The Stromanthe Triostar plant is popular for its multi-colored foliage that simply catches everyone’s eye. The form of the plant, along with its foliage majestically standing upright and the striking color of the leaves, makes it stand out among all other houseplants.
Learn all about its growth and care requirements in this complete and comprehensive guide.
- What Is Stromanthe Triostar?
- Quick Overview
- Stromanthe Triostar Care
- Other Useful Information
What Is Stromanthe Triostar?
Stromanthe Triostar is an ornamental plant with multi-colored foliage and is native to the tropical rainforests of Brazil. It is a member of the prayer plant family. The splashed green and white variegated leaves with pink undersides make it a hit among houseplant enthusiasts.
It belongs to the prayer plant family and the genus Stromanthe. You might find it in stores labeled under other names such as Triostar plant, Tricolor Stromanthe, Stromanthe Thalia Triostar, Stromanthe Sanguinea Triostar and the Magenta Triostar.
– Size and Growth
Stromanthe Triostar is a slow-growing, tropical perennial plant. The growth increases in the rainy season, but otherwise it is a slow-grower. It has short stems that support the variegated leaves. The best part about this plant is that no two plants are the same; each plant has different variegation patterns on their foliage.
Whether grown in pots or containers, Stromanthe Triostar plants can easily reach a height of up to two to three feet and a width of up to two feet. In ideal conditions, it can also reach a height of four feet.
The plant produces white or pink blooms with orange bracts in winter and spring. It does not produce flowers when kept indoors.
The non-variegated version of this plant is also beautiful, but it is much plainer and less popular in comparison. Though Stromanthe Triostar plants look very pretty and tempting, you have to be careful about its care. Stromanthe Triostar plants are not toxic to humans and pets, so it is safe to keep in the house around children and pets.
Triostar Stromanthe has beautiful multi-colored leaves with different shades of white, green and pink. The undersides are all maroon or dark pink, while the top sides of the foliage have a mix of green, pink and white variegations.
The swirling patterns on the leaves give the plant a stunning appearance. The leaves fold up at night, helping them conserve raindrops. The leaves can be 6 to 12 inches long.
Another interesting fact about this plant’s leaves is that it can move its leaves towards and away from the sun based on its needs. The plant spreads out the leaves in the morning to soak up the sun and when the light gets too harsh in the afternoon, it closes the leaves. In the evening, you can find the leaves upright, displaying the deep red undersides.
Here is a handy table of this plant’s requirements.
|Light||Thrives well under bright, indirect light|
|Water||Water every two to three days during summer, decrease the frequency in winters|
|Soil||Well-draining and moisture-retaining|
|Humidity||High humidity levels above 50 percent|
|Temperature||Temperatures ranging from 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit|
|Fertilizer||Fertilize using rich compost or a well-balanced liquid fertilizer every two to three weeks during spring and summer|
Stromanthe Triostar Care
The growth requirements of Stromanthe Triostar are quite similar to those of other Calatheas. Like most tropical plants, it thrives in warm and humid environments. It can be slightly challenging to take care of this plant if you are new to the world of gardening. No matter how hard you try to provide the best care, you may end up with brown and crisped-up leaves from time to time.
Despite the challenges, this plant is still a must-have. Once you get the hang of how to care for it the right way, it will reward you with bigger and shinier leaves. Learn all of its growth and care requirements in this section.
– Light Requirements
Stromanthe Triostar is a shade-loving plant that needs bright, indirect light to grow well. Any bright spot indoors or outdoors where there is good air circulation works fine for its growth. North or east-facing windows are generally great spots to keep these plants.
Avoid direct sun exposure as it can cause leaf burns and the leaves to lose their variegations. The leaf edges will also crisp up and brown over time, and the intense sunlight can kill the plant. In case you have a very sunny window, ensure that the plant receives curtain-filtered light.
