2 March 2011

Chlorophytum comosum 'vittatum'

We have the variegated and the non-variegated varieties of Chlorophytum comosum 'vittatum' growing in our garden here in Tunis.  It is interesting to note that these plants can also be grown indoors.

Chlorophytum comosum 'Vittatum', or Spider Plant, is one of the standards among houseplants sold today. They have low, clustering rosettes, with channeled, narrow-linear, recurving leaves. Leaves are dark green with a white stripe in the center, which reach 10 inches (25 cm) in length by ¾ inch (2 cm) wide. They are easy to culture and make good plants for beginners.

Blooming Time: In the spring and summer, small white flowers form on racemes. Successive plantlets develop from the flowering racemes, which become pendent if grown in hanging baskets.

Culture: Chlorophytum comosum 'Vittatum' need medium to high interior lighting, or partial shade if grown out doors. In the greenhouse, we grow them under 50% shade all year. We use a soil mix consisting of 1 part peat moss to 1 part loam to 1 part sand or perlite. The plants are kept moist, but not overly wet. They are fertilized monthly with a balanced fertilizer. If grown in the home environment, they may need to have some additional humidity to keep the leaf tips from browning. Misting once or twice a day usually takes care of this. During the winter months, water should be somewhat restricted, but plants should never be allowed to completely dry out.

Propagation: Chlorophytum comosum 'Vittatum' are propagated by division of large clumps or by removal and culturing of plantlets.  
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