Anthurium Care (Flamingo Flower): How to Grow Anthuriums as Houseplants


Anthurium care (Flamingo Flower) is simple and fulfilling; it is the perfect houseplant to bring some color and life into your living space. Its tropical look and long-lasting flowers will be a welcome sight each day and provide a talking point to visitors.

The Anthurium flower is known to represent everlasting love and friendship–a great plant to give as a gift to special people in your life.

Also known as flamingo flowers, tail flower or flamingo lilies, Anthuriums are naturally found in the rain forests of South America and the Caribbean. They are also popular as cut flowers, indeed we used them extensively when our floristry business supplied flower arrangements to high class hotels.

This article will give you the information needed to help your Anthurium thrive indoors and live to its fullest potential. 

anthurium care showing plants in pots on window and side table

Light Requirements

Anthuriums require medium to bright, filtered light to bloom. They can survive and grow in low light, but they’ll grow more slowly in these conditions. For them to bloom to their fullest potential and produce bright flowers, they need more bright light. 

Anthuriums should NOT get direct sunlight. Light that is too harsh will cause their leaves to burn. Placing them near a sunny window that gets indirect light will be the perfect spot for them to thrive. Think of a tropical climate–it’s typically warm with indirect sunlight due to tree and foliage cover. Try to simulate this environment for your plant by controlling the light sources!

Temperature Requirements

Anthuriums survive best in temperatures of 65-95oF(18-35oC)  during the day. They can be sensitive to the cold, so avoid temperatures below 59oF (15oC) at night. Remember that this is a tropical plant, so it will thrive best in more humid, warm conditions. You might consider leaving your anthurium in your bathroom for optimal growth. 

A rule of thumb for most houseplants is to avoid placing them near or on top of heating and air vents or in front of fans. This can cause the leaves and soil to dry out and makes it more difficult to regulate the correct temperature for the plant. 

Watering Requirements

A common mistake with anthurium care is overwatering. The soil of your anthurium should dry out between waterings, but not completely. Water when the top inch or so of soil is dry. Watering once a week is typically a sufficient watering schedule.

Water less in the autumn and winter. Too much water will lead to root rot, which can affect your plant’s growth long-term. 

Soil Requirements

You should use a coarse, well-draining soil for your anthurium. The soil should hold some water, but you don’t want it to become waterlogged. A good option for soil would be a mixture of half potting soil or orchid soil and perlite. Perlite will aid in draining for your plant. 

Special Care

Anthurium care is pretty low-maintenance and doesn’t demand much attention from its owner. If you want to make your tropical plant feel more at home, you can mist its leaves and blossoms every few days to simulate a tropical, humid environment. 

Propagating 

Propagating anthuriums is quite simple and can help you multiply your houseplant collection! The easiest way to propagate anthuriums is to make stem cuttings. Make sure you have gloves and safety goggles before cutting your stems—the anthurium can irritate skin and eyes if not protected. 

Using sterilized tools, cut the anthurium in a place where there are at least two nodes on the stem. Then, place the cut end into a sterile potting mix, water the soil, and place the pot and stem in a plastic bag. The plastic bag will help create humidity and prompt more growth in the anthurium. 

Anthurium cuttings may take more time to show growth compared to other houseplants, so be patient. It will happen, as long as it’s getting enough indirect light and water! 

Pests & Problems

Aphids and mites are common pests when it comes to tropical houseplants. A simple way to deter aphids is to spray them with cold water. If pests persist, you may need to implement an organic pesticide. This can be purchased at any garden center or nursery.

Scale and spider mites can cause yellowing and shriveled leaves, but can usually be killed by spraying soapy water on them. If scale insects are stubbornly hanging on, you can wipe them off of the leaves with rubbing alcohol. 

Isolate your plant from other houseplants if you notice pests—this way, they won’t spread as easily. 

Toxicity 

Anthuriums are definitely toxic. If a human eats them, they’ll experience burning and blistering and possible swelling in the mouth. Animals will experience similar symptoms, though the risk can be more serious in pets; their airways can be affected by the swelling which can be dangerous.

Be sure to keep anthuriums out of reach of pets and children. A high shelf or countertop is a good place for an anthurium.

Anthuriums next to a rubber plant

Common Questions About Anthurium Care

How long does an anthurium plant flower? 

Anthuriums can flower throughout the year, but they generally flower for about three months and then begin their growth cycle again during the colder months.

How many varieties of anthurium exist? 

There are more than 600 varieties of anthuriums. They are a very versatile plant and bloom in many different colors, including pink, purple, yellow, blue, and red. This plant typically grows to about 12-18 inches tall. 

What time of year are anthuriums available? 

Anthuriums are available to buy year round at nurseries and plant stores. 

What should I do if my plant starts getting yellow and brown leaves? 

If this happens, it could be one of two problems (or both): your plant is either getting too much direct sunlight or you are overwatering it. Move your plant further away from the window, and test out the soil moisture with your fingers.

If you stick your finger in the soil and it is super dry, give the plant some water. If it’s wet, lay off the watering for a few days. 

Can anthuriums be grown outside? 

Yes! Many people have anthuriums in their outside gardens. Certain climates are more conducive to growing anthuriums, specifically areas that don’t freeze during the winter. Even a light frost can damage or kill an anthurium, so if you’re interested in growing them outside, be prepared to keep an eye on them and move them indoors if needed. 

What colors are available

There are a variety of varieties available with different colors. Although red is probably the most popular, there are also white, pink and lime green varieties.

About the author 

Paul - Better Houseplants

Loves orchids and foliage houseplants. Always trying to be a better plant parent. Let's get growing!

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