The name Anthurium is derived from the Greek words “anthos” and “oura,” meaning “tail flower.” Originally found in areas of the Andes Mountain range in Colombia and Ecuador, the colourful “flowers” of the Anthurium are actually modified leaves. The true flowers are the yellow cylindrical structures growing from the centre called an inflorescence.
As a tropical plant, the anthurium is very easy to care for and extremely robust. The anthurium loves warmth and light and little but of sunlight. It grows dormant for 5-6 weeks during winter if you live in cold areas and springs right back into blooms as soon as the weather gets warmer and the sun comes up.
Let's take a look at the detailed care guide for anthuriums to make your home garden brighter.
Common name: Anthurium, Tailflower, Flamingo Flower, and Laceleaf
Botanical name: Anthurium andraeanum
Sunlight: Bright indirect sunlight to partial sunlight
Air: Warm and well-ventilated and humid with frequent misting
Soil: Very well-draining soil with organic matter. A mix of equal parts Ugaoo Pot-o-mix and garden soil, with a part of perlite or wood chips, works well.
Water: Water when the top inch of the soil is dry to touch. Keep the soil moist but do not overwater.
Fertilisers: Once every two to three weeks. Withhold fertilisers in winters.
Issues: Rot due to overwatering and aphids and spider mites
Anthuriums prefer bright indirect light and do exceedingly well with a few hours of morning or evening sun. But keep it out of the scorching afternoon sun that may burn the leaves. The brighter the light the plant receives and for the greater number of hours, the more blooms it will produce.
Anthuriums do extremely well indoors in bright indirect light or partial sun. They flower more, with bigger blooms, when they get some direct light in the morning or evening, so a spot near an east or west-facing window is a great choice. Keep them away from south-facing windows to avoid leaf burn.
WateringWater thoroughly when the first inch of the soil becomes dry to the touch till the water drains out of the drainage hole at the bottom and always drains the bottom plate to avoid overwatering. The more light and warmth the Anthurium gets, the more frequently it will need to be watered.
Droopy leaves with browning leaf tips and shrivelling aerial roots are signs of an underwatered plant. Anthurium loves a humid environment, so you can mist every day. Try to use a pebble tray, or a humidifier during the dry winter months.
When watering an extremely dried out soil (visible cracks and soil leaving the planter walls) water in batches. Watering all at once allows the water to simply pass through the soil without getting absorbed.
Every time a plant is watered, water it thoroughly till you see some draining out of the drainage hole and always empty the underplate.
Anthuriums need a rich but well-draining soil that drains out quickly but holds moisture. A half and half mix of potting soil and Ugaoo’s Pot-o-Mix works well. You can also use a mix of regular potting soil, compost, and wood chips, anthurium plants don’t like continually moist soil.
Feed your Anthuriums with a generic houseplant fertiliser every three weeks, diluted as instructed on the packaging. Fertilising during the growing period (other than winter) is important.
Ensure that the fertilisers have the three major nutrients, nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. Ugaoo’s Plant Tonic and NPK are great options for both root and foliar applications.
Make it a point to remove fading and dying flowers, to redirect the plant’s energy towards new growth. This helps the plant focus its energy on new growth. Avoid pruning your plant during winter when it is dormant.
Repotting an Anthurium plant
- Fertilise your anthurium with a fertiliser high in phosphorus to promote flowering.
- Use a well-draining soil that is a good mix of aerators and water absorbers.
- Rootbound anthuriums have stunted growth. So repot you anthurium when it gets too big for its pot.
- Browning tips are a sign of underwatering or infrequent watering.
- Burnt leaf spots are a sign of too much sunlight
- Green flowers are a sign of forced flowering.