Rolled leaves on plants: causes and treatment

Rolled leaves on plants are a symptom of stress

Image – Wikimedia / Smartse

Rolled leaves on plants are one of the symptoms that can worry us the most. And not for lack of reasons, since we all like to see the leaves unfolded, wide open, and of their natural color because that means they are healthy.

But of course, when they hook up, something very serious is happening to them. Sometimes it is simply a reaction to excessively high temperatures, but other times we will have to investigate a little more to find out what happens to them.

When to worry about rolled leaves on plants?

There are a number of reasons why sheets fold or roll. Knowing all of them will be of great importance, since they will allow us to take the appropriate measures:


Stress is not only a human reaction, it can also be experienced by plants, although of course they react in different ways. Plants have basically two types of stress:

  • Thermal: or climatological. When temperatures are higher or lower than they can withstand, the sheets can be folded in order to protect themselves.
  • Water: when they lack water, or when on the contrary they have too much. However, they tend to roll the leaves especially when they are going thirsty.

To do? It will depend on the case. For example, If it is a plant that is not used to direct sun, or that has to be in shade, what we will do is protect it from the star king. If it is indoors next to a window, we will have to move it away from it since otherwise it could burn, since the magnifying glass effect would be produced.

If it is a plant that is thirsty, which we will know if the earth is very dry, and in more serious cases also the new yellow leaves, we will simply have to pour plenty of water.

And if on the contrary you are suffering from excess irrigation, We must stop watering for a few days and apply fungicide that carries copper, so that the fungi do not harm it. From then on, we will water when necessary, preventing the soil from remaining flooded for more than a few minutes.

Liquid on the leaves + direct sun

The water on the leaves can burn them if the sun hits them

Water on the leaves can burn them if the sun hits them.

One of the most serious problems but at the same time easier to avoid is the one we cause them when we spray / spray their leaves while the sun is directly on them. Regardless of whether we are wetting them with water or applying a phytosanitary product, the leaves at least can be closedbut they would also suffer burns, and if the situation worsens, the plant would lose part of its foliage, the one that was most exposed to the sun king.

Therefore, whenever you have to do some type of treatment, or if they are outside and we want to cool them in summer with, for example, the hose, It must be done in the late afternoon when the sun is low on the horizon.


There are many pests that attach to the leaves, causing the leaves to fold or curl. Mealybugs, aphids, or white mites that especially attack nightshades such as tomatoes are just some of them. Depending on the size of the plant and the extent of the pest, it will be enough to clean the leaves with soap and water.

Now if the affected plant is large, then it is best to treat it with insecticides, if possible ecological like diatomaceous earth (for sale No products found.) or the potassium soap.


Viruses that affect plants can cause leaves to curl, although this will not be the only symptom. In fact, we can also see chlorotic stains, or mosaic type, as well as a bad general appearance. It may even happen that the new leaves are getting smaller and smaller, or that the fruits do not finish maturing.

Plant affected by virusplant affected by virus

Related article:

How do I know if my plant is affected by viruses?

Unfortunately, there is no treatment. The best we can do is prevent, making sure that we buy healthy plants, and that we provide them with the necessary care.

When not to worry (or not too much)?

We are going to end the article by mentioning those cases in which the sheets appear rolled up, but it is not because of a problem that endangers your life. In this way, we can be calm because taking a few measures will be able to solve:

High temperatures – High degree of insolation

Let’s imagine that we have a plant that, although it has to be in a sunny area to grow, faces for the first time a somewhat warmer summer than has happened to date, or that is taken to a place where the degree of insolation It is very high. One of their reactions may be to fold the most exposed leaves.

It’s bad? If you have water at your disposal, no. But if it didn’t, then we would also talk about water stress, and to solve it we would have to do other things that we have already mentioned before. In any case, and whenever possible, the ideal in this case is to protect it from the sun during the central hours of the day.

Fern leaves

The fern leaves open little by little

The leaves of the ferns open little by little

The Ferns are plants whose leaves, which are actually called fronds, they start being rolled up and little by little they open. This is a natural behavior, and therefore we should not be concerned at all. So my advice is that you enjoy seeing how they develop, because the process is very interesting.

I hope it has been useful to you.

Rolled leaves on plants: causes and treatment

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