Originally found in Brazil and other parts of the USA, the Calathea is an indoor houseplant known for its beautiful leaves, non-toxicity, and pet-friendly nature. They are usually beautiful when the going is great but sometimes can be stressful to their owners especially when they start dying.
They are often characterised by body-marked leaves with strips of either pink, black, or even white. Because it is an indoor plant, calathea is usually high maintenance, so if you notice your calathea is dying or looking dry, it’s a sign that it has not been maintained properly.
Why Do They Keep Dying
1. Your calathea plant will continue to die if they are not kept properly; as dramatic as those plants are, they require high maintenance to thrive.
2. The calathea will keep dying when it is exposed to intense heat, extremely cold temperatures, over-watering, and under-watering.
3. When the leaves turn yellow, it is a sign that the plant is dehydrated, accompanied by very parched soil and a light pot.
4. Hard water can also be a major factor in why your plant is dying, unlike other plants, the calathea is very sensitive and will react if bad or hard water is used on it.
5. So even after cutting the leaf, the plant will still die if the water is not changed too. Hard water can include water that has some elements like calcium and magnesium in them.
6. Another probability why your plant is dying is because you could be having heavy soil, heavy soil will not allow water to drain fully and this might cause the plant to die.
Calathea Leaves Drooping or Turning Brown or Yellow and A Dying Appearance
What are the causes:
1. Too much sun or heat, overwatering or watering lightly, low humidity. Symptoms include leaves looking brown, hanging downwards with a dying appearance.
2. Watering the plant lightly will cause the plant not to soak up moisture properly, causing the plants to turn brown and become crispy.
3. Direct sunlight will cause the plant to become scorched and appear dry leading to the plants changing colour to brown.
How to Revive a Dying Calathea With Drooping Brown Crispy Leaves
1. Water your plants especially at once, so that the water will drain down the pot. This is a sign that the soil and plant has absorbed moisture fully, this will help the calathea to avoid drooping or turning brown
2. Place your calathea under a shaded environment: since we know that direct sunlight will cause the calathea to parch and change colour, it Is best if the plant is kept under indirect sunlight, greenhouse or anywhere that has shades.
3. Avoid Overwatering the plant, if moisture is excess in your calathea, it will cause the root to rot and kill the plant.
Revive Curling Calathea Due to Cold Temperatures
Because they are mostly found in the rain forests, they have adapted quickly to warm and consistent environments. A decrease in temperature causes the calathea to curl with brown foliage and have a bad appearance.
Because they are sensitive to cold environments, it is best to keep the calathea away from forced air cold air currents like the one found in air conditioners.
Not to forget the importance of keeping the calathea away from direct sources, they should be placed in indirect sunlight.
Revive Calathea with Scorched Leaves
Because calathea plants thrive more in tropical rainforests, they are not able to survive when there is direct sunlight to them.
Even we as humans get sunburned or turn red when we are exposed to direct sunlight, so definitely your calathea will become dry and change colour because it’s losing moisture from the surface of the plant.
The damaged leaves that changed a colour might not come back to life, but they still might not cause damage to the plant.
With time, the damaged calathea will recover and new leaves will appear. The old damaged leaves can now be trimmed.
How To Revive Calathea Leaves From Root Rot
Although calathea needs a lot of water times, the watering can become too much and lead to a condition called root rot. Root rot can cause the root and stem of the plant to become soft, tend to break and kill the plant.
To revive the root of the calathea plant, we need to follow the steps highlighted below
1. Remove the calathea from its root and closely inspect it.
2. If the calathea root appears black, slimy, and foggy, the root is rotting and will have to be trimmed carefully.
3. Some parts of the leaves will also be trimmed to reduce the pressure on the stem.
4. Disinfect the root to kill the bacteria left.
5. Change the pot, use a fresh pot to plant the calathea, and allow it to recover fully.
What To Do With Dead Calathea Leaves.
Since the calathea leaves are already dead, they cannot be revived. To prevent the damaged and dead leaves from infecting the others, dead calathea leaves are pruned.
Pruning is the process of removing excess material from a tree or plant to ensure healthy growth. A dead calathea plant is trimmed so that it won’t infect other parts of the plants that are not damaged.
Materials to use when pruning your dead leaves are Pruning shears, scissors.
Cut leaves at the base where the leaf joins the main stalk with a pair of sharp scissors, Trim away brown leaf edges with scissors by following the natural curve of the leaf. It might not be necessary to remove trimmed leaves because the plant will continue to grow after trimming.
Calathea plants are very high maintenance, so they require extreme care.
Extreme heat or cold temperatures will cause the plants to become damaged and die.
To revive a dying calathea, make sure that the temperatures are moist to survive in, place the plant away from direct sun, avoid overwatering to prevent root rot. The calathea should be grown in homes or places that have indirect sunlight.