How to grow Spathiphyllum
The Spathiphyllum are a genus of plants of the Araceae family that include about 30 tropical species with an elegant shape, which can reach one meter in height, with the flowers gathered in a spadix wrapped in a white or greenish spathe, known with the common name of Spatafillo or spatifillo or even spoon plant for the characteristic shape of the floral spathe.
These are plants without stems, with leaves that grow directly from the underground rhizome.
Among the most cultivated species for ornamental use we mainly mention: Spathiphyllum floribundum, originally from Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and Venezuela, and Spathiphyllum wallisi from Panama.
In this sheet we will see how to grow Spatafillo, as an ornamental potted plant in the apartments and the most useful techniques and devices.
Spatafillo requires warm and humid environments with minimum winter temperatures of no less than 12 ° C, so in the environmental conditions of our apartments we must check that similar conditions occur. Remember that the plant still excellently exceeds 30 ° C if the right humidity is guaranteed, while it does not tolerate the cold.
Spathiphyllum is a plant that also wants lots of light both in summer and in winter, but never in direct sunlight. The plant also suffers from smoke and stale air so it is good that its environment should always be aired. In summer this plant can also be outdoors but in a shaded area.
Spathiphyllum should be grown in a mixture of soil with peat, bark and coarse sand in containers that are sufficiently capacious to accommodate the root system. The repotting technique can be done every year or at least every two years. The container must always be slightly larger than the previous one and given that the plant does not tolerate water stagnations, it is advisable to place coarse material (perlite or coarse gravel) on the bottom of the pot, to facilitate drainage.
The multiplication of Spatafillo occurs by division of rhizomes; when the Spathiphyllum is repotted in spring, the rhizome is delicately divided with a clean and sharpened tool to obtain more parts with roots and leaves. Then each portion is planted in a pot with soil and placed in the shade in an environment with a temperature above 20 ° C until the buds appear, which indicates that even the roots have developed and then it is now a well plant formed. We remember immediately after cutting the portions to treat the cuts with fungicides based on sulfur.
Spathiphyllum requires a constantly humid (but always well drained) substratum so it is frequently watered especially during the summer; in winter it should be watered less frequently taking care not to completely dry the substrate.
As for many houseplants of tropical or subtropical origin, the use of nebulisations with non-calcareous and non-cold water is recommended.
As for fertilization this should be done from the beginning of spring until the middle of autumn every two weeks, and then suspend it until the new season. The recommended fertilizers are those for flowering houseplants, with good content in potassium and microelements that are necessary for optimal development.
Spathiphyllum is a plant that should not be subjected to pruning but to clean dry or brown leaves, cutting them at the base, even for an aesthetic point of view.
Unlike other plants Spatafillo should not be subjected to polishes for the leaves. it is better to use a damp cloth that will also serve to eliminate dust.
As for adversity: check that the leaves do not appear to be appasite, which can mean lack of water or, if we are in the presence of spots on the leaves, these may be caused by scale bugs that are gradually eliminated by spraying, with small sprayers based on Marseille soap. Other parasites that can occur are also the red spider mite or aphids.