Common Names Polka dot plant, flamingo plant, freckle face, measles plant, pink dot Botanical Name Hypoestes phyllostachya Family Acanthaceae Plant Type Herbaceous, perennial Mature Size 1-2 ft. tall, 1-2 ft.
wide Sun Exposure Partial Soil Type Moist, well-drained Soil pH Slightly Acidic to Neutral (6.1 to 7.3) Bloom Time Summer or early fall Flower Color Lilac or pink Hardiness Zones 10 to 11, USDA Native Area Madagascar Toxicity Nontoxic.Polka dot plants bloom sporadically, typically during the summer, with small lilac or pink-colored flowers on spikes.Pinch off these flower spikes to keep the plant’s energy focused on growing its vibrant foliage.Warning Polka dot plants have become a problematic, aggressive grower in Queensland and New South Wales, Australia.Polka dot plants prefer organically rich soil with good drainage.Avoid letting the soil completely dry out, which can cause the foliage to wilt and make the plant struggle to survive.Feed container plants with an organic fertilizer designed for houseplants once a month during the warm growing season.Pink Splash polka dot plant David Q. Cavagnaro / Getty Images.You’ll need a pair of clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears to keep the plant from developing long, lanky branches.To promote a bushier growth habit, cut or pinch back the top two leaves on each stem weekly.Although flowers sound nice, it's best to clip them when they start appearing to extend the growing season of your polka dot plant.You can propagate from cuttings anytime; however, your success rate of growing a healthy plant will be best in the spring or summer.Let's examine how to propagate your polka dot plant from a stem cutting rooted in water or moist soil.To propagate the polka dot plant using stem cuttings, you will need a sterilized pair of scissors or shears.Every other week, change the water entirely to inhibit bacterial or algae growth until the root grows up to 2 inches long.If rooting in the soil, place the fresh-cut end of your cutting into potting mix or peat moss and keep it evenly moist.Cover the cutting with clear plastic wrap until the stem develops leaves or other obvious growth.Once the seedling has grown several inches—usually in a couple of weeks—it is ready to transplant into a larger container or plant outdoors.A sure sign your plant has outgrown its pot is when the roots start growing out of the drainage holes.Too large a pot encourages the roots to focus on growing below the soil line, which is not good for the plant's upward growth.Before the first frost, you can cut stems from the plant, root them indoors in a small potting container or jar of water.Common pests that enjoy polka dot plants are mealybugs, aphids, and whiteflies.The shortening of daylight hours tells the plant that the growing season is coming to a close, encouraging its flower growth.Insufficient water and humidity can cause the polka dot plant's leaves to turn brown or start drooping.Hard water and overfertilization are other reasons for a polka dot plant's leaves turning brown.If you notice leaves yellowing, reduce the amount of water you give the plant and make sure you're using potting soil with good drainage.
How to Grow Polka Dot Plants Indoors or Outdoors
Polka dot plant (Hypoestes phyllostachya) is an evergreen shrub that is native to Madgascar.In colder regions, it is grown outdoors as a bedding annual or indoors as a houseplant.Polka dot plant grows 1 – 2 feet tall and 1 foot wide.Newer cultivars have leaves with white, red, rose or burgundy spots.Plant them in the spring after your last frost when temperatures have reached 70⁰F and the soil has warmed.Mix in a thick layer of compost when you install your plants in the spring.Water regularly, about 1 inch per week, so that the soil stays moist but not soggy.A thick layer of mulch will help the soil to retain water and prevent weeds from taking hold.The plants will get leggy so it’s a good idea to pinch on a weekly basis.Pinching means removing the growing tip on the end of each stem.Because they like shade, polka dot plants make good houseplants.A good rule of thumb is to water your plant when the top inch of soil has become dry.A humidity tray is simply a shallow pan filled with ornamental gravel.Fill the pan with water and place your plant on top of the gravel.Indoors, they can be grown in a sunny room with either an east or south facing window.The best time to take cuttings is in the spring or summer when the plants are actively growing.Make a 4 – 5 inch cutting from a stem and remove the leaves from the bottom half.A polka dot plant with red leaves, Wikimedia Commons.You can transplant your seedlings outdoors after your last frost when air temperatures have reached 70⁰F and the soil has warmed. .
Polka Dot Plant
This beauty shows off red, pink, or white leaves marked with splashes of dark green.This colorful houseplant will wilt if it dries out too much, but is quick to spring back to life when you water it again.Like many houseplants, polka dot plant also does well outdoors in shady spots in garden beds, borders, and containers. .
How to Grow and Care for Polka Dot Plants
The cheery plant is known for its brightly patterned leaves, which show off splashy red, pink, and white tones against a deep green background.The plant's small size means it won't make much of an impact in an outdoor garden but can add a pretty accent to a small-scale planter.Indoors, polka dot plants prefer rich, well-drained soil, frequent misting to recreate tropical humidity, monthly fertilizing, and filtered sun or part shade locations that keep its colors vibrant. .
