Do you have a calathea plant in your garden? Have you been waiting for it to bloom? If yes, you should read this article thoroughly to know more about this topic.
Calatheas are fascinating and diverse plants because their flowers range from small to large and grow in various colors.
Wide Calathea varieties bloom when they grow in the wild. However, when this plant is grown indoors, it will rarely bloom. The only calathea variety that may bloom indoors is the “Calathea crocata” which produces gorgeous orange flowers.
In this article, we’ll see under which conditions calathea will bloom. We’ll also show you how to encourage this plant to bloom and whether you should keep the flowers of this plant or get rid of them.
Let’s get started!
Why Does Calathea Bloom?
When calathea blooms, this means that it is producing pollen which is the male reproductive cells produced by the plant. It contains all the genetic information that is needed to make new seeds. Pollen is usually released by the male flowers of plants during the blooming season.
Pollen travels through the air and lands on the stigmas of other flowers. When pollen lands on a stigma, it can enter the ovule and fertilize the egg cell. As a result, the plant will start producing seeds.
In the case of calathea, blooming means the plant is pleased. This is a good sign that you are providing proper care and that the environment is suitable for the plant. But, this is not true for all plants. In fact, blooming may be a sign of an unhealthy plant in some cases.
If you are growing calathea indoors, don’t expect it to bloom more often unless you give it optimal care. Generally, this plant blooms exclusively in tropical forests under indirect shady light and high Humidity.
But, if you are growing a calathea variation called Crocata, you can expect it to bloom indoors if you grow it under optimal conditions.
In the next section, we will discuss encouraging your calathea to bloom.
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How to Encourage Calathea for Flowering?
To encourage your calathea to flower, you must grow it under high Humidity and plenty of indirect sunlight. Also, fertilizing this plant during warm days will increase its chances of blooming. Finally, to increase your chances of getting a bloomy calathea, try to grow the Crocata variant.
Here are the three main factors that will encourage your calathea for flowering:
Plenty of Indirect Sunlight: Growing calathea under indirect sunlight will help mimic its native environment. Additionally, indirect sunlight will help the plant absorb as much light as it needs without being exposed to the sun’s harsh rays, which can cause sunburns and heat stress.
High Humidity: calathea blooms more often when they grow in tropical forests where the air is full of moisture. As a result, providing this plant with high Humidity will increase its chances of blooming indoors. You can keep the Humidity high around your calatheas by misting them regularly or using a humidifier.
Adequate Fertilizer: feeding your calathea using a liquid fertilizer with a 3:1:2 NPK ratio will give it more chance for flowering. To get the best results, you should provide this plant every 2 weeks during the spring and summer months and every 4 weeks during winter.
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Should I Remove Calathea Flowers?
If you are growing calathea for their foliage, then it’s better to remove the flowers. In fact, calathea produces a stable amount of energy whether it has flowers or not. But when the flowers are delivered, they will require a lot of energy to remain alive. Therefore, the foliage will receive less energy during the blooming days causing the leaves to grow slower than usual.
If you are not interested in ample calathea foliage and are more attracted by the blooming, you can keep flowers on the plant.
In case you are interested in removing the flowers of your calathea, here is a step-by-step process that will help you to perform this task without causing any damage to the plant:
1. Never Pull the Flower from Its Stem: this will damage the flower and possibly kill the plant. A better way to remove the flower is to use a sharp knife to carefully cut off the stem, then the flower will fall off. To be extra careful, wait until the flower is completely dry and brittle before cutting it off.
2. Cut the stem above the flower using a sharp knife or gardening scissors: Make sure you cut through the branch at the base. If you accidentally cut the stem too high, the flower will continue to grow, but it will likely become stunted.
3. Remove the Petals: If you remove the petals while the flower is still attached to the plant, it will likely dry out and die.
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How Do You Know If Calathea Is Happy?
Calathea plants generally look healthy when their leaves are shiny green with no yellowing or signs of any other disease. However, if your Calathea plant is experiencing stress, it will appear as one of the following symptoms:
• Leaf Drop: calathea experiences this issue due to overwatering, too much fertilizer, fungal infestations, and insect damage. It is also possible that there could be a combination of all these factors.
• Leaf Yellowing: this indicates that the plant is not growing in a well-draining soil/pot or the humidity is not high enough. It’s also possible that the plant is growing under low light or being overwatered.
• Stunted or Slow Growth: this is one of the significant signs of stress in calathea. This issue indicates the plant does not have enough energy to produce flowers. The most common cause is when the plant is too wet and does not get enough sunlight. It is also possible for the plant to have been over-fertilized.
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