The Chinese evergreen plant may be one of the hardiest houseplants around. It has a reputation for surviving even in extreme low light conditions. These indoor plants can handle a lot: dry air, drought-like conditions and underwatering, lack of access to direct sunlight, and just about anything else that can make life difficult for most indoor plants.
While the Chinese evergreen can handle a lot, it still requires some plant care from you. So, how do you care for a Chinese evergreen, anyway? Keep reading to find out.
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What Soil Works Best for Chinese Evergreen Plants?
Chinese Evergreen plants are hardy plants, so they do well with most premade indoor potting soil mixes. However, slightly acidic, well-draining potting mixes made with perlite or peat moss tend to work best. If you are looking to add a bit of acidity to your soil, you can sprinkle some coffee grounds on it.
How Much Sun Does a Chinese Evergreen Plant Need?
In its natural environment, the Chinese Evergreen plant grows under the shade of larger plants in indirect light. That is why it can adapt to low light environments indoors and handle indirect light with ease. You should always keep it out of bright, direct sunlight because it’s not adapted to harsh light.
Chinese evergreen is known to grow even under fluorescent lighting. That means it is ideal for home desks and interior office spaces. Cultivars like these don’t always do that well in such artificial environments, but these do.
If you notice any issues with your Chinese evergreen, you may want to consider first looking at the potting soil and repotting it rather than giving it more light. More light is potentially unnecessary.
What Temperature Works Best for Chinese Evergreen Plants?
Chinese Evergreen plants originate from hotter climates, so they do best at 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Fortunately, that means they do well at room temperature in most homes.
Of course, these sturdy plants can survive in more extreme temperatures than that. Hopefully, your home’s temperature does not fluctuate too much outside the range above, but we all sometimes experience an extremely hot or cold day. As a heads up, Chinese Evergreen plants do better with scorching and humid temperatures than frigid and dry.
Do Chinese Evergreen Plants Enjoy Humidity?
Chinese Evergreen plants do enjoy a bit of humidity. That is because they come from warmer environments that are naturally humid.
If the leaves start to turn brown, the air might be getting too dry for the plant. Consider using a humidifier or misting the leaves to increase humidity. But keep in mind that you don’t want to mist to the point that the leaves get soggy.
Another way to increase the humidity for the plant is to place it in a bathroom with a shower. A hot shower will create extra moisture around the plant, which it will enjoy.
How Often Should You Water a Chinese Evergreen Plant?
The Chinese evergreen may need more watering during the growing season of spring and summer and less during fall and winter. Generally speaking, you should wait until the top two inches of soil are dry before watering again. Don’t ever let the plant sit in wet soil or get soggy. Chinese evergreen isn’t a plant adapted to heavy-water climates.
Remember: this is a low water plant that not only tolerates but thrives in dry soil. Too often, people concerned with Chinese evergreen care may believe that more water is always better. But that’s not the case.
What about other issues, like houseplant fertilizer? The Chinese evergreen plant doesn’t require a lot of food, but you can use some liquid fertilizer. Some people use slow-release fertilizers to give the plant everything it needs during the growing season. You might have to experiment a little to find out the right level for your plant.
What Size Do Chinese Evergreen Plants Grow to Typically?
Chinese Evergreen plants grow very slowly. They can grow up to three feet tall and three feet wide, but some cultivars may be smaller than that. The leaves themselves can grow up to two feet long.
Most Common Bugs
Chinese Evergreen plants can suffer from pest infestation, especially if the plant is overwatered or underwatered. The most common pests include aphids, mealybugs, and spider mites.
Regularly inspect the potting soil and the leaves. Be exceptionally watchful for aphids if you keep your Chinese evergreen plant somewhere with outdoor access.
Most Common Diseases
Chinese Evergreen plants are susceptible to root rot and yellowing leaves. These diseases are often caused by overwatering. However, you also may be underwatering it if you leave the soil too dry for extended periods.
Monitor to make sure the leaves stay deep green or colorful. You don’t want them starting to yellow and wilt. A Chinese Evergreen plant will typically only start yellowing if it’s under signs of stress.
Also, check the soil for a rotting smell, indicating root rot. If there is a smell, you may need to repot the plant immediately with new potting soil before the plant dies.
How Often Should You Repot Chinese Evergreen Plants?
Since Chinese Evergreen plants grow slowly, they do not need repotting very often. However, monitor your plant to see if it starts to outgrow its pot. If the pot seems overgrown or the roots begin to grow outside of the pot, repot your Chinese Evergreen right away. It is typically necessary every two to three years.
If your plant is overwatered and begins to rot, repot the plant with new potting soil immediately.
How Do You Propagate Chinese Evergreen Plants?
Chinese Evergreen plants are straightforward to propagate.
- Using clean, sharp scissors or shears, cut off a few longer leaves at the base.
- Next, place the cuttings in a clean glass of water near a windowsill where they will get indirect sunlight.
- After a couple of weeks, the cuttings should begin to grow roots.
- Once roots form, you can plant the cutting in a pot with fresh potting soil. Chinese Evergreens root easily, so you should have a new plant growing in no time.
Conclusion — How to Take Care of a Chinese Evergreen Plant
In summary, a Chinese Evergreen plant is a relatively straightforward plant to care for in your home. It doesn’t need direct sunlight and performs well with mild to slightly warmer temperatures. Not only is the plant easy to have in your home if you don’t have many windows, but it is easy to propagate, which means you can add more of them around your home!