The White Bird of Paradise is sure to bring out your tropical nature. Here are some helpful hints to keep it growing:
With the high-light requirement, this plant is a moderately heavy drinker. Thoroughly wet the soil with each watering and let it dry down to moist before watering again. Sub-irrigation can be very helpful in reducing the frequency of watering. Please see our watering guide for more details.
This guy needs lots of light, so plan on positioning it near an east-, south, or west-facing window and get some sun on its leaves. You might be able to move it to low/medium light for special occasions, but if you want it to last you’ll need to park it a very bright spot.
Like other plants shipped fresh from Florida, you won’t need to feed this palm for at least 6 months after you get it. That’s because there is residual nutrients in the soil from when the palm was being propagated. After 6 months, it can be fed quarterly with a complete fertilizer formulated for interior plants.
With the White Bird, you get lots of plant with fewer leaves; so cleaning it is pretty easy. Just use a damp cloth soaked in water and a light soap solution and wipe down the tops and undersides of the leaves.
Older leaves can turn brown (especially if you let it dry out) and you can just prune them off at the base of the stem. Do the same if it’s actively growing and a few leaves decide to go where you don’t want them to.
This is another “mealy and mite” plant. Watch for the little white cottony mealybugs at the base of the leaves, on the stems, and the undersides of the leaves by the leaf margin; mites will hide on the bottom side of the leaves and produce webs. Be extra vigilant when scouting for mites, as they can do irreparable harm quickly often mistaken for dust on the underside of the leaves. If you see either of these, break out the spray bottle with a light soap solution, spray and wipe them daily ’til they’re gone.
Keep an eye out for the bugs mentioned above, and you’ll enjoy bringing this tropical gem inside.