Anthurium – Flamingo Flower – Tail Flower
There are around 700-900 species of evergreen perennials, many of which are epiphytic with erect or climbing stems, in this genus. They occur from wet mountains forest in tropical and subtropical North and South America. It’s a popular houseplant. They bear large unlobed, untoothed or palmately lobed glossy broad leathery leaves. They also bear white, pink, and orange colored flat or concave spathed (flower with one petal hood) and cylindrical spadices (finger like spike) to 18” long. The spadices usually taper evenly upward although may be pendent or contorted. It bears ovoid or spherical berries, which ripen to orange, red, or purple.
Where not hardy grow indoors in containers or in warm greenhouse. Plant in a mix of 1 part fibrous loam, 1 part coarse sand and 2-3 parts leaf mold with additional charcoal soil. Provide high humidity and constant temperature with filtered light and full light in winter. In the growing season water freely and apply a balanced liquid fertilizer every 2-3 weeks. Reduce humidity and water sparingly in winter. Anthurium scherzerianum are tolerate to drier conditions and are a popular choice for a houseplant.
Where able to grow outdoors be sure to plant in humid tropical areas as a border with crowns just above the soil surface and cover with a layer of sphagnum moss to protect the uppermost part from drying out. Insure soil is moist, fertile, humus rich, enriched with leaf mold in full or partial shade. Divide in rootstock in winter.
Most provide excellent long lasting cut flowers. If ingested all parts may cause mild stomach irritation and contact with sap may irritate skin.
Prone to mealy bugs, scale insects, fungal root rot, bacterial blight (xanthomonas) fungal leaf spots, and bacterial soft rot, and Dasheen mosaic virus.
Anthurium andraeanum – Flamingo Lily – This Colombian and Ecuadorian species grows 2’ feet tall and spreads to 8-12” wide. It’s an upright epiphytic perennial with ovate arched or bent sharply back dark green leaves, which are arrow shaped at the base. Both leaf blades and leaf stalks grow to 12” long. Throughout the year it bears ovate to heart shaped, brilliantly red colored spathe with raised veining 4-5” long with yellow spadices. Other colors have been bred including pink, green, and marble with red.