Why Your Plant Has Only Three Leaves? [3 Causes & 5 Solutions]

why your plant has only three leaves

Only three leaves on the plant are not a common thing. When you find three leaves on your plant, you need to pay attention to this matter. So, why your plant has only three leaves? Or is it okay to have three leaves only?

There have 3 reasons I found which keep the plants 3-leaves only. For example, genetics, environmental factor, diseases, and pests. These are the main causes which make the plants only three leaves.

This article helps you to get the causes with detailed answers and also helps you to get some serious points to identify the affected leaves. So, stay connected to get further information.

Why Your Plant Has Only Three Leaves? (3 Core Reasons)

You may often find some of the plants which come with only three leaves. They are not always bad enough. But some of the plants contain more leaves, but due to the following reasons, they contain only 3 leaves.


Genetics always plays an important role in keeping the leaves growing properly. Moreover, it is also designed for the plant’s leaves, branches, colours, and others.

According to a study by the California University of California Cooperative Extension, white cloves genetically come with three to four leaves only. Check out the following list of plants which will help you to understand that they come with only three leaves.

  • Clover
  • Oxalis
  • Trillium
  • Wild strawberry
  • Shamrock

Environmental Factors

When your plant doesn’t get enough sunlight, it is a common matter that the plant is unable to produce more leaves. Even excess moisture, humidity, and others also created this problem.

Similarly, high temperatures and wrong watering are also harmful for producing more leaves. Most importantly, you must provide proper watering so that the plant grows properly and leaves without facing any issues.

According to Oregon State University, the plants are generally exposed above 90°F (32°C) degrees temperature. Besides the temperature, you also need to ensure the soil is rich and PH maintained properly.

Diseases & Pests

This is not a major issue, but it damages the leaves and also damages the plants. If your plant has many leaves in previous time and now you find only three, you should pay attention to this factor.

First of all, you need to check out pests and insects properly. You can use an electric pest controller if you find pests or insects on your plant. On the other hand, when the plant comes with diseases, you need to contact a garden expert to get the best solution.

Read More: How long does it take for thyme to sprout?

How to Solve the Three Leaves Problem

You have enough causes to know why the plant has three leaves. But, you should find out the actual causes of this matter so that you can easily find out the problem and solve them as soon as possible.

  • First, you need to check out the genetic origins. It is a little bit tricky. You can take help from an expert person about this matter.
  • Second, check out that your plant gets enough sunlight. Because lacking of sunlight, your plant will be unable to grow more leaves.
  • Third, make sure that the plant gets enough water. Note over watering may kill the plant also; avoid producing more leaves.
  • Fourth, the soil condition is always important. You have to keep the soil fertile, near PH 7, and clear the drain system.
  • Fifth, Don’t keep your plant left for pest foods. Use an electric pest controller or other things to control the pest or insects.

These five points are enough to grow more leaves and avoid only three leaves. But, if the plant’s genetics always produce only 3 leaves, the above 5 solutions may not work.

Read More: What happens if my corn plant comes too close together?

Is It Okay to Have Only Three Leaves on My Plant?

Most of the time, only three leaves on the plant are not okay. In this situation, you have to find out the actual problems and then need to solve the problem.

For example, only having 3 or 5 leaves on the plant means a genetic problem. On the other hand, when the plant comes with a lack of water or over-watering as well as a lack of fertilizer, this problem comes out.

Similarly, lacking sunlight also causes this problem. Because plants need enough sunlight to make fruits and produce more leaves, to solve the problem, you can check out the above 5 solutions.

Read More: How much time should you wait to get thyme from seed?

5 Poisonous Plants With Three Leaves

Here, you will discover 5-poisonous plants which come with three leaves. You should avoid planting these 5 plants to stay safe.

  • Poison oak
  • Doll’s eyes
  • Jimsonweed
  • Poison sumac
  • Poison ivy

5 Non-Poisonous Plants With Three Leaves

Now, you will get 5 non-poisonous plant which comes with three leaves. However, check out the following list and plant them in your garden. Note they only produce 3-leaves; you don’t need to worry about this matter.

  • Clover
  • Wild Strawberry
  • Trillium
  • Shamrock
  • Oxalis

Despite these, 5 non-poisonous plants with three leaves are popular among garden owners. However, you will also consider the other three leaves planted in the garden, which are non-poisonous.

Read More: Why are my strawberry leaves yellow with green veins

Should You Take Any Steps to Increase the Number of Leaves?

First of all, you need to find out the genetics of the plant. Some of the plant only comes with three leaves because of genetic issue. Here, you don’t need to do anything to increase the number of leaves.

On the other hand, if the plant does not come with a genetic problem, you need to check out the temperature, planted areas, water system, and so on.

I would love to suggest you check out the above 5 solutions to increase the number of leaves. If you are still confused, please let me know in the following comment box.

FAQs (Frequently Ask Questions)

Q: What strains have 3 leaves?

Answer: It is a little bit tricky to provide you with an exact answer. Because there is plenty of things working here, however, genetics is one of the major problems which strains the 3 leaves. You will also check out the temperature, planted area, fertilizer of soil, and watering.

Q: Is it okay to have 3-leaves on my plant?

Answer: If the plant comes with three leaves, plant genetic, it is okay, and you don’t need to do anything. But, if the plant comes from other genetics and only produces three leaves, you need to be careful about this matter. You can check out the above article to get clear instructions to increase the leaves.

Wrapping Up!

Having 3 leaves on a plant is not a common issue. However, if the plant comes from 3-leaves genetic, you don’t need to do anything. On the other hand, weather, temperature, watering, poor soil, and other things don’t help the plant grow more leaves.

However, you can check out the above article to find out the causes and solve them to grow more leaves. If you are still confused about this matter, let me know so that I can solve your problem and grow more leaves.

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