Calathea Beauty Star
The Beauty Star doesn’t even look like a real plant with its white and salmon brush-stroked leaves. Olive green highlights contrast beautifully with the deep sage margins and along the center vein. The Calathea Beauty Star truly shines among any indoor plant collection.
What’s even more amazing about the Calathea is the way it moves throughout the day, folding open to the light in the morning to catch as energy as it can until it closes again in the evening to display its aubergine undersides. This is why Calatheas and Marantas are nicknamed prayer plants. Their leaves look like they are folded in prayer in the evening. Check out this short Instagram video from mostlyplants_ .
And that dance and it’s color is deserving of every plant owners attention. Calatheas want as much of their owner’s love and care as they can get. Prayer plants, like ferns, love a consistently damp soil, preferring regular tiny sips of water rather than a big drenching every now and again. Keep your eye on it by regularly tapping the soil with your fingers. It should feel cool to the touch and some soil should stick to your hands, but there should not be any actual water coming away onto your hands.
A soggy soil is a no-go with the Calathea Beauty Star. Let your water sit out overnight beforehand as well as city tap water, hard water or water high in flouride and salts is not going to get you anywhere with this baby.
As a native to South America, the Calathea Beauty Star wants high humidity and warmth. It does not like drafts so keep it away from the heater or furnace. Set it instead next to other plants to help create a greenhouse effect through plant grouping. Pebble trays filled with water for it to sit on and humidifiers are also a great idea. Temperatures should be consistent and warm for them. If you can trick them into thinking they’re back home in South America, you’re on the right track.
That beautiful aubergine color on the underside of a prayer plant is not just for show. This is a wonderful adaptation that allows the plant to maximize the amount of energy it captures by reflecting light back up into the leaf. What does that mean for us as plant parents? It means the Calathea grows in a lower light environment. Keep this houseplant away from direct sun and offer instead an environment with gentle light.
The Calathea genus and prayer plant family holds so many meanings to plant parents. But with a bit of attention, the Beauty Star will gift you with beautiful foliage over and over. Each new leaf is truly amazing the way it shoots out, completely rolled up out of the dirt and then slowly unfolds over a few days, it’s coloring developing more and more every day. It even makes us smile as we write this, imagining the next leaf on our own Beauty Star coming. Yes we are cheesy. We know.
Size: Approximately 30-35cm long in a 10cm nursery pot
Care tips: bright indirect light, high humidity, minimum of 18 C, maintaining a damp soil