Zebra Plant


2 entries found.
Picture of Zebra Plant Zebra Plant
Common Name: Zebra Plant
Botanical Name: Aphelandra squarrosa (af-el-AN-dra skwah-RO-sa)
Decorative Life: Many weeks in flower, longer as a foliage plant.
Post Harvest Care:
  • May have or develop a disorder of unknown origin called leaf crinkle or leaf stunt. Under these circumstances leaves tend to bend downward and twist (similar to epinasty) and/or the leaf blades actually develop a crinkled appearance.
  • Leaf drop can be a major problem and is caused by water stress. Therefore, never let the growing media (soil) in which this species is planted get too dry although some experts say that it is okay to let them dry somewhat before irrigation.
Harvest Instructions: With 'Dania', any form and combination of nitrogen fertilizers seems to work equally well in producing high quality and long lasting plants as long as the plants were irrigated frequently and the growing media salts were kept below 1000 ppm using a 1:2 (media:water) by volume salts extraction procedure. However, if allowed to dry too much between irrigations, then lower fertilization regimes produced plants that did better under postharvest interior environments. This species loses about 1.5-2.0 times more water per leaf area compared to many other common foliage plants. This may partially explain why they are often prone to wilt.
Family Roots:
  • Member of the Acanthaceae (acanthus family).
  • Native to the Tropical Americas.
  • Some common relatives include Crossandra, black-eyed-Susan (Thunbergia alata) and shrimp-plant.
Personality:
  • Leaves are glossy green, veins white.
  • Classed as a dicotyledon, leaves not parallel veined.
  • Flowers enclosed in showy bracts, forming dense two-ranked spike at stem end.
  • Flowers are not fragrant.
Availability: Year-round.
Flower Color: Yellow.
Storage Specifics: Chill sensitive, store above 55F. Plants can be stored at 77F in the dark for 9 days with no loss in quality under subsequent interior conditions.
Tidbits:
  • Plants are easy to grow. Plants should be rested after flowering. Propagated mostly by cuttings and sometimes seeds when available.
  • The specific epithet name squarrosa means spreading or recurved at ends, possibly referring to the often curved leaf margins.
  • Aphelandra: Greek for simple anther, the pollen bearing part of the stamen.
  • Will generally grow well in light levels bright enough to read a newspaper in comfort but higher levels can improve flowering.
Picture of Zebra Plant Zebra Plant
Common Name: Zebra Plant
Botanical Name: Calathea zebrina (kal-a-THE-a ze-BRI-na)
Decorative Life: Many months to years as a foliage plant.
Post Harvest Care:
  • Leaves tend to fold up in the dark. Prefer medium light levels (75-150 ft-c.) under interior conditions.
  • Red spider can be a problem. Fluoride in water can cause leaf tip/margin burn.
Family Roots:
  • Member of the Marantaceae (arrowroot) family.
  • Native to Southeastern Brazil.
  • Related species include rattlesnake plant and prayer plant.
Personality:
  • Under natural environments can grow to about 3 feet. Leaves are from 8-24 inches long and about 3-11 inches wide, green with yellow-green veins above and red-purple below.
Availability: Year-round as a foliage plant.
Flower Color: Bracts are tinted violet with white to violet petals.
Tidbits:
  • From the Greek "kalathos" for a basket, in reference to the leaves forming a basket around the flowers.
  • The specific epithet name "zebrina" actually is the old genus name for Wandering Jew. In reality, it means zebra-striped in reference to the leaf color pattern.
  • The small tubers produced by some members of this genus (i.e., C. allouia) are used for food. In fact, in some parts of the world it is second only to maize as a field crop.