Common Name: Leopard Plant 'Firefly'
Botanical Name: Farfugium japonicum
To keep your leopard plant looking absolutely breathtaking you will need to know a few tricks. These glorious indoor plants will continue to send their beacons of light when they are receiving the care they need. In a nutshell, water and light are the two most important requirements that need to be addressed properly. Read more to lock the secrets of Farfugium japonicum care!
Leopard Plants, formerly known as ligularia, are shade dwellers when grown outside, but indoors they need bright indirect light to produce new growth and remain full. Plants that are not receiving enough light -- at least 5 hours a day -- will being to lose leaves and become leggy and thin. Place them in close proximity to a south or west-facing window, out of the direct rays of the sun, to keep their yellow firefly glow. The morning sun that hits the leaves will do no harm to them, but the hot afternoon sun can cause damage!
This is the part that you need to pay attention to. Leopard Plants do not like dry soil. The leaves will start to droop, very quickly when they are in need of water. Water them immediately when you start to see signs of leaf wilting. Here is the caveat, sometimes the leaves will droop when they are receiving too much water, so always check the status of the soil (with your finger or a moisture meter) before watering. Soak the soil completely making sure that the entire root ball is saturated. The best way to ensure that your plants are adequately watered is to place the grow pot in a bowl of water for 15 minutes so the water can be absorbed by the soil. Lastly, make sure that the soil is never sitting in standing water, as this will cause root rot - #1 plant killer of all time!
Farfugium will be content in most average household temperatures. A comfortable range is between 65-75° F. It is best to avoid placing them near drafts and frequently used doors during the winter as extreme cold temperatures might cause cold damage to their lovely leaves.
These fantastic houseplants will benefit from elevated humidity levels. If you are not aware of the humidity levels in your home, then you can tell if the air is dry if your plants (or your nose) look and feels dry around the edges! The most efficient way to increase the humidity in your space is to use a cool-mist humidifier; or place your plants on a tray filled with pebbles and water. As the water evaporates the plants will soak up the moisture!
Proper nutrition will help your Farfugium japonicum push out big, beautiful leaves. Fertilize when the plant is actively growing during the warmer months. Use a ¼ diluted complete liquid fertilizer when watering or you can use seaweed or fish emulsion.
These indoor plants are medium growers with their maximum height reaching around 3' indoors.
Pet Friend or Foe
These indoor plants are toxic to pets! Foe
- A clean plant is a happy plant, so make sure to remove the dust with a warm, damp cloth every month.
- A dormancy or rest period during the winter can help promote new growth and possibly even blooms during the growing season. Give the plant time to rest by slightly cutting back on the water and avoid placing the plant in areas with very warm temperatures during the winter.
- Repot these plants when the roots are pushing out of the pot or have become dense. This will enable your plants to grow faster.