Press Enter / Return to begin your search.

How To Grow and Care for Calathea Beauty Star

The Calathea Beauty Star is a flowering plant that belongs to the family Marantaceae. This gorgeous beauty is native to South America. 

The genus Calathea contains around 60 species under its frame. 

Adorned with decorative long dark green leaves, the Cathaleas are used as pot plants. Their eye-catching green foliage makes them quite a sight for sore eyes. 

Let’s discover the care regimen for this household beauty!

Table of Contents

Meet The Calathea Beauty Star: Basic Knowledge And Origins

 

Family name Marantaceae
Common name Calathea, prayer plant, beauty star, peacock plant
Botanical name Calathea ornata
Plant type Herbaceous perennial
Size 30cm tall, Up to 2 ft. (24 in.) tall, and wide
Native Area Brazil and other parts of South & Central America
Sun Exposure Medium to bright filtered or indirect light is preferable. Avoid direct sunlight as it can scorch and discolor the leaves.
Soil Consistency Peat-based, well-drained soil. It should be evenly moist but never soggy.
Humidity Higher than 60% humidity works best for them
Season Being a perennial, it grows during the spring and summer and blooms in the summer
Temperature Optimal temperature is 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit (18-29 degrees Celcius)
Toxicity It is non-toxic to humans, dogs, and cats.
Common pests Spider mites and mealybugs

Making Your ‘Beauty Star’ Comfortable In Its New Home

First Steps After Purchase

After you’ve purchased a Calathea and brought it home, you’ll want to make sure it gets used to its new home. 

Here are some easy steps that will help ensure that your new plant gets all the extra love and care that it needs.

Choose the right spot for your new baby:

In addition to adding joy and color to help brighten up your space, houseplants have an impressive array of science-backed benefits. 

They help boost mood, reduce stress, increase concentration span, improve air quality indoors, and manage moisture levels.

If you want to get the best from your plants, make sure that you pick an ideal spot for them in your home to provide them with adequate sunlight and the optimal climate to thrive. 

For the ‘beauty star,’ this would be one with lots of indirect light of moderate intensity, warmth, and humidity. Place the plant in a favorable environment, and you’ll see it perk up right away! 

Trim away damaged foliage:

To give your new possession a healthy and neat appearance, get rid of all the torn, dead, diseased, or shriveled leaves. 

Doing so will give its appearance an upgrade and encourage the healthy growth of the emerging leaves. 

Keep a check on soil moisture levels:

Maintaining an evenly-moist soil bed is key to the healthy growth of the plant. Ensure that the soil isn’t dry but not too soggy either. 

If you notice any dry or wilting leaves, water the plant until the soil is soaked thoroughly. 

Inspect for diseases and be wary of pests:

Spraying your houseplants with insecticidal soap or horticultural oils, like neem oil, is a safety measure you must take to protect them from bugs and diseases. 

Bugs aren’t always noticeable, so it’s always a good idea to spray them with pesticides as a precaution. 

Ramp up humidity levels:

Treat the new addition to your house with a slight boost in humidity to make it comfortable in its new home. 

Related:  How To Keep Flies Away Outside?

You may increase humidity levels by simply installing a humidifier or placing a water tray near the ‘beauty star.’ 

You can also mist the plant regularly to ensure optimum humidity around the plant. Calatheas are happiest in environments with high humidity, preferably 60% or higher. 

How To Care For The Calathea Beauty Star

Sunlight:

The Calathea Beauty Star, being native to the tropics, is accustomed to being overshadowed by large trees. 

Its location permits it to receive only short bursts of sunlight during the day. 

Since the Calathea Beauty Star is not used to excess exposure, providing too much direct light can harm it and cause the leaves to scorch, pale, and lose their distinctive colorful markings. 

To help them grow better, keep them away from south-facing windows that would expose them to direct sunlight. 

North, west, and east-facing windows will let in ideal (medium to bright indirect or filtered) light for your Beauty Star to thrive. 

Temperature:

The Calathea, similar to many other tropical houseplants, is vulnerable to the effects of sudden temperature variations. 

Your location plays a critical role in determining how well your plant will do. Maintaining a warm temperature, preferably around 65-85 °F (18-29 °C), will do wonders for the growth of the Beauty Star, as it appreciates cozy surroundings. 

Under no circumstances should the temperature dip below 60 °F (15.5 °C) as cold can wreak havoc on your new beauty and cause brown spots, drooping, and wilting of its leaves. 

To ensure that it stays protected from the cold, avoid placing it near uninsulated windows, entryway doors, and heat registers. 

Humidity:

Calatheas thrive well in places with high humidity, ideally above 60%. 

A consistently humid spot, such as the bathroom or kitchen, works best for the Beauty Star. Placing them somewhere that guarantees no fluctuations in humidity will provide you with ease of mind, as you won’t be required to keep a constant eye on the plant. 

If you don’t have a spot with ideal humidity requirements, you can resort to other methods. Installing a humidifier in the room that houses your Beauty Star is a no-brainer. Regular misting also works well enough to create optimal humidity for it to flourish. Just sit your potted Calathea on top of a water tray that contains pebbles.

Alternatively, you can create a humid microclimate for your Calathea by bringing all your houseplants closer together. Just remember to check that all the plants are healthy and disease-free before you do so. 

Misting/Spraying:

Misting or spraying houseplants with water has two benefits:

Increases humidity

Drives off spider mites

To make the most of this activity, always use room temperature or lukewarm water for misting. Never use hot or cold water as it can cause damage instead. 

You should spray the water directly above the leaves to ensure the even distribution of the water droplets. 

Soil:

Well-draining, peat-based soil that stays evenly moist without getting soggy is vital for the healthy growth of your plant.

