Fertilizing Anthurium

Houseplants in containers benefit from occasional fertilizer application. Repeated watering leaches nutrients from the soil in containers and depletes the plant of nutrition. Out in the wild, decaying plant matter returns nutrients and organic material to the soil, providing plants with complete nutrition. Fertilizer is a way that we can mimic these natural cycles of the native habitat. 

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Why Fertilize Anthurium

Fertilizing your Anthurium plant can replenish the nutrients in potting soil that are lost through repeated watering. Fertilizing can help plants produce fuller and faster growth. Fertilizing can also improve the overall health of the plant and encourage flowering.

Anthurium will only want to be fertilized during the active growing seasons of spring, summer, and early fall. Do not fertilize during the winter months when Anthurium slows its growth. 

How Often To Fertilize Anthurium

Anthuriums are not considered heavy feeders. In fact, you may very well get away with not fertilizing your Anthurium at all! Since Anthurium has lighter nutrient needs, it is important not to fertilize too much or too frequently. A good starting point would be to fertilize once every six months. Fertilize at the beginning of the growing season and then again towards the later half of the growing season. If you want to promote a lot of growth and flowering, you can fertilize up to once a month. 

How To Tell If Anthurium Needs Fertilizer

Anthuriums have lower fertilizer needs so they will likely not show many signs of wanting fertilizer for a long time. If the plant has been potted in the same soil for a long time, it might show signs of undernourishment. Slower or stunted growth is a sign that your Anthurium is underfed. Another sign would be limp, yellowing leaves that appear faded and almost chlorotic. Signs that you have overfertilized your Anthurium include defoliation, stunted growth, and a mineral crust on the soil.

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Best Fertilizer For Anthurium

Anthurium will do fine with a balanced fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10:10:10 for overall plant health and growth. If you are looking to promote flowering and red spathes, choose a fertilizer with a higher phosphorus content, such as a 1:2:1. The best type of fertilizer is a liquid formula because you have greater control over the application amount as long as you properly dilute the fertilizer with water. The next best formula would be a slow-release granular fertilizer. A balanced Miracle Gro fertilizer would work well or the Miracle Gro Orchid formula would be appropriate for Anthurium. 

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Anthurium Fertilizing Tips

Anthurium plants have low fertilizer needs but can benefit from occasional fertilizing. Fertilizer can promote the overall health and longevity of the plant 

  • Choose a balanced fertilizer or a fertilizer with higher phosphorous to promote flowering and red spathe health
  • Do not over-fertilize; follow product directions and do not apply more than once a month
  • Liquid fertilizer is a good choice to control application rate 
  • Stunted growth and pale, yellowing leaves are signs that your plant needs fertilizer
  • Greatly reduce or stop fertilizing during dormancy in late fall and winter

Warnings

-Always wear protective gloves and a face mask when handling chemical fertilizers.

-Closely follow all directions and storage guidelines that are on the fertilizer label.

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Author Katie Endicott - Published 11-28-2023