We would also not recommend keeping this plant in darkness or very low light. The plant loses the variegation in low-light conditions, so choose the perfect spot for beautiful variegation.
– Water Requirements
Water your Stromanthe Triostar every two to three days during summer and decrease the frequency in winters. It has high water requirements compared to other common houseplants. Water your plant thoroughly until the water drains out from the bottom drainage holes. Water again once the water on the surface of the soil dries up.
Poke your finger in the soil and if a couple of inches of soil feels dry, then it’s time to water the plant. The watering frequency will depend on factors such as the type of soil used, light exposure, temperature and humidity in your area. Water more frequently During the summer months and reduce it when the colder months arrive.
One very important point you need to remember about this plant is to not let it become thirsty. It prefers a moist soil mix, but be careful to not overwater it. Find a balance with your watering schedule and keep track of weather changes to see what your plant needs.
– Type of Water
If you use hard water or tap water that has chlorine or fluoride in it, it may result in the browning of the leaves. Try to use mineral-free water such as distilled water, reverse osmosis (RO) water, stayed water and aquarium water. Be careful with aquarium water because you could end up overfertilizing your plant if you use it frequently as it contains potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen.
– Soil Mix Requirements
Use a rich, well-draining, moisture-retaining soil to grow Stromanthe Triostar. Mix regular potting soil with lots of coco coir for moisture retention and perlite for drainage. Add organic matter to keep the soil fertile.
Loamy soil works the best for this plant’s growth. To prepare loamy substrate, use 40 percent sand, 40 percent silt and 20 percent clay. However, we would recommend using 30 percent river sand, 20 percent vermiculite, 10 percent coco coir, 10 percent gravel, 10 percent perlite and 20 percent clay. This well-draining soil mixture will keep your plant healthy.
The quantity of perlite and coco coir will depend on the climate you are living in. If your area is dry and hot, use more coco coir for better moisture retention. If you live in a tropical area, add more perlite than coco coir to make the soil mix airy and well-drained. This will help avoid problems related to overwatering.
– Temperature Requirements
Stromanthe Triostar thrives in temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. It is a tropical plant and prefers warm temperatures to grow well, but it can also tolerate temperatures as low as 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
If your plant is outdoors in the cold, move it inside to a warm spot where it can get bright light during the day. It cannot tolerate frost, cold air drafts, and freezing temperatures for longer periods. It is a warm-growing plant perfect for a tropical climate.
During the summer months, be careful to regulate the conditions around your plant when the temperature goes beyond 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Move it to a cooler spot, mist it regularly to increase humidity, and keep it away from hot air drafts.
– Humidity Requirements
Humidity is one of the most important growth factors for Stromanthe Triostar plants. This plant needs humidity levels above 50 percent to grow well. Normally, the humidity levels in our homes work well for its growth, but you may want to consider using a humidifier or a humidity tray to increase humidity levels around the plant.
The higher the humidity levels, the healthier your plant will be. If you live in a dry area, the plant will likely suffer due to high temperatures and low humidity. In the summer, the leaves will start to turn brown or curl. When you see your plant experiencing this, take extra measures to increase the humidity levels.
– What To Do
To prepare a humidity tray for your plant, fill a tray with some pebbles and water. Keep your plant above it and as the water evaporates, your plant will receive the necessary moisture. You can also group many plants to increase the humidity levels. Grouped plants release moisture in the air that helps in creating a tropical microclimate.
While maintaining high humidity levels, do not forget to keep the air around your plant moving. Poor air circulation with high humidity levels can lead to problems such as root rot and fungal infections. Keep the plant in an airy spot, or you can also place a fan nearby for proper air movement.
– Fertilizer Requirements
Stromanthe Triostar is not a heavy feeder, but regular fertilizing during the growing season makes it grow faster. Fertilize your plant with rich compost or a well-balanced liquid fertilizer every two to three weeks during the active growing seasons of spring and summer. Use seaweed solution or any organic mild fertilizer. You can also occasionally top up the soil with vermiculite or cow manure.
