Syngonium is an easy-care houseplant that puts on an impressive foliage display. This leafy plant has some of the most colorful leaves out there that add a burst of unexpected color. Syngonium is versatile because you can let the vines trail and create a wall of greenery or break out your pruning shears to maintain a more compact look. However you style your syngonium, this plant will shine.
Syngonium is a tropical plant from Mexico and Central and South American rainforests. Formally known as Syngonium podophyllum, this plant also goes by arrowhead vine, butterfly plant, or goosefoot. Find out proper syngonium care to help your plants thrive.
Types of Syngonium
The leaves are shaped somewhat like an arrowhead or a butterfly, inspiring the common name. The stems create long, impressive vines, but the colors of the foliage make this plant stand out. The leaves can be green or have a mottled appearance. Some cultivars have subtle white, yellow, or pink highlights along the veining, while others have full-blown pink foliage. Syngonium has a mesmerizing look and will easily add color to your space. Some of the more common types of syngonium include:
- Batik Syngonium
- Berry Syngonium
- Glo Go Syngonium
- Gold Allusion Syngonium
- Moonlight Syngonium
- Pink Syngonium
- White Butterfly Syngonium
Syngonium Light Needs
Syngonium care is easy in most aspects, especially regarding sunlight. This plant will live in just about any amount of light. Feature a syngonium plant in a hallway or corner that receives low light to add vibrant greenery. With that said, syngonium grows best in medium to bright indirect light. Increased light levels help the plant push out new growth and maintain its lovely colors and variegation. Cultivars like pink syngonium or gold allusion syngonium may revert to predominately green when grown in low light.
Rotate your houseplants each time you water to ensure all sides receive consistent sunlight and grow evenly. Consider moving plants in low light to a brighter location during the winter to keep them happy and healthy.
How Often to Water Syngonium
Syngonium has medium water needs, so plan to water your plant when the top couple of inches of soil are dry. The leaves will turn yellow when the plant is overwatered, and overwatering increases the risk of root rot and pests. Underwatering is equally problematic, and the leaves will die starting at the bottom and working up when the plant is allowed to dry out too much.
Feeling the soil is the most dependable way to determine when syngoniums need a drink. Saturate the soil until excess water drains through the pot, and wait until the soil dries before providing more water.
Best Soil for Syngonium
Well-drained soil is ideal for syngonium. This leafy plant does not like soggy conditions, so soil that sheds extra water helps the plant thrive. Most potting soil mixes for houseplants fit the bill but avoid soils that retain moisture. Soil with organic content or a slow-release fertilizer mixed in will support growth.
Temperature for Syngonium
Comfortable household temperatures between 60° and 80° F are good for syngonium care. These are tropical plants, but as long as you are comfortable with the temperature, the plant will be, too. Avoid locations near exterior doors, especially during the colder months, and keep away from drafts. If you move your syngonium outside during the warm months, wait until the temperature is consistently above 50° F.
Syngonium plants are not fussy about humidity. Increased humidity will keep the leaves lush, but average humidity of around 50% is completely fine. Low humidity may cause the leaves to dry out, so be ready to increase the moisture in the air if you notice the foliage turning brown along the edges.
Remember that the humidity will impact how quickly the soil dries out, so adjust your watering schedule accordingly.
Plants in nature receive a constant supply of nutrients as nearby plant matter breaks down and rejuvenates the soil. Houseplants need help to receive a balanced diet that supports new growth. Fertilizing is particularly important for syngoniums because these are fast-growing plants. Feed your syngonium using a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every two weeks during the growing season. If you prefer to be more hands-off, apply a slow-release fertilizer during the spring.
Pruning is not a big part of syngonium care. The occasional leaf will yellow and die; this is normal and dead leaves can be removed as needed. You can let your plant have a natural look that requires very little pruning. Create a more maintained and bushy look by trimming the stems to keep the foliage compact.
When to Repot Syngonium
Some plants like being rootbound, but syngonium is not one of those plants. Plan to repot syngonium plants annually. Select a pot that is an inch or two larger in diameter, so the plant has room to grow. Spring is an excellent time to repot syngonium because you can set the plant up with fresh soil at the start of the growing season.
Expand your syngonium collection or share the lovely foliage by propagating your plant. Syngonium plants can be propagated through cuttings. Trim a stem section using clean, sharp shears and place the cut end in water or soil. Cuttings propagated in water can be moved to soil when the roots are at least a few inches long. Soil-propagated cuttings need water when the top layer of the soil is dry for the first few weeks.
Is Syngonium Pet Friendly?
Syngonium plants are not pet safe. Chewing or eating any part of syngonium plants can cause irritation, swelling, and vomiting. This is not a good plant to have around dogs or cats, so be aware when bringing the plant home to your pets or vice versa.
Syngonium Styling Tips
Syngoniums are easy to style because the foliage does all of the work. Feature pink or glo go syngonium in a neutral planter so the leaves stand out. Match the bold foliage with an equally statement-worthy container for a focal point. Vining syngonium is at home in a hanging basket, or place them up high so the leaves can trail. Compact plants are better suited to a tabletop or desk so that the leaves can be admired up close.
Syngonium Care Tips
Growing syngonium is easy since these plants require little care or attention. Once you get a handle on the water needs, syngonium care is effortless, and you can sit back and enjoy the lovely colorful, butterfly-shaped foliage.