The Q&A Archives: Droopy Calathea

Question: I have a calathea which my cat has fallen in love with. The cat continues to chew on the leaves, causing them to split and dry out on the tips. Most of the leaves have tiny holes through them, obviously from the cat's teeth, and the entire plant is starting to look terrible. I've also noticed that the stems are drooping and a few appear to be broken since they have no support to them. I have recently moved the plant out of the cat's reach but now wonder if it will even survive the damage that it has suffered. Please give me some help. Thanks!

Answer: Unfortunatley your plant will look ratty until new leaves have developed to replace the old damaged ones. Over time you may be able to remove the worst-looking leaves but to do it all at once would most likely shock the plant. In the meantime certainly remove any that are severed or irreperably damaged. Do your best to keep the plant healthy so it can recover as quickly as possible -- and do keep the cat away! (You might need to designate a special plant room off limits to the cat because many houseplants can be poisonous -- and offer the cat some other more suitable toys to play with.)

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