Polka dot plant care & info
Polka dot plant care is a breeze and this species is available in a whole range of different tones of green, silver and pink.Polka dot plants are native to Madagascar, although other members of the family Acanthaceae originate from South Africa and Southeast Asia as well.In its natural habitat, the polka dot plant grows in humid tropical forest areas in a shrubby manner.Hypoestes phyllostachya is also a naturalized species in other areas in the world, like parts of India and Costa Rica.If you want to keep those beautiful variegated leaves, you’ll need to make sure that your polka dot plants get plenty of bright but indirect light.It might take a bit of tinkering but if you manage to get the light levels right, your polka dot plant will continue producing those beautiful mottled leaves.If the air in your home is on the dry side, there are various things you can do to create a more humid microclimate for your plants.For example, you can use general potting soil mixed with perlite for drainage and throw in a layer of compost for extra nutrients.Any planter will work as long as it has a drainage hole at the bottom, although if you’re prone to forgetting to water you might want to go for plastic rather than porous terracotta.A lot of gardeners plant this species in large pots, which gives it more room to get a bit out of control.Tip: Hypoestes phyllostachya is also on Houseplant Central’s list of easy terrarium plants.In winter it will be even less, as light is limited and your polka dot plant won’t be actively growing.If the soil feels dry and your polka dot plant is looking a bit droopy, that means you’ve waited too long.Luckily, you can just flush the soil with some distilled water, snip off the affected leaf and carry on from there.Using sharp, sterilized scissors or a knife, cut a section of plant, at least two inches long, just below a node where the roots will grow from.Tip: Because polka dot plants benefit from regular pruning, you’ll have stem cuttings aplenty.One thing you can do to achieve a fuller look on your plant is just to place these cuttings back into the original planter.Don’t forget to replant the cuttings as described in the section on polka dot plant propagation!A few popular Hypoestes phyllostachya cultivars include ‘Carmina’, ‘Pink Brocade’, and the ‘Splash’ Series.Tip: Love the amazing colors and papery leaves of the polka dot plant?Don’t forget to also check out Fittonia, a similarly spectacular indoor plant that also stays small.If you have any more questions about polka dot plant care or if you want to share your own experiences with this cheerful houseplant, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below! .
Polka Dot Plant (Hypoestes Phyllostachya): Splash Plant Care
Polka dot plants are delightful flowering houseplants that have splashes of pink, white, red, or light green leaves.The polka dot patterns on the small plants’ leaves add plenty of color to any room or backyard.Part of the Latin name means “with a leaf spike,” referring to the pointed end of the ovate-shaped leaves.Native to Madagascar, South Africa, and Southeast Asia, polka dot plants are small and shrub-like.You can quickly grow strikingly colorful polka dot plants to brighten up your garden if you live in warm climates.Read on to find out how to care for varieties of pink, red, white, or green polka dot plants.The vibrant spotted, freckled, marbled, and splash patterns on polka dot plant leaves are the main reason to grow this cute houseplant.With a little care, your plant will continue to grow spotted leaves with pink, white, or red colors.The freckle face plant doesn’t just give plenty of color with its spotted vibrant foliage, but indoor and outdoor varieties also produce flowers.Proper care for your splash plant also helps it retain its bushy shape and attractive features.Your polka dot plant needs bright sunlight to keep the vibrant pink, red, white, or green splash patterns on the leaves.The reason for a pink splash plant losing its color is generally due to lighting issues.If your splash plant is in a low-light or dark location, you will find that the colorful spots and marbling patters will start to fade.You can get healthy polka dot plants by using soil that has plenty of organic matter and has a porous mix.Watering issues are usually the reason why the speckled pink or white leaves start to droop or look unhealthy.One tip to know when to water your polka dot plant is to wait until the top part of the soil has dried out.Not letting the splash plant sit in water helps prevent root rot due to soggy soil.One sign that your polka dot plant requires watering is if the stems start to wilt.So, if you have a collection of polka dot plants in different shades, regularly monitor soil moisture levels.Because polka dot plants grow in tropical and subtropical climates, they are well-suited to the indoor environment.A warm room and humid conditions make for the perfect environment for polka dot plants to thrive.Remove the lower leaves and then place the cutting in a rooting mixture such as peat moss or a glass of water.When you have roots at least 1” (2.5 cm) in length, transfer to a small pot with soil that is rich in organic matter.Bright, vibrant specks, dots, splashes, blotches, or marbling effects create unique patterns on the green leaves.The darker types of polka plants have burgundy red-green, dark red-green, or varying shades of green on the leaves.Polka dot ‘Camina’ has carmine red splashes on dark green, ovate, pointed leaves.‘Confetti Blush’ freckle face plant has olive-green pointed leaves with white veins creating intricate patterns.Other types of ‘Confetti’ polka dot plants are in red, pink, and rose shades of mottled patterns.Other types of ‘Confetti’ polka dot plants are in red, pink, and rose shades of mottled patterns.Polka dot plants (Hypoestes phyllostachya) are not toxic and won’t harm pets in your home.With regular pruning, you can have a gorgeous bushy shrub with pink, white, red, or purple spotted leaves.If you have cold winters where the temperature drops below 60°F (16°C), then it’s best to grow polka dot plants in containers or pots and bring them indoors. .
How long do polka dot plants live?
In reality, most hypoestes will not live much beyond a year or two before they flower, and many people don't bother to keep the plants after they've bloomed and slipped into their dormant phase.But, if you grow it outdoors, Polka dot plant will complete its life cycle within a year.In its native habitat, the plant can get up to 3 feet in height, but pot grown specimens will usually be smaller. .