How to care for an Aglaonema (Chinese Evergreen)
Are you looking for an easy-to-care-for houseplant that can be put in the darker spaces of your house? If so, the Aglaonema, also known as the Chinese Evergreen, is the perfect plant for you!
The Chinese Evergreen comes in several incredible colors with a spotted pattern and thrives in many different types of sunlight exposure, so you won't have any trouble finding a spot that's right for your Aglaonema to grow.
In this plant care guide, we're going to look at how we can help your Aglaonema thrive in your home. We're going to look at these aspects of its plant care routine:
Let's get started and learn how we can help your Chinese Evergreen stay happy in healthy in your house!
How do you water an Aglaonema?
Watering your plants is one of the most important parts of taking care of plants, it has a huge influence on whether your plant stays healthy or it's struggling. Luckily, the Aglaonema has fairly average watering needs: It likes to be watered regularly but also likes to dry out slightly before being watered again.
The easiest way to water this plant properly is to use a pot with drainage holes. When you're watering your plant, water until the excess moisture starts to drip out of the drainage holes. The soil will have absorbed all the moisture it can and the drainage holes help you to prevent overwatering by removing the excess water from the pot.
On average, you should water your Aglaonema once every 7 days in the spring and summer. This can take longer or shorter for you depending on the temperature and humidity levels in your house. If it's warm and dry, you'll have to water more often and if it's humid or cold, you might have to water less often.
Before watering your plant it's important to check whether the top 2-5 cm (1-2 inches) of soil are dry to the touch. If so, you can water your plant. If not, wait a day or 2 and check again. By checking the soil before you water your plant, you help to avoid overwatering your plant.
What are signs of over-watering or under-watering?
Everyone has overwatered or underwatered their plants before, but how do you recognize the signs your Aglaonema shows you if it hasn't been watered as it wants?
If your Aglaonema is not getting enough water, the leaves will start to curl and turn yellow or brown. The plant might also be drooping. If you notice any of these signs, immediately water your plant until the excess moisture runs out of the drainage holes.
If your Aglaonema is getting too much water, the leaves will start to turn yellow and the roots can start to rot. If you notice any of these signs, immediately stop watering your plant and check if there's standing water in the pot or tray underneath your pot. If so, empty it and wait until the top 2-5 cm (1-2 inches) of soil is dry before watering again.
What is the best light for an Aglaonema?
An Aglaonema needs indirect sunlight for best growth but can tolerate lower light levels as well. In general, you should place your Chinese Evergreen near a bright window with some shade from direct sunlight - this could be from curtains, blinds, or even other plants.
The green and white variety of the Aglaonema can tolerate low-light spaces in your house quite well, but the colored varieties need brighter spots to keep their vibrant colors looking their best.
How do you know if the plant is getting too much or too little light?
If your Aglaonema is not getting enough light it can start to lose the variegation, the spots on its leaves will lose color and the plant might get leggy (A plant that looks stretched out). If you notice this happening, move your Aglaonema closer to a window with more sunlight.
If your Aglaonema is getting too much light, you'll see the leaves start to turn yellow or brown and dry out. If this happens, move your Aglaonema away from direct sunlight and find a spot with more indirect light for it.
The direct sunlight is too harsh for all varieties of the Aglaonema and will scorch their leaves if they're exposed to the harsh sunlight for too long, especially during the summer.
What is the best soil for an Aglaonema?
The best soil for an Aglaonema is a well-draining potting mix. This type of soil will allow for proper drainage, preventing the roots from becoming waterlogged, which can cause root rot.
You can create the perfect potting soil mix for your Aglaonema by mixing 1/3 potting soil, 1/3 peat moss, and 1/3 perlite. This mix is perfect for plants that need their soil to stay light and airy. This type of soil will drain excess moisture quickly while letting oxygen freely pass down to the roots of your plant.
The peat moss and potting soil will provide your Chinese Evergreen with a nutrient-rich growing environment so it can stay healthy in the long run.
You want the mix to stay moist but not soggy. That's where the peat moss and perlite come in. The peat moss holds onto moisture well and the perlite drains the excess moisture to the bottom of the pot quickly. This creates a nice balance for your soil.
If you're not a huge fan of fertilizing your plant regularly, this is the perfect time to add a slow-release fertilizer to your potting mix. This will ensure that your Aglaonema gets all the nutrients it needs without having to constantly re-apply liquid fertilizer every few weeks.
Just remember not to overfertilize as too much fertilizer can burn the plant's roots, leading to stunted growth and yellowing leaves.
As a final note about the soil, I'd like to mention that it's a good idea to refresh your potting mix every 2-3 years as part of regular maintenance. This helps keep your Aglaonema's soil light, which will keep your plant healthy for many years.
How do you repot an Aglaonema?
Every 2-3 years you should refresh your Aglaonema's soil and this also happens to be the perfect time to repot your plant into a slightly larger pot. Many plant owners will use repotting their plants as the perfect excuse to refresh their soil as well, so let's see how we should repot a Chinese Evergreen.
Repotting an Aglaonema is quite easy and can be done by following these steps:
- Gently remove the plant from its current pot. If the roots are sticking to the pot, carefully loosen them with a knife or spoon.
- Carefully cut away any dead or damaged roots, while also loosening the old soil around the roots.
- Place a layer of new potting mix at the bottom of your new pot. This pot should be one size larger than the current pot, around 2-5 cm (1-2 inches) larger.
- Place your Aglaonema on top of this layer and fill up any gaps with fresh potting mix until all roots are covered.
- Give your newly potted Agloanema a thorough watering so that all air pockets can be removed from underneath its roots. Air pockets hold onto water and prevent proper drainage.
- Remove any air pockets by sticking a wooden skewer in the soil or tapping on your pot.
