Maranta leuconeura erythroneuro or Red-Veined Prayer Plant, a native of the Serra dos Órgãos or Organ Mountains in Brazil, is a small tropical plant with broad oval leaves up to 5 inches (12 cm) long by half as wide. The leaves lie horizontal to the ground and are patterned with a herringbone design of red veins over the light green to olive green leaf blade. Individual plants reach up to 10 inches (25 cm) in height and make great, showy container plants.
Blooming Time: In the greenhouse, these plants bloom in late spring to early summer. The small, white flowers with a purple spot are not particulary showy.
Culture: Maranta leuconeura erythroneuro need full shade and warm temperatures. We use a soil mix consisting of 2 parts peat moss to 1 part loam to 1 part sand or perlite. The soil should never be allowed to dry out. Fertilize weekly with a balanced fertilizer diluted to ½ the strength recommended on the label. Since the plant has a shallow root system they should be planted in shallow pots. The plant responds to being trimmed at least twice a year, this helps to keep the plant growing vigorously. Re-potting should only be done if the plant out grows its container.
Propagation: Maranta leuconeura erythroneuro are easily propagated by division.
Maranta leuconeura erythroneuro was featured as Plant of the Week March 14-20, 2003.
Guide to Past Plants-of-the-Week:
Cal's Plant of the Week was provided as a service by the University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology & Plant Biology and specifically Cal Lemke, who used to be OU's botany greenhouse grower and an avid gardener at home as well. If the above links don't work, then try the overview site. You may also like to look at the thumbnail index. ©1998-2012 All rights reserved.