Create Your Garden

Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’ (Spider Plant)

Variegated Spider Plant, Variegated Spider Ivy, Variegated Ribbon Plant

AGM Award
Variegated Spider Plant, Spider Plant Care, Spider Plants, Chlorophytum comosum Variegatum, Spider Ivy, Ribbon Plant, Evergreen Perennial
Variegated Spider Plant, Spider Plant Care, Spider Plants, Chlorophytum comosum Variegatum, Spider Ivy, Ribbon Plant, Evergreen Perennial

Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’, commonly known as the Variegated Spider Plant, is a popular houseplant cherished for its easy care and distinctive appearance.

Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’ – Variegated Spider Plant: An In-depth Look

The Variegated Spider Plant features long, arching leaves with a striking white center and green margins. They grow from a central rosette, giving them a grass-like appearance. The plant is well-known for producing baby plants or “pups” on long, trailing stems, which can easily be propagated.

Native: This plant is native to tropical and southern Africa, where it grows in a wide range of environments, from woodland to coastal areas. It belongs to the asparagus family (Asparagaceae), along with agaves and hostas.

Growth habit: It is a perennial, herbaceous plant with a tufted growth habit. Its long, arching foliage and cascading nature make it perfect for hanging baskets. The plant grows rapidly and produces offshoots called “spiderettes” or “pups” at the ends of long, slender stems called stolons. These spiderettes can be rooted easily to create new plants.

Size: Typically, the Variegated Spider Plant reaches 12-24 inches in height and spread (30-60 cm) with its stolons and baby plants.

Flowers: Spider plants produce small, star-shaped, white flowers on long, arching stems. The flowers are not particularly showy, but they add a delicate touch to the plant’s overall appearance.

Blooming season: Flowering occurs in late spring to early summer, though indoor plants may bloom less frequently.

Hardiness: Spider plants are not frost-tolerant and are typically grown as houseplants in most climates. They can be grown outdoors in USDA Hardiness Zones 9-11.

Award: Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society.

Uses: Spider plants are primarily grown for their attractive foliage and ease of care. The tropical plants are popular as houseplants, hanging basket plants, and in mixed containers. They are also known for their air-purifying qualities, as they can remove common indoor air pollutants.

Toxicity: Spider plants are non-toxic to pets and humans.

Benefits: Besides its aesthetic appeal, the Variegated Spider Plant is known for its air-purifying qualities, removing pollutants from indoor environments and improving air quality.

Variegated Spider Plant, Spider Plant Care, Spider Plants, Chlorophytum comosum Variegatum, Spider Ivy, Ribbon Plant, Evergreen Perennial

Spider Plant Care

To keep your spider plant healthy and thriving, follow these care guidelines:

Light: Spider plants prefer bright, indirect light but are quite adaptable and can also thrive in partial shade or low-light conditions. Optimal growth and variegation are achieved with more light, but this plant’s versatility makes it suitable for various indoor lighting environments.

If you’re growing spider plants outdoors, choose a location with dappled shade or partial sun. They can tolerate some direct morning sun, but it’s important to protect them from harsh afternoon sun to prevent leaf burn. Ideally, provide them with 4-6 hours of filtered sunlight or bright shade for the best growth.

When transitioning your spider plant from indoors to outdoors, do so gradually. Introduce the plant to outdoor conditions by placing it in a shady spot for a few days, gradually increasing the exposure to filtered sunlight over the course of 1-2 weeks. This process, known as “hardening off,” helps the plant acclimate to its new environment and prevents shock or damage.

Soil: Whether grown indoors or outdoors, spider plants require well-draining soil to thrive. The ideal soil mixture for spider plants should be light, airy, and able to retain some moisture without becoming waterlogged.

For indoor spider plants, use a high-quality all-purpose potting mix that contains a blend of peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite.

For outdoor spider plants, select a garden bed with well-draining soil. If your garden soil is heavy clay or tends to hold water, amend it with organic matter such as compost, aged manure, or leaf mold, as well as perlite or sand to improve drainage. A slightly acidic to neutral soil pH of 6.0-7.0 is ideal for spider plants.

Watering: Water your spider plant when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Water thoroughly, allowing the excess water to drain out of the pot’s bottom. Avoid overwatering, as this can lead to root rot. Spider plants prefer evenly moist soil but can tolerate brief periods of drought.

