How To Plant And Care For Calathea Orbifolia

The Calathea Orbifolia, a species within the Calathea family, stands out as a popular indoor plant cherished for its exquisite foliage.

Renowned for its large, round leaves marked with silver stripes, the Calathea Orbifolia adds a touch of elegance and tropical charm to indoor spaces.

In this detailed guide, we will delve into the unique attributes of the Calathea Orbifolia, optimal care requirements, and its role in enriching interior decor.

What You Will Learn?

Calathea Orbifolia Quick Guide

The Calathea Orbifolia (Calathea orbifolia) is a stunning, evergreen perennial appreciated for its striking, ornamental foliage, making it an ideal choice for indoor settings due to its care preferences and visually appealing characteristics.

This table outlines various aspects of the plant, including care requirements, appearance, and growth habits.

Calathea Orbifolia
Calathea Orbifolia
Common NameCalathea Orbifolia
Botanical NameCalathea orbifolia
Plant TypeEvergreen perennial
Soil NeedsWell-draining, high-quality potting mix
Sunlight NeedsBright, indirect light
Growing ZonesUSDA zones 10-12
FloweringProduces insignificant flowers
Leaf AppearanceLarge, round, paddle-shaped leaves with silver-green hues and distinctive silver stripes or markings
Flower SeasonN/A (not primarily grown for its flowers)
Height/SpreadTypically reaches 2-3 feet in height and spread
Pot Type NeedsSuitable for containers indoors
SpeciesC. orbifolia
Soil PH NeedsSlightly acidic to neutral (pH 6.0-7.0)
ColorsSilver-green leaves with silver stripes
Where to PlantIndoors, in areas with filtered light or partial shade
PestsSusceptible to spider mites and aphids
DiseasesProne to leaf spots, particularly in conditions of excess moisture
Watering NeedsKeep soil consistently moist, avoid waterlogging, and maintain adequate humidity
Feeding NeedsFertilize during the growing season with a balanced, diluted fertilizer
Growth HabitClumping, upright growth with leaves emerging from the soil
ToxicityNon-toxic to humans and animals
PropagationTypically propagated through division during repotting
MaintenanceRegular misting and wiping leaves to maintain humidity and cleanliness
Air PurificationContributes to improved indoor air quality by removing toxins
Drought TolerantModerate drought tolerance
LifespanPerennial, can thrive for many years with proper care
A comprehensive table with detailed information about the Calathea Orbifolia

what Is Calathea Orbifolia

Overview of Calathea Orbifolia:

The Calathea Orbifolia, a member of the Calathea genus, is prized for its distinctively patterned, large, round leaves with silver-gray stripes. It’s a highly sought-after houseplant for its unique foliage.

The calathea orbifolia, also known as the prayer plant, is a beautiful and unique houseplant that is known for its large, round leaves with striking patterns.

The leaves are typically a deep green color with silvery-green stripes, but there are also varieties with other colors, such as burgundy and pink.

Distinctive Characteristics:

Featuring broad, orb-shaped leaves adorned with intricate patterns, the Calathea Orbifolia lends an air of sophistication and style to indoor settings.

Calathea orbifolia plants are native to the rainforests of South America and prefer warm, humid conditions.

They can be grown indoors in most climates, but it is important to keep them away from direct sunlight, as this can scorch their leaves.

The Calathea Orbifolia is a stunning tropical plant known for its beautiful foliage and unique characteristics.

Here are some details about the Calathea Orbifolia:

  1. Appearance: Calathea Orbifolia features large, round leaves with silver-green stripes and patterns that create a visually appealing display. The leaves have a velvety texture, making them distinct from other Calathea varieties.
  2. Plant Type: It is an evergreen, perennial plant belonging to the Marantaceae family, known for its ornamental foliage.
  3. Growth Habit: It generally grows in a clumping form with wide leaves that unfurl from the center, creating a full, bushy appearance.
  4. Light Requirements: Calathea Orbifolia prefers bright, indirect light. Exposure to direct sunlight can cause the leaves to fade or burn.
  5. Watering Needs: It thrives in consistently moist but not waterlogged soil. It’s important to maintain adequate humidity levels, particularly in drier climates, to prevent the leaf edges from browning.
  6. Soil Type: Well-draining, high-quality potting mix is recommended to maintain proper soil moisture.
  7. Temperature and Environment: Calathea Orbifolia thrives in warm, humid conditions. It prefers temperatures between 65-75°F (18-24°C) and does well in indoor settings.
  8. Maintenance: Regularly misting the plant and wiping the leaves with a damp cloth helps maintain humidity and keeps the foliage clean, enhancing its overall appearance.
  9. Propagation: Propagation is typically done through division. The plant can be divided during repotting to create new plants.
  10. Toxicity: Calathea Orbifolia is non-toxic to humans and pets, making it a safe choice for households with animals or small children.
  11. Air Purification: Like many other houseplants, the Calathea Orbifolia helps improve indoor air quality by removing toxins and increasing oxygen levels.

Indoor Appeal:

This plant is renowned for its decorative qualities, making it a popular choice for enhancing indoor spaces with its stunning foliage.

