Anthurium (Painter’s Palette / Flamingo Flower)

Anthurium Care Guide

Light

Good light is needed for all Anthurium’s, but you should avoid direct sunlight otherwise the leaves will go brown and crispy.

Watering

Anthurium’s don’t like dryness at the roots, but occasional experiences of this won’t be a deal breaker. For best results use tepid soft water and try to keep the soil at least slightly moist at all times.

Humidity

The plant will need a reasonable level of humidity in order to thrive. The majority of homes should be suitable but if you’ve very dry air, regular misting will help, in addition to helping prevent dust from building up on the leaves.

Feeding

Anthurium’s require warmth and if you’re providing this it will grow all year round. This means regular gentle weak feeding all year (if it’s actually growing) would definitely be helpful, in order to provide a continuous supply of nutrients.

Assuming you’re feeding your plant, anything from once a month or once every couple of months is a good choice.

In order to thrive indoors Anthurium’s need warmth and humidity

Temperature

This houseplant must have warm temperatures, so choose your plant’s location carefully.

No lower than 16°C / 60°F and for good growth 20°C / 68°F plus. If you can’t meet the minimum temperature requirement all year round then ease up on the watering and feeding when it gets colder.

Repotting

Look to repot your Anthurium every couple of years in Spring if it’s needed. When it comes to the potting medium no special requirements are needed, normal potting soil or houseplant compost is completely fine, although adding small amounts of bark or perlite to the mix will be beneficial and help prevent drainage problems.

Propagation

You can remove any offsets that have grown when you repot your Anthurium. However the primary reason Anthurium’s are so expensive is because they take a long time to grow into an attractive looking sized plant. So bear this in mind if you are attempting to expand your collection through propagation as it could be some years before the offsets start flowering.

Speed of Growth

Anthurium’s don’t grow particularly fast, but if all the care requirements are met you’ll still notice the plant growing producing a new leaf or two every month.

Height / Spread

After many years the Painter’s Palette can get quite large at 60cm / 2ft in in both height and spread, where as the Flamingo Flower is often smaller at around 40cm / 16in.

Flowers

The flowers on Anthurium’s are unique looking and often give a long lasting splash of colour. If a constant warm temperature is achieved then flowering can occur at anytime of the year. If not, then expect the waxy vibrant flowers to appear between February through to September.

Perfectly captured photo of the Anthurium in flower by Mike Bird

There isn’t any special trick to get the flowers, if you follow the Anthurium care tips they will come in time.

Is Anthurium Poisonous?

This is another houseplant which contains calcium oxalate crystals in the leaves and stems. Whilst rarely fatal it can be very unpleasant when chewed on. Keep your pets away if they’re the nibbling types.

Anything else?

The Painter’s Palette and Flamingo Flower can make great plants for the work office. The majority are air conditioned or heated to maintain a consistent temperature all year round, this combined with good light means optimum growth and flowering potential.

Anthurium Problems

Brown Anthurium leaves

Often caused by poor watering technique, i.e. not keeping the soil moist. Another common cause is that the humidity is too low or the light levels are too bright.

Yellow Anthurium leaves

This is usually a result of overwatering your plant. The soil should be moist rather than saturated. If you know you struggle to get watering right, then mix in some perlite or small bits of chipped bark to aid in drainage.

Aphids

You can either squish the Aphids with your fingers by gently running them up and down the stem where the colony has set up home. Or spray with a spray mister containing 9 parts water to 1 part washing up liquid / liquid soap.

No Flowers on my Anthurium

Your Anthurium plant will only produce flowers if it’s happy. Warm temperatures, moist soil and reasonable amounts of light are needed. The plant will also need feeding from time to time. Be warned that it will also dislike you if the temperature fluctuates wildly, i.e. very warm during the day swinging to cold temperatures at night. Try and fix all these problems and you’ll get the flowers.

About the Author

Tom Knight

Over the last 20 years Tom has successfully owned hundreds of houseplants and is always happy to share knowledge and lend his horticulture skills to those in need. He is the main content writer for the Ourhouseplants Team.

