Chlorophytum comosum (Spider Plant)

Common Name: “Spider Plant”; “Airplane Plant”; “St. Bernard’s Lily”; “Spider Ivy”; “Ribbon Plant”

Scientific Classification:
Order: Asparagales
Family: Asparagaceae (yep, same as Asparagus!)
Genus: Chlorophytum
Species: C. comosum

Native To: Tropical and southern Africa

Growing Specs:

  • Appearance: Exhibits graceful arching leaves and stems that jet from the plant and carry baby plantlets on them. Variegated leaves with green edges and white center stripes. Leaves are about an inch thick and can reach a length of 30″.
  • Flowering: Small, white flowers occasionally bloom on the ends of the long arching stems.
  • Hardiness: Hardy to about 35 degrees F.

Care Requirements: This plant is refreshingly easy to grow and will thrive in a variety of conditions. It favors bright indirect light, but it will also tolerate very low light. It loves weekly waterings, but it will also tolerate long dry spells. It’s great indoors, but it will also love being outside sheltered from full sun.

Propagation: Spider Plant propagation is easy and is done by planting the little spiderettes (spider plant babies) that form on the stolons. They can be placed directly in the soil, or they can also be placed in a little glass of water to develop the roots before planting, although unnecessary.

sto·lon
/ˈstōlən/
noun
BOTANY
1. a creeping horizontal plant stem or runner that takes root at points along its length to form new plants.

Toxicity: Chlorophytum comosum is non-toxic to dogs and cats. Check out my Pet Safety Guide for more information.

Xylem Rising’s Observations: Of course this plant is on my Top 7 Houseplants that are Completely Indestructible list. This is a famously foolproof houseplant, and for good reason. But what I’ve personally noticed, is that even though it is noted for thriving even in dark north-facing bathrooms, it is much happier outside in part shade! I had mine in my bathroom for quite some time, but once I moved it to outside, it breathed new life! The leaves got thicker, taller, fuller, and more vibrant in color. It is beyond thriving. It is in the shadiest portion of my deck, receiving about two hours of morning sun. I’ve never seen a happier Spider Plant!

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~CRK.

If what you read was helpful, and you never want to miss when I post more species plant care tips, securely sign-up for my e-mail list here.

All photo rights belong to Cristie R. Kiley. Please ask permission before taking.

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