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If you are looking for an exotic and colorful plant, then check out Anthurium andraeanum or a plant know as Painter’s palette.
This stunning plant is from an Anthurium family and grows in South America.
Painter’s palette has become a quite popular indoor plant that both amateur gardeners and professionals adore.
Due to its popularity, the plant is easy to get, and it isn’t as pricy as other Anthurium types.
Hoping to grow your own Painter’s palette plant? You will find everything you need to know in this guide!
How to Grow Anthurium Andraeanum?
The painter’s palette plant’s natural habitat is South America, where the environment is quite humid and warm.
That is why it might be a bit harder to grow it indoors. Recreating its natural environment isn’t easy, so the plant will require a lot of attention and care.
If you are an experienced indoor gardener than you won’t experience many difficulties when growing an Anthurium andraeanum.
The biggest challenge is finding and getting an Anthurium plant.
These plants are rare and extremely expensive, and Painter’s palette plant is no exception.
Even though it is cheaper than other Anthurium types, it is still quite pricy.
However, when it starts thriving in your home, you will be amazed!
Firstly, you should know that those big, bright flowers aren’t flowers.
Those are leaves that come in many different colors: red, purple, white and pink.
Flowers are placed in the middle of the base, but they rarely develop indoors, so you probably won’t even see them.
With the proper care, you might get them to blossom, so continue reading the guide to learn how to grow a healthy painter’s palette plant.
Different Types of Anthurium
Most Anthurium plants are from the same continent – South America and have adapted to the same conditions: warm temperature, humid air and a lot of water.
Since they are rare and expensive plants, most collectors aren’t ready to sell their examples.
If you manage your hands on one and grow it, you will be amazed by their beauty.
Most gardeners are attracted to the colorful leaves of Painter’s palette plant, so that is why it is so popular.
After successfully growing one Anthurium plant, you can grow another type also! There are many Anthurium varieties, but here are some of the most popular Anthurium plants, besides Painter’s Palette:
With the painter’s palette plant you will easily grasp the basics of taking care of Anthurium plants, so growing a different type won’t be a big challenge.
Some basic instructions have to be followed, and each type has a few unique requirements that most experienced gardeners can meet.
Watering Anthurium Andraeanum
As said, mimic the natural habitat of Anthurium andraeanum is the most important!
When it comes to watering, you will have to make sure that the plant is getting enough water.
Due to heavy rainfalls, this plant has adjusted to frequent watering, and many gardeners struggle with both underwatering and overwatering.
Firstly, the plant shouldn’t sit in water and soil shouldn’t be soggy.
The roots are prone to rotting, so overwatering will lead to different diseases, death of the roots and plant.
Whenever you are watering the plant, let the water pass through the drainage holes,
Then empty the tray and check the soil – if it is evenly saturated, great! Return the plant to its place and check the moisture of the soil in a few days.
If the soil is unevenly moist, you can add a dose of water to the dry part and wait until it fills up the tray. Then empty the tray again, so the plant isn’t sitting in water.
Over the next few days, check the moist of the soil – some soils retain the water longer and some shorter.
When the soil becomes dry, especially when the bottom layers become dry, it is time to water the plant again.
Underwatering is a less common issue. This plant can tolerate the dry periods, so even if you forget to check the soil or to water it, it won’t cause too much damage.
The amount of water is also determined by the period of the year.
Typically, the painter’s palette plant will require a few waterings each week in the spring and summer months.
This is a growing period for the plant, so it requires more care.
In the late fall and winter, you will water it only once a week. This will mostly depend on other conditions such as the temperature of the room and the humidity of the air.
Light and Temperature Requirements for Anthurium Andraeanum
This plant grows in large forests and since it isn’t quite tall, it doesn’t get too much direct light.
The leaves of Anthurium andraeanum are delicate and sensitive, so direct light can cause sunburns.
You should keep the plant in a shaded place – find a spot in a room that is bright but away from sun rays.
Using white curtains to reduce the intensity of the light works well, and the plant will get enough light without being directly exposed to it.
If you notice any discoloration of the leaves, it might be from too much direct light, so you should move it to a shaded place.
Since it needs a lot of light, but can’t be exposed to sunrays, many gardeners use other light sources.
Lamps are the best options – many of them allow gardeners to set the intensity of the light, so they can adjust it to fit the plant’s needs.
Also, during winter, when the number of sunny days is reduced, their plants can still thrive, since they don’t depend on sunlight.
When talking about the temperature requirements, it is best to keep it around 70-90 Fahrenheit degrees.
Fortunately, these plants adjust easily to different temperatures, so you don’t have to worry too much about keeping the temperature constant and warm.
