Stromanthe sanguinea care & info

Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’ is a striking houseplant appreciated for its wonderfully variegated leaves that feature pink and green coloration. Though not the easiest houseplant to maintain, it’s not impossible to keep a Stromanthe sanguinea alive and thriving as long as you provide the care this colorful plant needs.

Keep reading for everything you need to know about growing Stromanthe sanguinea at home!

Name(s) (common, scientific) Stromanthe, triostar Stromanthe, tricolor Stromanthe, prayer plant, Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’, sometimes incorrectly Calathea ‘Triostar’ or Stromanthe thalia
Difficulty level Hard
Recommended lighting Medium
Water Keep moist
Soil type Peat-replacement based

Stromanthe sanguinea care

Stromanthe sanguinea is a member of the prayer plant family and shares many characteristics with its ‘cousins’, such as the equally beautiful rose painted prayer plant.

The species is naturally found in Brazilian rainforests, which gives us some care indications: due to light being blocked by large trees, rainforest plants don’t appreciate direct sun.

These plants need high humidity to thrive and the average home might be a little too dry for them.

Pink and green leaves of Stromanthe sanguinea backlit by the sun | Full Stromanthe sanguinea care guide

Stromanthe sanguinea light, location & temperature

Light

Because Stromanthe sanguinea will burn when exposed to too much direct sunlight but still appreciates a relatively bright environment, it’s a good idea to avoid any windows that receive bright afternoon sun and go for something like a North-facing window instead.

If you’re worried about sun exposure, place a sheer curtain between the window and the plant.

Location

Humidity is one of the biggest challenges when growing Stromanthe sanguinea. Try to find a location for it that’s as humid as possible: most homes are simply too dry.

The bathroom or kitchen might be a good choice. If you’re running a humidifier for your plants, this is definitely a contestant for a spot near it. A humidity tray is another option.

Temperature

Because Stromanthe sanguinea is a tropical plant it does not appreciate low temperatures, so you’ll have to keep it away from cold at all times.

Normal room temperature works just fine. If your home doesn’t get too chilly during the cold months the plant should do just fine.

Light cream pink leaves of Stromanthe sanguinea with new foliage unfurling | Full Stromanthe sanguinea care guide

Planting Stromanthe sanguinea

Planting

Because Stromanthe sanguinea likes a humid environment and should be kept moist, some special care should be taken when planting it. This plant is a great option for terrariums and other (partially) closed environments that trap moisture for a longer time.

Be sure to always keep an eye out for rot, though. Your Stromanthe’s soil should be moist, not wet.

Soil

Plant your Stromanthe sanguinea in a pot with a drainage hole to prevent standing water from causing root rot. Due to its rhizomatous nature, this plant does well in shallow planters or bowls. When it comes to soil, a peat-based medium is often recommended.

Because peat isn’t the most renewable resource, try creating an alternative by mixing your own soil. A combination of water-retaining coco coir, potting soil and drainage-increasing perlite should work well.

Watering Stromanthe sanguinea

When figuring out the proper watering schedule for your Stromanthe sanguinea, it’s very important to keep in mind that this plant likes its soil moist but never wet for longer periods of time. To prevent the soil from becoming either too wet or to dry, try watering once the top inch (2-3 cm) or so has dried.

There are a few things you can do to keep the moisture level around the plant high enough. The best option is to place it near a humidifier, a bit of an investment but definitely worth considering if you grow many tropical plants in your home.

You can also try regularly misting the plant, placing it near other plants or using a humidity tray.

Stromanthe sanguinea, a variegated houseplant.

Feeding Stromanthe sanguinea

You can fertilize Stromanthe sanguinea during the growing season as long as it’s producing new leaves.

A regular houseplant fertilizer can be used, though be sure to dilute it to half strength.

Buying Stromanthe sanguinea

Stromanthe sanguinea is a member of the prayer plant family but a bit less easy to find than some of its cousins, though you might be able to locate one in larger garden centers and plant stores.

You can also easily buy Stromanthe sanguinea online.

Is Stromanthe sanguinea toxic to cats and dogs?

Although the ASPCA doesn’t have specific information about this species, it lists Calathea, its close relative, as safe.

Other sources also report that although ingestion of any plant can cause an upset stomach in your pet, Stromanthe sanguinea is not toxic and shouldn’t cause any further problems.


If you have any more questions about Stromanthe sanguinea care or want to share your own experiences with this striking houseplant, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below.


8 thoughts on “Stromanthe sanguinea care & info”

  1. Hi
    I’m living in Singapore where the weather is consistently hot. I noted that the leaves of my Stromenthe S. often turns brown at the tips and the budding leaves take a long time to grow. I followed care and tips in growing it to the ‘T” but I find it so difficult to grow it beautifully.

    Reply
    • Hi! Sorry to hear you’re having issues getting your Stromanthe to grow into its best self. I had the same issue when I grew this plant in chilly Holland and interpreted it as an issue regarding humidity. I would assume Singapore to also be quite humid, though, is that the case? What kind of lighting conditions are you growing yours in?

      Reply
  2. What do you do if the soil becomes too moist? My Stromanthe leaves are feeling very soft/soggy and arent going up in prayer 🙁

    Reply
    • If the soil becomes too moist I just try to go on with business as usual, basically. I might increase ventilation to help the soil dry faster, and once that’s done I just go on watering as I normally would and hope no permanent damage has been done. If you don’t detect any rot at the base of the stems in a week or two you should hopefully be fine. Good luck!

      Reply

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