The importance of ensuring that the soil contains an adequate amount of moisture cannot be stressed enough. 

You can use any traditional potting mix as long as it’s peaty. Add one part perlite and two parts sphagnum moss to supplement its peatiness. You may also add one part of loamy soil to the mix. 

Related:  How to Care for Your Prayer Plant (Maranta Lemon Lime)

Good drainage is another quality that adds to the health of the plant. Make sure that your container is equipped with sufficient drainage holes to ensure good drainage. Cathaleas are susceptible to root rot if left in waterlogged soil. 

Soil pH:

Another factor worthy of notice is soil pH. The Beauty Star thrives in mildly acidic soil with an optimal soil pH of about 6.5. 

Fertilizer:

Cathaleas are heavy growers. They can grow as tall as 2ft. in just a year. Use a rich, fertile potting mix and supplement it with fertilizer to encourage robust growth. 

The best time for fertilizing is throughout the spring, summer, and early fall. Replenish the soil with fertilizer every four weeks to provide nutrients. 

Water your plants before applying fertilizer, this helps protect the roots from root burn. Try using water-soluble or liquid fertilizer at half the recommended strength. 

Propagating the Calathea Beauty Star

Propagation in soil:

You can propagate your Beauty Star in soil using root divisions. Here are some simple steps you can follow to help you propagate your plant with ease:

Start by unpotting your plant and shaking off all the excess soil from the roots. Now begin working them apart. 

When you’re done, you should be left with multiple divisions, each with several stems and a mass of healthy roots. 

Keep separate shallow containers ready on hand. They should contain soil that’s lightweight, airy, and well-drained. Start placing each plant division into these containers. 

The key to the healthy growth of the plant lies in maintaining an evenly moist soil and warm temperature. Keep the containers covered with polythene bags until you notice new growth to achieve the best results. 

Remember, it may take a few weeks to see visible new growth, so be patient!

Propagation in water:

Propagating the Beauty Star in water is possible, but the process is a bit trickier. Here’s how you can do it:

Create plant cuttings by cutting healthy stems below a leaf node.

Dip the cut in rooting hormone. The rooting hormone works to stimulate root growth during propagation. Now place these cuttings in a glass of water.

Remember to change the water after every two days to keep the cuttings from drying out.

Once you see a good mass of roots emerging, it is time to plant them directly in a potting mix.

Now follow all instructions previously mentioned, such as maintaining good soil moisture levels and temperature. 

Mist or spray the new plant occasionally to keep humidity levels high. As long as you’re taking good care of these new plantings, it won’t be long until you grow a whole new crop! 

Re-potting

To keep houseplants healthy, it is necessary to re-pot them every few years. Repotting a plant has numerous benefits. It helps the soil get rid of pathogens and accumulated salt and aids in replenishing it with nutrients. 

A Calathea will need to be re-potted after every two to three years. 

Repotting early in spring, just before the onset of its growth spurt is a good time for the Beauty Star. 

Related:  Sustainable Gardening: The Art Of Growing Your Own Coffee Plant

Just follow these simple steps to help you through the process:

Start by unpotting your plant. Inspect for any signs of disease or root rot. Shake off all of the oil soil from the plant. 

Trim away and discard any rotten or damaged roots. 

Treat the roots with a hydrogen peroxide solution, to help encourage healthy root growth. 

Place the potting mix into a container that’s meant to receive the plant,

Now repot and water it thoroughly.

Keep it in a shady place until you see new growth emerging.

Pruning

Pruning removes dead or damaged parts of the plant to help them grow better. To prune your Calathea efficiently, trim at the point where the leaves join the stems. Doing so will encourage new leaf growth from these exact places, giving your Beauty Star a wonderful upgraded appearance! 

Challenges & Solutions

Pests

The Beauty Star is susceptible to numerous pests, including spider mites, mealybugs, aphids, scale, and fungus gnats. These bugs thrive and reproduce in very hot and dry conditions. 

To get rid of these pests, use a strong water shower to blast them off the leaves. Rubbing alcohol on both sides of the leaves can aid in killing off mites. 

Spray your plant with a good-quality insecticide or neem oil to ward off any remaining pests, and repeat the cycle every 7-10 days until completely pest-free. 

Diseases

The Calatheas can fall prey to a number of diseases, most of which are brought on by damp conditions and waterlogged soil. 

The more common ones are root rot and leaf spot diseases caused by fungi. 

To protect against the spread of these diseases, immediately isolate the affected plants and trim away all rotten leaves. 

Browned leaf edges

Underwatering the plant or exposing it to too much light can cause leaf edges to brown. To help it heal, place it in a shadier spot and water it well. 

Drooping stems

Drooping stems are suggestive of the fact that your plant is either overwatered, underwatered, or diseased. To treat the ailment, target and treat the underlying cause.

Falling leaves

If your plant is shedding too many leaves, it suggests that it’s in dire need of a drink! Water your plant thoroughly and make sure it’s placed in an environment with a favorable temperature. 

Curling leaves

Moisture deprivation in the soil can lead to curling up of the leaves, compromising their beauty. Once you see the top surface of the soil becoming dry, water thoroughly. 

Place it in a spot with high humidity and avoid direct sunlight. 

Ask Away: The FAQ Section

How do I care for my Calathea Beauty Star?

Here are some easy steps you can follow to ensure the good health of your plant:

Water your plant when the topmost soil layer is dry. Make sure that the soil is moist but not too soggy.

Trim away any dead or damaged leaves.

Find a warm and humid spot away from direct sunlight for your Beauty Star. 

What is the ideal temperature for my Beauty Star to thrive?

Keep your plant in a place that has an optimal temperature of 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit (18-29 degrees Celcius) to ensure healthy growth.