It's hard to believe that these colourful plants, are classed as "easy-care" and "low maintenance." If you're a beginner to the plant world, then Aglaonema's are definitely a plant of choice that you should add to your growing collection. You don't need to be concerned about buying one of these, only to have it hate you for no apparent reason. It's one of the many reasons why we love them and why we think you should love them too.
So you're starting to see why these are plants you should love, let's now take a closer look at what they love, so you can ensure they not only survive, but also thrive.
💧 How often to water your Aglaonema
Aglaonema prefer consistently moist soil, so it's easy to know when to water your Aglaonema by checking the soil moisture. You want to ensure that the soil is moist, but not soggy. We recommend using your finger to dig down a little from the top and feeling the soil. It should feel damp but not wet. It's also a good idea to feel the weight of the pot and know what it feels like after being watered. It should feel lighter when it's due a drink.
You want to ensure that after watering, you leave the soil to dry out, but for it not to dry completely. Sure, they will forgive you if you forget from time to time, but ideally, keep the soil moist, like a wrung out dishcloth - you get the idea? In the cooler months (e.g. Autumn/Winter), let the soil dry out a little more as they don't need as much as they're not actively growing.
☀ How much light do Aglaonema’s need?
You've bought one of these beauties and now need to know where to place your Aglaonema so that it thrives. Aglaonema can survive in low light and some varieties even prefer it. However, if you happen to have one of the many colourful varieties, your plant may need a little more light to keep it's colour vibrant. By all means, you can place it in a lower light area, just monitor the colour and if it starts to fade, move it somewhere a little brighter. Aglaonema's will be happiest in medium light based on our lighting diagram here.
What soil do Aglaonema’s like?
We recommend a soil composition of 1 part perlite to 4 parts potting mix. Perlite helps to aerate the soil and also holds water, allowing it to release slowly into the soil. You can find perlite at most garden/hardware stores.
Make them SUPER happy...
Sometimes plants need more than just light and water. We recommend Groconut for it's amazing growth stimulant super powers. They will also require some houseplant food during the growing season - an all round fertiliser will do the trick. Just ensure that you dilute to the instructions on the pack as it can be too much of a good thing if not diluted correctly.
What is wrong with my Aglaonema? It's not often that these guys will sulk, but it's good to know what to look for, to ensure you help them to love life again. Watch for these signs, as they're easy to fix:
When Aglaonema leaves turn yellow, brown, droop or curl
You may need to put your detective hats on to determine the root cause, but usually it's due to either the room temperature, lighting, watering, a nutrient deficiency or a pest that has made it's home on your plant.
As mentioned above, Aglaonema like consistently moist soil, but not soggy wet. If your Aglaonema leaves discolour, this is likely due to an incorrect watering regime. Whilst they like moist soil, this doesn't mean that they consistently sit in water. Any water that drains from the pot after watering, should not surround the pot for long periods. Otherwise, the soil will soak this water up and the soil may not dry out enough. This can lead to root rot, which no plant parent wants to deal with.
Likewise, if your Aglaonema starts to droop, it's likely that this is a result of dry soil, where you've waiting too long between watering. Give the plant a good drink of water, ensuring that all of the soil is wet, with water flowing from the drainage holes.
If your Aglaonema goes from moist to bone dry before being watered, you are putting stress on your plant, which can result in discoloured or drooping leaves.
Temperature: Most houseplants prefer a consistent room temperature, so avoid large fluctuations. Extremes in temperatures can occur through the use of your heating - log burners and heatpumps in particular, will dry out the air and alter the temperature, sometimes considerably. Ideally, houseplants like a temperature range between 12-24. So consider moving your plants to achieve this where possible. Aglaonema's prefer a warm room, so avoid place them in a room where the temperature could drop considerable - e.g. a room where winter heating doesn't reach.
Pests: If you're confident that you've kept the conditions on point (lighting and watering - as per above), then your plant may be unhappy due to pests. These can be hard to spot and can turn a thriving plant into a very unhappy one, relatively quickly. Look for white fluff (mealy bugs), small webbing or orange dots on the undersides of your Aglaonema leaves (spider mites) as these are the most common pests that an Aglaonema may encounter. There are many more, so you need to check your plant regularly. Should you locate an infestation, we recommend isolating your plant and treating it with Gro-Sure Insect Control Spray.
Are Aglaonema's toxic to cats and dogs?
Unfortunately, Aglaonema are toxic to cats and dogs, so keep these out of reach if you have an inquisitive fur baby. If ingested, we do recommend contacting your Vet for advice. It's lucky that these don't grow very large and are quite compact, making them easier to put out of reach.
So there you have it, all the info you need to grow and love Aglaonema in your own home. These plants rarely disappoint and their colours are incredible. I truly hope that this care guide has helped you. Our goal is to make plant care easy. Why? Because we've been there and have also felt overwhelmed and like it's all too hard. You can read our story here.
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If you've read this far, you are a committed plant parent and we take our hats off to you. Thanks for visiting us, as a small business we are grateful to connect with you.