Avocado leaves droop typically due to Overwatering, Lack of Sunlight, and Transplant Shock. Avocado leaves also droop when the tree is root-bound or underwatered.
Avocado trees are grown for their fruits. Their fruits are rich in a variety of nutrients and minerals. Avocado is a type of berry.
It is not that hard to care for an Avocado tree. But, the tree comes with its own issues. The most common of them being leaf drooping.
Overwatered Avocado plant
Avocado leaves droop mainly due to Overwatering. Avocado plants look droopy and sick when they sit in waterlogged soil for too long.
Overwatering may happen due to one reason or the other. It may happen when you water the plant more than needed.
Overwatering also happens when the potting mix/soil doesn’t drain well. Overwatering also can happen if the pot doesn’t have drain holes.
So, drooping is because of ‘wet feet’, whatever may be the cause. Try to feel the soil/potting mix with your fingers. Water your Avocado tree only when the soil is dry up to two inches.
What does an Overwatered Avocado tree look like?
Overwatered Avocado plant’s leaves become droopy and turn brown. The leaves become saggy but do not look or feel dry.
Initially, the leaves start to go yellow and droopy. You can take a look at the roots to make sure they haven’t rotten yet.
If Avocado roots get rotten, they look brown and mushy. Healthy roots should look white, of course, after you clean ’em with water.
Root rot in Avocado
Overwatered Avocado plants suffer from root rot if the plant isn’t taken care of well. Phytophthora is the fungus that causes root rot in Avocado plants.
Roots get rotten in plants infected by Phytophthora fungus. Such roots are unable to absorb adequate water/minerals from the soil.
This inability to absorb water/minerals is the reason why leaves droop in Avocado plants.
How do you save an Overwatered Avocado tree?
Follow the below instructions if you want to save your overwatered Avocado tree.
- Stop watering your Avocado tree for a week or two if you diagnosed the problem as overwatering.
- Make sure the soil/potting mix drains the excess water away. Add some Perlite to the potting mix to make it porous.
- Ensure that the pot in which the Avocado plant sits has drain holes.
- Respond quickly and try to alleviate the plant by taking necessary actions.
- Prune the Avocado tree back hard if you don’t like the look of the plant. Avocado responds well to hard pruning.
- Apply suitable fungicide if Phytophthora infects the plant.
Lack of sunlight
Avocado leaves also droop if the plant doesn’t get adequate sunlight. Sunlight is one of the most important factors that affect a plant’s health.
Like other fruit trees, Avocado needs adequate sunlight to thrive. Plant it in a place where it gets direct sunlight in the garden.
If you are growing the Avocado tree indoors, place it near a sunny window. Place it near a south-facing window for the best results.
If providing natural light isn’t possible in your house, arrange some grow lights for the Avocado plant.
Root-bound Avocado Tree
Avocado tree leaves droop when it doesn’t get enough space to spread its roots. The tree becomes root-bound and can’t absorb essential nutrients.
Here’s the simple rule: Make sure the pot is at least twice the size of the rootball. And every 2-3 years, give your avocado tree a bigger home by repotting it.
Now, if you’ve got a spacious outdoor garden, it’s usually best to plant your avocado tree in the ground. But if you’re rocking a patio or apartment garden, aim for the largest pot you can manage.
Guess what? Avocado trees are like little pot gymnasts. Starting small and moving up to a bigger pot isn’t a problem. In fact, it’s a stress-buster for your plant and keeps it healthier in the long run.
Keep an eye out for roots sneaking out of the pot’s drainage holes—that’s your cue for a repotting mission.
Transplant Shock in Avocado Tree
Avocado tree leaves droop after transplant if the plant is experiencing transplant shock. The most common reason for transplant shock is root damage.
Be careful when taking your Avocado plant out of the pot. Provide the plant some shade after transplanting to prevent transplant shock.
After you transplant your Avocado plant, water it adequately. Lack of water makes the leaves droop and stunts the growth.
Water consciously. Water your Avocado plant only when the soil dries out up to an inch depth. Damaged roots can easily get infected, so water properly.
Shade the plant
Shade the recently transplanted Avocado tree as it’s quite weak at this stage. Abrupt sunlight might damage the plant.
Arrange some artificial shade or place the Avocado plant near another tree/plant.
Remove all the fruits
Remove all the fruits that your Avocado plant bears. This is to minimize the nutrient/water needs of the Avocado plant.
By doing this, you’ll give the plant the opportunity to revive itself. Remove the fruits using a sterilized pair of pruning shears.
Avocado seedling leaves drooping
Leaves of Avocado seedlings droop when it isn’t watered efficiently. This is influenced to a great deal by the potting mix.
Vermiculite is the best material to grow seedlings. Mix the material into the potting mix properly to avoid watering your Avocado seedling improperly.
Seedlings should not be planted in heavy/clay soil. They need aerated/well-drained soil for thriving. You need to amend the soil for the seedling’s needs.
Underwatering your Avocado plant also leads to droopy leaves in some cases. Although this is not the usual reason for drooping, do consider the possibility.
Water your Avocado adequately and regularly to help it thrive. Underwatered plants’ leaves can’t support themselves, and that’s why they droop.
Check the affected plant’s soil with fingers/soil moisture meter and see if it’s dry. Sometimes, the root ball becomes dry too.
Check the soil with your fingers and water when the top two inches of the soil goes dry.
How do you fix droopy Avocado leaves?
Droopy Avocado leaves are a sign of a sick plant. You need to find the cause and try to fix it as soon as possible to avoid further damage to the plant.
- If the plant has been overwatered for a long time, stop watering the plant for a week or two. Check the roots for any fungal infection. Re-pot the plant into a fresh pot.
- If the plant has suffered transplant shock, see what’s the problem. The most common problem is the plant lacking adequate water. Keep the transplanted Avocado plant away from direct sunlight.
- Care well for your Avocado plant as improper care is the main reason why drooping is seen in Avocado leaves.
- Providing adequate sunlight to your Avocado plant is crucial to help the plant thrive. Place the plant near a sunny/south-facing window.
Happy Growing 🙂