Calathea Orbifolia in Interior Design

Creative Uses in Interior Decor:

The Calathea Orbifolia makes a stunning stand-alone piece or complements various decor styles, from modern to tropical, and works well as a focal point in an indoor space.

Companion Plants and Arrangements:

Pair it with other Calathea varieties or plants with contrasting foliage to create visually engaging indoor plant arrangements.

Suitable Container Options:

Select containers that complement the plant’s elegant appearance. Neutral-colored, decorative pots or baskets enhance its visual appeal.

Calathea Orbifolia Varieties

Propagate Calathea Orbifolia
Calathea Orbifolia Varieties

Calathea orbifolia (Calathea orbifolia) is a distinctive and popular variety within the Calathea genus, known for its beautiful, round leaves with silvery-green patterns.

While Calathea orbifolia itself is a distinct species, there aren’t multiple named varieties of this specific plant.

However, within the Calathea genus, there are numerous species and cultivars that offer variations in leaf patterns, color, and size.

Some Calathea species and cultivars that share similarities in appearance and care with the Calathea orbifolia include:

Calathea lancifolia (Rattlesnake Plant):

Recognized for its long, lance-shaped leaves with patterns resembling a rattlesnake’s skin, the Rattlesnake Plant has a similar growth habit and care requirements to the Calathea orbifolia.

Calathea makoyana (Peacock Plant):

This species exhibits distinctive foliage with feather-like patterns in shades of green and pink. Though not identical to the orbifolia, the Peacock Plant shares the same care preferences.

Calathea roseopicta (Rose-Painted Calathea):

Known for its stunning, glossy foliage with pinkish hues, this species offers a range of varieties with various leaf patterns and coloration.

How To Propagate Calathea Orbifolia

Propagate Calathea Orbifolia
Propagate Calathea Orbifolia

Calathea orbifolia (Calathea orbifolia) can be propagated through division.

Here are the steps to propagate Calathea orbifolia by division:

Materials Needed:

  1. Healthy, mature Calathea orbifolia plant
  2. Clean, sharp gardening shears or a knife
  3. Small pots or containers
  4. Well-draining potting mix

Calathea Orbifolia Propagation Steps:

Select a Healthy Plant:

Choose a healthy, mature Calathea orbifolia plant to propagate.

Prepare for Division:

Take the plant out of its pot gently, making sure not to hurt the roots. Remove excess soil from the roots to have a clear view of the rhizomes.

Separate the Plant:

  • Locate the sections of the plant where the roots divide, typically seen as separate “clumps” or individual stems emerging from the main root ball.
  • Using clean and sharp gardening shears or a knife, carefully divide the plant into sections.
  • Ensure that each division has both roots and shoots, and preferably a portion of the rhizome.
    Potting the Divisions:
  • Plant each division in its own pot or container filled with well-draining potting mix.
  • Create a hole in the soil for the division and place it gently, ensuring the roots are spread out in the soil.
  • Push the soil gently around the bottom of the plant to give it support.

Watering and Care:

  • Water the divisions thoroughly to help the soil settle around the roots. Keep the soil always a bit wet, but not too soggy.
  • Put the newly planted parts in a spot with lots of bright, but not direct, sunlight. Avoid direct sun exposure, which can stress the young plants.

Post-Propagation Care:

  • Keep the soil consistently moist and maintain a suitable level of humidity to support the new plants’ growth.
  • Monitor the divisions for signs of stress or issues, ensuring they’re acclimating well to their new containers.

How To Plant Calathea Orbifolia

Plant Calathea Orbifolia
Calathea Orbifolia Plants

Here is step by step guide to plant calathea orbifolia

Selecting the Ideal Indoor Environment:

Choose a spot with indirect light and consistent temperatures around 65-75°F (18-24°C) with moderate humidity for optimal growth.

Soil and Potting Guidelines:

Prepare the Soil

Use a well-draining, peat-based potting mix and plant in a container with adequate drainage holes.

Planting the calathea orbifolia

Plant the calathea orbifolia in a pot that is one size larger than the root ball.


Watering Practices

Water the plant thoroughly after planting.

How To Care Calathea Orbifolia

Care Calathea Orbifolia
Calathea Orbifolia Plant Care

Light and Temperature Requirements:

Provide bright, indirect light to maintain the plant’s vibrant foliage color.

Protect it from direct sunlight, as it can cause leaf burn. Keep the plant in a warm environment, avoiding sudden temperature fluctuations.

Calathea Orbifolia Watering Needs:

Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged, and ensure a moderate to high level of humidity by misting the plant or using a pebble tray.

Calathea orbifolia plants need regular watering, but be careful not to overwater, as this can lead to root rot. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.

Humidity Needs:

Calathea orbifolia plants prefer warm, humid conditions. If your home is dry, spray water on the plant often or put it on a tray with pebbles.

Fertilization and Feeding Schedule:

Feed the Calathea Orbifolia with a balanced liquid fertilizer during the growing season, typically every 4-6 weeks.

