Cissus Discolor: Where to Buy, Guide, and care tips

Are you a lover of exotic vines with vibrant colors like me? Then, you’ll fall in love with the stunning foliage of Cissus Discolor, also known as Rex Begonia Vine.

One look at the dark-green glossy leaves with iridescent silvery patterns and crimson undersides, and you’ll want this plant in your collection!

Cissus Discolor is a low-maintenance tropical plant that thrives in bright indirect sunlight with temperatures ranging from 75-85°F (24-30°C). Similarly, water the plant regularly, maintain humidity levels above 50%, and provide the plant with liquid fertilizer.

The unique foliage of Cissus discolor. (Source: Wikipedia)

Aside from its intriguing foliage, the best part of this plant is that it’s not a demanding plant.

With the right amount of sunlight, watering, and other guidance, you’ll be able to grow this plant in no time!

This article will go through various factors necessary for the plant, its propagation, and how to overcome its issues.

Cissus Discolor: Plant Overview

The evergreen perennial plant Rex Begonia Vine is botanically known as Cissus Discolor.

This vining plant is endemic to Southeast Asia, including Java and Cambodia, and is more closely related to a grape plant than a begonia (it belongs to the Vitaceae family).

Here is a brief overview of the plant:

Scientific Name Cissus discolor
Common Name begonia vine, tapestry vine, climbing begonia

Native Southeast Asia, including Java and Cambodia
Family Vitaceae
USDA11 or higher
Plant Type Climbing plant
GrowthAvg. Height: 6-8 feet long
Avg. Spread: 0.75 to 1 foot wide
FoliageElongated, heart-shaped, deep green with silvery-white coloration
Some burgundy blotch and a deep red underside
FloweringSmall yellowish-to-off-white flowers on warm days.
Early spring to late autumn
Plant ProblemsPests: Whitefly and Mite galls
Disease: Edema and Root rot.
PruningDoesn’t require regular pruning.
You can trim the plant every two months during summer or spring.
Toxicity Non-toxic plant

Although the plant is commonly known as Rex Begonia Vine, it is not a Begonia. The plant got its name from its foliage’s likeness to that of a Begonia.

Get to know the beautiful variety of Begonia, A Complete Guide to Grow and Care Beefsteak Begonia.

Places to Purchase Cissus Discolor

Do you want this rare gem in your collection? Don’t worry! I got you.

You can purchase Cissus Discolor from various online shops, which will deliver this gem right at your doorsteps.

Here is a list of online stores from which you can access the rare plant:

StoresDelivery TimeRange of Price
My Mother Nature1 week $17.95
EtsyAs per the location. $16.22

Steve's Leaves1 week $19.99
Gulley Greenhouse & Garden CenterMonday & Tuesday$14.99

Cissus Discolor: Care Guide and Tips

The beautiful metallic huge leaves of your Rex Begonia Vine will give a touch of exotic beauty to your living space.

It’s a beautiful houseplant that you can grow quickly if you properly care for it. Here is a quick look at the requirements of the plant:

(flaticon.com)
Bright Indirect Sunlight

Moderate, after 3-4 times a week
soil
Well-drained, nutrient-rich potting mixes
Fertilizer icons created by Smashicons - Flaticon
Liquid fertilizer every 3-4 weeks.

from 65°F to 80°F
humidity
Hight, ideally 50% or more

Every 2 years.

Stem Cutting

1. Bright Indirect Light

Cissus Discolor comes from tropical regions, making the plant a sunlight lover.

To keep their hues brilliant, these plants require a lot of sunlight, and your Cissus Discolor will love to bathe in bright indirect light.

Use of Sunlight by plant
Use of Sunlight by a plant (Source: ucl.ac.uk)

Similarly, your plant will also do well in dappled or partial shade.

Photosynthetic Photon Flux (PPF): 250-450 µmol, more than 1,000 foot-candles, more than 20 watts.

However, never let your Cissus Discolor out in the bright sunlight for long. It will develop scorch marks on the leaves.

If there is some problem with the lightning for your Cissus Discolor, they might suffer from:

Over-exposure Low Lightning
Burned leavesLoss of coloration pigment
Yellowing and dropping of leaves. Wilting of the leaves.
Brown edges around the leaves. Slow growth of plant.

