How to Look After Chlorophytum comosum (Spider Plant) - A Care Guide

Here's some tips on how to care for your Spider Plant, so that you can keep this classic houseplant happy and healthy.

A Spider Plant being held up at the Garden Geeks store. | Garden Geeks UK
A Spider Plant at the Garden Geeks store

The Spider Plant


A plant that almost everyone knows, Chlorophytum comosum, or the Spider Plant as it's more commonly called (due to the small, spidery plantlets that grow from it), makes for an adaptable and easy to care for houseplant wit around 200 varieties to pick from.


Native to South Africa, it rose to fame as a house plant in the 19th century. You may not have guessed, but it's actually a member of the asparagus family too!

Light


An easy going plant, Chlorophytum cosmosum can tolerate lower light conditions. However -if you want your Spider Plant to be at its best - bright, indirect light sunlight will help your plant to flourish and bring out the iconic striping on your Spider Plant's leaves.


If you cant provide enough light, grow lights work great too.


As usual, avoid harsh, direct sunlight, as this may scorch your houseplants leaves.


Soil


A Versatile species, Spider Plants can grow in a variety of soil and potting mediums. Overall, you want good drainage and a little bit of moisture retention, so that you don't drown the plant, but it's not dried out all the time.


As a basic mix, adding 1/3 perlite to 2/3 potting soil will help add the drainage you need and should do your Chlorophytum comosum just fine. If you're wanting to provide optimal conditions, a slightly acidic soil of ph. 6-7 is usually suggested.


Some growers will use peat moss and coco coir and others might suggest throwing in some bark too. Feel free to experiment with what works best for you and your Spider Plant . Just keep in mind that good drainage is key for this easy-care houseplant.


Watering


On average, and depending on your household conditions, you'll want to water your Spider Plant about once a week and less in the winter months. Your Spider Plant won't mind drying out between watering every so often, so if in doubt and the soil is still moist, wait another day or two till the soil is dryer. The plants fleshy roots are adapted to help survive inconsistent watering.


Pick your plants pot up and notice the weight difference when the soil is dry and after watering, this is a good way to tell when a plant needs a drink. Generally, you won't want to water your Chlorophytum comosum until at least the top 50% of the soil is dry


Filtered water or rainwater is best and if you don't have a filterer, let your water sit overnight to help remove some of the chemicals, too much of which can lead to your Spider Plants leaf tips browning in some cases.


Humidity


Spider Plants can survive fine in normal household and lower humidity, but too dry air may result in the plant's leaf tips going brown. Spraying your plant with a mister every so often will help give it a boost.


Avoid placing your Chlorophytum comosum near dry heat vents that will suck humidity away from the plant.


Temperature


Your Spider Plant should do fine in temperatures between 15°C - 26.5°C. As you get to the lower end of this range the plants growth might slow down a bit though remember it's form South Africa after all and does enjoy a bit of warmth.


Toxicity


Spider Plants / Chlorophytum comosum are non toxic to pets and humans. Y


our spider plants floppy leaves and spidery plantlings make for fun play things for cats paws though, so place them out of reach if you don't want them to be batted around a bit!

Growth


Spider plants are relatively fast growers and as such can become pot bound if you're not careful. Usually you'll want to repot your plant every other year.


Typically, in good conditions, your Spider Plant can grow to around 12 - 15 inches tall in just a few years.


The plants iconic plantlings/pups are easy to propagate and can easily be rooted into new plants to grow your collection or gift to friends!

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