There is no need to turn on air conditioners to control the temperature
As long as you keep the plant away from drafts and prevent any extreme temperature changes, it will thrive.
Also, make sure the temperature doesn’t drop to low or gets too high since both can seriously damage the plant. During winter, you can move it to the hottest room in a house, and during summer, move it in a more shaded area, so both wilting and sunburns are prevented.
Soil Requirements for Anthurium Andraeanum
Besides frequent watering, optimum temperature and a lot of indirect sunlight, some soil requirements need to be met as well.
When it comes to soil, you can either create the mix on your own or buy it online.
There are plenty of organic soils that will work well for Anthurium andraeanum, all you have to do before buying is check the ingredients.
In general, the soil should retain water, and have some drainage material, since sitting in water or too soggy soil can damage the root system and plant.
For retaining water, you should go for peat-based soil. Peat moss absorbs water quickly and slowly releases it, making sure the plant is getting enough of it until the next watering.
Also, peat-based soils allow aeration – it is equally important as the ability to retain water since the health of the plant depends on it.
A great substitute for peat-based soils is sand-based soils. However, for Anthurium plants, peat moss is a safer option and will work the best!
Besides peat moss, the growing mix should have perlite as well. It has the same function as peat – absorbs water and improves aeration.
You can also buy soils that have coconut coir and pine bark. All of these ingredients will improve the health of the painter’s palette plant.
Because roots are prone to rotting and different diseases, the soil should have a bit of drainage material as well.
Whenever you are watering the plant, you should wait until the water passes through the soil and empty the tray.
Thanks to the drainage material in the soil, the process will be much quicker, but won’t make the soil too dry.
Organic ingredients such as bark, compost or wood chips are the best for drainage.
With the right combination of ingredients, the plant will get enough water between two waterings, and won’t have to battle some common root diseases.
Fertilizing Anthurium Andraeanum
For plants to develop those stunning, vivid leaves, it will need some extra boost.
Since it isn’t growing in its natural conditions, some nutrients might be lacking.
With the proper fertilizer, you will have a healthy Painter’s palette plant with the biggest and most colorful leaves.
This Anthurium type (like many others) doesn’t require too much fertilizer – when the growing period starts, you can fertilize the plant only once a week.
Once the winter arrives, you can stop with fertilizing entirely and continue with watering, and keeping the best conditions.
Anyone who already has an Anthurium plant knows that organic fertilizer is the best choice!
If you don’t care about using the organic ones, artificial is okay as well, but won’t give as good results.
The problem with artificial fertilizers is that you will need large amounts that won’t give the plant a needed boost.
With a good organic fertilizer, using a smaller amount and fertilizing once a week is more than enough for a healthy plant to develop.
Also, organic fertilizers might boost the development of flowers, so your painter’s palette plant might even blossom!
The fertilizer you are using should be a liquid, slow-release fertilizer that is soluble in water.
When it comes to the ingredients is should have, find the one that has phosphorus, nitrogen and calcium. Magnesium will additionally boost the plant’s growth, but the plant will do well without it.
If the fertilizer has nitrogen, make sure it is the nitrate-nitrogen, not the ammonical.
Even though it is recommended to feed the plant every week, you don’t have to use large amounts.
Just dissolve the fertilizer in water and sprinkle it around. This will give the plant enough boost to continue a healthy development.
If you are worried about overfertilizing and damaging the plant, feeding it once every two weeks, or even once a month is also okay.
Anthurium Andraeanum Pruning
This plant doesn’t need to be pruned often.
After two years, it might be the first time it will require some pruning.
Usually, gardeners only have to deal with dead leaves or some discoloration. Both are the signs of a problem with watering, light or temperature.
If you spot either on the leaves, just use the shears to cut them off. However, after pruning is done, change a frequency of watering or find a better spot for the plant.
When basic criteria aren’t met, other leaves will start dying as well and healthy ones won’t be able to grow back.
Also, make sure you are using clean shears, so you don’t accidentally transfer any diseases to the plant.
Check the plant regularly to see whether the leaves have started growing – you can expect them after about three weeks.
Pruning can be done when the flowers grow as well.
Many gardeners cut off the flowers and keep them in vases.
If you want to do the same, make sure you aren’t cutting only the flowers, but a few stems as well. This will keep the flowers alive for a longer period.
Anthurium Andraeanum Propagation
Since this is a rare and expensive plant, once the gardeners grow their healthy example, they can’t wait to propagate it and have some more.
There are different ways to propagate an Anthurium plant, so choose the one that is the easiest for you.
The best period for propagating the plant is the spring and summer because this is its growing period.
Propagating Anthurium Andraeanum by Division
This is the easiest way to propagate any plant and the most common way for Anthurium andraeanum.
