It’s disheartening to repot your Monstera and still be stuck with a sad, droopy plant.
One would imagine a roomy pot and fresh soil would inspire new growth and a proud, upright posture.
But, being rewarded for all that hard work with a limp plant instead can be a disappointment.
Dehydration caused by stressed or damaged roots is the most common cause of Monstera leaves drooping after repotting. Pruning of roots or leaves and a lack of structural support can all contribute to this condition—water thoroughly before repotting to avoid root system damage.
Thankfully, those sad floppy leaves are a temporary side effect that passes with time.
Causes of Droopy Monstera After Repotting
Repotting is an integral part of plant care, but it is traumatic to the plant, no matter how carefully done.
Even the gentlest touch can send a Monstera into transplant shock.
Repotting During Dormant Period
Regardless of the variety, tropical darlings like Monstera are a delight.
They thrive in hot, humid conditions and enter a state of dormancy during the colder months of the year.
Roots stop drawing water from the soil as the plant’s biology slows down.
If you choose to repot in the fall or winter, it’s like taking a sleeping person out of a warm bed and hurling them into a freezing one.
It’s unpleasant, so it’s not surprising that a Monstera would react negatively to it.
Unfortunately, transplant shock is an unavoidable result of such treatment.
Damaged Root System During Repotting
Monstera roots are more challenging than most, but they still don’t take well to any handling.
This is because they’re supposed to stay safely anchored in their growing medium rather than being yanked free and jostled.
In addition, fine roots can easily be damaged during the repotting process, especially if dealing with a root-bound specimen.
Persistent droopiness, particularly from outlying leaves, is a sign of damaged roots.
Dehydration symptoms include curled leaves and yellow tips.
Root damage makes it difficult for the Monstera to get the moisture it needs from the growing medium.
Pruning Roots During Repotting
A rootbound Monstera, particularly a Monstera deliciosa, is difficult to unpot.
Their roots are often thick and powerful, which is a testament to their history as avid climbers.
They can attach themselves to any rough surface, such as the inside of pots, and wriggle out through the drainage holes.
It is necessary to cut large swaths of root to free it from its old pot!
When dealing with a Monstera that has suffered from root rot due to overwatering, it is also necessary to perform root pruning.
For this reason, it is critical to remove any diseased or dead roots as soon as possible after diagnosis.
You can read more about it saving Monstera from root rot here, but it is almost inevitable that some of the roots will be too damaged to save.
The catch is that any pruning of the root system eventually harms it.
So, although it’s in the Monstera’s best interest, a root cut will cause transplant shock, resulting in limp leaves.
Pruning Plant Parts While Repotting
Monstera isn’t called “monsters” for nothing; a well-cared-for Monstera can get to be a considerable size.
Repotting is an excellent time to prune any damaged leaves or broken vines.
If you have a large Monstera, you may want to prune it to a more manageable size.
Pruning a Monstera’s vines stresses the plant, just as trimming the roots does. The more you cut, the longer it will take to heal.
The Monstera may take a while to recover from that damage and return to its leaves. As a result, you’ll notice more droopiness until it feels better.
Lack of Support
Maintaining the structural integrity of an enormous Monstera is critical; otherwise, it will sag and look sad.
After all, they’re a family of climbers. So they don’t make very heavy trunks and instead rely on external support to keep them upright.
Repotting is an excellent opportunity to add support to a young plant or upgrade an established climber to a stronger stake or pole.
I’ve written more about stakes and poles here, but a little extra support works wonders once a Monstera reaches a specific size.
Staking a Monstera will result in a small amount of drooping.
Even if you’ve staked a Monstera, it will feel wobbly and unsure until it gets used to its new surroundings. It takes time to re-establish the strong roots.
Alternatively, your stake in the new pot may be weaker than in the previous one.
Root systems often tangle around the soil’s support to provide additional stability.
So it could be your stake or pole that is drooping, not the Monstera!
Even if you’ve been as gentle as a whisper, potted at the right time of year with a delicate touch, and haven’t scratched your Monstera, it can still go into shock.
It’s not a reflection of how well you care for your plant; repotting is hard on it. Even if you follow all the instructions to the letter, it may still droop.
Don’t beat yourself up. Every gardener has experienced this at some point.
What To Do After Repotting Monstera?
Whatever the cause, you can use a few tricks to reduce how much a Monstera droops.
But, of course, it won’t take long for the replanted Monstera to bounce back, as they’re such hardy plants.
So let’s see what you can do to help them along.
