Snake plant wrinkled leaves are a bit worrying because the condition is not normal for most snake plants. Fortunately, we have all the reasons for your plant becoming the way it is listed here, and we also have the solutions laid out for you.

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Read this to learn more about all the possible causes of wrinkled leaves and what you can do about them.

Why Does My Snake Plant Have Wrinkled Leaves?

Extremely high or low temperatures, underwatering or overwatering, stress, chemical burns, pests, or fungus are just some of the most common reasons why your snake plant is suffering from wrinkled leaves.

While snake plants can be easy to grow, gardeners can also encounter some issues, such as wrinkled leaves. Wrinkled snake plant leaves can be traced back to a wide number of causes. Here, we will go over all the reasons why your snake plant’s leaves are wrinkling or curling.

– Hot Weather

Believe it or not, even snake plants can suffer from extremely hot weather. Despite its tolerance to high temperatures, the plant can reach a point where it can suffer from the searing heat. This is especially true when the plant is exposed to harsh direct sunlight for more than four hours a day.

The wrinkling effect on its leaves means that it is losing water due to high heat. When this happens, the heat is often the cause of dehydration and water evaporation from the leaves. This leads to further health problems and the eventual death of the plant if not treated in time.

– Frost Damage

Snake plants can experience wrinkled leaves when exposed to low temperatures that are beyond their tolerable limits. This happens often in areas that experience winter seasons.

Snake plants prefer warmth but can be tolerant of the cold up to a certain degree. The low temperatures brought about by the winter season are enough to shock the water molecules inside the leaves of the snake plant. The shock can cause the plant to shrivel up before finally dying.

– Humidity

Snake plants prefer to grow in environments with high moisture air content. When humidity is low, this can result in snake plant wrinkled leaves due to water loss from the foliage.

Cold drafts also contribute to wrinkled snake plant leaves, especially when the air is very dry. When the plant leaves are wrinkled, you can always check if the humidity is low or if they are exposed to cold air drafts, especially if you place your plants indoors.

– Underwatering

An underwatered snake plant can display wrinkled leaves. This is mostly due to dehydration. Wrinkled leaves from lack of water can happen in both cold and hot weather.

Another sign of underwatered plants is the appearance of dry brown tips on the leaves. This could also be a sign that the snake plant is on its way to dying. This is usually a result of underwatering, especially when snake plants are not watered for a prolonged period of time.

– Overwatering

Some snake plants can exhibit slight wrinkling in their leaves when watered too much. This is accompanied by the plant turning yellow. An overwatered snake plant will have its leaves turning soft as well, especially in the areas near its base.

This can lead to root rot and drooping leaves before eventually dying off. When your snake plant leaves yellow and wilt, the culprit is most likely overwatering.

Snake Plant Wrinkled Leaves Resons PlantAmerica

– High Soil Drainage Rate

The texture of your potting soil can be another cause for dry snake plants with wrinkled leaves. When the soil drains water too fast, it can lead to the snake plant becoming dehydrated.

Even if it is drought-tolerant, the snake plant will eventually suffer when its roots do not get enough water. Coupled with high temperatures and infrequent watering, you will end up with a wrinkled snake plant quicker than you can imagine.

– Low Soil Drainage Rate

When your potting soil has a low drainage rate, it can lead to snake plant leaves that look similar to overwatered ones. The wrinkling will be more subtle than dehydration, but this simply means that the wrinkled snake plant has difficulty circulating water all over its system.

As with an overwatered plant, your snake plant can suffer from root rot and yellow leaves due to constant and stagnant water in the soil.

– Low Soil Mineral Content

Soils that have mineral imbalance will leave all plants with irregular growth. This includes wrinkled leaves, deformed foliage, and other unusual plant conditions.

This could also be due to low nitrogen content, which is essential for promoting healthy foliage growth. When you see your snake plant turning a bit wrinkly, you might need to check if it is getting the right amount of nutrition.

– Too Much Sunlight

When your snake plant gets too much sunlight than what it is used to, the plant’s leaves can wrinkle. This is due to the sunlight causing the snake plant’s photosynthesis capabilities to go into overdrive.

This results in curling and wrinkling leaves caused by water loss. The condition becomes highly problematic when combined with high temperatures and infrequent watering.

– Too Little Sunlight

Snake plant leaves are wrinkled when exposed to very little light as well. The leaves start to wrinkle before dropping off. Snake plants drop off their leaves in low light levels to reduce their energy consumption because keeping leaves takes up a lot of energy. If left in this condition long enough, your snake plant can eventually die from dropping too many leaves.

– Stress and Shock

Snake plants can suffer from traumatic events that cause stress and shock. These events can include transportation stress, transplant shock, and sudden placements in new environments.

Stress and shock could also be caused by curious pets and children who play or nibble on the foliage. When the snake plant gets stressed, its leaves can wrinkle from the shock.

– Chemical Burns

Fertilizers are important to your snake plant’s growth, but too much fertilizer can lead to serious health problems. This can be especially true when you apply fertilizers or other chemicals directly on the leaves of your snake plants.

Moonshine snake plant wrinkled leaves are prime examples. When your snake plants start to curl up, dry, and turn brown, then you might need to check if you are applying the right amount of fertilizer or chemicals.

– Pests

Sap-sucking pests can result in your snake plant displaying wrinkled leaves. Some of the most common pests include spider mites, mealybugs, and thrips. These pesky little bugs can easily infest your plants without detection. Pests are normally drawn to snake plants that are vulnerable to attacks, especially those suffering from existing health conditions.

– Fungus

Fungal diseases are some of the subtle reasons that cause your snake plants to shrivel up and die. This condition usually shows up with some wrinkling on the leaves along with red spots and dark brown leaf patches. Fungal infections are often caused by overwatering, which triggers spores to develop and spread.