If you have a healthy Painter’s palette plant, use it to make other healthy examples.
The things you will need are:
- A cloth or tissue
- Clean, sanitized shears
- A pot
- A plastic container (optional)
- A little bit of potting mix.
Firstly, you will have to remove the plant from the pot and place it on a surface. Make sure that the roots are placed on a cloth or tissue.
It should protect it from the damage and save the plant.
You can slightly untangle the roots, and examine them.
For propagating the plant by division, you will need a healthy, undamaged root system.
The roots can have a few stems as well.
Then cut off a piece of a plant including the roots, without damaging the rest of the root system.
Repot the old plant and fill the new pot with a potting mix.
If you have a potting mix that worked well for the previous plant, use it for a new one also.
Fill half of the pot with the growing mix and place the cuttings in the pot. Add the growing mix until the pot is full.
Water the plant and place it in a shaded area. You can add a plastic container over the soil, to create a more humid air that will help the plant grow.
Propagating Anthurium Andraeanum by Seeds
Propagating this type of Anthurium by seeds will be much harder than doing it by division.
For starters, you will need the seeds from the flowers.
If your plant hasn’t blossomed and developed fruit from which you can take the seeds, then you will have to use the previous method.
If you have the seeds, all you have to do is remove the pulp by washing the seeds.
Then place the seeds in the potting mix. Covering the pot with a plastic container will create the humid conditions the plant needs for growing.
Repotting Anthurium Andraeanum
After one or two seasons, you will have to repot the plant.
When choosing a new pot, make sure it is at least 20% wider than the previous one. In the bigger pot, the roots will have enough room to grow.
Just like propagating, repotting should also be done in spring and summer, because of the numerous sunny days and warmer temperatures.
For repotting, use the same potting mix as previously. Also, make sure that your plant is kept in the same conditions, so it doesn’t have to adapt to new ones.
Another thing you should do after repotting anthurium is to feed the plant.
Dissolve the fertilizer and sprinkle it a little bit over the Anthurium.
Also, pruning it after the repotting isn’t recommended – allow the plant to rest for a few days or a week, and then remove the dead ends or discolored leaves.
Anthurium Andraeanum Problems and Solutions
There are a few common problems that even professional gardeners have to face when growing Anthurium andraeanum.
Here are some of them and different ways of resolving them.
1. Yellow leaves
Yellow leaves indicate overwatering and sunburns.
You can easily solve the problem of overwatering by checking the soil before watering.
If the soil is evenly saturated, it is not the time for watering.
This plant can stand a few days of dryness, so you can wait until it becomes dry to water it.
Also, you should always wait until the water passes through the drainage holes and empty the plate.
If the problem is sunburns, you should move the plant to another spot that is a bit more shaded.
Direct light will cause sunburns, so always use curtains if the plant is placed near the windows.
Once the plant spends a few days in a shaded place, the leaves will start recovering. You can also prune the Anthurium to boost the recovery process.
2. Lack of nutrients
As said, the quality of soil and fertilizer is of utmost importance.
If the plant doesn’t get enough nutrients, the leaves will change its color to brown.
Phosphorus, nitrogen, calcium and potassium are the nutrients that the painter’s palette plant needs to thrive and blossom.
You will probably need to switch to the fertilizer that is rich with these nutrients.
If the fertilizer contains them, the problem is the frequency of fertilizing. Start feeding the plant once a week so it gets enough nutrients.
3. Problem with fungi
Fungi is a common problem for Anthurium plants.
Their root system is prone to developing fungi when the soil is too soggy.
When the fungi attack roots, the leaves start browning.
Repotting will easily solve this problem – place the plant in a new potting mix, and make sure it is evenly saturated.
Make sure that you don’t repeat the previous mistake – as long as the soil is moist, don’t water the plant.
4. Leaves falling off
As the plant ages, the leaves start falling off.
This is a natural process, and it isn’t much you can do it about it.
If you don’t remove the leaves by yourself, they will just fall off.
Many gardeners prune the old leaves, so the new ones can take their place.
1. Is Anthurium Andraeanum toxic?
Yes, like many other Anthurium types, the Painter’s palette plant is also toxic.
Its toxicity won’t affect humans – it is more toxic to pets.
If your pet tends to bite on plants, keep the plant out of its reach.
2. Does Anthurium Andraeanum need misting?
Since this plant is used to high humidity, you should mist it from time to time.
If you can create a high humidity (either by placing it in a room with humid air or by using humidifiers), you won’t have to mist it as frequently.
Gardeners that struggle with keeping the air humid, should frequently mist the plant.
3. How to make Anthurium Andraeanum to blossom?
To make this type to blossom, use the fertilizer that is rich with nutrients and create a high humid air.