Also on Ourhouseplants.com

(Article / Gallery) Photo credit of the Flamingo Flower in a window to Romwriter
(Gallery) Photo credit of the Anthurium Scherzianum flower close up by JJ Harrison
(Article / Gallery) Photo credit of the Red Anthurium Flowers by Mike Bird
(Gallery) Photo credit of the Red Anthurium Flowers by Ramesh NG

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Plant of the Week: Painter’s Palette

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture does not promote, support or recommend plants featured in “Plant of the Week.” Please consult your local Extension office for plants suitable for your region.

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Painter’s Palette
Latin: Persicaria virginiana

Gardeners having to deal with a lot of shade in their gardens are always looking for new plants that add color to the shaded recesses of their planting spaces. Painter’s Palette, often known as Tovara virginiana, is a plant relatively new to the garden scene that may be worth considering. For really shocking foliage color, few plants rival this beauty.
Painter’s Palette is an herbaceous perennial that grows to 18 inches tall and spreads by means of underground stems. It has large, oval shaped leaves that grow 4 to 6 inches long and are a beautiful composition of rich green, maroon markings in the shape of lightning bolts and cream colored patches that occupy just a portion or occasionally the entire leaf. Each leaf has a different variegation pattern. In the fall it produces loose, terminal spikes that grow to 8 inches long and contain a number of small, cup-shaped greenish flowers. The plant dies to the ground in the winter but is hardy statewide, in fact it grows from zones 5 to 9.
This species is relatively unusual because, while originally discovered growing in Virginia and named for that locale, it also occurs in Japan, Korea and the Himalayas of China. Such wide distribution is uncommon amongst plants of a single species and helps explain why it is described under at least three Latin names in garden catalogs.
Plants that have underground root systems sometimes can become aggressive and grow into areas where they are not wanted. Painter’s Palette is a member of the smartweed family and a few of these have sufficiently aggressive spreading habits to make them suitable for use as groundcovers. At least in my experience, this plant is not as aggressive a spreader as the groundcover types, but in a good site it could move away from its original planting location. Should you wish to increase its spread and use it as a groundcover, spring division or summer cuttings are an easy way to propagate new plants to increase the size of the planting.
The best planting location for Painter’s Palette is in medium shade in relatively fertile soil that can be watered during dry spells. Members of the smartweed family typically do best in relatively moist locations, but Painter’s Palette has good drought tolerance once established. It is ideal for mass plantings where its showy color markings and bold leaf size can make an effective display in those shady recesses that need a spot of summer color.

By: Gerald Klingaman, retired
Extension Horticulturist – Ornamentals
Extension News – April 23, 1999

The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture does not maintain lists of retail outlets where these plants can be purchased. Please check your local nursery or other retail outlets to ask about the availability of these plants for your growing area.

The painter’s palette, a tropical gem

The Sunday Mail

Andrew Mangwarara —
NATURE never ceases to amaze, packed within it are some of the most attractive plants. This can be undeniably applied to the likes of anthurium andreanum, commonly called the painter’s palette due to its unique inflorescence shaped like an old paint brush and its palette. The wonderful red colourful blooms add to the charm of the plant. Other species have different coloured blooms in pink, green or white.

This is a South American plant from Colombia, found in the tropical rainforests there. It has become an important indoor and shade plant for the garden.

Being found in humid conditions sheltered under the canopy of trees speaks of its preferences when growing. It needs high humidity and warm temperatures of about 15 to 30 degrees celsius. Anthurium does not like direct sunlight, it must be screened from direct sunrays or else the leaves will be scorched. The painter’s palette is able to grow to about 50cm in height, producing large leaves of about 20cm in diameter.

Position the plant indoors if there is enough light. In our climate, I find it does well on verandas, patios or under shade cloth.

Even before it flowers, which is usually regularly in the tropics, the leaves are a feature in themselves, you can polish them with plain water. The plant requires continuous feeding for it to produce flowers regularly.

You will need a slow release fertiliser such as compound D but in minute quantities. You can also change the compost frequently. Misting daily prolongs the blooms as well as snaps the central flower.

Allow the compost to dry out between watering but try to keep it moist most times. However, water more in summer than in winter. If the plant has developed some aerial roots, mist these frequently. For your pot plants, keep some water in the trays to maintain humidity. Occasional application of magnesium rich fertiliser helps it flourish, about half-a-teaspoon in each pot (once a month).

