This is a complete prayer plant propagation and care guide, in here you’ll find everything you need to care for this gorgeous and colorful indoor plant.
House plants in the home are quite beneficial; however, a lot of people do not keep houseplants in their homes for long because of how they are cared for. In caring for a houseplant, many things go wrong sometimes because we do not have adequate knowledge on how to care for them.
Some of the house plants we have in our home come in different types, which also affects how they are cared for. This article will discuss everything you need to know about one of our favorite house plants.
The Prayer Plant Background
|Botanical name||Maranta Leuconeura|
|Common name||Prayer plant|
|Light||Bright, indirect light|
|Toxicity||Non-toxic to children and pets|
|Size||Plants: 12 inches tall Leaves: 6 inches long.|
The name prayer plant is a common name for different species of herbaceous plants. They are of the Marantaceae family, they are perennial plants which means that they grow and stay alive for more than one year. This family is made up of 31 genera and about 550 different species.
The maranta leuconeura which is our focus is a colored tropical plant from South America, it is known for its oval leaves, it grows to about 30cm. The prayer plant comes in a variety of colors, from light green to brown, gray, dark red to bright green.
The name” prayer plant” was given because of how the plant folds and raises skyward like hands in prayer. Prayer plants are best known as indoor, however, some species do well when placed outdoor. Unknown to so many of us, prayer plant does produce flowers, this is one of the benefits of growing it outdoor.
Planting and growing prayer-plants are not difficult; however, it involves specific requirements. As a plant from the tropical forests, there are specific needs that the plant requires i.e. Light, temperature, and water.
The inability to meet these needs makes it seem hard to a lot of people who do not know this.
Prayer Plant Propagation Requirements
The following are requirements you need to help you plant and grow a prayer plant.
Bearing in mind that the prayer plant is from the tropical forest, it is important to note that it doesn’t require direct sunlight, this is because direct sunlight or too much light on them will result in faded color, leaf scorch, and brown blotches on the leaves.
The prayer plant thrives and blooms properly in bright, indirect light. If you will be placing it indoors, you might want to place it where too much light won’t get to it.
For a Prayer plant, the soil has to be perfect. This means there cannot be a mistake in the preparation of the soil for the plant. Prayer plant requires acidic soil, with a pH of 5.5 to 6.
You can make use of pre-packaged potting soil, however, make sure it is properly drained. Like many other plants, well-drained soil is a must for healthy growth. The soil mustn’t be too dry or too moist.
Like many other plants from the tropical forest, the prayer plant tolerates a humid environment. Especially if you will be growing the prayer plant indoor, then you must make provision for high humidity.
You can increase the humidity inside by getting a humidifier, or by growing your plant close to other green plants so that they will maintain a constant level of humidity, you should also watch and get rid of the things that steal moisture from the air, for example, heaters, etc.
When preparing to plant a prayer plant, the right kind of pot to get is a plastic pot. This is because the terracotta-made pot will dry out the soil. A plastic pot with a drainage home in it is best. You should also make sure the pot is shallow; this is because the root system of the plant is also shallow, and so it makes it less likely to overwater.
As common to many-colored houseplants, Prayer plants do not require direct full sun. placing it in full sun will harm the plant than do good to it, it enjoys indirect light and this is attributed to its origin.
Prayer Plant Propagation
Propagating prayer plants is one of the many things people have questions about. The following are some of the ways to propagate the prayer plant.
1. Grow Prayer Plant From Stem Cutting
This is the most popular of all the methods of propagation; it is also the easiest method to increase the plant supply. Cut the plant, below the nodes, close to the bottom of the stem, this is the point where leaves will form from the stem. Dip an inch of the cutting into some water then into a rooting hormone.
After this is done, move the cutting into its pot. Make sure the soil in the pot is well-drained and moist. You can cover it with a plastic bag, for proper ventilation and moisture.
2. Slip Propagation
This is another common way of propagating prayer plants. Pick a healthy plant, if it has different stems, and divide them into slips. Get ready a pot and some potting mix, remove the plant from its present pot, brush off the soil/sand on it so you see the roots.
Remove clumps of stems and roots with your fingertip and replant them in new pots, the same way they were planted before. Each of the skips will bring forth new plants.
3. Propagate From Seed
Is it possible to propagate from seed? Absolutely! However, it can be hard to find a prayer plant seed. You can collect some seeds from their flowers when they fade. sow your seed in moist, soil between 55-65 degrees temperature.
Retain moisture by covering the seed with a plastic bag (if you are sowing into a pot). Place them in a less humid condition and as they grow, expose them to more humidity.
How To Care For Your Prayer Plant
The first thing to note in caring for a prayer plant is that watering is very important to prayer-plants, this is because the roots are shallow and very delicate.
Water your plant the right way
It should never be too dry or overwatered. Before watering, make sure the topsoil is damp, not dry, and not soggy. You can water the plant regularly little by little.
One sure way to get the watering aspect right is by filling your watering can the night before and let it sit in overnight, by the time you water in the morning, the chlorine in the water which would have caused damage to the plant would have evaporated and the water will be just right for the plant. Watering in the morning also gives the plant some time to dry, this reduces the risk of fungal infection diseases that thrives in damp areas.
Fertilizing the prayer plant is quite important too. You can dilute a liquid feed to have what is recommended and feed the plant every 2 weeks.
Pot it right
Like many other house plants, the prayer plant enjoys a well-drained potting mix, you can also add about 25% sand to enable drainage. The plant can also grow in soil with a pH of 5.5.
Pruning of the leaves is quite important too, the leaves do not have a very long span, so it becomes obvious when they get tired. You can prune them about 3 times a year to get them in shape.
Careful with the leaves
The leaves of the prayer-plants are quite delicate, hence they may be attracted to pests like spider mites, mealybugs, aphids, etc. brown spots, curly leaves when you water, residues on leaves are signs to look out for, when you see all these, it is time tit rat your plant and get rid of these pests.
It’s not toxic
Unlike some other houseplants, the prayer plant is not toxic to humans or pets. The only damage that can be done is to the plants
Prayer Plant Care FAQ
Where Can I Buy A Prayer Plant?
It is not common for stores to keep and sell prayer plants, this is because they might not be able to provide the right light, warmth, and humidity that the plant requires. The best place to get is to contact a specialist grower, this way you will choose the variety that you want.
How Can I Revive It?
There are so many things that can cause the prayer plant to get unhealthy. However, when you detect the problem on time, you will be able to revive it. If the leaves turn yellow, the solution is to water or feed it less. if the problem is that they do not open, then the light they are receiving is not enough. If fading, give it less light. Chemicals in water especially tape water can cause the plant to be unhappy, you might want to adjust that too.
Will The Prayer Plant Flower?
Yes! Prayer plants produce flowers, they come in white and purple colors, and however, they are small in size. And although some people term them as insignificant, they still stand out.
How Often Should I Water My Plant?
There is no specific routine for watering, your watering schedule is dependent on the size of the pot, room temperature, and the weather. however, the prayer plant cannot tolerate dry soil, so you should water when the topsoil feels dry. You should keep an eye on your plant and adjust the watering schedule as it fits.
Are Prayer-Plants Easy To Grow?
Prayer plants are very easy to grow, however, like many other plants, they require specific care. And the inability to stick to this care will result in an unhealthy plant.
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Like many other house plants, knowing and understanding the care of each plant will produce a healthy relationship between you and your plant.
It is important to remember that there are different species of the prayer plant and as they are different, their needs are slightly different too, hence you should pay attention to what each needs. You can also request advice on how to care for the species you have from a plant specialist.
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