This plant started with luxurious leaves, and I thought — there are enough! But I will love this plant and it will get even bushier. Not to be.
It did not enjoy moving to my house. I perhaps needed to treat it more gently when I placed it (original pot and all) in my own ten inch hanging pot and moved its vines around the chains. It dropped all its leaves eventually, after they crisped with minimal colour change — I realize now, it wanted humidity. Soil drainage was poor.
Since then, it did have new growth and I attempted a couple failed water and soil propagations. I repotted it directly into the hanging pot with what I thought should be very well draining sail, but. Drainage continued to be poor.
Field notes — June 23, 2021
Repotted into 5.5 inch plastic pot. Covered large drainage holes with wire mesh because it’s all I had on hand. Found some root rot when I pulled it out and removed those roots. Used Calathea potting media by Suburban Stems, bought from House of Plants. Also potted an ultra-mini guy with no leaves but green on the stem and no rot. I would have otherwise tossed it, but it had some roots and I have this tiny pot, so why not.
Bought a plastic stool from the dollar store that’s tall and sturdy enough to let me look in on this hanging planter and decent enough looking to leave in the dining room and put other plants or plant stuff onto. So much handier!
Field notes — June 25, 2021
Soil moisture: 6 (moist)
Number of strands: 4
New growth: seven nodes with new growth, one looking a bit crispy
Moved little guy into ziplock baggie (not fully closed) and placed in bright spot in living room
Light: bright indirect; dappled shade or partial sun
Temperature: 21 to 27 degrees Celsius in summer; 18 to 21 degrees Celsius in winter
Preference: spring to fall: moist, with 30% moisture in upper layer; winter: allow to dry out between watering
Soil, fertilization, and pots
Soil type: rich with nutrients but well-draining (50% regular, 10% peat moss, 40% perlite); good in Calathea mixes
Fertilization: every three to four weeks in summer using common houseplant fertilizer
Repotting: every two years; can have three to six plants growing together in a large pot
Grow style: medium, difficult care
Mature size: lengths of 6 to 8 feet (up to 10 in ideal conditions); spread of 6 to 20 inches; leaves 3 to 6 inches long; can last for many years
Neat stuff: new leaves can be completely red or purplish before fading to green; new green stems may fade to tan
Common problems: Whiteflies (signs: small white eggs or insects; treat with insecticide) Light too bright or air too dry(signs: scorch marks or brown patches on leaves) Light too dim (signs: leaves don’t develop silvery-white veins)
Pruning: cut unhealthy leaves; can trim to shape, but not necessary
Other care: may shed leaves in winter; be careful not to overwater
Propagation: Some people say cuttings can root in water. Some people say it will always fail to root in water. In either case, early spring is likely best. In water: cut vines with two leaves or more; remove the first leaf to create a node; submerge node in water; place in warm area with bright, indirect light; when roots are 2 inches, plant in soil In soil: take cuttings from partially woody stems (neither all red nor all tan); dip in root hormone and plant in well-draining soil mix (regular + peat + sand); cover in ventilated plastic bag; place near heat source and check daily to ensure soil stays moist. Cuttings should root in a month; after new growth appears, remove bag and move plants to regular location. One month after removing bag, transplant to individual pots.
In moss: take two to three leaf cuttings below the terminal bud; dip tips in rooting hormone; moist sphagnum moss using chlorine-free water; plant leaf node in moss; keep in warm, humid environment with medium indirect light (possibly cover with ventilated bag). Keep moist by misting; stem develops roots in 3 to 4 weeks. When rooted, transfer to moist, well-draining soil with roots at least one inch deeper in soil. Shoots develop after 4 weeks; continue with high humidity, warmth, moist soil. After third week, treat as mature.