- Place your Aglaonema back in its spot and monitor closely for the next few days to make sure it's settling in comfortably.
If you follow these steps you'll successfully repot an Aglaonema. Always make sure you take plenty of time to repot your plants, so you don't accidentally damage your plant's roots and shock it. If you're careful, your plant will settle into its new pot quickly.
What are the ideal humidity levels for an Aglaonema?
Aglaonemas like high levels of humidity to stay healthy, around 60-70%. So if you live in a place where it's quite dry, you might have to take some steps to increase the humidity in your house or around your Chinese evergreen.
If you notice the leaves start to look dry, it could be a sign that the humidity levels are too low and you might need to increase them. You could place your plant on a tray with pebbles and water or group plants together that need similar levels of moisture - this creates a "microclimate" where the humidity is higher than in the rest of your house.
If you're using the pebble tray method, make sure your plant isn't sitting in a layer of water, but on top of the pebbles, away from the water. This could accidentally overwater your plant if your pot has drainage holes.
Another fantastic way to increase the humidity in your house, to help your plants get the humidity they need, is to use a humidifier. This is a more premium solution, but will also benefit you, not just your plants.
What is the ideal temperature range for an Aglaonema?
Aglaonemas are tropical plants, so they prefer warmer temperatures. They thrive in temperatures between 18-27℃ (65-80℉) during the day. Temperatures lower than 65℉ can cause the leaves to yellow and drop off, while temperatures above 80℉ can lead to wilting. It's important to keep your Aglaonema away from hot or cold drafts, as this can damage their leaves.
You can also move your plant outside during the spring and summer, as long as you make sure that temperatures won't drop too low at night. And of course, don't forget to bring it back inside when the weather starts to cool down again.
If you do decide to move your plant outside in the spring and summer, make sure to protect it against hard winds by placing it next to a fence or a wall.
How do you fertilize an Aglaonema?
Fertilizing your plants helps them grow strong and healthy and provides them with the nutrients they need for growth. It's important to fertilize your Chinese Evergreen once every month during spring and summer when it's actively growing. During fall and winter, you shouldn't fertilize your Aglaonema, because it won't grow (at all) during this time of year.
The easiest way to fertilize your Aglaonema, if you're not already using a slow-release fertilizer in the soil, is to use a liquid fertilizer. You should mix this type of fertilizer with the water you use to water your plant. This dilutes the fertilizer, so you won't overfertilize your plant.
It's important to not over-fertilize your Aglaonema as this can damage its roots and cause brown tips on its leaves. If you're not using liquid fertilizer to feed your plant, it's important to water your plant before and after fertilizing. This helps the fertilizer to be absorbed by your plant and the soil and helps to distribute the nutrients throughout the pot.
When and how should you prune an Aglaonema?
Pruning your Aglaonema helps to keep the plant healthy and looking its best. Usually, you only prune your plant to remove any dead or damaged leaves, so make sure to avoid pruning large amounts of foliage as this can put unnecessary stress on the Aglaonema.
The best time to prune an Aglaonema is in the spring, but you should also be on the lookout for any burnt or yellow leaves throughout the year. During this time of year, when your plant is in its growing season, it'll recover from any pruning much more quickly.
When you're pruning, make sure to use sharp, clean pruning shears or scissors and cut as close to the base of the plant as possible. This helps you to prevent too much dead foliage in the weeks after the pruning. Dead foliage attracts pests and diseases, so it's best to minimize their chances.
Finally, after pruning your Aglaonema make sure to keep an eye on its water levels for a few weeks. Don't let them get too low or too high until your plant has settled back into its routine.
What are common pests and diseases for an Aglaonema?
Aglaonemas are not immune to pests and diseases, so it's important to keep an eye out for any warning signs. Common pests that you can find on your Aglaonema include aphids, mealybugs, and scale insects. These pests sip on the moisture of your plant's stems and leaves and can cause discoloration of the leaves and stunted growth.
It's important to get rid of pests as soon as possible, as they can spread quickly from plant to plant. One way to prevent these pests from infecting your Aglaonema is by regularly spraying your plant with a mixture of neem oil, mild detergent, and water.
One of the biggest problems, besides pests, is root rot. Root rot is can form when the soil stays wet for too long. This can happen if you water too often or if the soil doesn't drain the excess moisture well. Symptoms of root rot include yellowing of the leaves, wilting and stunted growth.
To prevent root rot, make sure that you only water when the top of the soil is dry, and always use a potting mix that drains excess moisture well. If you notice any symptoms of root rot in your Aglaonema, it's important to take action by pruning the rotting roots and repotting the plant into fresh soil with better drainage.
As you've seen in this plant care guide, taking care of an Aglaonema is not difficult as it's quite a tolerant plant for many spaces in your house. The best spot in your house is a spot that gets bright, indirect sunlight during the day. Keep it away from cold drafts and give it a high-humidity growing environment for it to be happy.
On average, you should water your Aglaonema once per week in the spring and summer and once every 10 days in the winter, but make sure to check whether the top of the soil is dry before watering your plant.
To help your plant stay healthy and grows strong, you should fertilize it once per month during the spring and summer months when it's actively growing. Keep a lookout for pests like aphids and mealybugs that could infect your Aglaonema as well as root rot which can form if the soil doesn't drain moisture quickly enough.
Caring for an Aglaonema plant is a rewarding experience that can provide you with beautiful foliage and vibrant colors in your home or office. Share this plant care guide with your friends, family, and colleagues to help them take care of their Aglaonema plants!
Thank you for reading this post! I hope it helps you to keep your plants healthy and beautiful! If you're looking for more guides on specific plants, you can always request a plant guide to get a guide for the plant you have trouble with.
Tags: beginner-friendly, humidity-loving, low-lightPosted on: Feb 4, 2023