The Q&A Archives: zebra looking plant

Question: I have a plant with colored looking zebra leaves. I have lost most the leaves. I bring it in off the patio when a freeze is to occur. Is this an annual plant or will it begin to grow again in the spring.

Answer: The problem with common names is that they can refer to many different plants depending upon your region. I'm only guessing about your plant but if it is a Zebra plant, here are some basic guidelines:

Zebra plant (Aphelandra squarrosa) is given a "care rating" of "demanding" in Houseplants for Dummies, by Larry Hodgson and NGA, so if you're keeping in from freezing weather, you're doing the right thing. It has a "flower" that is actually a dense spike of bright yellow bracts which form at the tip of the stem. It forms in summer or fall and can last for several months. The tubular yellow flowers, however, are short-lived. Zebra plant is hard to grow because it requires very high humidity. You might try setting it on a tray with pebbles and water to promote more humidity. Don't let the water soak up into the pot. It wants bright to medium light, to be kept moderately moist, normal indoor temps, all-purpose fertilizer and a soilless mix. It can be propagated from stem cuttings after it blooms. Good luck!

« Click to go to the homepage

» Ask a question of your own

Q&A Library Searching Tips

  • When singular and plural spellings differ, as in peony and peonies, try both.
  • Search terms are not case sensitive.

Today's site banner is by Char and is called "'Diamond Head' Sunrise"