If Roots Are Removed, Remove Top Growth
Even though it seems counterintuitive, it’s a good idea to cut off the top if you’ve had to cut off the roots.
To maintain the Monstera’s beautiful leaves, damaged roots are not up to providing the necessary support.
Cutting off the newest growth is a great way to relieve stress on the root system and give it time to heal.
All of that beautiful growth does not have to go to waste. This type of trim is ideal for propagation because almost all Monstera cuttings root vigorously.
Place the trimmings in a small amount of water in a well-lit area, and you’ll have an entirely new plant in no time.
Apply A Root Growth Promoter
A root growth promoter comes in handy if you’ve had to trim your plants.
This is a synthetic hormone that stimulates the growth of new roots.
Usually, a booster is put directly on the roots, but if you just potted your Monstera, you can mix it with water and pour it over the soil instead. (Check out the Amazon prices here)
Cinnamon is a natural alternative that some people swear by.
Aside from its antifungal properties, it’s an excellent choice for Monsteras who have cut their roots.
The simplest method is to steep one teaspoon of powdered cinnamon in a gallon of hot water to make a tea.
Once cooled, strain it and pour it into the pot to thoroughly soak the roots.
Water Thoroughly Immediately After Repotting
Root damage causes dehydration, which causes droopy leaves in Monstera.
It’s easy to avoid this by giving your Monstera plenty of water when it’s in its new home.
This will provide the plant with enough water to counteract the effects of the repotting process.
In addition, it will aid in the stabilization of your growing medium’s loose parts.
Once everything is in place, you may need a few more handfuls of the medium.
If the Monstera is staked or climbing a moss pole, the medium must be solidly in place to prevent the support from shifting.
Remember to soak your new moss pole as well. They are an essential water source for climbing Monstera, and if the stakes are dry, the plant will become thirsty.
Water Appropriately Later
After settling the medium and giving your Monstera a good start, you must exercise caution when watering.
After the first deep watering, let the medium dry completely before giving the Monstera another drink.
This ensures that the Monstera gets the moisture it needs, and the drying out period prevents the fungi that cause root rot from taking root in the new, clean soil.
Before re-watering, allow the top two or three inches of soil to dry out completely.
This could take as little as one week during the summer, but if you’ve had to repot in the dead of winter, it could take up to one month or more.
Don’t be tempted to water the medium until it’s scorched. You can’t let the roots sit in stagnant, wet soil.
Overwatering injured roots is the fastest way to rot a plant from the ground up.
A moisture meter is an excellent tool if you’re unsure of the water levels in the Monstera pot.
This small device uses a small amount of electricity to determine how much water is deep in your medium.
They’re an excellent choice for growers who value accuracy. (Check out the prices on Amazon here)
Maintain A Good Growing Environment
Monstera is not the most demanding of plants. They will thrive in various lighting conditions and will not complain if their medium becomes dry.
However, it’s best to be extra gentle with a droopy transplant; they’re already feeling vulnerable and need all the love they can get.
Monstera does best at temperatures between 65 and 85°F (18 and 30°C), with the warmer end better. They also require humidity levels of at least 40%.
Maintain as much stability as possible for both. Temperature and humidity fluctuations can also cause drooping leaves.
Monsteras require consistent light, so return a newly potted Monstera to its original location.
The plant has already experienced enough change and will recover best at an average light level.
Be Patient and Attentive
Your Monstera is in a state of recovery. Indeed, you’ll be able to enjoy your tropical paradise again in no time.
So take care of it while you can. If you don’t want to overwater it accidentally, keep a close eye on it.
The root cause of transplant shock is a severe issue.
Even though this problem can be remedied over time, it leaves the Monstera vulnerable to other root-system diseases.
Keep an eye out for yellowing roots and musty odors in the growing medium.
This is especially important if you’ve repotted a Monstera with root rot; you’ll want to watch it to ensure the treatment was successful.
How Long Does It Take for Monstera to Heal After Repotting?
A droopy Monstera’s recovery time depends on several factors, but the root system is the most critical. Your recovery will be quick if your roots are healthy.
As a result of their vigorous growth and deep roots, monsteras can quickly adapt to a new medium.
The entire plant should perk up in about two weeks.
However, you’ll have to wait longer if you’re doing it as part of a root rot treatment.
It could be a month or two, especially if the cool part of the year and the Monstera were primarily dormant.
An overworked plant will take some time to recover from its sleep deprivation.
It’s just a matter of being patient and showing tender kindness to the Monstera while it heals.
Even a wounded one will bounce back if you treat them right.