Repotting and Maintenance:

Repot the Calathea Orbifolia every couple of years, refreshing the soil mix. Groom the plant by removing dead or damaged leaves as needed.

Pruning and Grooming Tips:

Cut off any leaves that are dead or not looking good to keep the plant looking nice. Regular grooming ensures the plant stays healthy and visually appealing.

Winter Care:

If you live in a cold climate, you may need to bring your calathea orbifolia plant indoors for the winter.

To encourage new growth, deadhead spent flowers and remove any damaged or dying leaves.

Pest and Disease Management

Monitor for pests like spider mites and aphids. Treat with insecticidal soap if necessary. Keep an eye out for common leaf issues like brown tips or yellowing due to overwatering or low humidity.

Here are some common issues and how to manage them:

Calathea Orbifolia Pests:

  1. Spider Mites: These tiny pests can cause stippling on the leaves. Increase humidity, use insecticidal soap, or wipe the leaves with a damp cloth to control them.
  2. Mealybugs: Mealybugs appear as white, cottony masses on the plant. Remove them by using a cotton swab dipped in alcohol or use insecticidal soap to control the infestation.
  3. Scale Insects: These pests can attach themselves to the undersides of leaves. Use a cotton swab dipped in alcohol or insecticidal soap to remove or control the scale.

Calathea Orbifolia Diseases:

  1. Leaf Spot: Leaf spot can appear as dark or discolored spots on the leaves. Prune affected leaves, improve air circulation, and avoid overhead watering to prevent this issue.
  2. Root Rot: Don’t give too much water, and use soil that lets water flow through easily, or the roots might get sick. Use soil that lets water flow through easily and be careful not to water too much to avoid problems.

Calathea Orbifolia Common Problems:

  1. Brown leaf tips: Brown leaf tips can be caused by overwatering, underwatering, or low humidity.
  2. Yellowing leaves: If the leaves turn yellow, it might be because you gave too much water, too little water, or the plant needs more nutrients.
  3. Leaf drop: Leaf drop can be caused by overwatering, underwatering, or low humidity.

Management Tips:

  1. Check your plant often for bugs or sickness.
  2. Maintain proper watering practices to avoid overwatering and ensure the soil drains well.
  3. Provide adequate humidity, as Calatheas prefer a higher humidity environment.
  4. Wipe the leaves occasionally to remove dust and potential pests.
  5. Consider natural and organic pest control methods before resorting to chemical treatments to avoid harming beneficial insects and the environment.

Pros and Cons of Growing Calathea Orbifolia

Growing Calathea Orbifolia
Growing Calathea Orbifolia

Advantages of Calathea Orbifolia:

  • Exquisite, eye-catching foliage pattern.
  • Adds a touch of elegance and style to interiors.
  • Well-suited for indoor spaces with proper care.

Considerations and Potential Challenges:

  • Requires consistent care, including maintaining appropriate humidity levels.
  • Sensitive to overwatering and direct sunlight.


In conclusion, the Calathea Orbifolia is a visually captivating indoor plant, appreciated for its stunning foliage. Its distinctive characteristics make it a prized addition to interior decor.

Calathea orbifolia plants are a beautiful and unique addition to any home. With proper care, your calathea orbifolia plant will thrive for many years to come.

Growing Calathea Orbifolia
Calathea Orbifolia


How often should I water my Calathea Orbifolia?

Give the plant water when the upper part of the soil feels dry, usually every 1-2 weeks. Ensure consistent but not waterlogged moisture.

What causes brown tips on Calathea Orbifolia leaves?

Brown tips can result from dry air, fluoride in water, or overfertilization. Increase humidity and use distilled water to address this issue.

Can Calathea Orbifolia tolerate low light?

While it prefers bright, indirect light, it can survive in lower light conditions, but its growth and vibrancy might diminish.

Is Calathea orbifolia hard to care for?

Taking care of Calathea orbifolia plants isn’t super hard, but it’s not the easiest either.
These plants need indirect light, warm temperatures, and humidity. Also, make sure to use regular soil and water them as usual.

Does Calathea orbifolia need sunlight?

Calathea orbifolia is very adaptable when it comes to light. The orbifolia requires low, medium, or bright indirect light.
Giving this easy-to-care-for houseplant more light will make it grow faster, but it can still thrive in low light.

How do you care for Calathea orbifolia indoors?

Water the calathea orbifolia a little bit regularly. Check the soil frequently.
Finding the right balance might be a bit tricky because the plant doesn’t like its soil to get too dry or too soggy.
Every week, see if the top 2-3 inches of soil are dry before giving water.

Author Profile

Leafy Lines
Leafy Lines
Step into the world of plants and flowers brought to you by Leafy Lines, a devoted gardening lover and someone who enjoys playing with words about all things botanical.
With a love for nature and a talent for growing things, Leafy Lines is here to be your companion in the vibrant world of plants and gardening.
Leafy Lines started a gardening adventure driven by a passion to create, nurture, and feel connected to the earth. From the initial steps into potting soil to the thriving garden today, the path has been filled with trying new things, gaining knowledge, and a profound recognition of the therapeutic joys that come with gardening.

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