Polka Dot Plant

Polka Dot Plant Care

Hypoestes phyllostachya

Basic Polka Dot Plant Care

Polka Dot plants are loved for their colourful speckled leaves and although they aren’t super difficult to care for, it’s important their environment is right! Here’s our complete Polka Dot Plant care guide with everything you need to know.

Bright Indirect Light

I love the sunshine but too much direct light will damage my leaves.

Water Moderately

I don't like my soil to be too dry or too soggy. Little and often is what I'm after.

High Humidity

I thrive in humid environments so please mist my leaves every so often.

Draining Soil

I like a mix that includes peat moss and perlite as these prevent my roots from becoming water-logged.

Detailed Polka Dot Plant Care Information

Whether you're looking to make sure your Polka Dot Plant is in it's perfect conditions, or looking to see if one could work for your space. We've got you covered.

Polka Dot Plant

Avoid direct sunlight

Polka Dot Plants thrive in bright indirect light and it’s important they aren’t exposed to any direct sunlight (especially in summer) as this will fade and scorch the leaves.

On the other hand, low light levels can cause quite leggy growth on your Polka Dot Plant so finding the right balance is key.

Don't let the soil get too soggy

Polka Dot Plants like their potting mix to dry out between waterings so it is important you check the moisture regularly. Too much water can very quickly lead to root rot. Reduce watering in the winter as the temperatures drop.

They love humid environments

Polka Dot Plants will struggle in homes with dry air. Particularly in the winter due to central heating and less ventilation. To increase the humidity for your Polka Dot Plant, we recommend misting several times a week.

Polka Dot Plants love warm temperatures

Cold drafts and air conditioning can be quite harmful to your Polka Dot Plant as they need warm environments to grow. Invest in a digital thermometer to make sure the temperature is above 70F/20C.

Fertilise regularly in the growth period

We recommend feeding your Polka Dot Plant once a month during spring and summer but not during the cooler winter months as growth will be slow or stagnant. Use a water soluble fertiliser at less than recommended strength.

Propagate through stem cuttings

It really couldn’t be easier to propagate your Polka Dot Plants. Simply take a few stem cuttings and leave them to grow roots in water for several weeks. Change out the water regularly and pot once the roots are longer than 5 cms.

Polka Dot Plants are relatively non-toxic

Whilst they are safe for pets and humans, if ingested in a very large quantity it will cause an upset stomach.

Polka Dot Plant FAQs

Quick and simple answers to the most common questions we see about the Polka Dot Plant .

It’s important that your Polka Dot Plant doesn’t receive any direct sunlight. This is because their leaves are so delicate that intense sun will quickly dry them out and scorch them. Instead, you want to find a spot that has plenty of indirect sunlight to keep your Polka Dot Plant thriving. 

If your Polka Dot Plant does receive too much sunlight, then it may lead to leggy growth.

Polka Dot Plants fit somewhere in between a beginner and fussy houseplant. They can be quite fussy about things like humidity and watering but once you’ve nailed down a good routine, they shouldn’t give you too much hassle and will reward you with plenty of new incredible foliage. 

The Polka Dot Plant is native to South East Asia, South Africa and Madagascar. 

The Polka Dot Plant is relatively non-toxic but can cause some stomach irritation is ingested in large quantities.

Polka Dot Plant Care Starter Kit

We've put together this great little starter kit that includes all of the equipment and information you'll need to take proper care of your Polka Dot Plant .

Polka Dot Plant

Common Problems with your Polka Dot Plant

Here are some common issues that you might run into. It's important to diagnose any issues early to give your plant the best chance of bouncing back.

Leggy growth can occur as your Polka Dot Plant ages. It can become more of a problem if your plant isn’t getting enough light which is why you’ll often see more leggy growth during autumn and winter. This isn’t due to anything you’ve done wrong but just due to lower light levels.

To avoid further leggy growth on your Polka Dot Plant, move your plant a little closer to the window to allow it to get more light. You may also choose to supplement light levels with an LED grow light. These can be great for getting your houseplants through the winter as well as for seedlings and propagation.

You may choose to trim away the leggy stems as this can encourage bushier growth and will look better aesthetically.

If your Polka Dot Plant’s leaves are fading or discolouring then it may be due to intense levels of direct sunlight or a pest infestation. Take a close look at the leaves to see if you can spot any pests or holes which could indicate bugs.

A consistent lack of water can cause your Polka Dot Plant to become dry and wilt. Check the moisture in the soil to confirm and adjust your watering schedule accordingly.

There are several factors which may be causing your Polka Dot Plant to die. First, check the soil to see if there is too much or too little moisture. Then monitor the amount of sunlight it is getting as well as if it needs misting or moving to a warmer room. A rarer cause of Polka Dot Plants dying is pests so check the leaves regularly to spot bugs such as mealybugs, scale insects and aphids.

Simple Polka Dot Plant Care Requirements

It sometimes helps to take caring for your plants back to the basics, here's the key considerations that you should take into account when caring for your Hypoestes phyllostachya.

These simple points should give you all you need to keep your plant happy and healthy for years to come.

Common NamePolka Dot Plant
Latin NameHypoestes phyllostachya
LightBright Indirect Light
WaterWater Moderately
HumidityHigh Humidity
Soil TypeDraining Soil

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