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How to Care for a Spathoglottis Plant

By Joyce Starr ; Updated September 21, 2017

Spathoglottis is a terrestrial orchid belonging in the family Orchidaceae. Found growing wild throughout regions of Asia and Australia, the spathoglottis is well adapted to living outside in the ground in the tropical regions of the U.S. It will also grow well inside containers or hanging baskets.

Treat spathoglottis as a tender perennial, as it will not survive freezing temperatures. The flowers come in colors of peach, purples, mauve or white and form in clusters on the crown.

Grow spathoglottis in an area of the landscape that receives either full sun to light shade conditions. In the warmest regions of the country, growing spathoglottis in partial shade is best. The plant is tolerant of a wide range of light conditions.

Plant spathoglottis grown in containers in a well-drained soil medium comprised of a mix of peat and perlite. Grow the plant in a deep container, as their root system is quite vigorous and will require room to develop appropriately.

Plant spathoglottis grown outdoors in a well draining soil that has peat incorporated into it. Amend sandy soils with peat or compost to make the planting site rich in organic material. Work the organic material approximately 1 foot deep into the existing soil.

Situate the plant in an area that is warm. Spathoglottis will flower best in areas where daytime temperatures are higher than 75 degrees and night temperatures are above 60 degrees.

Water the plant regularly to keep the soil evenly moist. Spathoglottis will tolerate drought conditions more that flooded, which can cause the plant to develop fungal problems.

Fertilize the plant once per month for both outdoor and container grown Spathoglottis. Use an orchid fertilizer and apply to the entire plant for best foliage and bloom growth. Due to their vigorous growth, they are heavy feeders.

Protect plants from frosts or freezes by bringing container grown plants indoors to a warm location. Protect outdoor grown plants by covering them with a blanket, until all signs of cold weather have left the region.

Use an insecticide specifically designed for use on orchids, if spider mites become a problem for plants grown indoors. Outdoor plants do not seem to be afflicted with them. Anthracnose and crown rot can pose a problem, if plants are over-watered. Use a fungicide on plants that develop brown spots.


Things You Will Need

  • Deep container
  • Peat
  • Compost
  • Water
  • Orchid fertilizer
  • Insecticide
  • Blanket


  • Flowers will develop in approximately 5-7 months after planting a young spathoglottis plant. Blooms can last for several months.

About the Author


For over 25 years, Joyce Starr has owned businesses dealing with landscape & design, lawn maintenance, specialty herbs and a garden center. She holds certificates in landscape design and xeriscaping. Starr shares her passion for nature in her writing, publishing articles on horticulture, outdoor recreation, travel as well as business.