Spathiphyllum or Moonflower: maintenance flowering watering and repotting

In the family of Araceaegenre Spathiphyllum which includes about forty species. They are evergreen perennial herbaceous plants, native to South America and Asia. Very commonly grown indoors in our latitudes, the species Spathiphyllum florbundum or Moon flower is majestic with its inflorescences which bloom at any time of the year and emerge from the no less remarkable tuft composed of large lanceolate leaves, of a frank green, with well marked veins. The Spathiphyllum deserves its place in interior decoration but can also, under certain conditions, spend some time outside. Let’s see how to maintain and when to repot a Spathiphyllum to encourage its spectacular flowering.

Caring for a Spathiphyllum

This tropical plant has a reputation for being easy going. This is quite true provided you offer him a perfectly adapted environment.

Growing a Spathiphyllum

The Spathiphyllum is preferably planted in a fertile horticultural soil et able to retain freshness. Let’s not forget that in its natural environment, this exotic plant grows in moist soil. However, care should be taken to ensure good drainage because it is not desirable for its roots to be immersed in water. A mixture of good topsoil, sand, organic manure or decomposed compost is fine. A good bed of clay pebbles or gravel should be placed at the bottom of the pot.

Regarding theexposition of the Spathiphyllum, it may be the partial shade or the full light but we make sure to protect this plant from direct sunlight as they can quickly burn its foliage. Inside, it is installed away from drafts, in a room where the temperature is at least 12°C and at most 24°C, near a window to the north or a good meter from a glazing if it faces due south and provided that it is veiled because strong sunlight can cause damage.

Take out the Spathiphyllum

It is possible to growing Spathiphyllum outdoors (in a pot, of course, on a not too hot terrace) but also in the ground. Here again, it is appropriate to offer him ideal conditions namely a shady corner, without drafts, and a rich, humus-rich soil, perfectly drained and not too heavy. Note, however, that growing Spathiphyllum in the garden is only possible than in regions with a mild climate. If this is not the case, it is necessary to opt for a culture in pot or container in order to bring the plant in at the end of September to make it pass the autumn, the winter and part of the spring (until mid-May ) well sheltered from the cold. No question that it suffers the onslaught of frost. But taking it out in the summer can only do it good.

Fertilize Moonflower

The fertilisation Spathiphyllum should not be overlooked. From April to the end of September, a supply of fertilizer for indoor plants is necessary every 15 days, in accordance with the dosages indicated on the bottle.

Pests and diseases

Spathiphyllum is not sensitive to no disease and he is not also not the target of parasites, which is far from the case with many plants that are grown indoors! It is also for this reason that the Moonflower is ranked among the easiest to grow. Among the species most commonly chosen to vegetate its interior, we can mention (in addition to St. floribundum) S. wallisii, S. friedrichsthalii et S. cochlearispathum whose characteristics are very similar.

Spathiphyllum flowering

It’s in a very bright environment that the Spathiphyllum blooms the best. Each inflorescence is composed of a spathe creamy white from 15 to 20 cm in length whose shape is similar to that of a leaf, and from this case emerges a fallow carrying a profusion of tiny flowers pale yellow. The set is of a real beautyespecially since the inflorescences are proudly carried by an erect stem with a height of 60-100 cm.

A healthy Spathiphyllum can bear 20-30 inflorescences at one time, each of which has a lifespan of several weeks. The effect is spectacular. They can be cut for the composition of bouquets because they hold very well in a vase. Some people call the Spathiphyllum “false Arum” as the resemblance between the flowers of these two plants is striking…

It is advisable to cut each stem at the base after wilting, which favors the formation of new inflorescences and also allows to preserve the aesthetic advantage of this plant. When it feels good and lacks nothing, the Spathiphyllum has the particularity of bloom in any season, several times a year. So it’s worth the pampering…

Watering the Spathiphyllum

The Spathiphyllum can’t stand a lack of water. A dry soil inevitably leads to the death of the plant. But we must not drown its roots for all that. The good idea is to install it in a large water tank. Otherwise, you get into the habit of watering your Spathiphyllum regularly, without waiting to see its leaves become stunted and its stems bend.

The watering frequency is appreciated depending on the environment. Some accommodations are quite cool, others on the contrary have a relatively high temperature. In a room equipped with large bay windows, it is logical to have to water your Spathiphyllum once or twice a week in summer, whereas watering every 10 days may be appropriate if the indoor temperature does not exceed 18°C, the brightness is low, which is the case in a room facing north or the windows are small. It is up to each gardener to observe his plant in order to understand their needs to can anticipate them afterwards and in any case respond to them as well as possible.

In winterit is right to reduce watering except in a particularly confined environment where heating is pushed beyond reasonable limits. Let’s say that from November to March, under normal conditions, we water when the soil is dry by 2 or 3 cm. A foliage misting is welcome because the Spathiphyllum likes the humidity level to be quite high. It goes without saying, we do not stick this plant to the radiator and we keep it away from the wood stove!

Repot Spathiphyllum

We also recommend repotting the Spathiphyllum in spring every two or three years, in any case imperatively as soon as its roots come out of the pot. Thus, we replace its devitalized growing medium with a good brand new soil and we offer the plant a container with a pierced bottom or with water reserve bigger than the previous one, just a little bigger than the root ball. It will be all the better for it and will flower even more abundantly. We take the opportunity to clean the roots a little, that is to say to remove those which are damaged, and we cut the leaves at the end browned, withered, dry (which should be done gradually). You should also remember to dust the foliage with a damp cloth. In short, it’s a real beauty session. It remains to replant the Spathiphyllum in its new substrate making sure to do not bury the collar.

It is possible to settle for a surfacing, especially if you have a very old subject that is difficult to handle. The operation consists of scraping the surface substrate over approximately 3 or 4 cm in order to renew it.

In a few years, the Spathiphyllum can completely fill its tank as the clump develops. We must therefore think about the divide, in spring, when repotting. Each foot from a multiplication must have a rhizome and at least 4 or 5 leaves to be able to take root and develop well. In any case, it is very easy to have several Spathiphyllum plants and even to offer some…

We often read that the Spathiphyllum is an indestructible plant. Let’s not exaggerate! As we can see, negligence can overcome this beautiful exotic, certainly tolerant but which has its limits…

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