This plant is sensitive to heavy fertilization, so keep it light and fertilize it only once a month from spring to late summer. Do not fertilize your plant in the winter months as the plant hardly shows any new growth and is almost dormant.
Stromanthe Triostar needs to be repotted every couple of years when it outgrows the pot. When the roots start coming out of the drainage holes at the bottom, it means that it is time to move the plant to a larger container. Early spring is the ideal time to repot the plant, just when new growth begins to appear.
Use a light and airy soil mix to repot your plant. Choose a new pot that is around two inches larger than the previous one. Remove the plant from the old soil mix and shake off all the old soil from the roots. Check the roots and make sure that they are clean before cutting off the dead ones.
Add some soil mix to the pot and place your plant in the center. Cover the roots with soil and firm it properly so that no roots remain uncovered. Pat it down, water the plant thoroughly, and keep it in a shaded spot for a few days. It may take 10 to 14 days for the plant to completely recover from the transplant shock.
The Stromanthe Triostar plant can be propagated using several methods, which we will be learning about in this section.
– Rhizome or Root Division
Stromanthe Triostar can be easily propagated by rhizome or root division during spring and summer. To do this, remove the plant from the pot and separate it into smaller parts to create new plants. First, gently untangle the roots with your hands or use a sharp knife.
Divide the plant and place the divisions in the fresh soil mix. Press the soil firmly around the roots avoiding any root exposure. Allow the plant to adjust and stabilize in its new surroundings by keeping it in bright warm spots.
– Stem Cuttings
Another method to propagate Stromanthe Triostar is through stem cuttings. Choose a healthy and established section with no sign of pests or diseases. The cutting should be at least 8 to 10 inches long. Cut below the node with a clean pair of scissors.
Remove the leaves from the bottom, leaving only the top two to three leaves intact. Place the cuttings in a jar of water. Keep changing this water once a week and wait for the roots to grow one inch long. Once the roots are over an inch long, you can plant the cuttings in the soil.
Plant your cuttings in a loose and well-draining soil mix, keeping the leaves above the soil. Keep it in a shaded spot away from direct sunlight and provide good humidity. Once they are well-settled in the new soil mix, move them to a bright spot with indirect light.
Keeping your Stromanthe Triostar plant happy and healthy can be a task in and of itself. Despite this, there are also some pests and diseases that can bother your plant.
Thrips are often found on the undersides of this plant’s leaves. They are tubular flies that can be very damaging to the plant. It is slightly difficult to completely eradicate thrips, but it is possible.
Remove the visible bugs and larvae with your fingers or a damp cloth. Prune the affected leaves and stems to control the spread and hose down the plant gently. Replace the topsoil with freshly composted soil, and once the soil is dry, spray it with a chemical pesticide. Repeat this process every 7 to 14 days to eliminate thrips.
– Red Spider Mites
Spider mites thrive in dry conditions while Stromanthe Triostar plants thrive in high humidity conditions. When the humidity levels are too low, red spider mites find it easy to live and multiply. To get rid of these bugs, use a mild horticultural soap or a neem oil spray. Mist the plant regularly to prevent these unwanted pests.
Mealybugs look like small cotton balls and can spread quickly to other plants too. Remove and crush the bugs with a damp cloth. Prune the affected stems and spray chemical pesticides or neem oil to get rid of them completely. Repeat the process fortnightly for best results.
– Drooping and Crisping of Leaves
Droopy and crisp leaves are a sign of underwatering. When there is a lack of water in the leaves, they respond by drooping. To avoid this problem, water your plant regularly. This problem can also be caused by high temperatures, low humidity levels, dryness and minerals in the water.
– Curling of Leaves
Leaves curl because of underwatering, low humidity levels and high temperatures. Stick to a proper watering schedule and maintain proper temperatures and humidity levels by misting the plant and keeping it away from hot air drafts.