Care Guide to Preventing Snake Plants With Wrinkled Leaves

Treating snake plants with drooping, curling, or wrinkling leaves is easier than you think; you will only have to place them in a proper environment and make sure they are getting their basic needs met. Let’s look at the solutions based on the reasons above.

– Extreme Weather

You have several options to protect your snake plants from the hot weather. Some of them are applicable for in-ground snake plants while all of them can be used for ones grown in containers.

  • Place them under the shade of other plants and trees.
  • Locate your snake plants in shaded outdoor areas, such as your porch or patio.
  • Cover your snake plants with some gardening nets to protect them from the heat.
  • Bring your snake plants indoors.

– Humidity

Snake plants can easily lose the water in their leaves when the air is too dry. Here are some of the most essential methods you can use to add moisture to the air near your plants.

Care of Snake Plants With Wrinkled Leaves PlantAmerica

  • Mist your snake plants frequently to provide a temporary boost of humidity.
  • Group plants together to increase the moisture in between their foliage.
  • Place your snake plants in areas that often have high humidity, such as your shower or pool area.
  • Slide a large tray full of gravel filled halfway with water under your potted snake plants. This works well for outdoor and indoor potted plants.
  • Purchase a humidifier, especially if your snake plant is indoors.

– Underwatering

Snake plants can tolerate neglect every once in a while, but prolonged neglect can lead to their leaves wrinkling and drying up. Here are some techniques on how to prevent underwatering your plant.

  • Snake plants need to be watered as little as once a week up to three times weekly.
  • Water only when the topsoil is dry by checking the soil daily until you get an average number of days to water the soil.
  • Create a routine that includes watering your snake plants as often as needed.
  • To help you remember, set alarms on days when you have to water your snake plants.

– Overwatering

Too much water can drown the roots of your snake plant and cause root rot. You’ll need to use the following techniques to lessen the risks of overwatering your snake plant.

  • Check the soil of your snake plant consistently to determine how many days go by before the topsoil dries out.
  • Use the length as your watering schedule for the week.
  • Incorporate your watering schedule into your household routine to make it a habit.
  • Reduce watering during the winter season.

– High Soil Drainage Rate

If your soil drains water too fast, then it might not retain enough moisture to keep your plant hydrated. Here are some tips on improving the water retention capabilities of your soil.

  • Work in loamy soil that has slightly higher clay components to help retain water.
  • Add soil amendments, such as clay beads, vermiculite, and sphagnum or peat moss.
  • Place mulch on top of the soil around your snake plants.

– Low Soil Drainage Rate

Soils that retain too much water can suffocate your snake plants and cause root rot. To prevent this from happening, go over the techniques below.

  • Place potted snake plants in containers with adequate drainage holes.
  • Mix more sandy soil into the current soil composition to encourage drainage.
  • Perlite works especially well for potted snake plants in high clay-content soils.

– Low Soil Mineral Content

Wrinkled snake plant leaves can be caused by low amounts of soil nutrients. If you suspect this to be the cause, simply apply the correct amount of fertilizer to your snake plants.

You can choose to use organic ones, such as compost, or purchase synthetic ones from your local garden center. When possible, always select the most organic and environmentally friendly approach to improve and feed your garden soil and plants.

– Too Much Sunlight

Snake plants that are not ideal for too much harsh sunlight can wrinkle up. To reduce the risks, you can use any of the following tips.

  • Relocate your snake plants into partially shaded or shaded areas of your house.
  • Bring your snake plants indoors.
  • Protect your snake plants with some garden nets.
  • Place your outdoor snake plants under taller trees and bushes.

– Too Little Sunlight

When your snake plants get wrinkled from too little sunlight, you can simply place them in areas that receive a high amount of bright indirect light. This is the safest option since they still get to receive light without any harsh exposure to direct sun. A south-facing window is the best location, followed by east-facing windows.

– Stress and Shock

Prevent your snake plant from any stress and shock by using the following techniques.

  • Reduce transportation stress by handling them gently during the entire process.
  • Prevent transplant shock by allowing them to adjust for a few weeks to their new environments before transplanting them.
  • Avoid placing your snake plants in areas that can easily be accessed by children and pets.

– Chemical Burns

Prevent chemical burns on your snake plant’s foliage by applying fertilizers properly into the soil and not on the leaves.

Even beneficial materials, such as fertilizers, can cause the leaves of your snake plants to wrinkle and burn. This applies particularly to synthetic fertilizers. Refrain from splashing other forms of chemicals on the leaves of your snake plants as well.

– Pests

Pests rarely attack healthy snake plants. Here’s the easiest solution to combating pests on your snake plants.

  • Fill a spray bottle with water and some mild dish soap.
  • Close the bottle and shake it.
  • Spray the solution on the affected plants that have spider mites, mealybugs, and thrips.

– Fungus

Fungal infections can easily be treated and prevented with the tips provided below.

  • Fungal diseases can be treated through natural solutions such as applying a mixture of neem oil and mild dish soap mixed in a spray bottle filled with water.
  • Commercial fungicides are also available in many garden centers and are considered safe when used as directed.
  • Fungal infections can be prevented by not overwatering the soil of your snake plants or by placing them in well-draining soil that retains an adequate amount of water.
  • Snake Plant Wrinkled Leaves Reasons and Solutions PlantAmerica

– Frost Damage

Snake plants are easily affected by extreme cold, especially when the temperature is lower than what the plants can tolerate. If you are residing in an area that experiences cold seasons, it is best to place your snake plants in containers. This way, you can easily bring them inside once the winter season comes and take them back outside during warmer seasons.


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