Do Plants Feel Pain?

We have often heard people tell you not to hurt plants, as they feel pain. However, as a plant enthusiast, you do need to know if the plants feel pain. Since plants cannot talk, they have no way of telling us how they feel. So, it is for us to identify and take care of their needs. So, do plants feel pain or is it just a thing people tell us to stop us from damaging the plants?

Do plants feel pain?

No, there is no scientific basis to prove that plants can feel any form of pain. However, plants do get stressed due to various reasons. A stressed plant cannot grow well and the plant is likely suffering from some form of pressure. Stress can be triggered due to various factors. Some signs of a stressed plant are loss of leaves, change in color, drooping, etc. If left untreated, the plant can be irreversibly damaged. Thus, we need to take preventive measures to help nurture your plant back to health.

Factors that can cause stress to plants

So, let us explore the factors which can cause stress to your plants –

  • Sunburn
  • Improper Handling
  • Pests
  • Inadequate Moisture


If your plant is exposed to long hours of bright, direct sunlight for long hours, it may be prone to sunburn. Sunburn causes severe damage to the tissues of the plant and weakens it.

The plant starts to turn brown and eventually withers away. The damage due to sunburn is irreversible; hence prevention is the best cure.

Avoid placing your plant outside on days of extreme heat. The plants should always be grown in a place where it has access to bright, indirect light to ensure proper growth .

Improper Handling

If we pluck too many flowers or leaves from the plant, the plant will likely suffer from damage. It is best to use a sterile knife to ensure clean, uninfected cuts while picking out leaves and flowers. Similarly, the plant is prone to damage while being potted. In such cases, be careful while using sharp objects near the roots of the plant and handle them with care.


Another reason for damage to your plant is pests such as spider mites, aphids, and mealybugs. These bugs suck on the sap of the plant and eventually weaken the plant. If an infestation is spotted, the plant should be immediately isolated. Treat the plant with an effective pesticide. Spray it regularly until the pests have been eradicated.

Inadequate Moisture

Both under-watering and over-watering are fatal to your plant’s health. Overwatering can make your plant weak, soggy, and prone to pest infestations. Underwatering can cause your plant to turn dry, crisp, and eventually die. So, it is very important to provide your plants with the right amount of water. Each plant has different watering needs, so, it is best to know the water requirement of your plant to ensure that you provide it with the right amount of water.

Thus, these are the steps to prevent your plant from getting stressed.

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