Updated: May 8, 2022

Christmas plants are a common sight in many homes during the holiday season. These plants, including poinsettias and Christmas cacti, are popular for their bright colors and festive appearance. However, some plant owners may notice that their Christmas plant leaves are curling, which can be concerning. In this article, we will explore the causes of curled Christmas plant leaves and what you can do to prevent or remedy this issue.


One of the most common causes of curled Christmas plant leaves is overwatering. When plants are watered too frequently or given too much water at once, the roots may become waterlogged, which can lead to root rot. This can cause the leaves to curl and droop as the plant struggles to absorb nutrients and water properly.

To prevent overwatering, ensure that your Christmas plant is planted in well-draining soil and that excess water can drain out of the pot. Water your plant only when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch.


On the other hand, underwatering can also cause curled Christmas plant leaves. When plants do not receive enough water, they may curl and shrivel up as a way to conserve moisture. In severe cases, the leaves may even turn brown and fall off.

To prevent underwatering, make sure to water your Christmas plant regularly and thoroughly. Check the soil moisture level frequently and adjust your watering schedule accordingly.

Temperature Stress

Another common cause of curled Christmas plant leaves is temperature stress. These plants are sensitive to extreme temperatures, especially cold drafts or hot, dry air from nearby heating sources. This stress can cause the leaves to curl and wilt as the plant tries to protect itself.

To prevent temperature stress, keep your Christmas plant away from doors or windows that may let in cold drafts. Also, avoid placing your plant near heating vents or radiators that can dry out the air.

Pests and Diseases

Pests and diseases can also cause curled Christmas plant leaves. Spider mites, mealybugs, and whiteflies are common pests that can infest Christmas plants and cause leaf curling. Fungal and bacterial diseases can also affect these plants and cause leaf damage.

To prevent pest and disease infestations, inspect your Christmas plant regularly for any signs of pests or leaf damage. If you notice any issues, isolate the affected plant to prevent spreading to other plants. You can also use insecticidal soap or neem oil to treat pest infestations, or consult a professional if you suspect a disease.


How often should I water my Christmas plant?

Water your Christmas plant only when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Avoid overwatering or underwatering, as both can cause curled leaves.

Can I revive a Christmas plant with curled leaves?

Yes, in most cases, you can revive a Christmas plant with curled leaves by addressing the underlying issue. Adjust your watering schedule, move your plant to a more suitable location, and address any pest or disease problems. With proper care, your Christmas plant should recover within a few weeks.

How long do Christmas plants last?

Christmas plants can last for several weeks to several months, depending on the variety and care they receive. Poinsettias typically last for 4-6 weeks, while Christmas cacti can live for several years if given proper care.

In conclusion, curled Christmas plant leaves can be caused by a variety of factors, including overwatering, underwatering, temperature stress, pests, and diseases. By identifying and addressing the underlying issue, you can help your Christmas plant recover and thrive throughout the holiday season and beyond.