Suggestions for Maintaining the Best Lightning

  • The best location for your Cissus Discolor is the east-facing window, where the plant will receive a lot of bright indirect sunlight.
  • You can also place your plant near the south-facing window. However, be sure to place your plant container back several feet to avoid the direct rays of sunlight.
  • Similarly, you should rotate your Cissus Discolor so your plant will get sunlight equally.
  • Consider using a grow light if your current light source is insufficient.
  • You can also use drapes or curtains to filter out the sun’s harsh rays.

2. Regular Watering

Your Cisscus Discolor comes from a tropical native, and as much as it loves the sun, it also is a big fan of hydration. Thus, it needs to be watered often.

You should check moisture levels in your plant’s soil regularly. If you find out that the topsoil layer is dry, you should water your plant.

During the growing seasons, summer and spring, you need to water your plant in every 3-4 days.

Water the plant when required.
Water the plant when required (Source: Tenor)

However, during the harsh cold winter days, cut down the hydration for your Cissus Discolor.

During the winter, your plant will go semi-dormant state. It’s better to water your plant once in 3-4 weeks during such days.

You must carefully check the soil before adding water to ensure that you are not overwatering.

If you are not aware of your watering frequency, your Cisscus Discolor might suffer from:

Overwatered Underwatered
Wilting of the plant.Slowed growth
Yellow leaves and mushy stem. Drooping leaves.
Falling of leaves. Crispy brown leaf edges.
Development of molds on the soil. Parched soil mix.

Tips on Watering your Cisscus Discolor

  • When choosing a pot, make sure there are drainage holes at the bottom of your Cissus Discolor.
  • To minimize cold stress and chemical accumulation, use rain or distilled water stored at room temperature.
  • Before watering, check the soil moisture. You can feel the top layer of soil with your finger to determine the moisture level of your plant’s soil.
  • You can also employ a soil moisture meter to determine the exact percent of the moisture.

Are you worried about your Underwatered Prayer Plant: Here’s What to DO!

3. Warm Temperature

Your tropical Cisscus Discolor will thrive well in average room temperature and moderate shade outside its native environment.

Temperatures between 75-85°F (24-30°C) are ideal for these plants. It thrives in USDA hardiness zones 11 and above.

Relation between Rate of Plant Growth and Temperature
Relation between Rate of Plant Growth and Temperature (Source: Research Gate)

As per their tropical nature, they have limited tolerance when it comes to cold, so do not mistake exposing them to temperatures below 50°F (10°C).

During the day, the temperature should range between 75°F and 85°F (24°C and 30°C).

The minimum temperatures at which these plants may thrive are 65°F and 70°F (18°C and 21°C).

When the temperature becomes below the limit of 50°F (10°C), your plant will suffer from:

  • Drooping Leaves
  • Discoloration of leaves
  • Formation of frost on the plant.
  • Salt damage
  • Sunscald

How to Maintain Warm Temperature?

  • If your plants appear to have been harmed by the cold, move them to a warmer location as quickly as possible.
  • To protect your plant from stress during cold days, use a heating pad to increase the temperature.
  • Cover the potting mix with dry mulch around the topsoil of the plant.
  • Keep your Cissus Discolor away from heat sources like air conditioners and central heating.
  • Similarly, you can also use a frost blanket to keep chilly breezes at bay.
  • To guarantee proper air circulation, rotate your plant regularly.

4. High Humidity

The Begonia Rex Vine is native to Southeast Asia’s subtropical and humid tropical rainforests. Thus, your Cissus Discolor loves an excellent high humidity.

Their tropical nature allows them to thrive well on an average of 50% and above humidity.

However, your plan will wilt and droop when compromised with their humidity. Similarly, the leaves of your Cissus will have brown edges and a crispy and dry texture.

In many cases, the leaves may also wilt and fall. Thus, to avoid such issues, you can increase the humidity of your plant in the following ways:

  • Pebble Tray: To begin, fill the tray with pebbles and pour some water on it. The plant’s air is saturated with water vapor as the water slowly evaporates, increasing humidity.
  • Grouping: Grouping your plants is a great way to increase humidity naturally. Plants can pool their humidity resources through a process known as transpiration. The grouping, on the other hand, may foster insect infestation.
  • Humidifier: The most practical and straightforward approach to adding humidity to your Cissus Discolor environment is to use a humidifier.
  • Misting: Another simple approach to simulate humid conditions is to mist the leaves with water!

5. Well-Draining Soil Mix

The Cissus Discolor prefers a consistent moisture level in its soil. Like many plants, your Begonia Rex Vine also prefers nutrient-rich soil.

Cissus Discolor prefers well-draining, nutrient-rich, and slightly acidic to neutral (pH 6.0-7.0) soils, particularly sandy or loamy.

