Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’
Spider plants, also known as Chlorophytum comosum, are one of the most popular houseplants around. They are known for their long, slender leaves that arch gracefully from the center of the plant, earning them the nickname "airplane plant." In this blog post, we'll explore the origin and habitat of the spider plant, as well as popular cultivars, and tips for light, fertilizing, plant care, including potting up, watering, humidity, and pest control.
Origin and Habitat
The spider plant is native to tropical and southern Africa, from Sudan to South Africa. In the wild, spider plants grow as ground cover in shaded forests, sending out long runners with baby spider plants or plantlets that take root in the soil. This is why spider plants are so easy to propagate and share with friends.
Habit: Low growing herbaceous perennial with arching grass-like green nd white leaves and long hanging bunches of white flowers that develop into little plantlets.
Temperature: Plants grow best between 15 to 25ᐤ C and temperatures below 4ᐤ C may result in the death of the plant.
Light Exposure: Plants grow well in bright, indirect light for best growth indoors. Avoid placing plants in direct sun or in dark locations.
Watering: Chlorophytum like a moist growing medium but not saturated; water only when the top 3 cm of soil feels dry to the touch. Always check the soil moisture first but as a rule of thumb watering once a week in the rainy season, once every two or three weeks in the cold dry season and once or twice a week in the hot dry season.
Fertilising: Give plants a well balanced fertiliser twice a month during the hot dry season and rainy season but not during the cold dry season when plants are resting (semi-dormant).
Pruning/Repotting: Spider plants like to be slightly pot-bound, so it's best not to over-pot them. When the roots begin to outgrow the pot, you can transplant them into a larger pot or divide them into smaller plants. Remove dead or dry leaves and old spent flower stalks as needed. Repot plants every two or three years once the roots have filled the pot.
Pest Control: Spider plants are relatively pest-free, but they can be susceptible to spider mites and mealybugs. Keep an eye out for any signs of infestation, such as webbing or white, cotton-like spots on the leaves. If you do notice pests, treat the plant with an insecticidal soap or neem oil.
In conclusion, spider plants are easy to care for and make a beautiful addition to any home. With a little bit of attention and care, your spider plant will thrive and bring joy for years to come.