Parse error: Unexpected token; token 3 expected in file '[inline]' on line 10 Marantha tricolor - Prayer plant, Arrowroot care

Prayer plant, Arrowroot

Latin name: Marantha tricolor
Common name: Prayer plant, Arrowroot
Plant group:
Green plants
Plant family:
Tropical rainforest climate
Minimal temperature: 16-18°C (60-64°F)
Optimal temperature: 26-28°C (78-82°F)
Recommended place:
bright, am or pm sunlight
Plant form:
upright, columnar
Height: 50 cm (19.5 in.)
Flower color:
Repotting: every 24 months (2 years)
Rarity: no
Pytium blight (Helminthosporium, Pythium, Fusarium)
Origin country:
Flowering period            
Availability on market            

Maranthas are spectacular and attractive foliage house plants. Each leaf looks as if it has been hand painted with markings that are distinctive to each variety. Maranthas and their close relatives calatheas are both members of the Marantaceae family but although there are botanical differences between them, there is much confusion between the two genera. Marantas are generally low and squat and calatheas are more upright.


The maranthas are named after Bartolomeo Maranti, a Venetian botanist who was famous in the mid-sixteenth century. There are some fourteen species, coming from tropical Central and South America.


The two best known maranthas are Maranta ‘Kerchoveana’ with green and black markings which give it the common name of rabbit’s tracks; and M. ‘Tricolor’ with two shades of green and red vein markings. This is commonly known as the red herring bone plant. Both of these varieties are also known as prayer plants because their leaves curl up at night and remind people of praying hands.


Maranthas will grow to about 18 inches (45 cm) across. In the home they will put on 5 or 6 new leaves a year. An insignificant single white flower is produced on a stem in the summer. This is best removed as these plants are grown mainly for their beautiful leaf markings. Besides these flowers have no scent.


Like most indoor plants they do not like too much light, and are good plants to have in a shady position. However, they like more light in the winter. This is necessary so that they will develop their leaf markings.


These are easy plants. They can stand much higher temperatures in summer but here one must increase the humidity. Spray the plant with warm water in summer. Spraying should keep the plants clean. If not, wipe leaves gently with a damp cloth. Never use leaf shine.


Water 2 to 3 times a week in summer and once a fortnight in winter or less. During the growing season, usually spring, add half the recommended dose of liquid food to the water every 14 days.


Repot once a year. Make sure the plant has good drainage. Cut out straggly shoots and dried up or damaged leaves.


Propagation is by gently dividing the roots and stems in the spring when repotting. Never by leaf cuttings.