Two sets of evidence reviewed herein, one indicating that prenatal stress is associated with elevated behavioral and physiological dysregulation and the other that such phenotypic functioning is itself associated with heightened susceptibility to positive and negative environmental influences postnatally, raises the intriguing hypothesis first advanced by Pluess and Belsky (2011) that prenatal stress fosters, promotes, or "programs" postnatal developmental plasticity. Here we review further evidence consistent with this proposition, including new experimental research systematically manipulating both prenatal stress and postnatal rearing. Collectively this work would seem to explain why prenatal stress has so consistently been linked to problematic development: stresses encountered prenatally are likely to continue postnatally, thereby adversely affecting the development of children programmed (by prenatal stress) to be especially susceptible to environmental effects. Less investigated are the potential benefits prenatal stress may promote, due to increased plasticity, when the postnatal environment proves to be favorable. Future directions of research pertaining to potential mechanisms instantiating postnatal plasticity and moderators of such prenatal-programming effects are outlined.