Birds of paradise are large tropical plants that feature long stems, massive fan-shaped leaves, and spiky white, orange, and purple flowers that resemble the feathers of tropical birds.
These plants are easy to look after, as long as you water them properly and have a lot of sunlight to offer.
But many who care for these plants find that they suddenly become droopy.
And when this happens there is usually one thing to blame.
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Why Is My Bird Of Paradise Drooping?
Your bird of paradise is most likely drooping because it has not been watered enough.
Birds of paradise plants need plenty of water and they will quickly droop if they aren’t getting enough.
Larger plants typically need more watering than smaller ones and they really need that water to soak in and saturate the soil so their roots can access it.
Birds of paradise are large plants with enormous leaves and they need to draw lots of water up through their roots to keep those leaves green and healthy.
When your plant is not receiving enough water, its leaves will begin to droop, turn yellow and eventually fall off.
This is a defense mechanism that allows your bird of paradise to conserve water by shedding leaves and reducing the surface area where water evaporates from.
What To Do If Your Bird Of Paradise Is Drooping
The first thing you should do if your bird of paradise is drooping is to test the soil with your finger to see how dry it is.
Stick your finger into the soil about two to three inches deep and if the tip of your finger is not making contact with moist soil, then it is too dry and the plant needs water.
It can be normal for the top couple of inches of soil to dry out but if it’s not moist below that, then it’s too dry.
Also, remember that your bird of paradise is more susceptible to drying out during the spring and summertime.
If It Is Not Too Dry
If your bird of paradise has not dried out too much then it probably just needs a good watering.
Give its soil a really good soaking and then don’t water it again until the top one or two inches of soil has dried out.
In general, you should be watering this plant once every week or two.
But you may need to water it even more if it is very big or if it’s getting a lot of heat and sun.
If Your Bird Of Paradise Has Completely Dried Out
If you test the soil with your finger and it is very dry below a depth of three inches, then it has been allowed to dry out too much and you will need to soak the entire pot.
Submerge the plant in a bucket of lukewarm water right up to the brim and weigh it down so it doesn’t start floating around.
Allow it to soak up the water for a couple of hours until the soil is drenched all the way through.
This should rehydrate your bird of paradise and stop the drooping.
Just try not to let it dry out so much in the future.
How To Prevent Your Bird Of Paradise From Drooping?
To prevent your bird of paradise from drooping, you’ll have to make sure it is growing in the right conditions.
Give It Space
Make sure your bird of paradise has room to grow.
The ceiling should be tall enough to allow it to grow several feet tall.
Bird of paradise plants love full sun.
Put them in a spot where they can receive as much direct sunlight as possible.
They can also survive in environments with lower levels of indirect light but they will not flourish.
These plants prefer high humidity.
You can increase your home’s humidity with a humidifier or move your bird of paradise to a more humid room, such as a bathroom.
Beware Of Drafts
Keep this plant away from drafty doors, windows, or air vents.
Temperature changes can cause it to droop or split its leaves.
Water And Temperature
It’s best to allow your bird of paradise to tell you when it needs water.
Allow the top two or three inches of soil to dry out before you give it water.
Also, be careful not to overwater it.
Use a pot with good drainage so the plant’s roots are never waterlogged or sitting in soil that’s too wet.
The bird of paradise can also be sensitive to the chemicals that build up in tap water.
To avoid this you can use mineral water or collect rainwater.
You can also leave tap water to sit out for at least 24 hours in an open container so that the chemicals evaporate from it.
This plant also likes a temperature that will be comfortable for most homes (65-80 degrees F).
Soil and Fertilization
Your bird of paradise will thrive in organic, well-drained soil that is rich in nutrients.
These plants are also heavy feeders and benefit from a balanced fertilizer (1:1:1), with equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.
Apply fertilizer about once a month in winter and about once every two weeks in spring and summer.
The bird of paradise is a gorgeous tropical plant that is pretty easy to take care of.
These plants love the heat and sun and can grow to be massive.
This can lead to them needing a lot of water and if they don’t get it, they can quickly start dropping.
By acting quickly and soaking your plant or at least giving it a good watering you can usually reverse the drooping with no lasting negative effects.