Why Is My Purple Waffle Plant Dying? Tips for Rescuing Your Dying Hemigraphis Alternata

If you’ve added a purple waffle plant to your home or office space, you know how wonderful it can be to have around. From its gorgeous purple leaves that give it the nickname red ivy to its interesting waffle pattern and even to its remarkable abilities to purify the air, you can’t go wrong with this natural addition to any space.  

So, if your purple waffle plant is dying, or seems to be, you’re likely devastated.  

Fear not, the Hemigraphis alternata is not only easy to care for, but it is also relatively simple to bring it back to life once it starts fading.  

Please note: Some of the links in my posts are affiliate links. I get commissions for purchases made through those links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases when you buy something from those links.

That’s what we’ll be doing here – going over all possible tips and tricks to rescue your dying purple waffle plant.  

A Purple Waffle Plant Is a Great Choice for Your Home or Office 

The purple waffle plant is a striking choice to include in your home or office space, and that’s exactly why most people choose to get one.  

A Purple Waffle Plant Is a Great Choice for Your Home or Office 

It is vibrant in color, a showstopper really, and it can add complexity to a simple space or build on an existing tropical theme.  

The purple waffle plant is also particularly good at removing the toxins in your household that are released through common household cleaners and other items.  

But, you’re asking, “How do I keep my purple waffle plant from dying?” 

Fortunately, even if yours seems to be drooping and not responding to care, there is still hope.  

Signs of a Dying Purple Waffle Plant 

To be sure your plant is actually dying, or drooping, and not just living its natural growth period, it pays to check the signs.  

After all, the purple waffle plant is a slow-growing plant that will maintain its size in a medium sized pot. So, if you’re worried that the plant is not growing larger, you have nothing to worry about.  

There are some signs to watch for that hint at decline:  

  • Leaves drooping 
  • Leaves turning yellow 
  • Leaves falling off in abundance 
  • Overwet soil  
  • Color of leaves begins to fade and look less vibrant 
  • Bugs or root rot 
  • Plant looks spindly or leggy

Common Causes of a Dying Purple Waffle Plant 

The common causes of a dying purple waffle plant are typically the result of the plant owner not realizing how much, or how little, care the plant needs. The good thing is that once identified these causes are easy to remedy.  

Common causes of a dying purple waffle plant include: 

  • Overwatering 
  • Underwatering 
  • Pests 
  • Overfertilizing 
  • Too much light 
  • Ceramic pots 
  • Not enough light 

It can be difficult to stay on top of each plant’s specific needs and easy to find yourself struggling with one plant that requires your attention. It is important for plant owners to learn about those needs to salvage their plants and maintain the plant-rich indoor atmosphere we all love so much.  

Watering Needs of a Purple Waffle Plant 

One of the most common causes of a dying plant is related to water – either too much or too little. Especially if you have a lot of plants, you may have a schedule where you water all your plants at the same time. Take a look at this article on watering mistakes that might be killing your plant. 

Watering Needs of a Purple Waffle Plant 

The purple waffle plant does actually require moist soil, unlike many common indoor houseplants, so you’ll want to pay particular attention to the watering needs of this red ivy.  

Are You Underwatering Your Purple Waffle Plant? 

Have you been asking, “Am I underwatering my purple waffle plant?” The answer is in the purple waffle plant itself; it will let you know relatively quickly. The leaves will start to wilt and droop. This is one plant that communicates well with its owner.  

Aside from drooping or wilting leaves, you will also notice the soil is dry.  

The purple waffle plant wants moist soil, not soggy, so stick your fingers in the soil and check that the first few inches are not dry.  

Restoring Water to Your Underwatered Purple Waffle Plant 

If you notice these telltale signs of underwatering your purple waffle plant, there are a few steps to take to restore it to a happy state.  

  • Place pebbles under the soil to ensure good drainage. 
  • Water the plant well, from top to bottom. 
  • Allow all water to drain out and remove any excess water from the plant’s saucer. 
  • If the soil has become hard-packed and does not seem to take water, repot your plant in fresh indoor plant soil. 
  • Make sure your plant is not in a ceramic pot, which leaches water out faster than other pots. 

Are You Overwatering Your Purple Waffle Plant? 

On the off chance you find yourself asking “Am I overwatering my purple waffle plant?” you might see the signs in the form of soggy soil or even pests like scale or whiteflies, which are attracted to overwet plant soil.  

Again, you can tell your plant has too much water if water is sitting on the surface of the soil or if you stick your fingers in the soil and your fingers find mushy soil.  

Restoring Balance to Your Overwatered Purple Waffle Plant 

If you have overwatered your purple waffle plant, place it in the sun and allow the soil to dry out.  

Restoring Balance to Your Overwatered Purple Waffle Plant 

If your soil is still not drying up after a day or so, you don’t want your leaves to burn, so you will have to repot the plant in fresh soil.  

Remove the root ball, place pebbles at the bottom of your pot, then layer in a nice indoor houseplant soil, and replace the root ball. Water the soil, leaving the plant in indirect light with good air circulation, so it can restore itself.  

Soil Needs of a Purple Waffle Plant 

The purple waffle plant will do well in a light indoor plant soil that is fertilized once a month during spring and summer.  

Soil Drainage Needs for a Purple Waffle Plant 

Add pebbles to the bottom of your pot so your plant has plenty of drainage opportunity.  

If you notice your soil is not draining, be sure you have created an environment at the bottom of the pot, like with pebbles, that allows for proper drainage. Also remove any water from the saucer. The purple waffle plant does not enjoy sitting in water.  

Lighting Needs of a Purple Waffle Plant 

The purple waffle plant will do well indoors in indirect sunlight. Direct sun will scorch or burn your leaves, causing them to yellow. Too little light will cause your plant to fade, losing its rich and vibrant color and sheen.  

Resolving Lighting Issues for a Purple Waffle Plant 

If you notice either of these symptoms, yellowed, burned leaves, or a loss of color and sheen, check the plant’s location.  

Move it, if necessary, close to a window, but not directly into the sunshine. Be sure it gets hours each day of indirect light.  

Pests or Diseases that Can Cause Issues with a Purple Waffle Plant 

The most common pests that affect the purple waffle plant are scale and whiteflies. They are typically attracted to overwet soil, so if you notice bugs in your plant, first address the watering issue as directed above, then be sure to spray the tops and bottoms of your leaves with a non-toxic insecticidal soap once a week until the pests are gone. 

Pests or Diseases that Can Cause Issues with a Purple Waffle Plant  

In terms of disease, watch out for root rot, also caused by overwatering. You will notice root rot in the form of soggy soil and a mushy plant.  

Fake Purple Waffle Plants Are an Additional Consideration 

In the end, you may decide that a live purple waffle plant is just too much for you right now, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up! Fake purple waffle plants can look just like the real thing and will still contribute many of the same benefits as a live plant that requires more care and attention.  

Wondering if fake plants are even trendy right now? Check out my article on whether artificial plants and flowers are tacky. 

Do you have a purple waffle plant you’ve nursed back to life? What worked for you? Leave your tips and tricks in the comment section below.  

Leave a Comment