The Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’ is an absolute show-stopper. Brilliant, large, rose-colored leaves feature a full flood of deep pink. The leaves are lovely and pull you in. Calatheas are easy to grow but demanding, so they’re not necessarily the best choice for new houseplant owners. If you are thinking about adding a Rosy to your collection or trying to help your plant thrive, here is what you need to know about Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’ care.
The Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’ hails from South America, where it naturally grows as an understory plant in tropical rainforests. The foliage is the standout feature of the Rosy. Oval leaves feature bold, dark pink centers edged by a dark green border. New leaves are silvery-light green before gradually fading into the super-saturated fuschia hue that is the hallmark of this plant.
The undersides of the leaves are a deep, velvety-looking purple. Thin stems grow in a rosette formation, and the plant gradually spreads with time. Mature plants can stand two feet tall and wide. The foliage moves throughout the day and night in a process known as nyctinasty.
A member of the Marantaceae family, the Rosy is commonly known as a Calathea or Prayer Plant. However, this beauty is formally known as Goeppertia roseopicta. Genetic testing has made it possible to reclassify plants to represent their lineage more accurately. Calatheas are now considered part of the Goeppertia genus, so this plant is technically a Goeppertia roseopicta. This name change has yet to be widely accepted, so most plant hobbyists continue to call this beauty a Calathea roseopicta or, more fittingly, Calathea Rosy. FYI, even though Goeppertia roseopicta is the proper name, I use the term Calathea roseopicta because that is the name most people use.
Calathea Rosy Light Needs
Give the Calathea Rosy bright, indirect light. This plant naturally grows under the dense rainforest canopy, so direct light is damaging, but increased sunlight is needed to maintain the vibrant pink hue. A north- or east-facing window is often a good spot, or several feet away from a south-facing window.
How Often to Water Calathea Roseopicta
Water the Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’ when the top inch of the potting mix is dry. Calathea plants have high water needs, and they like consistently moist but never soggy conditions. Thoroughly drench the soil when it’s time to water and remove standing water from the cover pot or tray.
Overwatered plants have yellow and brown discoloration along the edges of the leaves. Fungus gnats and root rot occur when the conditions are too wet. The leaves will droop and stay that way when the plant is underwatered. The foliage naturally folds down and bends upright during the day, but if you notice the leaves haven’t moved in several days, you may have a dehydrated plant on your hands.
Tap water with high mineral content or hard water may be trouble for the Calathea Rosy. Some plant owners fill a watering can and let it sit out overnight or for 24 hours before watering their Calatheas, and they swear this does the trick. Other plant owners use filtered or bottled water for Calatheas.
Prayer Plants having a hard time with hard water will develop dry patches along the edges of the leaves. This damage looks the same as plants suffering from low humidity. Be open to different issues and prepared with several possible solutions if you notice leaf damage.
Moist, well-drained soil is vital for proper Calathea roseopicta care. Root rot is a very real problem, so only use a potting mix that allows excess water to drain. The plant appreciates rich soil with high organic content or fertilizer mixed in to support growth. Most ready-made potting mixes work well, but amend the mix with perlite to improve the drainage.
Temperature for Calathea Roseopicta
Temperatures between 65° to 75° F are best for Calathea roseopicta care. This tropical beauty can handle warmer temperatures, but anything below 60° F can be trouble. Relocating the plant to a screen porch or patio space in the summer can be a great way to help it grow and thrive, but pay attention to the temperature and move the plant inside before the weather turns chilly.
Calathea Roseopicta Humidity Needs
Humidity is essential for Calathea roseopicta care. These leafy plants require increased humidity of 60% or more. The more humidity, the better when caring for Prayer Plants.
Plants in average or low humidity will turn brown along the edges of the leaves, and the foliage may curl or droop unnaturally. Increase humidity by grouping tropical plants or introducing a pebble tray with water or a humidifier. Keep in mind that humidity changes throughout the year, so the plant may need a humidity boost in the winter when the air is naturally drier.
Calathea Roseopicta Fertilizer
Rich soil is often enough to keep new leaves coming in, but fertilizing the Calathea Rosy takes things a step further in supporting new growth. Fed the Calathea roseopicta every two to four weeks using a balanced fertilizer. Only fertilize plants when actively growing and hold off on feeding when the plant is dormant.
Water-soluble fertilizers are a good choice and can be combined with a regular watering session. Always water the plant before applying fertilizer to protect the roots.
Does Calathea Roseopicta Bloom?
The Calathea Rosy blooms and features tiny, pinkish-purple or white flowers that grow on top of short stalks. Houseplants do not typically bloom, but no worries because the foliage is much more showy than the flowers.
Calathea Pruning Tips
Prune dead or damaged growth so the plant can redirect energy into new foliage. Despite your best efforts, the plant will likely have dry vegetation at some point. Trim the stem back as far as possible without interfering with other leaves if more than half of the leaf is damaged or the plant is large and full. Just trim the damaged section if the plant is small and has fewer leaves or if less than half of the leaf is damaged.
When to Repot Calathea Rosy
A tricky thing about Calathea care is knowing when to repot the plant. Calatheas don’t like to be rootbound, but they also don’t enjoy being repotted. Plan to repot roughly every two years or longer if it isn’t urgent. Let the plant become rootbound before repotting.
Calathea Roseopicta Propagation
Division is the only method to propagate calatheas. These plants have thick roots known as rhizomes, which naturally spread and produce new plants when they receive proper care. Divide a calathea plant by removing the entire root ball from the container, gently remove the potting mix, and untangle the roots. Use sharp, clean pruning shears or a knife to separate the roots. Handling the roots is necessary to divide the plant, but be extra careful because touching the roots can be stressful for the plant. Repot each new plant in a container with fresh potting mix.
Is Calathea Roseopicta Pet Safe?
Rest easy because Calathea roseopicta is safe to have around pets. It’s disappointing if your cat or dog damages the plant, but your furry companion will be safe. Eating or chewing on a Calathea, Goeppertia, or whatever you call it will not harm your pet.
Calathea Roseopicta Styling Tips
The Calathea roseopicta has abundant style, so give this beauty a sunny spot and a subdued pot that will not distract from the foliage. Small plants dazzle on a desktop or end table. Mature plants are better suited to a plant stand.
Pair the Calathea roseopicta ‘Rosy’ with the Calathea roseopicta ‘Dottie’ to create a stunning and complementary grouping. The Dottie features the same shape of leaves but is dark green with the same pink hue along the midrib and outlining the border. The coordinating colors play off each other nicely while allowing each plant to stand out.
Calathea Roseopicta Care Tips
The Calathea Rosy is somewhat adaptable, but this beauty knows what it likes and does best when it receives proper Calathea roseopicta care. Warm, sunny conditions and plenty of humidity are necessary for this stunner to grow and look its absolute best. Getting the hang of Calathea care can be tricky, but learning how to read what the plant is telling you and understanding what it needs will become easy with time.