How to grow and care for Anthurium crystallinum plants at home
Leafy houseplants are all the rage and size-wise, the bigger the better. Rare and unique houseplants are also incredibly popular, sought after by collectors who have mastered the many popular houseplants available today. Fortunately, the fascinating Crystal Anthurium meets all these criteria and comes with even more benefits. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about growing and caring for Anthurium crystallinum plants at home, including planting, soil considerations, light, temperature, watering, fertilizing, pruning, and more.
How to grow Anthurium crystallinum – the essentials:
|Botanical name:||Crystalline anthurium|
|Also known as:||Crystal Anthurium|
|Light requirements:||Strong indirect light|
|Temperature and humidity:||Warm temperatures around 75F and high humidity around 70%|
|Watering needs:||Water when the top two inches of soil has dried out|
|Ground Settings:||Well-draining, airy potting mixes|
|Fertilization:||Half strength dose of balanced fertilizer every two months in spring and summer|
|Toxicity:||Toxic to humans and pets.|
Om Anthurium crystallinum
Taxonomy and characteristics
Anthurium crystallinum is commonly known as Crystal Anthurium, a member of the popular Anthurium genus. These traditional houseplants are known for their waxy, modified leaves in various colors, which surround their interesting spadix flowers. The flowers are characteristic of the family Araceae to which this genus belongs, along with similar houseplants such as the peace lily.
In any case, Anthurium crystallinum is special in that it is not desirable for flowers but rather for its interesting foliage. The large leaves are heart-shaped and deep velvety green, enhanced by the contrasting white veins. To top it all off, the undersides have a stunning copper color that makes Crystal Anthurium interesting from all angles.
Anthurium crystallinum is largely native to tropical forests in South America, much like other species in the genus. They cover the regions from Panama to Peru, but due to their rarity are not as prominent as more common Anthurium species.
Uses and benefits of Anthurium crystallinum
Those considering growing this beauty will be pleased to know that it also has some additional benefits.
The first is understandably aesthetic. The stunning large leaves make an instant statement wherever they are placed to become a wonderful design feature. The softness of the leaves, together with the strong contrast and geometry of the veins, makes it suitable for all types of interior design.
It’s also good for the air in your home. Anthuriums were tested as part of the famous NASA Clean Air Study. They appeared at the top of the list for removing volatile organic compounds from the air, including ammonia, xylene and formaldehyde. Although you need many plants to have this effect, it is all the more reason to add more Anthurium species to your collection.
In Feng Shui, Crystal Anthurium is also believed to bring positive energy and prosperity to your home. Keep them in a light and bright corner to reap all the possible benefits of this wonderful plant.
Average cost of Anthurium crystallinum
Crystal Anthuriums can be expensive compared to more common houseplants. They used to be considered quite rare but have become more common in recent years, bringing the price down. You can pick up a plant online for just under $100 and a cutting for even less. They can be a little harder to find, so contact a local grower in your area for help if you can’t find one.
Anthurium crystalline is toxic
Like all other Anthuriums, this plant is poisonous to pets and humans. The leaves contain calcium oxalate crystals that cause irritation if ingested. Keep them out of reach of your pets and curious children.
How to grow Anthurium crystallinum at home
Is Anthurium crystallinum considered easy to grow?
Many rare plants are considered difficult to care for because they are fussy about their conditions. Fortunately, this is not the case with Crystal Anthurium. This plant is as easy to care for as common Anthurium species and has similar requirements to other leafy houseplants.
Anthuriums are relatively slow growers, adding a couple of centimeters to their height each growing season. In ideal conditions, they are considered moderate growers but remain relatively compact indoors.
The best soil mix for Anthurium crystallinum
Anthurium requires a well-draining soil mix with large spaces between particles to deliver oxygen to the roots. Standard potting soil or garden soil generally does not drain well enough for indoor plants, requiring a specialized potting soil mix to do its best.
Potting soil mixes are available for purchase online, which contain the right material ratio to drain well while keeping the soil moist. You can also mix your own by combining potting soil with perlite, coconut or peat moss.
To keep the strong color of its leaves and grow as large as possible, give your Crystal Anthurium very bright indirect light throughout the day. They will also grow well in moderate light but are not suitable for low light areas of your home.
These plants should also be kept out of intense direct sunlight as the large leaves can burn easily. Some mild early morning sun in front of an east-facing window is appropriate, but a sheer curtain should filter south- or west-facing windows to protect the foliage.
Temperature and humidity preferences
In their native habitats, Anthurium crystallinum is used to constant heat and high humidity. The forests they inhabit rarely drop below 60F in temperature and average about 80% humidity. Replicating these conditions is key to keeping your plant happy and thriving.
Crystal Anthurium does not tolerate cold at all. They cannot be left in temperatures below 50F or the leaves and roots may be damaged. Aim for consistent temperatures of around 75F throughout the year, and keep them in the warmest room in the house.
Humidity is also important for these large-leaved plants. Some houseplants can be happy with humidity as low as 40%, but Crystal Anthuriums grow best when humidity is closer to their native habitats of around 70%.