Humidity: Spider plants appreciate moderate humidity levels (40-50%). You can maintain humidity by placing a tray filled with water and pebbles under the pot or occasionally misting the plant. However, they can also tolerate average indoor humidity levels.

Temperature: These plants prefer temperatures between 65-75°F (18-24°C) and can tolerate a range of 55-85°F (13-29°C). Avoid exposing them to temperatures below 50°F (10°C), as this can cause damage to the foliage.

Fertilization: Feed your spider plant every 4-6 weeks during the growing season (spring and summer) with a balanced, water-soluble houseplant fertilizer diluted to half the recommended strength. Avoid over-fertilizing, as this can cause leaf tip burn.

Repotting: Spider plants prefer to be slightly root-bound, so repot them only when necessary, usually every 2-3 years. Choose a pot one size larger than the current pot, with drainage holes to prevent root rot.

Pruning: Regularly remove any brown or yellow leaves by cutting them at the base. This will encourage new growth and maintain the plant’s overall health.

Propagation: Spider plants are easy to propagate through their spiderettes. Simply cut a healthy spiderette from the mother plant and place it in a container of water or directly into moist soil. Roots should start to form within a few weeks.

By providing the proper care and conditions, your spider plant will continue to grow and thrive, adding beauty and cleaner air to your indoor space.

Variegated Spider Plant, Spider Plant Care, Spider Plants, Chlorophytum comosum Variegatum, Spider Ivy, Ribbon Plant, Evergreen Perennial

Spider Plant Common Problems

Spider plants are relatively hardy and low-maintenance, but they can still encounter a few common problems. Here’s a list of potential issues and how to address them:

Brown leaf tips

  • Cause: This is often due to low humidity, over-fertilization, or fluoride/chlorine in tap water.
  • Solution: Increase humidity by misting the plant or placing it on a tray with water and pebbles. Use distilled or rainwater for watering, and avoid over-fertilizing.

Yellow leaves

  • Cause: Overwatering, poor drainage, or inadequate light can cause yellow leaves.
  • Solution: Ensure the plant is in well-draining soil and allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings. Move the plant to a location with bright, indirect light.

Wilting or drooping leaves

  • Cause: Underwatering, overwatering, or exposure to extreme temperatures can cause wilting.
  • Solution: Adjust your watering schedule based on the plant’s needs, and maintain a consistent temperature range between 65-75°F (18-24°C).

Root rot

  • Cause: Overwatering or poor drainage can lead to root rot.
  • Solution: Repot the plant in fresh, well-draining soil and a pot with drainage holes. Adjust your watering routine to prevent soggy soil.

Pests

  • Cause: Spider plants can occasionally be affected by common houseplant pests, such as spider mites, aphids, or scale insects.
  • Solution: Wipe the leaves with a damp cloth to remove pests or use insecticidal soap or neem oil to treat infestations. Keep the plant isolated from other plants to prevent the spread of pests.

Slow growth or pale leaves

  • Cause: Insufficient light or inadequate fertilization can cause slow growth and pale leaves.
  • Solution: Move the plant to a brighter location with indirect light and apply a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 4-6 weeks during the growing season.

By addressing these common issues promptly, you can ensure your spider plant remains healthy and vibrant. Regularly check your plant for signs of stress or pests to catch potential problems early.

How to Propagate a Spider Plant

Propagating a spider plant is quite easy, as they naturally produce small plantlets or “spiderettes” that can be used for propagation. There are two common methods to propagate spider plants: water propagation and soil propagation. Here’s a step-by-step guide for each method:

Water Propagation

  • Locate a healthy spiderette on the mother plant. It should have a few small roots forming at its base.
  • Using clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears, snip the spiderette from the mother plant, leaving a small stem attached.
  • Fill a jar or glass with water, making sure the water level is high enough to submerge the small roots or root nodes on the spiderette.
  • Place the spiderette in the water, ensuring only the roots or root nodes are submerged and not the leaves.
  • Place the jar in a spot with bright, indirect light, and change the water every few days to keep it fresh.
  • Within a few weeks, you should see new roots forming. Once the roots are about 1-2 inches long, transplant the spiderette into a pot with a well-draining potting mix.

