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Plant-o-pedia: Prayer Plant

The Prayer Plant has been a popular houseplant for decades and with its vibrant, patterned foliage it’s not hard to see why. With flashes of neon green, deep purples, bright pinks, and more, these striking leaves are sure to grab some attention, but once day turns into night, the real show begins. Prayer Plants, like many plants in the Marantaceae family, fold up their leaves at night and if you’re paying attention, you might be able to see it happen! If you want to see the whole process, our friend Darryl, at Houseplant Journal has some great time lapse videos of his Prayer Plants in action.

Prayer Plants can be a bit tricky to keep happy. They do best with some humidity, so keep this in mind as you choose a spot for yours. A bathroom with fairly bright indirect light can be a perfect fit as the steam from the shower or bath will add humidity to the air. No window in your bathroom? Not to worry- Prayer Plants can be placed anywhere with bright to medium indirect light, you may just need to boost the humidity around them by keeping them in a grouping of plants, running a humidifier, using a humidity tray (tray with pebbles and water that sits under the plant), or misting the leaves. If your plant seems to be getting the perfect amount of water and light, but the leaves are turning brown in spots/along the edges, chances are you need to give it some more humidity. The extra effort is well worth the payoff this beautiful and active plant provides.

GET THE GREEN:  Prayer Plant (Maranta leuconeura; ‘Kim’ and ‘Marisela’ pictured, but there are numerous species/cultivars)

WATER: Plant in pot with good drainage. Keep soil evenly moist, but not soggy. Water just before the surface of the soil dries out. Prayer Plants do not like to dry out completely and leaves may turn brown along edges and in spots, if allowed to get too dry between watering. In winter months, this plant may go through a dormancy period where you’ll see little to no growth. This is normal. During this time simply allow the soil to dry out a bit more than in the warmer growing season.

SUNLIGHT: Bright to medium indirect light. Protect from direct sun. If parts of the leaves turn brown and crispy, it may be getting too much light, though this is also a sign of not enough water or humidity, so rule that out first before moving the plant.

PLACEMENT: The Prayer Plant will branch out a bit, so it looks great as a hanging plant, or sitting on a shelf where it has some room to spread. This plant doesn’t get overly large though, so it’s perfect for a plant grouping. Because this plant likes humidity, a bathroom with good indirect light is a great home for it.

EXTRA CREDIT: Extra humidity is needed to keep leaves looking their best. Keeping this plant in a grouping of other plants can help, as will a humidifier or misting the leaves. Prayer Plants fold their leaves at night so keep an eye on them at dusk and you might get to witness their little bedtime dance!

WORD OF CAUTION: According to the ASPCA, Prayer Plants are non-toxic to cats and dogs. Yay!

In the LA area and want to learn more about caring for all of your houseplants? Come to Danae’s Houseplant 101 workshop, this Saturday from 2-5pm at The Line Hotel. Full details and registration here

Alternative Text Danae Horst

Total Plant Geek. Check out my botanical shop and design firm, Folia Collective.

30 responses to “Plant-o-pedia: Prayer Plant”

  1. Charline Giffard says:

    how do you multipply this prayer plant?

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  7. Autumn says:

    Where did the teardrop hanging planter come from? I’d love to get one for my plant.

    • Danae Horst says:

      Sorry I missed your comment originally! That is a vintage hanger- try searching Ebay or Etsy for ‘vintage wood plant hanger’ or the like. Justina also just came out with a new rattan hanging planter that has a similar vibe- it’s available in the online store!

  8. […] A prayer plant is perfect for the bathroom. Plus, they droop at night, which is super cool. Learn how to take care of one here. […]

  9. […] care tips on some these lovely plant homies, consult our Plant-o-Pedia: Prayer Plant, Caladium, Rubber […]

    • August says:

      Thanks for sharing these tips. But when i put my plant on the indirect sunlight it was turning brown, but now in direct sunlight its much better, though the sunlight come for 3-5pm only.
      Is it slow plant?
      Now all i want to know What should i do for its growth?

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    […] A prayer plant is perfect for the bathroom. Plus, they droop at night, which is super cool. Learn how to take care of one here. […]

  11. Because it have to be your happy place. Angelica Baini / BuzzFeed Roll your towels in order that they soak up a good deal less apartment and seem as neat since the ones in a 5-star inn. See it here. megzie.com Pour your grotesque branded bottles into fancy uniform pumps. See it here. Get a four-pack of amber glass bottles from Amazon for $10.99. thechicsite.com Stick a waterproof speaker onto your bathe wall to pipe out some soothing spa tune. Or heavy metal. I don't respect what you're into. Get it from Amazon for $13.99+. amazon.com Dabney Frake Stock bathing room needs like cotton swabs, soap, and cotton balls in glass jars. The courses they can be found in are only together with to the clutter. See it here. ellaclaireinspired.com Or effortlessly stick a lazy Susan in there so that you aren’t knocking everything over each and each time you need to grab the rest. See it here. Katie Friedman / goodhousekeeping.com Decoupage lace to your window that you can get a little bit privateness with out blockading out the effortless. See it here. buzzfeed.com Bring in a little bit of of existence with a few plants that thrive in low-light, humid environments. A prayer plant is wonderful for the washing room. Plus, they slump at middle of the night, which is large cool. Learn how to deal with one here. Instagram: @houseplantjournal Hang a bar instead of the utilization of a hook so that your towels aren’t falling to the floor each 5 seconds. Makes me recoil every time. Learn how to hold a towel bar on the once again of the door here. Get a towel bar from Amazon for $10.33. jennaburger.com Hang bundles of eucalyptus to your bathe head for a clean smell every time you activate the hot water. It'll additionally guide clear your sinuses if you occur to're feeling a little bit of under the local weather. See it here. advicefromatwentysomething.com Attach a wine holder to the wall to make your bathtub even more relaxing. Get it from 3Dvisualsanddesignco on Etsy for $7.22. etsy.com Or lay a table all the way through your bathtub in order that you’ve a spot in your e e book, as neatly. See it here. Or get one from ShopModeGifts on Etsy for $19.99+. nearlyhandmade.blogspot.ca Choose a curved curtain rod to make your bathe way additional spacious. See it here. Get a curved anxiety bathe rod from Amazon for $24.47. viewalongtheway.com Frame your lame replicate with a picket trim. See it here. cherishedbliss.com youtube.com Or paint some wine crates to healthy the partitions and hold them with command strips if you can’t come to a decision to this type of permanent trade. See it here. acutedesigns.blogspot.com « Live Life Late says:

    […] A prayer plant is perfect for the bathroom. Plus, they droop at night, which is super cool. Learn how to take care of one here. […]

  12. Alison says:

    Just love that the whole plant scene is back – as an avid gardening I adore having greenery in the home

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