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How to Grow the Anthurium Hookeri (Tried & Tested)

If you’re a big fan of Tropical plants like me, you’ll no doubt love Anthurium hookeri in your collection!

Anthurium hookeri is a one-of-a-kind plant. They’re not the kind of tropical plants you would find in the house of a plant enthusiast.

White berries are a distinct distinguishing feature of Anthurium hookeri. Similarly, the plant is also called “birds nest hookeri” due to the shape of berries.

Anthurium hookeri grows best in well-draining soil, bright indirect sunlight, the humidity of at least 70%, and temperatures ranging from 70°F (21°C) to 90°F (32°C). Similarly, feeding Anthurium with a slow release fertilizer every 3-4 months and repotting it every 2-3 years can help the plant flourish.

Tropical Anthurium Hookeri (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Likewise, the capacity of an epiphytic plant to flourish without soil is incredible. These plants grow on top of other plants and even trees in the tropical jungles from where they originate.

The plant is from a rare species and requires special attention. As a result, this article will give detailed Anthurium hookeri care advice and more!

Overview of Anthurium Hookeri

Anthurium hookeri is an aroid found on several West Indies’ lower eastern Caribbean islands, including Dominica, Grenada, and many more.

Scientific Name Anthurium hookeri
Common Name Bird's nest anthurium
NativeLower eastern Caribbean islands
USDA13a-13b

NatureTropical
Average Height Minimum- 10 cm
Maximum- 50 cm
Average Spread Minimum- 10cm
Maximum- 50 cm
Foliage Wrinkly green lush leaves
Flowering Dark red flowers
Blooming time Flowers year-round, usually 3-month intervals
ToxicityToxic to cats and dogs.

Anthurium Hookeri Grow and Care Guide

The attractive Anthurium hookeri has a tropical-looking evergreen perennial leaf.

They feature similar lush green foliage with purple-blue stems leading to a substantially oval shape with white berries dangling from it. 

With a little care and attention, you can bring a bit of the tropics into your house all year!

ParametersFavorable Conditions
Light Requirements Bright, indirect light
Watering Once a week
Temperature Between 70ºF (21ºC) to 90ºF (32ºC)
Ideal Humidity Best above 70%
Soil Type Well-draining soil
Fertilization Once a month, only during the growing season
Pruning Once a year
Repotting Every two to three years
Pests/Diseases Mealybugs, Thrips, Bacterial Bling, Bacterial Wilt
Propagation Stem Cutting and Seeds

1. Adequate Sunlight and Proper Location

For maximum health, Anthurium hookeri requires bright yet indirect sunlight.

The Anthurium is from tropical jungles where they can absorb lots of sunlight. Thus, you must create a space exposed to light in your indoor space.

Place your Anthurium hookeri near a sunny window that gives off indirect sunlight.

Similarly, you can also place your plant to bathe in the early morning or late afternoon sun.

Sunlight hitting the leaves
Sunlight hitting the leaves (Source: Pixabay)

However, never expose Anthurium hookeri to direct sunlight. The plant also thrives in the shade of bigger plants, protecting them from the sun’s rays.

Similarly, when exposed to direct sunshine, the plant becomes fragile. The leaves are scorched by direct sunlight, leaving unsightly that do not heal.

Signs and Symptoms of Improper Lighting

  • Too much exposure to the sun’s rays can cause dryness in a plant’s leaves, leading the plant to lose much of its green vitality.
  • Similarly, black or bleached patches on the leaves indicate that your plant has been overexposed to the sun.
  • Insufficient light exposure stops chlorophyll from operating at its optimum, and the Anthurium’s leaves will lighten and lose their dark tint with time.
  • Inadequate sunlight will also stifle the plant’s development.

Tips to Ensure Adequate Sunlight and Proper Location

  • Please do not place your plant directly under the artificial light; instead, put it away from the artificial lighting.
  • Use shade curtains during high-light and high-temperature months.
  • In addition, make sure your plants aren’t near any heat sources such as fireplaces, radiators, or ovens.

