The Pellionia Pulchra (pel – ee- oh- ne-uh pul- kruh) belongs to the Urticaceae family of plants and is member to a unique genus among the house plants, the pelliona genus.
This plant is commonly found in the tropical and subtropical regions of Asia. Specifically in countries like Malaysia, Burma, and Vietnam, where it usually grows as an understory plant.
If you wish to cultivate this plant inside your home, you should know that the Pellionia Pulchra is not an easy plant to grow and maintain. Without the appropriate amount of supervision and care, this plant will quickly die away.
Don’t worry, though; we’ve got your back. Keep reading ahead, and we will teach you everything you need to know about the care and Propagation of this plant.
- Watering & Nutritional Requirements
- Light requirements
- Temperature & Humidity requirements
- Soil and Repotting
Pellionia Pulchra – Main Characteristics
The Pellionia Pulchra is a pretty-looking trailing plant with awe-striking variegation on its leaves, making it a wonderful decorative plant. Usually, these plants are grown in hung baskets indoors, where they cascade off the rims to become a beautiful spectacle.
The small leaves of this plant are variegated in silver and green that contrast beautifully with the dark stems of this plant which come in shades of black and purple.
Size and growth
The Polynesian Ivy generally does not take up a lot of space. This makes it easier for gardeners to make room inside their homes. When grown in pots, the Polynesian Ivy can grow to around 8 to 10 inches in length. The plant will grow even longer than this if you grow it inside hanging baskets.
Flowers & Fragrance
The pellionia pulchra is a flowering vine plant known for its beautiful foliage. The plant does bloom flowers, but its eye-catching leaves are greater contributors to its beauty and attraction.
Due to this as well as the fact that its flowers take up a lot of its energy, most home gardeners follow the practice of pinching out the plant’s flowers when they bloom during summertime.
The flowers of the pellionia pulchra do give off some fragrance, but it doesn’t really stand out as a distinguishable characteristic of the plant.
Pests and diseases
If you observe that the leaves of your pellionia pulchra have begun to wither, it might be time to pay your plant a bit more attention.
Withering leaves are common to the pellionia pulchra, and it will mostly happen when your plant either receives too much sunlight or when it is kept in cool environments for prolonged periods of time (usually when it drops below 55 degrees Fahrenheit).
If your plant’s leaves accumulate greyish brown dust, your plant is telling you that its environment is too cold or too damp for its survival. Relocate your plant to a warmer place for its recovery.
The pellionia pulchra plants are known to be prone to small, sap-sucking aphids as well. To ensure that your plant remains healthy, it might be a good idea to start spraying your plant with a good insecticide. Specifically, neem oil is recommended to rid the plant of such pests and diseases.
How to take care of your pellionia pulchra
Watering & Nutritional Requirements
Pellionia pulchra requires light soil that is always kept wet. However, it is important to avoid overwatering these plants to prevent rotting.
During the summer, these plants demand more regular watering, while during winters, it is best to reduce the frequency with which you water this plant.
Your Pellionia Pulchra will grow nicely in pots put over wet stones and upside-down pots positioned over a dish filled with water (for humidity).
During spring and summer (growth seasons), apply a balanced liquid houseplant fertilizer every other week to optimize growth and fulfill its nutritional requirements.
The Pellionia Pulchra thrives under bright light. So, a good option is to plant it inside a hanging basket in a window or in your garden. Be careful, though, these plants should never be exposed to direct sunlight, or their leaves will burn out.
If you don’t know how to expose your plant to bright indirect sunlight, a pro tip would be to keep your plant near a large window covered with a thin curtain that allows light in. This should meet your plant’s light requirements indoors.
Temperature & Humidity requirements
The Pellionias thrive at temperatures ranging from 72° to 78° Fahrenheit. Even in the dead of winter, though, these plants may thrive if kept at room temperature (above 55° Fahrenheit).
Being a tropical plant, your Pellionia Pulchra will require high levels of surrounding humidity in order to thrive. It is recommended that you ensure that the plant’s surrounding humidity levels are above 80%.
Of course, higher levels of humidity will only amply your plant’s growth further. If you live in a relatively dry region, you should invest in a humidifier to meet the gap.
While excessively long stems may be pruned at any time of year, it is typically best to prune these leggy plants in the spring. You can also stimulate plant growth by pinching. This will help in the sprouting of new leaves and the breaking of new stems.
Soil and Repotting
Ensure that your plant has adequate room to grow and thrive. When plants outgrow their container and become pot confined, it is best to report them. Spring is the optimum time of year to conduct this plant’s repotting since, during this time, your plant’s growth is boosted.
To meet your plant’s soil requirements, use a combination of rich peaty potting soil with a tiny quantity of perlite for repotting and cuttings.
Propagation guidelines for the pellionia pulchra
The Pellionia plant is mainly propagated through stem cuttings. Follow the steps we’ve outlined below to propagate this plant in your home garden successfully.
- Begin by removing the bottom-most leaves of your plant before chopping off at least 4 inches-long stem cuttings.
- Next, place these stem cuttings in damp soil and ensure that the soil drains quickly and has a high peat moss concentration.
- We recommend you put at least 3 – 4 cuttings per container to create large, bushy plants.
- During this time, the surrounding temperatures should be kept between the 70° to 75° Fahrenheit range for optimal growth.
- Although the cuttings like warm soil and light, they should not be placed in direct sunshine.
- During the summer, Pellionia flourishes. If the stems get too long, groom your plant by clipping them off to keep the plant’s form attractive.
- Continue taking care of your plant using the tips we’ve outlined above, and your plant will grow out and flourish in no time.
The Pellionia Pulchra is a beautiful vine that is most used indoors for decorative purposes. The plant requires a decent amount of care and supervision to grow out properly, but, for the most part, it will be quite manageable.
If you wish to propagate this plant, use the stem cutting method we’ve outlined above step-by-step to grow more of these plants inside your home.