– Yellowing of Leaves
Yellowing of leaves can be caused due to overwatering and blocked drainage holes in the pots. Stromanthe Triostar plants love high moisture in the soil, but soggy soil conditions can cause root rot and fungal infection. Maintain a regular watering schedule to avoid such problems.
Sometimes, yellowing is also caused by over-fertilizing the plant. Over-fertilizing causes salt build-up that draws the moisture out of plant roots and leads to root burn. Stick to the fertilizing schedule mentioned on the label to avoid this problem.
Remove the yellow leaves from your plant, if any. They will not turn back into their original color and will most probably die. Removing the yellow or brown leaves helps in saving the plant’s energy.
– Browning of Leaves
Browning of the foliage is a result of lack of humidity and low soil moisture level. Low humidity with high temperatures can cause the leaves to turn brown and crisp on the edges. Water the plant regularly and mist it occasionally to avoid this problem. Wipe the leaves to get rid of any hard water stains on them.
– Fungus and Mold
Stromanthe Triostar plants love humidity, but they can also develop fungus, mold and rot because of damp and soggy soil conditions. To prevent this problem, maintain good airflow around the plant.
Good air circulation is important to prevent rot and fungus growth. Reduce the frequency of misting upon the appearance of mold or fungus. In cases of severe infestation, use a fungicide.
Other Useful Information
Let us take a look at some frequently asked questions about the Stromanthe Triostar plant.
Is Stromanthe Triostar Difficult?
Stromanthe Triostar plants can be a little difficult to care for, especially if you are a beginner in the world of gardening. But it is definitely possible to care for it if you keep in mind all of its basic growth requirements.
How Do You Care For a Stromanthe Triostar?
Keep the plant in medium to bright, indirect light and water it often in the growing period, keeping the soil moist most of the time. The soil should be airy and well-draining to avoid problems related to overwatering. Add lots of organic compost to make it rich.
Maintain the temperatures around the plant between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Feed the plant every two to three weeks with a liquid fertilizer from spring to summer, and do not fertilize during winter. This plant thrives in high humidity, so keep the humidity levels above 50 percent for best growth results.
Does Triostar Like To Be Root Bound?
Stromanthe Triostar does not enjoy being repotted too often, and it prefers being root-bound for some time. But if you notice its roots coming out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot, it’s time to move it to a larger pot.
What Is Bright Indirect Light?
Bright, indirect light refers to sunlight that does not directly fall on the plant. It is equivalent to approximately 800 to 2,000 foot-candles. Keep this plant in a bright window that receives curtain-filtered light throughout the day.
Does Stromanthe Triostar Produce Flowers?
Yes, Stromanthe Triostar flowers during winter and early spring. A large shaft grows from the center of each stem, growing a flower at the top. As the stem blooms, it will stop growing and will allow for new rhizomatous growth below the soil.
Stromanthe Triostar is a gorgeous plant to have and if you want to add some color to your plant collection, then this is the one for you. Read all the important points you need to know about this plant below.
- Stromanthe Triostar is an ornamental plant native to the rainforests of Brazil.
- It has white, pink and green variegations on its leaves.
- Keep it in a spot where it can receive medium to bright dappled light throughout the day.
- It has high water requirements and needs to be watered regularly for proper growth results.
- Water the plant regularly, especially during its growing periods of spring to summer.
- Maintain the humidity levels above 50 percent to keep your plant happy.
- Fertilize your plant once every two to three weeks during spring and summer and do not fertilize it in the winter months.
- Repot your plant every few years when it has outgrown its existing pot.
- Propagate the plant through division at the time of repotting.
- It can face problems such as thrips, mites, yellowing, browning and curling of leaves.
Each leaf of this plant is a work of art, giving it a beautiful appearance. We hope our care tips have helped you to know all about Stromanthe Triostar and that you get one of these stunning plants for yourself!
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