How to Look After Anthuriums (Flamingo Flower) - A Care Guide

Here's some tips on how to care for an Anthurium , so that you can make the most out of of this colourful flowering houseplant

A Pink Anthurium being held up at the Garden Geeks store. | Garden Geeks UK
A Pink Anthurium at the Garden Geeks store.

The Flamingo Flower


Commonly know as the Flamingo Flower, Painted Tongue, Laceleaf, Taliflower and Hawaiian Heart, due to its unique, single heart shape leaves (spathes) and spadix (the central tower of tiny flowers in the centre of the plant), Anthurium is a genus of over 1,000 flowering plants, available in a variety of captivating colours.


Native to the Americas, in the wild this pretty houseplant can be found from Northern Mexico and Argentina to the Caribbean and is bound to add colour and character to your home.

Light


Your Anthurium will bright, indirect light. Avoid harsh direct sunlight which can burn your Flamingo Flower's leaves.


The more bountiful the light to your Anthurium houseplant receives , the more it will reward you with beautiful blooms.


In lower light areas and during the winter months especially, you may want to supplement the light your Anthurium receives by using a grow light.


Soil


With its thick, orchid like roots, your Anthurium will do best in a corse and well draining potting mix.


Adding some extra peat moss and sand to a premixed orchard mix will work well. As will adding equal parts bark and perlite and a little bit of sand to a general potting soil.


You want to make sure your soil drains well so that your Anthurium's roots are not sitting soaking in water for long periods of time, but remains lightly moist and airy.


Watering


Although Anthuriums are tropical plants that enjoy humid environments, their watering requirements are rather light in comparison to some other tropical houseplants. This is due to their big, fleshy roots that succumb to rot easily if your soil is too waterlogged.


In general household conditions, you'll probably want to water your Anthurium about once a week, when the top 50-75% of the soil is dry. When watering, give your plant a good soak and let the excess water run out of your pot's drainage holes.


If your Anthurium dries out too much though, the edges of its leaves may yellow.


Humidity


Being native to the tropics of the Americas, your Anthurium will enjoy high humidity and will benefit from daily misting of its leaves. You can also place it on a trad of pebbles and water, or use a humidifier in the dryer winter periods.

Keeping your Anthurium beside other humidity loving plants will help to create a more humid microclimate too.


You'll want to aim for a humidity of 60% or more if possible, although anything above 50% should be sufficient.


Temperature


Anthuriums grow best in temperatures ranging from 18-27°C. You should try to avoid temperatures dropping below 15 degrees Celsius at night if possible.


Keep your Taliflower away from radiators, air vents and other drey eat sources, to stop humidity and heat being sucked away form your houseplant.


Toxicity


Anthuriums /Taliflower / Flamingo Flower / Hawaiian Heart / Laceleaf are toxic to humans and pets if ingested, so you should keep them away from hungry doggies and moggies and don't be tempted to eat their pretty flowers.


If you do, be prepared for mouth and skin irritation, stomach pain and possible vomiting.

Growth


Anthuriums are rather slow growers, with the most common species reaching an average height of around 12-18 inches when mature.


Letting your Anthurium have a more dormant period of about 6 weeks in winter (with a little less light and water) will help encourage blooming in spring and summer.


Every so often you may want to gently remove the dust off of your Anthurium's wide leaves to help increase the indirect sunlight it receives and prune any wilting flowers as they appear, to help redirect growth to the rest of the plant.


Generally, you'll want to repot your Anthurium every 2-3 years when it starts to become particularly root bound or to refresh the nutrients in the soil and you can feed your Laceleaf once a month in the growing season (Spring and Summer) with a liquid houseplant fertiliser.


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