Re-potting is highly recommended once the roots have filled the pot. This you can check by removing the plant briefly from the pot. Propagation is by means of dividing the mature plants or taking stem cuttings.

Cuttings can be planted in river sand or water until they root away from direct sunlight. Anthurium has a lot of potential as a cut flower as the cut blooms can last for up to three weeks. The plant, however, has some toxicity so it should not be consumed by pets or children.

If flowers are few in between then the light is inadequate, expose the plant to more light. Scorched leaves indicate that direct sunlight is burning the leaves or it is a case of over fertilisation, which is more prominent on the lower leaves.

Some common pests such as aphids, thrips, scale and red spidermites need to be monitored and sprayed accordingly.

Bacterial infections can occur and appear as lesions on the leaves so remove affected leaves, spraying with a bactericide such as copper oxychloride. Fungal infestations show themselves as spots, blight and root rot. It is usually a case of over watering and infected soil.

Sterilise your soil medium and use clean plant material. A little attention to detail can reward you as you look after this plant. It will also help you clean the air in your house.

The painter’s palette, a tropical gem of note. Happy gardening!

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Painters Palette Plant Stock Photos and Images

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  • Painter’s Palette plant (Anthurium andreanum) in a private garden in Jinotega, Nicaragua
  • Red tropical plant – painter’s-palette
  • Anthurium (Andraeanum Group) ‘Volare’ Araceae family Anthurium andraeanum is a flowering plant species in the family Araceae that is native to Colombia and Ecuador tailflower painter’s palette flamingo flower laceleaf, grown as an ornamental plant in the form of many hybrids or horticultural varieties
  • Persicaria virginiana (Variegata Group) PAINTER’S PALETTE
  • Two Painter’s palette flowers in full bloom
  • The house plant Anthurium Painters Palette.
  • Persicaria virginiana (Variegata Group) PAINTER’S PALETTE
  • Painter’s palette, Anthurium scherzerianum, Red subject.
  • The house plant Anthurium Painters Palette
  • Painter’s palette, Anthurium, Pink subject, Black background.
  • Anthurium, Rosenkalla (Anthurium andraeanum)
  • Painter’s palette, Anthurium scherzerianum, Red subject.
  • persicaria painters palette
  • Berberis thunbergii ‘Orange rocket’. Japanese barberry ‘Orange Rocket’ flowers in april. UK
  • Painter’s palette, Anthurium scherzerianum, Red subject.
  • Closeup image of green hose plant in a pot with red flowers
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Painter’s palette (Anthurium andraeanum)
  • Anthurium house plant in a pot on white coffee table on neutral background
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • close up painter’s palette flower. Flamingo Flower and Painter’s Palette are two Anthurium species that are grown as house plants
  • Anthurium andreanum Bright Red (Miami Beauty), Common Name: Flamingo flower ; Flamingo lily ; Oilcloth flower; Painter`s palette.
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • close up painter’s palette flower. Flamingo Flower and Painter’s Palette are two Anthurium species that are grown as house plants
  • Flamingo lily (Anthurium andraeanum) in the Quito Botanical Gardens, Quito, Ecuador
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Jumpseed (Persicaria filiformis ‘Painter’s Palette’ syn. Polygonum filiforme ‘Painter’s Palette’)
  • Cardon cactus (Trichocereus species) and ‘ The Painters Palette ‘ / ‘ La Paleta del Pintor ‘ hillside, Maimara, Argentina
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Persicaria virginiana syn. Polygonum virginiana ‘Painter’s Palette’
  • Cardon cactus, Maimara and ‘The Painters Palette ‘ / ‘ La Paleta del Pintor ‘ hillside, Quebrada de Humahuaca, Argentina
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo lily (Anthurium andraeanum) in the Quito Botanical Gardens, Quito, Ecuador
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Anthurium andraeanum FLAMINGO PLANT PAINTER S PALETTE
  • Red Anthurium Flower on Green Background
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Anthurium andraeanum FLAMINGO PLANT PAINTER S PALETTE
  • Red Anthurium Flower on Pink Background
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Painter’s palette ‘Anthurium andraeanum’ Shot in studio against a white background
  • Red Anthurium Flower on Green Background
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum
  • Flamingo flower, Tail flower, Painter’s palette, Anthurium andraeanum

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