2. Ideal Temperature

Generally, the Anthurium hookeri plant prefers the temperature range of 70°F (21°C) to 90°F (32°C).

Anthurium hookeri can endure summer temperatures of up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius). Similarly, it can withstand at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius) in the winter.

Anthurium hookeri, like many other tropical plants, cannot resist cold temperatures. It will be beneficial to place them in warm circumstances before the cold season begins to cause damage.

Tips for Maintaining the Ideal Temperature

  • Put your Anthurium near a double-glazed window to ensure they get the light they require.
  • Open flames and central heating may destroy the plant, so keep them away from heaters and radiator shelves in the winter.
  • During winter, make sure to move your hookeri to warmer or shelter areas such as your bedroom.
  • Similarly, shade coverings made of lightweight material (such as old sheets) can also help keep your plants cool during summer.
  • You can also use cold frames to protect your plant from cold winds. They also retain heat.

3. Watering Requirements

Anthurium hookeri, like other Anthurium species, thrives in damp (unsaturated) soil.

As a result, they require water once a week during the summer season and once every two weeks during the winter season.

You should not overwater this plant. When the soil is too moist, oxygen cannot reach the roots.

Root rot occurs when the soil retains more water than required. It can cause fungus, poor health, and the plant’s eventual death.

Similarly, you also do not want to under-water it. A plant that isn’t getting enough water develops slowly.

Optimum watering is important for your Anthurium hookeri. (Source: Unsplash)

Signs of Overwatering

  • Yellow lower leaves.
  • The young leaves will turn a darker color.
  • There will be no new growth because the roots will die or be stunted.

Signs of Underwatering

  • When a plant receives little water, its turgor, or rigidity in cells and tissues, is lost.
  • Wilting is a common sign that a plant is not getting enough water.
  • When a plant doesn’t get enough water, the tips and edges of the leaves dry up and turn brown.

Tips to Water Anthurium Hookeri

  • Allow the soil of the Anthurium hookeri plant to dry completely between waterings.
  • To test for dryness, insert your finger into the soil up to your knuckles. If you feel dampness on your fingertips, don’t water your plant.
  • Make sure your plant container has at least one drainage hole.
  • Similarly, you can also test the moisture level of your plant through a moisture meter.
Moisture Meter for Testing Soil
Moisture Meter for Testing Soil (Source: Amazon)

Read about the 8 best plant spray bottles for Watering your plants!

4. Maintain High Humidity

Some plants, especially tropical plants, might be harmed by dry air since they require high humidity.

Thus, a humidity level of roughly 80% is ideal for the Anthurium hookeri.

When the humidity is not maintained, the plant will be unable to get rid of water vapor. As a result, your hookeri will suffer from dry and brown tips in your leaves. Similarly, the leaves will also shrivel up.

Tips to Maintain High Humidity

  • Humidifiers: These electrical devices produce humidity quickly and with level adjusters that may be changed as needed.
  • Pebble Tray:  Place pebbles in a tray and fill the container halfway with water, slightly above and below the pebbles’ tops. The evaporating water will generate humidity in the room.
  • Grouping: To benefit your Anthurium hookeri, group your plants to increase the humidity in your home. You’ll create a tiny environment where plants may share their humidity resources.
Humidifier is placed near a Plant
Humidifier near a Plant (Source: Amazon)

Can I Mist my Anthurium Hookeri?

Misting your Anthurium hookeri is one of the most common methods of raising the humidity level, which I also prefer.

However, be cautious not to soak your leaves when using this procedure.

Soaking up will have the same effect as overwatering your plant. Similarly, fungi will grow on your leaves if there is too much water on them.

So you should mist your Anthurium hookeri twice every week. 

Misting Plants
Misting Plants (Source: Unsplash)

5. Well-draining Soil Mix

Anthurium hookeri needs the correct water balance in its soil for optimal growth. As a result, either well-draining soil or moist (unsaturated) soil will do the trick!

Your Anthurium hookeri prefers the optimal soil pH value between 5 and 6.