Well-draining soil helps enable more water to percolate through the soil, reducing runoff and erosion.

Similarly, the soil also leaves empty pore space after infiltration, allowing for more significant plant development.

You can also make your homemade mixture by adding:

High-quality components like perlite, pumice, peat moss, etc., will help ensure quick drainage for your plant.

The material required for Homemade Soil Mix with their benefits, drawbacks, and alternatives is shown in the table below.

Materials RequiredBenefitsDrawbacksAlternatives
Peat Moss
  • Provides Proper Moisture

  • Holds Vital Nutrients

  • Provides Aeration

  • Enhances Texture and Consistency
  • Has Acidifying effect

  • Expensive
  • Coconut Coir,Rice Hull, Saw Dust,
    Coconut Coir
  • Doesn't affect pH

  • Retains 30% more water than Peat Moss

  • Sterile and Weed Seed Free

  • improves resistance to root rot diseases
  • Nutrient Deficient compared to Peat Moss

  • Causes potting mix to become compact
  • Compost, Manure. Bark or Pine sawdust
    Perlite
  • Good water drainage capacity

  • Light-weight

  • pH Neutral
  • Can cause loss of water if used in high quantity

  • Light-weight means that it can blow away

  • It's dust can cause eye and nose irrtation
  • Pumice, Vermiculite
    Worm casting
  • Rich in Nutrient Source

  • Loaded with beneficial microbes

  • Add as pH buffer

  • Helps to defend some plant diseases
  • No Major Drawbacks
  • Compost

    However, you can also purchase a commercial soil mix to shorten the process. Here are some of the few recommendations for your Cisscus Discolor:

    Note: Avoid potting mixes that contain compost or bark, since they might lead to gnat infestations.

    6. Liquid Fertilizer

    Fertilizing your Cissus Discolor will help grow your plant luscious and make it seem more vivid.

    Apply a liquid fertilizer and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the greatest results.

    However, if it is your first time fertilizing your Begonia Rex Vine, dilute the fertilizer half strength before applying.

    Similarly, Cissus Discolor is a big feeder of potassium. Potassium aids development and improves drought resistance.

    It is beneficial to fertilize your plant during the growing season, such as summer and spring. During these seasons, fertilizing should be done every 3-4 weeks.

    However, do not fertilize your plant during the colder days of winter.

    Here is a list of 10 Best Fertilizers for Indoor Herbs.

    7. Size, Dormancy, and Growth Rates

    Just like the saying “have patience with all things,” you need to have patience with your Cissus Discolor!

    The plant is a medium grower that reaches 6-8 ft, with spreads of about 0.75-1 foot wide. 

    The plant will look fantastic in a hanging basket and on a trellis, pole, or hoop as a climbing vine.

    During winter days, your Cissus Discolor will go to a dormant state. It is usual for your plant to discolor or have drooping leaves during such a stage.

    Thus, don’t be alarmed! But be sure to continue caring for and loving your plant because, with spring, your plant will be back to its blooming and luscious self!

    Fantastic Foliage

    The foliage of the unique Cissus Discolor is one of the most attractive features.

    The plant is luscious with elongated heart-shaped, velvety leaves of 3 to 6 inches long and 2 to 4 inches broad.

    The leaves have a deep green top side with silvery-white mottling radiating outwards with a burgundy blotch along the veins and margins.

    The fantastic feature of these leaves is the backside! While the upper side of the leave is deep green, the underside of the leaves is gifted with beautiful deep-reddish purple.

    Similarly, the stems and vines of the Rex begonia vine are also reddish or can be burgundy, similar to the undersides of the leaves.

    Tiny Blooms of Cissus Discolor

    Your Cissus Discolor will bloom tiny flowers during the growing season of summer and spring. They bloom bisexual yellow blooms which adorn the vine plant.

    Similarly, the blooms are in beautiful colors ranging from tint of green to pale yellow.

    The tiny blooms of Cissus Discolor. (Source: Flickr)

    They’re about an inch long and grow in bunches from the axils.

    The Cissus Discolor bears inedible publish-black, 14-inch berries non-late summer or early fall.

    8. Potting and Repotting

    While most plants prefer terracotta or plastic pots, your Cissus Discolor likes to be potted in a hanging basket to showcase its beautiful vines and easy maintenance.

    Similarly, you can also modify the plant’s growth by making it support in the trellis.

    Young Cissus Discolor should be repotted every year, while you should repot older plants every two years.

