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My Peace Lily Has A Bad Haircut Will It Survive?

Ask the Expert: Can my Peace Lily be saved?
I had a large peace lily that was so heavy it kept falling over. I had to lean it against a wall until I got a larger pot to put it in. In the meantime, all of the stems drooped so low that the stems became permanently bent. I figured there was no way for them to unbend, so I cut each stem at the point right before the bending occurred. Now the plant has a few lily flowers, 1 leaf, & about 20 short, cut stems. Will the stems keep growing or did I kill it? Or should I cut the stems closer to the roots? Is there a way to save my lily or is it too late? Stacie

I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is your peace lily (Spathiphyllum) will survive. The bad news is you are being brought up on plant assault charges. Just kidding!

The peace lily will put on new leave shoots fairly quickly. In the meantime, you need to cut the stems off at the based of the plant. Why? The stems will not produce new leaves. However, the plant will produce new leaves to replace the ones it has lost. Give it a very light solution of fertilizer or vitamin b1 to add in the new leaf production.

Anytime you peace lily stem become bent and damaged, you will need to cut them off at the based of the plant. Peace lilies will produce new leaves from the based of the plant and usually quite often. So in a few weeks, you’ll never know the peace lily had a bad haircut. Good luck and keep me posted.


  1. What does the based of the plant meen exactly?

    Does this meen the roots?

    I am not very green if you can’t already tell!

  2. In this case, the base means the point at which the stem is coming out of the plant but not the roots. You want to cut it off as low as you can go without cutting into other parts of the plant. If you are afraid you’ll make a wrong cut, think about your hair coming out of your scalp. The base of the plant is the scalp and the stems are the hair coming out of the scalp. Get as close to the scalp as possible without cutting the scalp.

    Relax! You’ll be a green thumb in no time.

  3. How do you keep the stems from falling over? I have tied them together and put them against the wall. One of my smaller stems has bent over and I guess I will have to cut it off. I hate doing that. What can I do to keep the other, large stems upright?

  4. Healthy stems usually don’t have a problem. Check your watering. Over-watering can cause this problem occasionally. The only other option is to use a plant support ring. If the plant is large used a peony ring – small use a dahlia support.

  5. Alec tac says:

    If i may ask, how about weak flower stalks? Mine’s a sensation, and as the flower stalk goes up, it eventually bends because of its heaviness and dies off

  6. Jamie Woods says:

    How big is your peace lily? It’s possible that it has outgrown its pot and needs a bigger one. A bigger pot will give it more room, and help make the stalks healthier. It may also need more light.

  7. Alec tac says:

    Thanks Jamie for replying, it was a long shot trying to up a thread from 2009. It is actually a spath sensation, just got it 2 months ago with previous flower stalks all up, now it has been popping up new ones that never lasted long because it cant carry the weight of the flower, it bends and browns. It is about 6ft from the east facing window, and the rooms full of windows, so it’s getting alot of indirect sunlight actually, and the pot’s about 2 inches wider than the plant.

  8. My peace lily had completely wilted, with all leaves yellow or brown, when I returned home after a work trip. The soil was still moist. So i had cut off all the leaves and replanted the base of stems along with roots. The base however is brown/dry too. Any advice if this method would work?

  9. Aynsley Broom says:

    Hey Archi,
    You might need to see if the plant is getting enough sunlight. Be sure to check the roots to make sure they haven’t rotted.

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