Soil Propagation

  • Choose a healthy spiderette with small roots forming at its base.
  • Cut the spiderette from the mother plant using clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears, leaving a small stem attached.
  • Prepare a small pot with a well-draining potting mix, such as a mixture of peat moss or coco coir, perlite or pumice, and compost or well-aged manure.
  • Make a small hole in the potting mix, and place the spiderette’s roots into the hole. Gently cover the roots with soil, ensuring the base of the leaves is just above the soil line.
  • Water the newly planted spiderette, ensuring the soil is evenly moist but not soggy.
  • Place the pot in a location with bright, indirect light, and keep the soil consistently moist until the plant establishes itself.

In both methods, it’s important to maintain a consistent temperature of 65-75°F (18-24°C) and provide bright, indirect light for optimal growth. With proper care, your new spider plant will grow into a healthy, mature plant.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Are spider plants toxic to cats?

Spider plants are considered non-toxic to both cats and dogs. According to the ASPCA, they are safe for pets. However, it is still best to discourage your pets from chewing on plants, as ingesting any plant material can cause mild gastrointestinal upset in some animals.

How often to water spider plant?

Water your spider plant when the top inch of the soil feels dry to the touch. Water the plant thoroughly, allowing the excess water to drain out of the pot’s bottom. Spider plants prefer evenly moist soil but can tolerate brief periods of drought. The frequency of watering will depend on factors like the size of the pot, the potting mix, and the environment. Generally, you may need to water your spider plant every 7-10 days, but always check the soil moisture before watering.

How to get rid of spider mites on indoor plants?

To get rid of spider mites on indoor plants, follow these steps:

  • Isolate the affected plant to prevent the mites from spreading to other plants.
  • Remove any heavily infested or damaged leaves using clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears.
  • Use a damp cloth or paper towel to wipe the leaves and stems gently, removing as many spider mites as possible.
  • Apply insecticidal soap or a solution of neem oil to the plant, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Be sure to cover all surfaces of the leaves and stems, including the undersides of the leaves. Repeat the application every 7-10 days, or as recommended by the product’s instructions, until the infestation is under control.
  • Regularly inspect your plants for signs of spider mites and treat as necessary. Maintaining proper humidity levels and regularly cleaning your plants can help prevent future infestations.

Requirements

Hardiness 9 - 11
Heat Zones 10 - 11
Climate Zones 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Houseplants, Perennials
Plant Family Asparagaceae
Exposure Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spread 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spacing 24" (60cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen, Plant of Merit
Tolerance Full Shade, Drought
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden
How Many Plants
Do I Need?

Recommended Companion Plants

Syagrus romanzoffiana (Queen Palm)
Cycas revoluta (Sago Palm)
Strelitzia reginae (Bird of Paradise)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
Buy Plants

Requirements

Hardiness 9 - 11
Heat Zones 10 - 11
Climate Zones 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Houseplants, Perennials
Plant Family Asparagaceae
Exposure Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spread 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spacing 24" (60cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen, Plant of Merit
Tolerance Full Shade, Drought
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden
How Many Plants
Do I Need?

Gardening Ideas

Plant Calculator

How many Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’ (Spider Plant) do I need for my garden?

Input your garden space dimensions

Your Shopping List

Plant Quantity
Chlorophytum comosum ‘Variegatum’ (Spider Plant) N/A Buy Plants

Please Login to Proceed

You Have Reached The Free Limit, Please Subscribe to Proceed

Subscribe to Gardenia

To create additional collections, you must be a paid member of Gardenia
  • Add as many plants as you wish
  • Create and save up to 25 garden collections
Become a Member

Plant Added Successfully

You have Reached Your Limit

To add more plants, you must be a paid member of our site Become a Member

Update Your Credit
Card Information

Cancel

Create a New Collection

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

    You have been subscribed successfully

    Join Gardenia.net

    Create a membership account to save your garden designs and to view them on any device.

    Becoming a contributing member of Gardenia is easy and can be done in just a few minutes. If you provide us with your name, email address and the payment of a modest $25 annual membership fee, you will become a full member, enabling you to design and save up to 25 of your garden design ideas.

    Join now and start creating your dream garden!

    Join Gardenia.net

    Create a membership account to save your garden designs and to view them on any device.

    Becoming a contributing member of Gardenia is easy and can be done in just a few minutes. If you provide us with your name, email address and the payment of a modest $25 annual membership fee, you will become a full member, enabling you to design and save up to 25 of your garden design ideas.

    Join now and start creating your dream garden!

    Find your Hardiness Zone

    Find your Heat Zone

    Find your Climate Zone