When you water your plant, the components in this soil hang on to the moisture it needs. Similarly, these soils are permeable enough to allow excess water to drain rather than collect at the bottom.

Likewise, a plant pot with drainage holes allows excess water to drain rather than sit at the soil’s bottom. If you’re unsure which soil to use, mix half regular potting soil and half orchid soil.

Home Made Potting Mix Recipe

Note: The use of charcoal is intended to improve drainage and take advantage of the small air spaces in the charcoal for the growth of beneficial bacteria. It also aids in the retention of fluids.

6. Growth Habits

Anthurium hookeri is a tiny plant that doesn’t get very big. They barely reach a height of four inches to two feet in most cases.

Similarly, the beautiful Anthurium hookeri has an evergreen perennial leaf that gives it a tropical impression.

It’s an aroid with a short stem and triangular to D-shaped, 10-26 cm broad, 35-89 cm long leaves grouped at or near the tip of the stem that grows as an epiphyte and a terrestrial.

Anthurium hookeri has green spathes with a purple hue. The seed berries on the infructescence are round and oblong, and they are white, not red as is generally assumed.

A healthy Anthurium hookeri. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

7. Fertilizer Requirement

You’ll only need to fertilize your plant once every three or four months once your Anthurium hookeri has reached maturity.

Most growers feed their plants once a month with a slow-release fertilizer.

On the other hand, uncoated quick-release fertilizers can burn Anthurium roots. Similarly, Root burn can be caused by even powdered organic fertilizers.

Liquid fertilizers can be administered as foliar sprays or mixed into surface irrigation water in lower quantities.

Anthurium hookeri thrives on high-phosphate fertilizers. It will guarantee that plants have good pigment levels and have lush green leaves.

If you plan to use NPK, a formulation of 15-30-15ratio will do well for your Anthurium hookeri. Furthermore, Anthurium hookeri requires low-level fertilizers. Strong fertilizers cause salt to build up in the soil, harming the plant’s roots.

Fertilizer Features Image
Florikan 16-5-11 NPK FertilizerContains essential micronutrients to ensure healthy, strong plants
Indoor Plant Food (Slow-Release Pellets)Slow-release pellets fertilizer promotes healthy growth and stops wilt.
Liquid Indoor Plant FoodSpecific ratio of N-P-K for Indoor Plants with added Sulphur promoting better nutrient uptakeLiquid Indoor Plant Food

8. Potting and Repotting

Anthurium hookeri grows at a slower rate than many other houseplants. As a result, you should only repot them every two to three years.

Anthurium roots well in a low, plastic pot with good drainage, as plastic pots are an excellent choice for moisture-loving plants. The most popular pot sizes are 5 inches, 7 inches, and 8 inches.

Only use pots with holes in the bottom for drainage. The drainage will assist you in determining the root length.

Similarly, repot your Anthurium hookeri if its roots start to creep out.

Repotting Anthurium hookeri is simple. However, You must handle the roots with care. All roots are delicate, and tearing them takes only a little power.

The roots of Anthurium hookeri before repotting. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Steps to Repot Anthurium Hookeri

  • Prepare a pot that is one size larger than the one you’re using now. The new container’s diameter should be no more than an inch or two (2.5-5 cm) greater than the old one.
  • Fill your new pot halfway with rocks.
  • Before repotting, water the anthurium well; a wet rootball is easy to repot and healthier for the plant.
  • Use a potting soil that closely resembles the plant’s present potting mix. Anthurium prefers a light, loose medium with a pH of 6.5 or above.
  • Fill the new container halfway with fresh potting soil, just enough to bring the top of the Anthurium’s rootball to within an inch (2.5 cm) of the container’s rim.
  • You should repot the plant at the same soil level as the original pot.
  • Carefully remove the Anthurium from its present container. To loosen the roots, gently tease the tight rootball with your fingertips.
  • Fill up around the root ball with potting soil after placing the Anthurium in the pot.
  • With your fingers, lightly compact the potting mix. Lightly water the soil to settle it, and then add more potting soil if necessary.
  • It’s critical to keep the Anthurium’s root ball at the same level as its former container once more. Planting the plant’s crown too deeply might cause the crown to decay.

