Prayer Plant Care
Calathea and Maranta,  Plant Care

Prayer Plant Care

In general prayer plants can survive most light ranges and not a fussy plant, just mist them regularly to keep them humid...

Prayer Plant Care Summary

Light needs:Plenty of indirect sunlight is ideal, low-medium light is ok too.
Watering needs:Water when the top layer of soil (half a finger depth) is dry.
Fertilizer:Feed them a well diluted feed in the summer months every 2 weeks.
Soil:A standard well draining potting compost.
Humidity:They like the high end of household humidity or mist them 3 times a week.
Temperature:Don’t let your prayer plant get below 12°C (55°F) for long periods of time.
Where to buy:Try our list of Rare Plant Shops.
Other names:Maranta
Common issues:Underwatering and a lack of humidity.

Intro

Prayer plants a.k.a. marantas are impressive-looking tropical houseplants, originally from Brazil. Briefly speaking to take care of a prayer plant you need a little humidity and to keep it wet and warm they will do well. We’ll go into more detail in the following prayer plant care guide.

See also: Prayer Plant Propagation.

Prayer Plant Light Needs

Prayer plants like a good amount of indirect sunlight. It will do ok in low-medium light though, they are not especially fussy when it comes to light. They’ll be fine a back from the window in a bright room.

How Often to Water Your Maranta

Prayer plants love water in the warmer months when they are growing, during this time keep them wet or damp. The rest of the year they can be let to dry out a little more, but not totally, you can water it when the top layer of soil (half a finger depth) is dry.

Tip: they are fussy about ‘hard’ water and humidity: use filtered tap water and keep them humid.

Prayer Plant Fertilizer

You can feed prayer plants with a balanced fertilizer, but water it down about twice as much as it says in the packet as prayer plants are sensitive and can burn from too much feeding. Feed them in the summer months every 2 weeks.

Prayer Plant Care

Prayer Plant Soil

Prayer plants will do well with a standard well draining potting compost.

When To Repot A Prayer Plant

Prayer plants root structure doesn’t grow especially quickly, but if it gets root bound you can pot it up one or two sizes. Prayer plants should not be allowed to get root bound as they will not grow as well.

Prayer Plant Humidity

Prayer plants need good humidity levels, this is key to their care. Lack of humidity can make their leaves curl and ultimately kill them. My first one suffered badly from a lack of humidity when the weather got hot, so mist it regularly. I keep mine in a pot inside a bigger outer pot. The outer pot has some leca (clay pebbles) in the bottom and I keep water a centimeter deep (deep enough to cover the pebbles but not so much that the plant is standing in water), this keeps the plant humid. I would at least keep them with other plants which gives the humidity a bit of a lift.

Some of my maranta cuttings (and pothos too). See our other article on Prayer Plant Propagation for more about maranta cuttings.

Maranta Temperature

Don’t let your prayer plant get too cold, 55°F lowest (12°C). Other than this they like the warmer end of household temperatures.

Where To Buy A Prayer Plant

Red prayer plants pop up in various online stores and all over the place, but for lemon lime marantas check Etsy, or your local rare plant dealer.

Other Names for Prayer Plant

Maranta.

Maranta Water Propagation

The easiest way to propagate maranta is to take a cutting and root it in a jar of water. for more on maranta propagation see our guide: Prayer Plant Propagation.

Prayer Plant FAQs and Common Issues

The most common issues with prayer plants are a lack of water and a lack of humidity. Make sure they are well watered (but not water logged) and misted regularly. Keep them humid with a pebble tray nd you’ll do well!

Why Are My Prayer Plant Leaves Curling?

Leaf curling is a common issue with prayer plants, this happens when the plant is lacking in moisture – make sure it is wet and humid and consider reducing it’s light. Most commonly this is just due to a lack of humidity and it can be remedied with misting or a pebble tray. For more on this see Prayer Plant Leaf Curling.

Do Prayer Plant Leaves Move?

Prayer plants and maranta move in a 24 cycle with the sun. They will lower and curl up slightly when there is no light and raise and open up when the sun rises.

Can Prayer Plant Leaves Uncurl?

Prayer plant leaves that have curled up doe to a lack of moisture will uncurl once the humidity is rasied and the plant is healthy again.

Prayer Plant Vs Peacock Plant?

They are both quite similar, but marantas and calatheas are not the same. Marantas are ‘true’ prayer plants – thy open and close with sunlight. But are both closely related.

Is Prayer Plant Toxic To Cats?

Marantas are not toxic to cats (source).

How Do You Make A Prayer Plant Bushier?

You can water propagate prayer plant cuttings and once they have established roots you can pot them up in the original pot to make it much more bushier. Its a great idea to do this

Prayer Plant Care

Why Is My Prayer Plant Flowering?

It is totally normal for a maranta to flower sometimes for weeks at a time. I normally trim them off to promote leaf growth instead of the energy being used for flowers.

How Often Do Prayer Plants Flower?

Prayer plants can flower all year round, but it is most probable to occur in the warmer months in spring and summer when the plant is growing.

Other Articles You Might Like

See all our plant care articles here, and our prayer plant propagation guide.

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Photo credits for this article (where not stated as mine) are from pixy.org

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