Plant Leaves Splitting: 7 Reasons Why and What you Can do

Environmental factors or physical factors can split leaves. They are frequently irreparable and might be unattractive. They might, however, be given infection treatment and left on the plant.

split plant leaf

Strong winds, low humidity, nutrient deficiencies, and location all cause plant leaves to split. Larger leaves frequently split along the leaf veins, and the split cannot be repaired. In order to inhibit fungus growth, cinnamon can be applied to leaves that have become brown along the split.

Other than the Monstera plant, a genus includes 45 species of flowering plants distinguished by their split leaves. Any other plant, whether in your house or business, may have splitting leaves.

We have included the things you can do and what to check for when plant leaves split since we are aware that these things occur.

What Causes Plant Leaves To Split?

When your plant’s leaves are splitting, you can tell as a gardener with ease. You observe that the leaves on your plant appear very thin or that the edges of the leaves have broken.

Splitting plant leaves is a normal, healthy occurrence and is not a sign of any kind of serious illness or ailment.

Species-specific factors can cause leaves to split on houseplants, but an unfavorable growing environment is nearly always at blame. The following are the main factors that break plant leaves:

1. Strong Wind:

Plant leaves that are strong enough to the wind may split. High winds’ downward pull produces leaf splitting in a variety of ways.

Instead of the wind itself, one form of leaf fracture that is frequently observed is caused by the weight of the water inside the leaves.

Depending on the plant species and the amount of water available to the plant, the water content of a leaf can range from 45% to 75%. It is known as “gravitational stress” by botanists.

You might observe the split beginning at one end of a vein and moving down to another one when this pressure generates rips in the leaves. Because one side of the leaf is being pulled by the wind more than the other, this occurs.

Banana and other large-leaved plants have leaves that are intended to shatter in the event of high winds. Leaf splitting may be expected in large-leaved plants, especially in spaces with lots of fans or natural airflows.

2. To Much Sun:

When you expose your plant to too much sunlight and the leaves open up, plant leaves split. What transpires is that as a result of sunshine heating up the natural moisture within the leaf, it dries out and causes splitting to emerge in the leaves.

Maintaining cool, shaded conditions for your plants will help prevent this. Simply relocate them nearer to a tree or structure if they are already in a pot, and cover them with fabric to shield their leaves from the elements.

3. Low Humidity:

The leaves of a plant resemble human fingernails. When they expand, a leaf sheath that surrounds them grows on top of them. They cut into the sheath as they force their way through. The leaf splits as the severed edges grow together.

Because of the sheath’s increased thinning due to humidity, the leaves are more susceptible to splitting. Low humidity frequently causes plants, including indoor orchids, to have broken leaves in the middle of the leaf.

Make sure your plant is receiving enough water, and that the trays that are stored under it to improve moisture are filled to the proper level.

If your plants are in a dry environment, one technique to enhance humidity is to mist the leaves of the plants in the morning.

Amazon’s Geniani portable humidifier offers the perfect level of ambient humidity for strong plant development. Clicking here will take you there.

4. Underwatering

When a plant does not receive the necessary amount of water for optimal growth, underwatering results.

Strong winds, high levels of sunshine, and low humidity all contribute to the plant receiving less water.

In order to get nutrients to the sections of the plant that require them, water is utilised by plants. Nutrient deficits result from low water content in plants because the transport mechanism is compromised.

5. Nutrient deficiency

Using Plant NutrientsNitrogen (N)Nitrogen helps plants grow lush, emerald-green leaves. Too much leads to poor root development and limited flowering.
Magnesium (Mg)encourages the production of sugar and green leaves. It plays a crucial role in the cultivation of several crops because it facilitates the calcium intake of the plant.
Calcium (Ca)encourages the development of new cells, growth, and disease resistance in plants.
Boron (B)It is essential for the creation and stability of cell walls as well as the preservation of the structural and functional integrity of biological membranes in plants.

My plants’ leaves, stems, and general health have been strengthened thanks to the cost-effective liquid fertilizer Purived. Clicking here will take you there!

6. The Plant’s Location

You may occasionally unintentionally harm your favorite houseplants. Damaged stems, broken branches, or broken leaves are just a few of the various ways that these accidents can harm the plants.

Here are a few instances of mishaps that could harm houseplant leaves, some of which you can consider before positioning your plants:

1 If a plant is accidently knocked over, for instance if it is placed next to a door that swings, the impact may shred larger leaves.

If the plant is at a location where there is a high likelihood of falling objects, several leaves may break as a result of one or more of those objects.

See our article on the safest places to keep houseplants in your house.

7. Playful Pets

Your adored, cute pets can also rip the leaf off the house plant. Animal companions are drawn to the plants’ beautiful hues and wish to own them.

They damage the leaves of your houseplant in their haste to get them. The smell of plants and their accessibility are two other aspects that may draw your pets to them.

Pets may mistake your indoor plants for chew toys. Even a well-behaved pet may become drawn to the plants and endanger them.

Pets are energetic and playful. All they want to do is play with them.

Pet accidents on plants can be avoided by educating young animals or providing a toy of some sort as a distraction.

What to Look for When Leaves Split

Depending on the plant, when leaves split, the plant appears unattractive. This is not an issue because some plants, like monsteras, are noted for producing huge leaves with long splits.

Thought must be given to whether to leave the leaf intact and cure it or to remove it in plants with smaller leaves.

Bacterial Infection

The inner portions of the leaves, which contain plant cells and their circulatory system, become visible at the beginning of a split. This exposes the plant to diseases and fungus that can quickly spread and harm the entire plant.

