Schismatoglottis Motleyana plants are spectacular indoor house plants. They feature variegation that starts at the centre of each leaf, and it extends from the stem to the tip.
Schismatoglottis Motleyana care is not that difficult for plant lovers of any degree. We will review everything you need to know to keep this plant healthy and happy for years to come.
Schismatoglottis Motleyana Care
No matter what level you are at, caring for this plant is simple. This makes it great for plant lovers that want a low maintenance plant, or those with busy schedules that don't want a fussy plant.
Motleyana are native to the Island of Borneo, but can also be found in Southeast Asia, New Guinea, and Melanesia. They grow on the jungle floor underneath the canopy.
Schismatoglottis Motleyana light requirements
In the jungle a Schismatoglottis Motleyana will receive bright indirect light that comes through the canopy, and that is what we need to replicate. Keeping this plant 2 to 3 feet from a window will provide it with enough light to be happy.
South facing windows are perfect, and if your plant can also be near a heat source as well it will thrive. Some window sills provide some extra heat which is great.
Some say this a Motleyana is a low light plant, and this is partially true. They can survive in low light, but you will notice more growth the brighter the room is.
Be sure to keep the plant out of direct sunlight, as the mid-day sun can scorch its leaves if it's in the sun for too long.
Schismatoglottis Motleyana water needs
Watering is easy with this stunning plant. Press your finger about 2 inches into the soil. If you finger some out with no soil on it, then it is time to water again. You can let a Motleyana dry out completely, but try not to leave it dry for extended periods.
We suggest that you water your plant with filtered water, and not tap water, as most cities have additives that are fine for humans, but not for plants.
Soak your plant with water in a sink, and let it drain for 5 minutes. Put it back in the pot and you are all set. Most Motleyana plants can go about a week with that much water, but each plant is different.
Bonus tip! Lift your plant up after watering it and feel the weight. Get used to it. In the future you can know when to water when your plant feels very light.
Watering will be more frequent in the summer moths as the plant receives more sun, and therefore needs more water to grow. Winter months, or if your plant is in a darker room will require less water as well.
A Schismatoglottis Motleyana will grow well with most well-draining potting mixes that you find at home and garden stores. We like to add more perlite to the mix. When you are repotting, add two extra handfuls of perlite, and you can also add fertilizer if you'd like
We prefer to fertiliz our plants with a USA based all-natural, simple-to-use fertilizer. It is safe to use every time you water, and will replenish the soil natural microbes for your plant to grow a healthy root system.
A Schismatoglottis Motleyana will enjoy most rooms in your home or your office. They average humidity indoors in Canada is around 30% or 40%, and Motleyana plants easily adjust to these levels.
We have to remember that most house plants come from jungles, and they love any extra humidity. If you've been to a jungle and felt the thick humidity in the air, you'll realize why so many of us love to put plants in our bathrooms.
Assuming your bathroom has adequate lighting, your plants will love soaking up the extra humidity from your baths and showers.
Speaking of house conditions, we have a quick video here about moving your plant. It's best to move your plant gradually so it has time to adjust to it's new setting.
How to Propagate a Schismatoglottis Motleyana
Schismatoglottis Motleyana propagation is easy! It's a great way to get a "free" plant, and also a perfect way to keep your Schismatoglottis growth in check.
Soil Propagation Method
Read about the proper soil to use above, and get ready to duplicate your plant!
We use plastic cups, but any vessel with drainage holes will do. Fill the cup to the brim with soil. When we add water the soil will compress.
Cut a piece of your Schismatoglottis Motleyana below a node (a split) on the branch. The node is where new roots come out of.
When you cut it, immediately press it into your cup of soil. Be sure not to compact the soil too much - the new roots are delicate and need room to breathe.
Add water and keep the soil moist. You will want to add more water than you normally would, but we are trying to stimulate growth from the node, and extra water help with that.
As the roots grow, the Schismatoglottis Motleyana will develop into an entirely new plant.
Water Propagation Method (Easiest)
Get a small clear jar and fill it with filtered water. Do not use city water for this part. Bottled spring water is also a good choice.
Cut a piece of your Schismatoglottis Motleyana below a node (a split) on the branch. The node is where new roots come from.
With the water method you can cut many pieces from your plant at one time and put them all into the same jar.
Submerge the node in the water right away. A few weeks later you will notice it has new roots. You can let the roots grow for a while in the water, and then transfer your plant into a pot with fresh soil.
Schismatoglottis Motleyana Varieties
There are 20+ varieties of Schismatoglottis plants out there! Each plant has its own unique qualities and differences. They feature different leaf shapes and colouration patterns. Some collectors have many different types in the homes.
To see a different variation we have, check out the Schismatoglottis Wallichii. The wallichii leaves have an oblong heart shape, and a white rim of colour on each leaf.
Pest Control with a Schismatoglottis Motleyana
As plant lovers we have to expect that from time to time our plants will attracted the odd pest. The soil your plant thrives in has many nutrients and microbes for your plants' health, and these attract other living beings that want that same nutrition.
Having a pest is not a problem unless left unchecked. That is why we simple pest prevention and control methods that larger growers also use.
We recommend that you contact us if you need any help controlling pests. We love to help plant lovers and find the right products that keep pests in check.
Are Schismatoglottis Motleyana Plants Pet Friendly?
Schismatoglottis Motleyana is not a pet friendly plant, and that is true for the entire Schismatoglottis family.
We always suggest keeping all of your plants out of reach for pets and children. Most tropical plants will irritate your pets mouth, which is a defense mechanism of a plant. This irritation should prevent your pet from nibbling on them again, but just keeping them out of reach is the best idea, as higher levels of ingestion could be dangerous.
A Schismatoglottis Motleyana is a perfect house plant for any plant lover. With its green leaves and stripe of colour down the middle it will draw some attention and will thrive in your office, living room, or bathroom.
They are simple to care for and a great plant lovers that are new to this hobby, or those who want a plant with minimal watering requirements,
Buy one today from our plant shop, or contact us for more information. We offer plant delivery in Ontario.
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May 6, 2023
I wish all plant stores were this informative and approachable! I will certainly be back soon.
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May 9, 2023
If you love plants, have any questions about plants, or are buying plants for the first time, in a queer safe space please check out Gold Leaf Botanicals
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May 2, 2023
Excellent! Exactly what I have been searching for in terms of indoor plants. Staff was incredibly knowledgeable, helpful and friendly.