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How to Care for an Anamu Plant

Anamu plants (Petiveria alliacea) are perennial shrubs native to the American and African tropics and grown outdoors only in United States Department of Agriculture zones 10 to 11. Anamus are also grown indoors or in greenhouses in cooler zones. Anamu plants reach about 3 feet high and are often grown for medicinal purposes. However, before ingesting this herb--also known as garlic weed and Guinea hen weed--consult with your doctor, especially if you are pregnant, have health concerns or are taking other medications or herbs.

Keep the soil moist. Anamu plants should not be allowed to dry out between waterings. When the soil is dry to the touch, it’s time to water it with just enough water so that it begins to seep out the drainage holes. Also, add about 1 to 2 inches of organic mulch such as bark or wood chips to help the plant maintain soil moisture.

Avoid dry air, which can especially be an issue indoors during the winter months. Mist your plants daily in the morning as well as keeping the air in your home moist. Using a humidifier, grouping plants together and setting plants near the bathroom or kitchen are good ways to increase humidity. You can also set the plant’s container on a bed of rocks and water.

Replace the soil if it is hard and easily dries out. Carefully turn the plant upside down to remove it from the container. Remove most of the soil, but keep the soil around the plant’s root ball. Use high quality potting soil for replacement.

Keep your anamu in an area with a lot of light. Outdoor plants should be in full sun. Indoor plants should be kept near a sunny south-facing window. If you lack a sunny area in your home, set your anamu near a fluorescent light.

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