflera plant.

It is essential to clean the pot as well as clean, fresh soil to eliminate all diseased leaves as well as soil, from your plant. When repotting, adhere to the correct watering schedule to stop the spreading of the disease.



Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)