Help Identify My beautiful Plant

Hi Judy! I was hoping you could help me identify what type of plant this is. I call it the surprise plant because I never know from morning to morning whether it is going to look dead or alive. After you identify it, please advise me on how to care for her. Thank you very much!

Hi Rachel,

Your plant is a type of Calathea. When it gets too dry, the leaves droop, sometimes quite a bit!  A Calathea plant likes bright indirect light; so placing it in front of an east, west, or north window is ideal. Too much direct sun burns the leaves and causes the beautiful leaf colors to fade. Calatheas are very sensitive to the water you use. Hard water, soft water, fluoridated water, or water of poor quality causes the leaves to turn brown from leaf burn. The best way to water is to use distilled water, rain water, or allow your tap water to sit out over night before using it. Keep the soil moist but never soggy. Allow the top 2-3” to dry out before watering. Never let a Calathea Plant sit in water. Feed monthly in the spring, summer, and fall with a basic houseplant food diluted to ½ the recommended strength. Don’t fertilize if the plant is not growing.

You can read all my care tips in the Popular Houseplant section of the website. The picture is of a different variety, but the care is the same.