Growing the Bird of Paradise as a houseplant is so easy. It turns your home into an instant jungle and doesn’t ask for much in return . While many of our tropical gardening friends can keep these gorgeous plants outside, the rest of us keep these babies indoors. Let me help you keep yours alive and grow it into a monster of a plant.
- Assess your space
You may not know this but the Bird of Paradise plant can get big! When I say big I mean bigger than your house BIG! If you have the space and want to commit to a big plant this is the one. But just know that It will likely outgrow your space at some point
- Start with a small plant
There is no good reason to buy a giant plant when this plant grows so fast. Unless you want big impact right away opt for the smaller plants. I have bought all of mine from Walmart. They sell them during the late spring and summer for less than $5!
- Bright light
The Bird of Paradise requires the brightest light you can provide. They thrive in direct sunlight so stick them directly in or next to a window where they can get at least 6 hours of direct light. It will survive in lower light but wont grow as fast, which might not be a bad thing if you have a smaller space.
- Water Regularly
This is a thirsty plant! During the growing season the Bird of Paradise needs to be watered pretty regularly. So as soon as the first two inches of soil dry out go ahead and give it a big drink. If you happen to forget to water this plant is also very forgiving. When the leaves start to curl in you know that you’ve waited too long to water.
- Fertilizer Schedule
The Bird of Paradise is a plant that loves to be fertilized regularly during it’s growing season of spring through fall. It enjoys any fertilizer you give it but be sure to follow the directions on the package to avoid leaf burn or any other issue that can occur from over fertilizing. You can still fertilize during the winter months just dilute your fertilizer with extra water.
A basic potting mix seems to work well for this plant. Be sure that your potting mix is light and fluffy. Water needs to easily flow through the soil and out the drainage hole. Here’s a link to my favorite potting mix
- Clean the leaves
Leaving dust and dirt on your plants leaves is a big no no. Too much dust can block your plants ability to photosynthesize plus it just looks gross.
- “Stuck” Leaves
Stuck leaves usually happen to me during the winter months when the plant slows down growth. I will have at least one leaf come out but not unfurl. The best thing to do is leave it alone but if you must do something its best to increase the humidity around the plant and or mist the “stuck” leaf daily.
- Leaf Splitting
Many people do not like the look of the Bird of Paradise when the leaves split. I happen to love it and you should too! The foliage is very thin so any brushing up against it can cause rips. It’s normal and is said that in nature the leaves rip to allow wind to blow through the plant easily. So don’t cry over split leaves.
Humidity doesn’t seem to be a big issue keeping this houseplant indoors. Our summers here tend to be the most humid time while the other months we are more on the normal range. Winters can be dry when we turn on the heat but keeping a humidifier around is helpful especially if you have a stuck leaf. Otherwise this plant is happy with your normal home humidity.
Growing the Bird of Paradise is a rewarding experience. If you have the space you should grow this gorgeous plant too!