So you’re ready to take the Japanese gardening traditions to the next level with a gorgeous anthurium kokedama? Or did you get the plant as a token of affection from a dear friend? Either way, give it the proper care, and it will return the favor with glossy green foliage and heart-shaped flowers in shades of red, pink, and white. The flowers are long-lasting and continue coming throughout the year as long as the plant receives ideal conditions.
As a houseplant, it’s effective in cleaning the air of formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene, and toluene. The species appears in NASA’s list of Clean Air Study for the same. Anthurium kokedamas aren’t hard to care for, making them an excellent houseplant even for a newbie.
The Origins Of Anthuriums
Anthurium andraeanum, or Flaming Flower, hails from the tropical forests of Latin America. The word “Anthurium” is Greek and it means ‘tail flower’. The unique, artistic flowers have given it many other nicknames too. Some of these include Hawaiian Heart, Painted Tongue, and Painter’s Palette.
How To Care For Anthurium Kokedama
Anthurium Kokedamas don’t ask for a lot. Here’s the bare minimum you should take care of to enjoy this living art piece in your home:
The plant appreciates bright, indirect light. Keep it in a well-lit spot, but out of direct sunlight. Direct exposure to the sun can burn the leaves. Though it can survive in shadier spots, you’ll get fewer flowers.
Anthurium kokedamas enjoy consistently warm temperatures in the range of 70 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Sudden changes in temperature aren’t good for the plant.
Native to the tropics, the plant thrives in humidity. Mist it once a week to keep the atmosphere humid enough for the kokedama, or place rocks under the moss ball with a little bit of water for more info check the humidity guide. Keep it away from cold drafts and radiators. The heat from radiators can dry out the moss of kokedama.
Moderate water is ideal for anthuriums. Overwatering isn’t good for the plant. If the plant is losing leaves, it’s typically a sign that it’s getting too much water. Water the plant when the base seems almost dry. Watering it once a week should work fine for the active growing season. During winters, however, growth slows down and your kokedama will probably need to be watered only once in two weeks.
To water your anthurium kokedama, follow the usual routine. Submerge the moss ball in a bowl of water until it’s saturated. Remove the ball from the water, let the excess water drip for about 20 min and place it back in its place.
- Plant Food
The moss ball is already enriched with the necessary plant food to keep your plant nourished for the first 2 to 3 months. Beyond that, the anthurium will benefit from a dose of diluted liquid fertilizer once a month. You can add plant food to the irrigation water
For more info about fertilizing your Kokedama check this guide.
Discolored, dead leaves will need to be removed every now and then. Remove wilted, spent flowers by cutting at the base of the stem. Regular pruning will keep the plant healthy and encourage new blooms.
Anthuriums can be propagated from stem cuttings. You can either root them first in water or perlite or transplant them directly into the potting mix. Soon you’ll have a new plant to give away as a gift or keep it to yourself.
- Common Problems
Improper watering often leads to root rot or fungal diseases. Make sure the soil dries out between waterings and you’ll not have to worry.
Spider mites may also bother your plant. They can be sprayed off with water or insecticidal soap. If you see whiteflies, they can be easily removed by vacuuming.
Is The Plant Pet-Friendly?
The plant is toxic to pets. Better keep them out of reach if you have pets or children in your home.