How to Care for the Anamu Plant

Overview

Called anamu in the Caribbean, Petiveria alliacea also goes by the names guinea henweed and garlic weed. It is an Amazon rainforest plant and an herbaceous perennial and as such, enjoys very warm, moist conditions. It grows best in subtropical or tropical climates or in a greenhouse. Anamu is typically sought for its healing properties. Growing anamu outdoors is only possible in zone 10 or warmer; otherwise, plant it in a container. Realize that the plant grows to be about 3 or 4 feet tall.

Step 1

Check its soil. Anamu prefers loose but moist soil. A soilless potting mix is good for containers. If growing outdoors, check that it is in loose, well-drained but moist soil

Step 2

Place it in a warm, lighted location. Outdoors, place the plant in full sun. Indoors, strong fluorescent or full-spectrum lighting would be best. Be sure the temperature does not dip too low. Anamu benefits from heat lamps or heating pads in colder seasons.

Step 3

Mist the anamu if growing indoors. A spray bottle of water turned to a mist setting is good for this purpose. Mist the leaves daily, and check the soil for moisture. It should be moist to the touch, but not wet.

Step 4

Check the air humidity level if growing anamu indoors. As a rainforest plant, it does best with high humidity, and you may need to install a humidifier in the greenhouse to keep it thriving. Optionally, place the anamu pot on a larger tray full of pebbles and cover the pebbles in water, so that it evaporates directly around the plant.

Tips and Warnings

  • Check with a doctor before using any part of the anamu plant medicinally. It has documented medicinal actions, but is not safe for all uses or for all people, particularly pregnant women.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Spray bottle
  • Soilless potting mix (optional)
  • Humidifier (optional)
  • Appropriate container (optional)
  • Tray of pebbles (optional)

References

  • Raintree Nutrition Inc.
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
Keywords: anamucare, grow anamu, rainforest plant care

About this Author

Kim Hoyum is a Michigan-based freelance writer. She has been a proofreader, writer, reporter and editor at monthly, weekly and daily publications for five years. She has a Bachelor of Science in writing and minor in journalism from Northern Michigan University.