Spider plants are stunningly beautiful houseplants with ribbon-like leaves that are versatile and can fit in any type of home décor. The botanical name of the Spider plant is Chlorophytum Comosum but it’s also known as many other names which feature the appearance of this plant such as ribbon plant, Spider Ivy, St. Bernard’s lily, Airplane plant etc. These plants are perennial plants that belong to the Asparagaceae family. Spider plants are one of the most adaptable of all houseplants and easiest to grow and care for.
These plants are called Spider plants due to their spider-like or spiderette leaves dangling down from the mother plant like spiders on a web. Chlorophytum Comosum is available in green and many other variegated varieties. These are very tough plants and can tolerate neglect which makes them an excellent candidate for newbie gardeners or those without a green thumb.
One more feature of Spider plants that make them a must-have plant is their ability to purify indoor air. According to NASA clean air study, this plant is highly effective in removing common household pollutants like formaldehyde, benzene and xylene etc.
Spider plant flowers bloom in spring and summer with the beautiful white star shape. These flowers are not very significant.
Types of spider plants
There are approximately 200 species of Spider plants, but most common ones are below.
- Hawaiian Spider Plant (Chlorophytum Viridescens)
- Variegatum (Chlorophytum Comosum)
- Zebra (Chlorophytum Laxum)
- Bonnie (Chlorophytum Comosum)
- Chlorophytum Comosum ‘Vittatum’ (Variegated Spider Plant)
Spider plant care indoors is easy, and these pants are quite low maintenance.
The Video version of Snakeplant Care and propagation is here.
LIGHT and TEMPERATURE
Spider plants prefer bright indirect light. Exposing them to direct sunlight can cause damage to the bright leaves of this plant. These plants can be grown in hanging baskets or in pots. They also look cool in glass vases with water. Spider plants can survive in a wide range of conditions. They can tolerate temperatures down to 2 degrees Celsius but grow best at a temperature between 18-32 degrees Celsius.
Spider plants watering is an important aspect to ensure that the plant grows healthy. They need regular watering. Always be mindful not to overwater the spider plants as soggy soil can lead to root rot. The roots of these plants are tuberous which a lot of water in them. This makes these plants quite drought tolerant. Water only when the soil feels dry to touch. Water them weekly during summers and Cut back during the winter season.
Spider plants prefer well-draining moist soil. The combination of coco peat, perlite and compost will help in the healthy growth of these plants. Coco peat or coco coir will help in maintaining moisture in the soil whereas perlite will help in aerating the soil and draining the excess water.
Feed the spider plants with balanced liquid fertilizer once in 3 months during the summer season. There is no need to fertilize during fall and winters.
Spider plants can be propagated very easily. Just take a spiderette that has developed roots and place it in water. When the roots become nice and swollen then place them in the soil. You can propagate directly in the soil as well. These can also be propagated by root separation during repotting.
Spider plants are susceptible to pests like Aphids, spider mites, whiteflies etc. Spider Mites on plants is one of the common problems for Spider Plants. The use of insecticides can help in eradicating these pests. You can make pesticides at home as well as using shampoo or dishwashing soap solution. Baking soda solution can also be helpful. Vinegar acts as an insecticide as well. Neem Oil solution has been observed to help with the pest problem quite effectively.
If you want to try a readymade solution to deal with insects, try multipurpose insecticide spray which helps you to control insects like Aphids, Spider Mites, Japanese Beetles, Caterpillars, diseases like Fungicide controls Black Spot, Powdery Mildew.
In addition to the insecticide, you can also use these easy to use Sticky traps to attract flying inspects for indoor and outdoor plants. These insects traps are easy to use.
Repotting Spider plant is easy. When the root bulb starts to show up from the top of the pot, that is the time to repot your Spider plant.
COMMON PROBLEMS WITH SPIDER PLANTS:
The most common problem that you will see with Spider plants is the browning of the leaf tips. There can be a few reasons behind the occurrence of spider plant brown tips problem: –
- Overwatering or Underwatering: Both of these leads to water stress which can cause the tips of the leaves to turn brown. Make sure that the soil remains moist but not soggy as Overwatering can cause root rot which can cause irreversible damage to your plant. Letting the soil to dry before watering will relieve the water stress on the plant keeping the plant healthy. Repot your overwatered plant to remove the soggy soil. Make sure the soil is well-draining so that excess water can seep through easily.
- Flourides in water: Added chemicals in water such as fluoride can be toxic to the plant which can cause browning of the leaf tips. Make sure that your tap does not contain fluorine. If it does, then use distilled water or filtered water to water your plant. Rainwater is best for watering Chlorophytum Comosum as it is considered to be the purest form of water. If you don’t have any access to rainwater or filtered water, then you can leave the normal tap water for 24-48 hours so that fluorine and chlorine in water can get removed and then use that water to water your plants. Flush your plant thoroughly to filtered or distilled water to drain out all the fluorides from the soil.
- Build Up of Salts: Overfertilization can lead to the build-up of salts in the soil which hinders the development of the plant causing the leaves to turn brown. Flush the plant with filtered water to drain out the excessive salts. You can also Repot your spider plant to fix this problem. Do not over-fertilize. Use a diluted water-soluble fertilizer to feed Spider Ivy.
- Direct Sun Exposure: Chlorophytum Comosum do well in indirect bright light. Exposing them to direct sun will burn the leaves causing the leaves to turn brown. If planted outdoor, keep them in a shady spot. And when indoor place them near windows which receive filtered light.
- Low Humidity: Chlorophytum Comosum love humid environments. Lack of humidity can be one of the reasons for the leaf tips to get dry and then turn brown. Water them regularly and using a pebble tray or a humidifier can help maintain the humidity levels in the indoor air.
- Bacterial diseases: Bacterial attacks can cause the leaves of the spider plant to develop black spots on the leaves. An easy fix to this problem is to remove the affected leaves as they can spread quickly. You might end up disposing of it as if not treated it can spread to other plants as well.
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