Calathea (Calathea) – belongs to the Marantaceae family. Its main advantage is the leaves – each leaf seems to be drawn by the artist’s hand, each is unique in its own way, and their reverse side is painted in rich purple color.
Calathea Vittata is a water-and heat-loving plant, prefers light partial shade, does not like drafts and sudden temperature changes. It requires abundant watering, especially in spring and summer – the period of active growth and flowering.
This plant needs frequent spraying, in winter it is watered less often, but kept at a temperature of not less than 17 °C.
Calathea Vittata is a perennial herbaceous plant. The leaves are basal, large, with pinnate veins, spectacularly colored. The flowers are 3-membered, yellow, collected in spikelike inflorescences (spikelike thyrsus), apical or axillary.
Typically, the genus is native to Brazil, Columbia, and Thailand.
The plants are found in tropical areas, so they like to grow in such environments. Unfortunately, because of the vast destruction of habitats, some of its species have been endangered with extinction.
Calathea plant care
Calathea Vittata – relatively shade-tolerant plants, develop well in diffused light, like bright diffused light. In winter, good lighting is also desirable for plants.
They do not tolerate direct sunlight during the spring and summer months.
The size and color of the leaves depend on whether the plant is successfully protected from the sun. If the light is very bright, the leaves lose their color, and the leaf blade also decreases.
They grow well near the windows of the eastern and western directions, near the windows of the southern direction, shading from the direct sun is mandatory.
Calathea Vittata can grow under artificial lighting with fluorescent lamps for 16 hours a day.
In the spring and summer periods, during the day, the temperature suitable for Calathea is around 22-30°C, at night it is slightly cooler.
In winter – even at night-no lower than 18°C and no higher than 25°C. Plants are very sensitive to temperature changes and drafts. It is very important to maintain the soil temperature of 18-20°C, in summer at about 22°C.
Hypothermia of the roots is detrimental to the plant. prefers high humidity (from 70 to 90%). It requires regular spraying throughout the year.
Spray well-settled or filtered water, fine spray, as large drops of water should not fall on the leaves – they may appear dark spots.
Your Calathea prefers average room temperature, from 60-80 degrees F.
They will not tolerate temperatures below 55 degrees.
They are also sensitive to cold drafts or blowing heat during the winter months, so keep them away from windows or heaters for best results.
As an understory plant, Calatheas will not tolerate bright direct sunlight for very long. However, very low light conditions will slow down the growth of the plant and increases the chance that overwatering will occur since the plant will be using less water.
Moderate indirect light is ideal to encourage steady growth.
Calathea is very demanding of water, especially in the summer. In addition, the plant requires high humidity.
She is very fond of spraying, you can also moisten the air around her from a spray gun. The root system of Calathea Vittata is superficial.
In the summer, in addition to watering, you can periodically put it on a pallet with wet peat or pebbles. With the watering of Calathea Vittata, you need to be very careful, since both waterlogging and over-drying of the earthen lump equally leads to the folding of the leaves and the drying of the edge of the leaf plate.
If you do not adjust the watering in time, then the Calathea Vittata can completely shed the leaves. Warm, soft water is recommended for watering Calathea.
If the water for watering is cold, the leaves of the Calathea Vittata become soft and rot.
Calathea Vittata pruning
Calathea Vittata leaves tend to brown out due to different reasons. It can be that they have aged or that something is wrong with their nursing. Leaves can also wilt due to bad and uneven watering.
If you notice your Calathea Vittata’s leaves are turning brown too often, it means that they are not getting old, but they lack adequate care.
Once you see the foliage started to brown out in the edges, take sharp scissors and trim the leaves a bit. There are cases when the whole leaf is darker and that means that the leaf has aged or has died.
Either way, you should cut the part where it is connected to the main stalk with a pair of scissors. Besides scissors, you can also use a sharp knife that will cut the skinny stalk of your Calathea.
You can do pruning on a regular basis so your Calathea can focus on growing some new and healthy leaves. If the foliage is turning yellow or if the color is fading away, change the place of your plant since it is probably getting some direct sunlight.
Also, prune the discolored leaves so the plant can flow its energy into growing pretty green leaves. Some people don’t know that the edges of the leaves are going to grow back once you cut them following the leaf curve, so trust this article when we say that this is the right way to maintain the beauty and well-being of your Calathea Vittata. However, don’t forget to use clean, sterilized tools.
Soil for growing Calathea Vittata
The substrate for growing Calathea Vittata consists of a mixture of two parts of leaf soil, one part of humus, peat, sand. The soil should have a slightly acidic pH reaction of the soil. At the bottom of the pot, do not forget to put a layer of drainage. It is better to use a pot rather wide than deep. In such a pot, Calathea Vittata will be comfortable until the next transplant.
Transplanting and propagating Calathea
You can propagate Calathea Vittata by dividing the rhizome. This is done once every two years during the Calathea transplant.
Parts should have a good part of the rhizome, so I do not recommend too small a rhizome, otherwise, you can lose the whole plant. If the plant is not divided, then the transplant should be done every year.
In the summer, apply top dressing once every two weeks with fertilizers for decorative deciduous plants. It is recommended to apply fertilizers after watering when the plant quenches its thirst.
Re-Potting: As the plant grows, you may have to get a wider pot so the roots and new stems have more room to grow. If you do not have a wider pot or just by choice, you can divide the plant in half or fourths and repot those divided.
Fertilizer: Use a balanced liquid feed to encourage the foliage to look healthy and more attractive. Feed once a month from April – August.
Humidity: Since the plant loves moist areas, you can leave a tray under your pot with pebbles to hold moisture from the water that escapes from the hole on the bottom of the pot so the plant remains moist. You can also use a humidifier for this task.
Even though you can find blooming Calathea plants in the wild, this is a rare occurrence for indoor plants.
Calathea Vittata pests
If the content is not correct, scabies settles on the Calathea Vittata. They can be seen on the underside of the leaves, where they sit motionlessly and suck the sap from the leaves.
The leaves begin to turn yellow and fall off, the shoots die off. If you do not start pest control in time, you can lose the plant. Sticky plaque on the leaves will help to recognize the scabbard in time. On this sticky plaque, a soot fungus settles. It is unlikely that it will be possible to assemble the shields manually. If there are a lot of them, then you can not do without four-fold treatment with carbofos or aktellik.
Spider mites also live on the underside of leaves. Their presence can be guessed by the thin cobwebs. They also feed on the sap of the leaves. The leaves damaged by the spider mite turn yellow and fall off. The defeat of Calathea Vittata by a spider mite indicates insufficient humidity in the room. Constantly spray the Calathea Vittata leaves on both sides. Once every two or three days, arrange a warm shower for the plant.
Great news for owners who have pets and children in the house, these plants are not toxic. Hence, they are safe to be kept around children and animals.
However, plants tend to have all kinds of harmful substances on their surfaces, such as fertilizers, pesticides, and bugs.
So, it would still be best if you kept them away from children’s reach and prevented them from being ingested.
Summary plant care
Classy and classic like a tailored shirt, the Calathea vittata’s foliage has clean bright green and white herringbone stripes and delicate, pointy tips. This is a houseplant that makes a quiet and sophisticated statement.
This houseplant prefers medium to bright indirect light, and as with most Prayer Plants, its leaves may open and close over the course of the day. It will thrive in high humidity with soil that is kept moist.