Note: Place the plant in a shaded spot for a few days. Don’t worry if the plant appears a little wilted in the first few days. When repotting anthuriums, little wilting is common.

9. Annual Pruning

Anthurium hookeri requires trimming at regular intervals to keep the plant erect and balanced.

To begin pruning, examine the plant closely to identify which sections should be pruned and which should not. Then proceed with the steps.

  • Remove all of the plant’s old leaves.
  • Similarly, remove any sagging or dead flowers.
  • Remove the suckers from the base, but leave the ones near the stem trimmed.
  • Likewise, if you like, you may also cut the twisted limbs off.

Note: Make sure you’re using high-quality scissors and other cutting instruments. To avoid bacterial infection, wash the equipment with alcohol between each cut.

Pruning equipments
Arrangements for pruning (Source: Unsplash)

Toxicity of Anthurium Hookeri

According to ASPCA, Anthurium hookeri is toxic to cats, dogs, and horses. All the plant parts contain Calcium Oxalate, which can cause irritations.

These crystals are released when you chew or bite into this plant, causing tissue penetration and discomfort in the mouth and Gastro-Intestinal system.

So if you are fond of plants and pets, make sure to check your houseplants thoroughly!

They may have difficulty breathing in severe circumstances since their throat has swelled shut. Although it is uncommon, it can be fatal.

Care for your Poisoned Pets

  • If you believe your pet has eaten any part of this plant, seek medical attention immediately.
  • Take them away from the plant and to a safe area.
  • Unless directed otherwise by a veterinarian, do not feed your cat or use any home cures to induce vomiting. Any food, milk, or oil falls within this category.

Note: If you believe your pet has consumed a potentially dangerous chemical, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the ASPCA at (888) 426-4435  or your local veterinarian as soon as possible.

Veterinarian Examining the Cat
Veterinarian Examining the Cat (Source: Free SVG)

Create a Safe Environment for your Pets

  • If you sprinkle cayenne pepper over the leaves of your houseplants, your pet will swiftly flee.
  • Another alternative is to directly spray the leaves with diluted lemon juice or orange oil.
  • Similarly, to discourage digging, you may also cover the soil with big pebbles or stones around the base of the plants.
  • To keep your pets out, create a plant room and keep the door closed.
  • Placing pine cones or aluminum foil around the planter, for example, may help keep your pets away.

Propagation Methods for Anthurium Hookeri

Warm temperatures are ideal for Anthurium hookeri growth. As a result, it is best to propagate it during the summer. Anthurium hookeri can be propagated via seeds and stem cuttings.

Stem Cutting Propagation

The stem-cutting propagation is considered to be the easiest propagation method. So, if you’re a beginner, you’ll love to propagate your Anthurium from this method!

Be sure always to use a sterile knife while dividing the plant to avoid any disease or pest infestation of the roots.

  • Take a healthy Anthurium hookeri stem cutting (at least three inches long). It should have two leaf nodes connected to it.
  • After you’ve obtained your stem cutting, you must keep it out for a week. In a warm atmosphere, it should be sitting on a paper towel. It permits the stem cutting’s cut end to cure.
  • Meanwhile, you can get your pot ready. Take a pot that has a bottom draining hole. Fill the container with soil that drains well.
  • After a week has passed, you can plant your stem cutting in the potting mix.
  • Make a tiny hole in the soil with your finger. It should reach your big knuckle. In this hole, place the stem cutting and compress the soil around it.
  • Ascertain that the stem cutting is in an upright position.
  • Water it regularly to keep the soil wet. Also, make sure it gets enough indirect sunshine.
  • Rotate your Anthurium plant if it’s in a window so that it gets enough light from all sides.

Note: Consider using a cut straw if you’re having trouble keeping the stem cutting upright. Tie the plant to the straw until it can stand alone.