    Here is a step-by-step guide to help you repot your Cissus Discolor:

    • Carefully remove your Cissus Discolor from its previous pot. While removing the plant, you can put gentle pressure on the sides of the plant to loosen the grip of the soil.
    • Lightly massage the roots at the bottom of the plant until they are free from their coils.
    • Choose your new pot with a 1 to 2 inches bigger than the previous pot. Now, fill your new container with fresh potting soil.
    • Gently place your Cissus Discolor in the middle of the contain and pour more potting mix to cover the plant’s roots.
    • Alter the height of the plant by adding/removing soil from beneath it.
    • Lastly, now, water your plant as per the requirement.

    Also Watch,

    9. Average Pruning

    Although Cissus Discolor is a vine plant, it doesn’t require regular pruning.

    It is a low-maintenance plant, and you can trim the plant every two months during summer or spring.

    However, be sure to check your plant every once in a while to discard discolored or dead leaves to avoid pests and diseases.

    Here are a few things to take care of while pruning Beefsteak Begonia.

    • Make sure you do not over-prune the plant. Chop off only 20-25% of the plant.
    • Cut should be made at the base of the leaf, the point in which the leaf and stalk meet.
    • Deadhead only dead, dried, discolored, older foliage and leggy stems.
    • Use sharp materials like pruning shears and scissors to ensure efficient cutting.
    • Always sterilize the instruments while pruning the plant. It helps to prevent the spread of pests and diseases if there are any.

    10. Safe for Humans and Pets

    The biggest pros of having a Cissus Discolor, aka Rex Begonia Vine, is that this plant is toxic-free.

    You can make this plant an acquaintance to your pets as it won’t affect your pet’s health. However, it is still important to mention that animals or children should not consume the plant.

    Propagation of Cissus Discolor: Stem-Cutting

    The propagation for the Rex Begonia Vine is all about options! You can propagate the plant as per your choice and convenience.

    However, as per the convenience of many gardeners, they experience that propagation by cuttings to be the simplest method.

    Before moving to propagation methods, here is a quick list of things you’ll need:

    What you need Requirements for

    Potting Mix


    Provides the right structure and nutrients for plants to grow

    Isopropyl alcohol


    To sterilize sharp pruning scissors or shear

    Rooting Hormone (Optional)


    For quick root development from cuttings

    Steps to Propagate

    • Choose a healthy, mature wood vine and chop it below a leaf node with scissors. Nodes are the plant part capable of producing new growth.
    • Cut the vine into smaller pieces, ensuring each has at least two or three leaves.
    • Then, remove the upper one/two leaves and the lowest leaves.
    • Now, immerse the cutting in your rooting hormone.

    Soil Medium

    • In your potting mix, make a hole to place the cutting. Make sure to bury one node and water it carefully. The potting mix will securely hold your cutting.
    • Then, you can place the cutting in an area with indirect sunlight.
    • You can also use a clear plastic bag to cover your new cuttings. It will aid in the retention of moisture. However, be sure to include openings to enable air circulation.

    Water Medium

    • Place your cutting in a glass of water and change it as per its transparency.
    • After a while, when the roots are generated and about 2 inches long with bud forming, make sure to transplant it.

    Your Cissus Discolor roots in no time. After a month your plant will generate new roots. Once you’re happy with the root’s development, transplant it into your favorable medium.

    Common Problems in Cissus Discolor

    Like any other plant, your Rex Begonia Vine can fall victim to various pest issues and diseases. However, don’t worry! We have the best guideline to locate such problems, symptoms, and solutions!

    1. Pests Infestation

    Whitefly and Mite galls are the most common pests that may invade your Cissus Discolor.

    Whitefly

    The Whitefly is the most occurring pest in your Cissus Discolor among all of the problems. Whiteflies are flying insects with delicate bodies linked to aphids and mealybugs.

    They can be as little as a tenth of an inch in length, have a triangular form, and gather on the undersides of leaves.

    If your Cissus Discolor is infected with Whiteflies, you’ll notice your leaves deforming and wilting. Likewise, you’ll also notice honeydew and black sooty mold fungi in the plant.

    Mite Galls

    Galls are generated by various insects, fungi, mites, viruses, bacteria, and nematodes which hampers the growth of your Cissus Discolor.

    Galls that have begun to develop will continue to form even after the death of insects.

    Mite Galls in the leaf of the plant. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

    Plants are harmed by insects or mites nibbling on them, and their salivary secretions (spit) stimulate plants to produce more typical plant development hormones.