To raise the humidity, group several houseplants together, place them on stone trays filled with water or invest in a humidifier. Keep the humidity constant throughout the year to prevent the leaves from drying out and turning brown.
How to care for Anthurium crystallinum at home
Crystal Anthuriums are used to consistently moist soil in their rainforest habitats. Planted in containers where the water does not drain away as quickly, however, they are susceptible to root rot. They cannot sit in damp or waterlogged soil for long periods and cannot tolerate being overwatered.
Watering Anthurium when the top layer of soil is still moist quickly leads to damage. The leaves start to turn yellow or brown, the stems soften and fall over and the roots stop drawing up moisture. In severe cases, only replanting and trimming the roots can save the plant, so this is an important mistake to avoid.
Underwater water can also be harmful. Without enough moisture, the large leaves will begin to curl and turn brown. The soil should not be left to dry out completely to avoid damaging too many of the leaves at once.
To water consistently, avoid overwatering and underwatering, and get into the habit of testing the soil every other day. Once the top two inches have dried out, you can water them again. When watering in a pot lid or on a drip tray, be sure to empty it after watering to prevent the pot from sitting in water.
Fertilizing Anthurium crystallinum
As slow growers, Crystal Anthuriums are not very dependent on fertilizer. But when they grow in the same pot for a while without additional nutrients, they would benefit from a top-up.
Feed your Anthurium crystallinum with a balanced houseplant fertilizer once every two months. A half-strength dose should be enough to keep the plants happy, but more can be applied if growth slows.
There are two ways to propagate Crystal Anthuriums. Propagation by division is good for large and established plants and immediately gives you two fully grown plants out of one. However, if your plant is small and not ready for division, you can also propagate with stem cuttings.
Follow these steps to spread by division:
- Propagate when your plant is ready for transplanting to tackle two tasks at once and limit shock problems.
- Squeeze the sides of the pot to release the roots and gently lift the plant out of the pot.
- Carefully separate the roots and identify areas where the plant can naturally divide. If you cannot identify spots, trim some roots with scissors to separate them, cutting as few roots as possible.
- Repot each division into separate new pots with a well-draining potting mix.
- Water after planting to encourage new root growth.
Follow these steps to propagate from stem cuttings:
- Identify a healthy strain with no signs of disease or damage.
- Trim the stem just below the node.
- Root in a propagation mix of equal parts perlite and coconut or peat moss.
- Transplant into a rich soil mix when the roots are an inch or two long.
For more, see our in-depth guide to propagating anthurium plants at home.
Transplanting Anthurium crystallinum
Because of their slow growth, Crystal Anthuriums do not need to be repotted very often. They are happy to remain confined to a pot for long periods and only need to be repotted every two years (and you are unlikely to need to prune these anthuriums).
Look for signs that the plant has outgrown the pot, such as roots growing through the drainage holes, or signs that the soil has broken down and can no longer hold water or nutrients.
To replant, remove the plant from its existing container. Gently tease the roots to release them and plant in a new pot one size up. Try to match the soil mix as much as possible to limit the risk of shock and water immediately after planting.
For more, see our in-depth guide to repotting Anthurium plants at home.
Common problems and how to treat them
Although not particularly fussy plants, Crystal Anthuriums are susceptible to a few problems. Look out for these signs, identify the most likely cause, and address it soon to get your plant back to good health:
- Yellowing leaves: Overwatering, low light, lack of nutrients
- Brown leaves: Underwatering, lack of humidity, excessive sunlight
- Sinking : Usually over- or under-watering.
- Stunted growth: Low sunlight, lack of pots, lack of nutrients
- Spotted leaves: Anthurium pest or disease problems, or root rot
No special tools are required to maintain these plants. When doing maintenance, pruning shears are easiest to cut damaged or dying foliage, but sharp and cleaned shears are also suitable.
When replanting, you need a new pot one size up and the right soil mix. A balanced fertilizer is also a good investment when you need it.
Frequently asked questions about the care of Anthurium crystallinum:
Is an Anthurium crystallinum a good indoor plant?
Crystal Anthuriums make wonderful houseplants because of their love of heat and high humidity like most houseplants.
How fast does Anthurium crystallinum grow?
These plants are slow to moderate growers depending on the conditions they are placed in. To get them going faster, make sure they have the right amount of light and plenty of nutrients.
Is Anthurium crystallinum poisonous to dogs and other pets?
Crystal Anthurium is toxic to pets and humans if ingested.
Can an Anthurium crystallinum tolerate low light?
Anthurium crystallinum tolerates moderate light, but should not be grown in areas with low light. This will slow growth dramatically and may cause the leaves to turn yellow.
Anthurium Crystallinum Care – Det sista ordet
If you are looking for an interesting leafy plant to add to your collection, Crystal Anthurium is it. These easy-to-grow plants are suitable for beginners and all Anthurium lovers.
For more, see our in-depth guide to the best plant shops that supply Anthurium plants nationwide.