Can you Root Anthurium Hookeri Stem Cutting in Water? 

You can also root your Anthurium stem cutting in water.

  • The first step is to take a stem from the plant and trim all of its leaves.
  • Instead of putting the cuttings in pots, you now put them in water-filled jars or glasses. 
  • The cutting’s bottom should be fully immersed in water. Ensure that the leaves do not become waterlogged; otherwise, they may decay.
  • After then, place the cuttings in an indirect sunlight area. You’ll notice roots sprouting after a few weeks.
Propagating Plant in water
Propagating stem cuttings in water (Source: Pexels)

Seed Propagation

It might not be easy to propagate Anthurium hookeri from seeds. The procedure might take a long time and requires a great deal of patience.

However, if you’re interested in seed propagation, you can follow the below instructions:

  • Anthurium hookeri’s white berries are densely packed with seeds. The seeds are encased in a sticky substance.
  • Remove the material from the seeds and allow them to dry for at least 24 hours.
  • Prepare your plant container. The container should have drainage holes at the bottom. Make sure you choose soil that drains effectively.
  • Plant the seeds just beneath the surface, leaving enough space between them. You should not place the seeds too deeply. Cover the seeds thoroughly with the soil.
  • During seed germination, keep the plant container covered. This aids in speeding up the process by containing moisture.
  • You should still examine the soil from time to time to ensure it isn’t becoming waterlogged.
  • Provide warm, humid conditions for the seed, but keep it out of direct sunlight.
  • Once a seed has sprouted, You may remove the cover. All you have to do now is take care of it like the original Anthurium hookeri plant. Make sure the soil is wet and that it receives adequate indirect sunshine.

The anthurium seeds should germinate in five to seven days, depending on the circumstances.

When the anthurium seedlings are well established and have grown a robust root system, you can transfer them into 6-inch wide pots.

Also watch,

Common Problems in Anthurium Hookeri

Like any other plant, Anthurium hookeri is also affected by various pests and diseases. However, don’t worry, we’ve got you with the symptoms of such issues along with their solutions!

1. Common Pests

Mealybugs and Thrips are the most likely plant pest you’ll discover on this plant. Sucking insects are the most prevalent pests that affect Anthurium hookeri. They drink the fluids that phloem cells transfer through Xylem tubes.

Mealybugs

Mealybugs are soft-bodied, wingless insects that appear as white cottony masses on the leaves, stems, and fruit of plants in warmer growing areas.

Similarly, mealybugs damage plants by draining the juice from them, and, like many pests, they prefer new growth.

Their damage causes the leaves to yellow over time and finally fall off the plant. Their waxy excretions (also known as honeydew) support the growth of sooty mold fungus in a bad infestation.

Mealybugs on the leaf of Anthurium. (Source: Flickr)

Thrips

Thrips are widespread insects that harm plants by sucking their liquids and scraping at fruits, flowers, and foliage in greenhouses and indoor/outdoor gardens.

Similarly, thrips eat in huge groups and are quite active. When disturbed, they jump or fly away. Plant leaves may become pale, splotchy, and silvery in an appearance before dying.

Thrips in the leave of Anthurium hookeri. (Source: Flickr)

Similarly, injured plants are bent, discolored, and scarred. Adults are slender straw-colored or black insects with two sets of feathery wings that are quite tiny (less than 1/25 inch).

Solutions

  • Adult populations of pests can be monitored using blue sticky traps.
  • To minimize insect populations, use the Bug Blaster to wash down plants with a vigorous, all-encompassing blast of water.
  • Insecticidal soaps produced from naturally occurring plant oils and fats are also efficient in suffocating large infestations.
  • BotaniGard ES is a potent biological pesticide that contains Beauveria bassiana, an entomopathogenic fungus that kills a wide range of agricultural pests, even resistant species.