    Similarly, as the gall-forming bug eats and develops inside the gall, the gall continues to expand.

    It is too late to cure galls once they begin to form, here the idiom Prevention is Better than Cure stands correct.

    Solutions

    • One of the easiest ways to eliminate the pests is to spray whiteflies with your watering hose or a spray bottle.
    • You can also remove the pests from your plants with a handheld vacuum every few days.
    • Attempt treating the foliage of your plants with insecticidal soap. Similarly, be sure to spray the underside of the leaves where the pests reside.
    • You can eliminate the eggs of whiteflies by rubbing the leaves with cotton dipped in alcohol.

    Preventive Measures

    • Use sanitary precautions with your cutting tools while propagating your Cissus Discolor.
    • One of the best ways to preclude the invasion of pests is to spray horticultural oil beforehand in the spring for insects or mites.
    • Similarly, it is essential to check your new Cissus Discolor before bringing it to your collection.
    • Inspect your plant more often during the growing season, such as summer.
    • You can also use yellow sticky traps to track the presence of the pests. You should set traps around the plant’s growth tips.
    • Before the infestation starts, mulch your plant with aluminum reflective mulch early in the season. Such action makes it difficult for the whiteflies to choose their host plant.

    Are you bothered by pests? Here’s How to Identify Insect Eggs on Leaves and Treat Pest Infestation.

    2. Diseases Infestation

    The most prevalent conditions your Cissus Discolor might suffer from are edema and root rot.

    Edema

    Edema is a condition that occurs when roots absorb water quicker than the plant can utilize and hence the plant has to outflow it via the leaves.

    As the leaves cannot outflow the water, the excessive water causes cells on the undersides of the leaves to burst.

    The blisters ultimately erupt, forming wart-like corky growths in tan, white, or brown. Similarly, the leaves may become yellow, droop, and fall off as the disease develops.

    Edema is not caused by a disease, bug, or fungus. In fact, it’s a condition usually caused by overwatering or applying the incorrect fertilizer.

    Root Rot

    Root rot is the most prevalent problem with Cissus Discolor. It is a disease impacts the plant residing in wet or damp soil.

    When your plant’s roots are exposed to overwatering, your roots die and decay due to the lack of oxygen.

    Root Rot
    Root Rot (Source: Unsplash)

    Because root rot manifests itself initially beneath the soil, gardeners are sometimes unaware of the problem until it has progressed.

    However, when you see your Ciscuss Discolor suffering from yellow leaves or slow growth, you need to look out for your plant’s roots.

    Solutions

    • You can apply different chemicals such as chloropicrin, methyl bromide, or root inoculant to lower the infection severity.
    • Provide greater airflow for plants by lowering humidity levels.
    • Similarly, you can increase the light flow for the plant by installing fluorescent lights.
    • For root rot, repotting is the best option. Take your Cissus Discolor out of its container, wash over the roots, and repot them in a new container.

    Preventive Measures

    • Ensure that your plant’s container contains drainage holes to discard the excessive water.
    • Before hydrating your plant, always make sure to check your plant’s moisture to avoid overwatering.
    • Ensure your plants get proper ventilation and air circulation, mainly during the hot summer days.
    • Do not water your Cissus Discolor from the overhead, and do not let them dry out or become soggy because it will harm the functioning of the roots.

    FAQs on Cissus Discolor; Rex Begonia Vine

    Why does my Cissus Discolor have Drooping Leaves?

    One of the most common reasons for the drooping of your Cissus Discolor leaves is related to the level of watering.

    Be sure to take a look at your watering schedule and frequency.

    Similarly, low humidity may also be the culprit. Make sure you increase the humidity as stated above for the growth of your Cissus Discolor.

    Why are the Leaves of my Cissus Discolor Yellow?

    Cissus Discolor leaves becoming yellow may be due to underwatering.

    When you place your Cissus Discolor in a bright location, you’ll need to water your plant more. Forgetting such aspects might also lead to other issues, such as stunted inflorescences, little to no growth, and shriveled stem.

    Conclusion

    Cissus Discolor is a lovely climbing plant that would look great in a hanging basket or trained on a trellis.

    This climbing vine is ideal for bright spaces and conservatories that require a splash of color.

    It’s a charming, non-toxic plant that’s well-suited to living in a house. To keep the plant thriving,  you won’t have to put forth a lot of work.

    With the mentioned measures and remedies, your Cissus Discolor will develop in no time. If you have any questions or inquiries, be sure to mention it in the comment box.

    Till then, Happy Gardening and Take Care!

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