Mandarin Plant (Chlorophytum amaniense ‘Fire Flash’)
Mandarin Plant Plant FeaturesMost colorful houseplants give us their shot of color from their leaves. But mandarin plant (Chlorophytum amaniense ‘Fire Flash’) goes a different route. It shows off colorful orange leaf stems (called petioles). This gives the plant an interesting, and eye-cathing look. Plus, its strap-like leaves add a tropical touch to indoor spaces.
Mandarin plant is relatively new to the houseplant scene. It was brought to North America in the 1990s -- and has steadily been growing in popularity since thanks to its interesting color. You get two different effects from the plant, depending on how you grow it. Look at it from the side and it almost looks like the plant is glowing from the base. Look at it from the top and the effect is more subtle, but just as pleasing.
Because mandarin plant only grows about a foot tall and wide, it’s best displayed on tabletops or wide mantles or window sills. The orange petioles make the plant look superb in a traditional terra-cotta (clay) pot. Or you can have more fun with it by growing your mandarin plant in a contrasting blue or purple pot. Or, highlight the bright color of the stems by growing it in a dark-colored pot.
Mandarin Plant Questions?
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Mandarin Plant Growing InstructionsMandarin plant is a relative of good, old-fashioned spider plant (Chlorophytum comosum). Like its cousin, it's delightfully tolerant to a wide range of growing conditions. It tolerates low light, and grows well in medium or bright light. (Try to avoid a spot where it gets a lot of afternoon sun, however. Its lush green leaves are susceptible to sunburn.)
Water mandarin plant when the top inch or so of the potting mix dries to the touch. How much water that is and how often you’ll need to add it depends on growing conditions. The warmer brighter the spot, the faster your plant will use water. It grows best when watered regularly. But, mandarin plant also holds up well to missed waterings -- so don’t fret if you don’t get to it after a week or two.
Like spider plant, it can be sensitive to too much fluoride in the water. If you see the leaves develop yellow, brown, or black edges, try watering it with rainwater, bottled water, or tap water diluted with one of these sources to reduce the fluoride levels.
To keep your mandarin plant happiest, fertilize in spring and summer with a general-purpose fertilizer formulated for houseplants. Follow the instructions on the product packaging for application rates. Never use more fertilizer than the label suggests.
Mandarin plant typically doesn’t need pruning, except to remove old leaves as they age out.
Need more care tips? See our houseplant basics!
Medium water needs
Indoors: High light
Indoors: Low light
Indoors: Medium light
Purifies the air
Super-easy to grow
Complement your Mandarin PlantOrchid, Phalaenopsis
Accent mandarin plant’s colorful petioles by growing it with a peach- or coral-colored moth orchid. Happily, both plants like the same growing conditions, so they should be perfect partners next to one another.
Mandarin plant has similar leaves to several different types of dracaena. Create an interesting look by pairing with varieties such as ‘Lemon Lime’ or ‘Warneckii’.
Love orange? Put your mandarin plant next to a fun philodendron such as ‘Prince of Orange’! Both plants are easy to grow and look great together.