To stop bacteria from growing, it is simple to gently rub cinnamon powder on the open lesion.

The anti-fungal and disinfecting properties of cinnamon make it a natural fungicide that can guard exposed plant wounds.

Browning of the Wounded Area

The area around the incision closes up as the plant heals itself. As a result, the vascular system in the injured area is unable to circulate nutrients and water.

The ripped region of the leaf subsequently turns yellow, then brown, shielding the wound and the remainder of the plant.

As was already said, utilizing cinnamon to stop fungus and infections speeds up the healing process.

Do Broken Leaves Heal Themselves?

Leaf splitting, which primarily happens on older leaves, can be a part of the growth process in many plants.

You can just pluck out the split leaves and throw them away as long as there are enough leaves to replace the ones that are damaged. Unfortunately, broken leaves never regrow.

How To Prevent Plant Leaves From Splitting?

You must first determine the cause of the leaves’ splitting. Given that it is split, a force that can destroy your plant must exist.

In Case of Low Humidity:

  • Measure the humidity in the area around your plant with a hydrometer. Move your plant to a high-humidity area if the humidity is low. As long as your plant receives enough light there, bathroom shelves and kitchen sinks tend to be more humid than living room corners.
  • If your home doesn’t have enough humidity for your plant, a humidifier on an enclosed porch can produce a humid environment.

In Case of Strong Wind:

  1. Wind speeds of 45 mph or higher have the potential to rip leaves on some plants. Place your plant in a location with little wind or good air circulation.

Plants Whose Leaves Commonly Split:

Bird of Paradise:

Many people worry that the bird of paradise’s leaf fissures are a symptom of ill health, but this is not the case at all; on the contrary.

The plant’s natural architecture includes the unraveling of the leaves, which allows the wind to move through the leaves in its environment without bending, shattering, or uprooting the plant.While fraying is less obvious when the plant is indoors, it is nonetheless extremely common.

Split-leaf Philodendron, Monstera Deliciosa:

The shape of a plant’s leaves makes it distinct from all other plants, and as the leaves develop, distinctive holes appear in them to let light through and benefit the leaves below.

The following plants are also the most prone to splitting:

Regular NameBiological Name
Vine beansPhaseolus
TomatoesLycopersicum Solanum
Cabbagevar. capitata of Brassica oleracea
Cucumberssativus cucumber

Can You Repair Split Plant Leaves?

With a simple handmade approach that won’t cost you much money, you can “rescue” them. You only need a small amount of pure beeswax for this; candle wax will also work.

Steps To Repair Split Plant Leaves:

  1. The wax must first be heated to a sufficient temperature without burning. You may do this in a small pot or even in the microwave for a quick and convenient method. To give you an idea, you ought to have no trouble sticking your finger in it. You will be able to roughly calculate the ideal temperature in this manner, preventing further damage to the plant. You may even wait till it sits before applying it if you overdid it.
  2. Once the wax is prepared, it is important to gently apply it to the cracked area. This is the time when you must use the brush or the plastic spoon, as you have decided. It is a really easy process. The injured leaf, stem, or petal should have a small amount of the wax lightly smeared on it before being applied delicately and carefully to the wound. Apply a coat that is reasonably thick. No matter how frequently you brush, it doesn’t matter.
  3. In order to obtain more effective healing, wait a few minutes for the paste to cool and solidify. It will eventually build something resembling a wax patch in this way. It will automatically start to peel off and fall off. The plant will look brand new.

Bent Plant Leaves

Plant leaves can bend improperly in addition to splitting, which might hinder their capacity to grow healthily. The leaf won’t heal itself like it does with split leaves if nothing is done; it will eventually die.

A bent leaf needs to be sustained in order for the midrib to continue delivering nutrients and water to the leaf. The xylem and phloem are located in the midrib, which extends from the base to the tip of the leaf. A straightforward skewer can be used to support the leaf, bearing its weight until it heals.

If you don’t act, a bent leaf may eventually die from a lack of water and nutrition transmission.

The Takeaway:

Splitting plant leaves has recently become a prevalent problem with indoor plants. Any plant, whether in your home or business, might have split leaves.

Too much light or heat, hard water deposits, dry air, low humidity, and high winds can all lead to split plant leaves.

The following are easy steps you may take to prevent splitting on your plants’ leaves:

  • Ensure enough moisture
  • Be mindful of potential risks near the plant.
  • Set up a fertilization schedule for the plant.
  • Keep pets outside


Are birds of paradise supposed to split?

Whether you like it or not, a Bird of Paradise’s leaves are SUPPOSED to split! Natural cracks in the leaves allow wind to pass through them without bending, shattering, or uprooting the top-heavy plant, which is how nature intended it.

Why are the leaves on my plant splitting?

Low humidity frequently causes indoor orchids and other plants to develop leaves that split down the middle. Make sure your plant is receiving enough water, and that any trays that are maintained underneath it to improve humidity are fully stocked.

Why is my bird of paradise splitting?

On the Bird of Paradise, splitting leaves is very normal and natural. The plant’s splits, an evolutionary adaptation, allow wind to travel between the leaves, preventing the leaves from acting as huge sails.

How often should you water Bird of Paradise?

weekly or biweekly

Why is my Bird of Paradise leaves splitting?

On the Bird of Paradise, splitting leaves is very normal and natural. The plant’s splits, an evolutionary adaptation, allow wind to travel between the leaves, preventing the leaves from acting as huge sails.