ANTHURIUM


Anthurium houseplants are some of the best indoor plants for beginners. Anthuriums are aroids and are the world's longest blooming houseplant – they are rarely without their showy flowers! Each bloom can last up to eight weeks, and new ones will pop up often. These aren't actual flowers, but modified waxy leaves. Originally found in areas of the Andes Mountain range in Colombia and Equador, this beauty enjoys a warm spot in your home with a bit of extra humidity.

 

Anthurium Plant belongs to a large genus of plants containing well over 700 species. This genus belongs to the Arum family (Araceae). Anthurium plants are also referred to as “Flamingo Flower”. The Anthurium symbolizes hospitality with its open heart-shaped flower and inspires happiness and abundance.

Light - Anthurium plants can tolerate all levels of indirect light, but anthuriums growing in low light will have fewer flowers and will grow slower. These plants cannot tolerate direct light however, as this can burn the leaves. They grow best in bright, indirect light.

Temperature - Anthurium plants prefer temperatures 75°F-85°F (23.9°C-29.4°C) during the day and about 10° cooler at night. Temperatures below 50°F (10°C) slow the growth of leaves and flowers. Avoid placing your plants near heating and air conditioning vents and fans.

Water  - Make sure to water your anthurium plant regularly, but don’t over water. Only water your anthurium when the soil is dry to the touch. The plant is susceptible to root rot, so too much water can cause the roots to die. If you allow the plant to become too dry in a pot, it will slow down its growth and the rootball will be difficult to re-wet. If the rootball becomes too dry, soak the pot in water for an hour to rehydrate it. Overwatering causes yellow leaf tips and under-watering causes brown leaf tips.

Humidity - The higher the humidity, the happier an anthurium plant. Normal room humidity is usually fine; however, dry air turns leaf tips brown (this is common). Your Anthurium loves a humid environment, so feel free to mist every day. Use a pebble tray or a humidifier during the winter months when the air tends to be drier.

Soil - Anthurium care also requires that the soil be free draining but hold some water. If you are growing this plant as a houseplant, a half and half mix of potting soil and orchid soil or perlite will provide the kind of soil anthuriums prefer.

Fertilizer - Care of anthurium plants does not require too much fertilizer. The plant only needs to be fertilized with a one-quarter strength fertilizer once every three to four months. To get the best blooms, use a fertilizer that has a higher phosphorus number (the middle number).

Re-pot - Anthurium plants are found in 4," 6," and 8" containers. These plants like to be root-bound, don't rush to put them into a larger pot.

Maintenance - Prune faded or dead flowers and leaves as soon as they appear. This helps the plant focus its energy on new growth. Give your Anthurium a six-week rest during the winter. Lower temperatures, less light, and drier soil during this time help an Anthurium produce more flowers in the spring and summer.

Pests - Anthurium plants are susceptible to Mealy Bugs, scale, Aphids, and thrip. The new tender growth is especially vulnerable. Examine your plants carefully every time you water. Spray with the " rubbing alcohol solution" if you notice plant pests. Fungal and bacterial plant diseases are a problem because of the high humidity and warmth anthuriums require. Keep the leaves dry and provide good air circulation to prevent plant diseases.

Propagation - An easy way to create new anthuriums is by cutting off the "air roots" that grow up above the soil level in the pot, dipping these root pieces in rooting hormone, and burying them in a new pot with fresh potting mix. Roots will start to send up stems and leaves within four to six weeks.

Anthuriums can also be propagated from cuttings. Select a stem at least 6 inches long with two or three sets of leaves. Dip the cut end of the stem in rooting hormone, then bury it in potting mix up to the first set of leaves. Water the cutting thoroughly when you plant it, then whenever the soil becomes dry. Mist the cutting each week to provide humidity. The cutting should develop roots within four to six weeks, and new growth shoots will soon follow.

Special Notes - ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) states that Anthuriums are very poisonous plants with a #3 toxicity level. Please keep them away from small children and pets.