Preventive Measures

  • Pests are drawn to plants with high nitrogen levels and weak growth, so don’t overwater or overfertilize.
  • Checking every new plant you bring into your house for pests is one approach to avoid them.
  • To eliminate alternate hosts for thrips, eradicate weeds and grass from around plant areas.
  • Washing foliage with a neem oil-based leaf shine regularly will help prevent new infections.

Related article: How to Identify Insect Eggs on Leaves and Treat Pest Infestation?

2. Common Diseases

Anthurium hookeri is prone to various kinds of diseases.

Bacteria Blight

Blight is a term used to describe a variety of plant diseases that cause abrupt and severe yellowing, browning, spotting, withering, or death of leaves, flowers, fruit, stems, or the entire plant.

Similarly, Bacterial Blights are generally caused by the pathogen Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. dieffenbachiae that affect the plant’s shoots and other young, quickly developing tissues.

The impact of Erwinia Blight Disease in leaf. (Source: Flickr)

Pesticide sprays or drenches will not heal the plants or provide adequate protection against bacterial blight.

Rhizoctonia Root Rot

Rhizoctonia is a fungus that lives in outdoor soils such as fields, landscapes, and gardens.

It makes sclerotia, strong, brownish-black structures that let it live for years in the soil or diseased plant tissue.

Roots after Rhizoctonia Root Rot. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Similarly, it is frequently the cause of rot in cuttings, particularly those exposed to mist.

Rhizoctonia solani is the most frequent plant-infecting species. However, several Rhizoctonia species cause plant diseases; not all are pathogens.

In addition, Rhizoctonia Root Rot cannot be reversed.

Bacterial Wilt

Stunting, wilting, and withering are caused by bacterial wilt caused by various species from the genera Corynebacterium, Erwinia, Pseudomonas, and Xanthomonas.

Discolored water-conducting tissue can be seen in shriveled and withered stems. In leaves, rapidly growing, dark green, water-soaked patches or streaks may appear initially.

Similarly, Bacterial Wilt cannot be reversed.

Preventive Measures

  • To prevent the black spot from starting the following season, remove infected leaves and canes from the garden.
  • If you’re buying bedding or containerized plants, gently knock the plant out of its container and inspect the root system.
  • Another strategy to avoid diseases is to rotate crops.
  • Remember to keep your sanitation measures as simple as possible. Periodically clean and de-soil tools.
  • Overwatering and overfertilization might be more prevalent causes of plant disease.
  • Use sterilized and well-drained potting mixes.
  • Before replanting, gently clean the roots under running water and remove all brown, mushy roots with a sharp pair of scissors.
  • It would be best if you used new containers. If the containers are reused, they must be sterilized thoroughly; otherwise, the illness may spread to the following crop. 
  • If administered weekly during wet weather while leaves and shoots expand, fixed copper or streptomycin is an effective antibacterial.
  • Remove the healthy root just above the damaged part. Work quickly, replant within a few hours.

FAQs About Anthurium Hookeri

Why is my Anthurium hookeri Leaves Turning Brown on the Edges?

When the edges of an Anthurium hookeri’s leaves turn brown, it means it isn’t getting enough humidity.

You can humidify a plant in several different methods. I usually prefer using humidifiers and DIY pebble trays. In addition, everything will be a lot better if you have high humidity going for your plant.

Is Coffee Ground Good for Anthurium hookeri?

You should avoid coffee grounds in general since they can create soil nutrient and acidity imbalances.

Likewise, Anthuriums are harmed by coffee ground, making it a bad fertilizer for your plant.

Are the White Berries on my Anthurium hookeri Edible?

You’re not supposed to consume the white berries of your Anthurium hookeri.

Those berries are toxic; as a result, they might cause severe digestive issues if you eat them.

Anthurium hookeri in a pot
Anthurium hookeri in a pot (Source: Etsy)

Conclusion

Anthurium hookeri is a magnificent flowering plant. Most of your friends’ tropical indoor plant collections will be missing this Anthurium due to its rarity.

With the above-mentioned care instructions, you’ll be proud to display this plant’s white berries and brilliant blossoms.

Please leave comments in our box if you have any questions or concerns.

Happy Gardening!

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