Common Name: Apoballis
Botanical Name: Apoballis acuminatissima 'Lavallaei'
Apoballis 'Lavallaei' loves to show off its wild side with its highly patterned leaves and deep maroon undersides. These perfectly pretty indoor plants are relatively easy to care for if you provide them with above-average humidity and consistent watering. Ensure you never let the soil dry out while avoiding soggy soil. Apoballis 'Lavallaei' will grow best when it receives bright indirect sunlight for at least 6 hours daily. Avoid direct sun as this will cause leaf burn.
Apoballis can handle low light, but increased light can help maintain the vivid colors and patterns on the foliage. Aim to provide at least 6 hours of indirect light daily for healthy leaf and root development! Direct sunlight can be damaging and may cause colors to fade and the leaves to burn. If you are keeping your plants outdoors in warmer climates, then be sure to provide it a shady location protecting it from the harsh afternoon sunlight.
Apoballis acuminatissima 'Lavallaei' loves its water and will let you know when it is time to give it a thorough soaking! Water these indoor plants when the top inch of the soil is dry. Conversely, it is possible to over-water these gorgeous indoor plants, so make sure that the roots are never sitting in a puddle of water as this will cause the roots to decay!
The type of water used can make a difference when it comes to watering your Apoballis. Tap water may contain different minerals or compounds that can be damaging to the leaves. Brown edges along the leaves can be an indication that the water is high in salt or contains chlorine, chloramine, bromide, or fluoride. It may be best to water the plant using filtered or distilled water, or water collected from a dehumidifier if you suspect tap water is not suitable.
Potting soil that is rich in nutrients and organic matter, but still has the ability to drain well is the perfect growing medium for your Apoballis. Most coco coir or peat-based potting soil mixes will be adequate but make sure that they do not contain water-retentive crystals as they can cause the soil to continually stay moist causing root rot. If you are feeling adventurous, try creating your own potting soil!
Average household temperature above 65°F is fine, but these indoor plants won't mind if it gets warmer and the temperature creeps closer to 80°F.
Avoid placing these cold-sensitive indooer plants near exterior doors, drafty windows, and vents, particularly during the colder months. Make sure to avoid placement near air conditioning vents during the warmer months.
High humidity (over 60%) is a must-have for Apoballis. The leaves may begin to curl or the edges will turn brown and dry out if they do not receive enough humidity. Apoballis loves to live in a kitchen, bathroom, or any area with extra moisture in the air. Using a humidifier or a pebble tray with water can help provide the extra dampness they crave. Learn how to increase the humidity in the air around your indoor plants!
Fertilizing your Apoballis can help promote new growth and even blooms depending on the variety. A complete liquid fertilizer diluted to quarter-strength is a good option. When re-potting, you can amend the soil with seaweed, fish emulsion, or worm castings. They will benefit from being fertilized every two weeks during the growing season. These indoor plants should not be fertilized during the colder months when the plant is dormant.
Pet Friend or Foe
Apoballis ‘Lavallaei’ is non-toxic to pets! Friend!
- Apoballis ‘Lavallaei’ are moisture-loving plants, but over-watering is still a concern and can introduce a whole host of problems. Making sure the plants receive lots of bright indirect light can help regulate the soil dampness while helping the plant thrive.
- Don't be too worried if you notice the leaves beginning to curl or the stems of your Apoballis drooping. These are signs of dehydration. It's important to pay attention to these indicators, but these hardy houseplants can bounce back within a day or so after receiving water.
- Apoballis can only be propagated through division. These plants naturally propagate themselves by expanding their root system and sending new shoots up through the soil. When a mature plant is re-potted, gently separate the roots to divide the main plant into several smaller plants. Each new plant can be potted in its own container. Given time and proper care, those new plants will fill in.