12 Reasons Why Peperomia is Dropping Leaves | Peperomia Leaves Falling

Peperomia plants collage

Peperomia dropping leaves is a common problem brought about by overwatering, inadequate light, extreme temperature, aging, pests, diseases among others.

Peperomia plants are popular houseplants on account of their variety and ease of care. However, they can sometimes develop problems if the growing conditions are not met.

One of the commonest problem in Peperomia is leaf drop. The reasons for Peperomia leaves falling are many and varied.

We have herebelow discussed 12 reasons for Peperomia dropping leaves and their solutions. Read on.

Reasons why Peperomia leaves are falling

1. Overwatering

Overwatering results in soggy soil (excess water in the soil). Too much water in the soil reduces the oxygen concentration in rootzone and this causes the roots to die.

When roots die, they cannot take up water and nutrients needed for the food making process. Therefore, the plant does not make enough food for growth and energy. In a bid to save energy, the Peoperomia plant begins to drop its leaves.


To avoid getting soggy soil, ensure that the pot for your Peperomia has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining.

Also, reduce watering the plant during the cold season to maintain the soil barely moist as growth is minimal at this time.

2. Underwatering

When Peperomia is underwatered, there is little moisture in the soil. As such, the plant cannot take up nutrients and water needed for photosynthesis (food making process).

Since the plant does not get adequate food for growth and energy, it drops the leaves inorder to save energy.


Water the Peperomia plant immediately and it should recover.

Thereafter, water the Peperomia plant liberally during the growing season and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.

Reduce watering during the cold season but do not allow the soil to dry out completely.

3. Extreme Temperatures

Peperomia plants require average room temperatures within the range of 15-260C inorder to thrive.

Extreme temperatures; either too high or too low (outside the above range) will affect the normal functioning of the plant systems.

Too high temperatures will cause excessive loss of water leading to wilting and leaf drop while at too low temperatures Peperomia stops growing and begins to die. Leaf drop is one of the signs of a dying plant.


Keep the Peperomia away from cold draughts like drafty winds, air conditioning, open doors and others.

Ensure your Peperomia is not near hot surfaces, hot vents and other hot areas to prevent extremely high temperatures.

Maintain an average room temperature within the range of 15-260C. Usually, a room temperature that is comfortable for you is ideal for Peperomia.

4. Low Humidity

Peperomia will grow in ordinary room humidity but a humid environment is necessary for lush growth especially where the temperatures are high.

Too low humidity for Peperomia affects photosynthesis and thus the plant cannot make enough food for growth and energy. To save on energy, it drops the leaves.

Peperomia thrives in above average humidity between 50& and 80%. Use a hygrometer to monitor the humidity for the optimum growth of your plant.


To raise humidity for your Peperomia, set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier.

You can also grow your Peperomia in the moist areas in the home like the bathroom and laundy area if the lighting is adequate.

Peperomia is also ideal for growing in a terrarium as high humidity can be maintained in a terrarium.

5. Too Little Light

The Peperomia Plant requires light for making food that is required for energy and growth. Insufficient light implies that the plant cannot make enough food for energy and growth.

In an attempt to save energy, the Peperomia plant begins to drop leaves. This way, it saves the available energy for the vital functions inorder to keep alive.


Cut back the stems to rejuvenate growth and move your Peperomia to a brighter spot or instal a grow light if you do not have adequate lighting in your home.

Regularly clean the Peperomia leaves by damp wiping with a soft cloth to ensure that it absorbs enough light for photosynthesis.

6. Overfeeding

Overfeeding Peperomia will cause the roots to die due to fertilizer burn. When the roots die, they cannot take up nutrients and water required for photosynthesis.

Without, adequate food for growth and energy, the Peperomia plant begins to drop leaves inorder to save energy.


Take care not to overfeed your Peperomia. Follow the instructions on the label of the plant food to avoid overfeeding.

Regularly flush out the salts from the Peperomia soil by running a stream of water through the soil until it comes out through the drainage holes and repeat the process several times.

7. Accumulation of Salts in the Soil

Excess soluble salts in the soil from the water or excess feeding will cause the Peperomia leaves to dry, shrivel and drop.


Regularly flush out the salts from the Peperomia soil by running a stream of water through the soil until it comes out through the drainage holes and repeat the process several times.

8. Pest Infestations

Peperomia are prone to spider mites, whiteflies, scale insects and mealy bugs.

These pests attack the new growth from where the suck the plant sap. This causes the Peperomia plant to become dehydrated and results in wilting and dropping leaves.


Regularly inspect your Peperomia plant for the pests and take timely control measures.

Treat the Peperomia plant appropriately for the pests with appropriate products like neem oil and insecticidal soap among others.

To discourage pests infestation, regularly clean the Peperomia leaves by damp wiping with a soft cloth.

Raise humidity for your Peperomia plant to discourgae pest infestaions by setting the pot on a wet pebble tray. Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

9. Root-rot Disease

Peperomia plants are prone to root-rot disease. Root-rot disease is brought about by soggy soil. The disease is characterized by wilted, discolored leaves, corky swellings under the leaves and dropping leaves.

Soggy soil reduces oxygen concentration in the soil which causes the roots to die. Once the Peperomia plant roots die, they cannot take up water and nutrients to the leaves. The leaves begin to wilt and eventually drop.


Take out the Peperomia from its pot and inspect the roots. Brown-black mushy roots indicate root-rot, trim them off and treat the healthy roots with a fungicidal solution.

Disinfect the pot or use a fresh pot to repot the plant in fresh free-draining soil. Do not water the Peperomia plant and keep it dry for some time before resuming watering. Read more on how to treat root-rot in houseplants.

10. Root Bound Plant

A root bound plant is one whose roots have filled the pot and there is very little soil to hold water when you water your Peperomia. Therefore, there is no water for the Peperomia plant to take up to the leaves. The leaves loss their stiffness and they wilt and drop.


Check the bottom of the pot for roots growing through the drainage hole.

Repot the Peperomia plant into a pot one size larger than the current one.

Divide the Peperomia plant into several sections and plant the sections in individual pots to propagate new plants.

11. Repotting Shock

Repotting your Peperomia will cause it some shock which may lead to some leaves wilting and dropping before it can adjust the new growing conditions.


To minimize repotting shock for your Peperomia, water the plant thoroughly one day before repotting. A well hydrated plant experiences less shock and is easier to divide.

Do not make too many changes at once. For instance, after repotting, maintain the Peperomia plant in the same location until it is well established before moving it to a new location.

12. Aging

As the Peperomia plant ages, it naturally drops the lower older leaves to spare energy for the growth of new leaves.

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