Anthurium magnificum (an-THUR-ee-um mag-NIH-fee-kum) is an especially gorgeous aroid member of the Araceae family of plants, part of the Anthurium genus.
This genus consists of about a thousand species of flowering, epiphytic perennial plants hailing from the Columbian rainforests.
Dr. Thomas B. Croat, Ph.D., identified and introduced the plant in 1865. Anthurium magnificum’s botanical name means “Magnificent Flower Tail,” which explains some of the plants’ common names.
Among them are:
- Lace Leaf
- Velvet Plant
- Flamingo Lily
- Flamingo Flower
- Velvety Anthurium
All types of Anthurium produce flowers, but most are valued for their attractive foliage. The “Magnificent Flower Tail” is certainly one of these. The plant’s foliage is large, dramatic, and colorful, which definitely outshines its blooms.
- Anthurium Magnificum: Discover This Amazing Aroid!
- Anthurium Magnificum Care
- How To Propagate Tailflower Plant
- Velvet Plant Pest or Disease Problems
- Anthurium Magnificum Suggested Uses
Anthurium Magnificum: Discover This Amazing Aroid!
Anthurium Magnificum Care
Size and Growth
Anthurium magnificum has an erect, upright growth habit. The plant typically grows about 3’or 4’feet high with a spread of 1’or 2’feet. A very happy Velvety Anthurium can grow to be five feet high.
The plants’ gorgeous leaves may attain a length and width of two or three feet.
The plants’ size is one of its most important identifying factors. Although it looks quite a bit like Anthurium clarinervium and Anthurium crystallinum, it is much bigger, and its leaves are quite a bit larger and have more of an elephant ear shape.
Flowering and Fragrance
It is unusual for Tailflower to bloom indoors. In its natural habitat, Anthurium magnificum blooms during the spring and summer. The long-lasting scape, or flower stalk, stands high above the foliage.
The actual flowers are tiny and difficult to see. They come in white, green, or yellow and are arranged in rows on a long slender spadix or spike.
When pollinated, the tiny flowers transition into globose berries as their fruit. The fully fruited spike looks like a long, slim ear of corn.
The spathe (leaf-like wrapper of the spadix) is positioned at a right angle to the spadix. It is usually flat, occasionally hooded, and can be erect, spreading, or reflexed. It has deep veins and does not overlap at the base.
The velvet plant is an incredible aroid boasting large leaves, reaching 18″ to 24″ inches long and 20″ inches wide when fully mature.
As the leaves age, they develop a sturdy, leathery texture with a velvety surface. Young leaves are a vibrant burgundy color.
As the leaves age, they transition through several shades of burgundy and dark green. Fully mature leaves are deep, velvety green with burgundy undertones and striking white veins.
Light and Temperature
Tropical, forest floor dwelling Velvety Anthurium likes a consistently warm setting with bright indirect light. These plants are adaptable and can be placed in various rooms of your house, including bathrooms with generous indirect natural light sources.
South or west-facing windows provide ideal lighting conditions; don‘t place your Flamingo Lily too close to the window or in direct sunlight. Set it back a couple of feet to protect it against the harsh rays of the direct sun.
A little distance from the window can also help prevent chills in the winter. Anthurium magnificum is native to the rainforests of Colombia and prefers temperatures ranging from 65° to 85° degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures below 50° degrees Fahrenheit will cause damage.
Lace Leaf Plant is winter hardy in USDA hardiness zones 9 through 11; however, even in these warm climates, it should be brought indoors during the cooler months to protect it against harsh winter weather.
By the same token, very harsh, hot sunlight will also cause damage, so remember to provide your Anthurium magnificum with dappled shade if it spends time outdoors in the summertime.
Watering and Feeding
Anthuriums are particular about their watering needs and prefer rainwater, purified, or distilled water.
It’s best to keep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged, as excess water can result in rotting. So ensure there are adequate drainage holes to avoid root rot.
During the growing season (typically March through September), thoroughly water your Flamingo Lily when the top 1″ to 2″ inches of soil are dry.
Reduce watering during the winter months when your plant is dormant. A moderate monthly watering should be enough to keep your Tailflower content during this time of rest.
During the growing season, your Velvet Plant will need humidity levels between 55% and 60% percent. During the plants’ dormant time, 50% humidity levels are fine.
It’s best to supplement humidity using a humidifier or pebble tray rather than misting, which can leave water spots on the leaves and may attract pests and fungal growth.
Flamingo Flower is not a heavy feeder. While not necessary, a balanced general-purpose, high-quality organic or natural fertilizer can be used monthly at 50% strength from spring through fall.
A natural, slow-release product such as fish emulsion is a good choice. Avoid chemical fertilizers because these plants tend to be sensitive to salt buildup.
During the summer, when your Anthurium is actively growing, fertilize outdoor plants monthly with a high-phosphorus fertilizer if you wish to encourage blooms.
Potting Mixes and Transplanting
Anthurium magnificum thrives in a loose, well-draining, soilless potting mix. An ideal mixture includes sphagnum moss or peat with plenty of chunky perlite, charcoal, or vermiculite. You may also wish to throw in a little coarse gravel or pebbles to help with drainage.
Your goal is to create a soilless mixture (with a neutral pH level) that allows excess water to flow through quickly and retains enough moisture to nourish and hydrate the roots.
As epiphytic plants, many Anthuriums naturally grow roots that extend beyond the pot. Anthurium magnificum tends to have lots of roots along its stalk or trunk. The presence of roots does not indicate that your Flamingo Flower needs to be repotted.
Repotting is only necessary every 2-3 years when the plant becomes noticeably pot-bound. If the container develops cracks or bulges, it’s a sure sign it’s time to repot. Likewise, if the potting medium just doesn’t retain any moisture, it’s time to repot.
Spring or early summer is the best time for repotting. Choose a pot 1 or 1.5 sizes larger than the plants’ existing pot to minimize stress. Be sure the container you choose has plenty of drainage holes.
Anthuriums benefit from higher humidity levels, so using tanks, terrariums, or humidifiers for small, immature plants can be beneficial.
Grooming and Maintenance
Wipe down your Velvet Plants’ leaves periodically to remove dust. You can use a soft cloth soaked in a mild Neem oil mixture if you wish. This will impart a bit of a shine and discourage pests.
Prune away dead and damaged leaves as needed.
How To Propagate Tailflower Plant
As seen in this video, Anthurium magnificum can be propagated by dividing new plants from the mother plant at the root level, as long as they have a few leaves.
Propagation of Anthurium Plant
Root division is another option:
- Carefully remove the plant from the pot.
- Dust off and wash the roots to separate them.
- Remove some roots and dry them thoroughly.
- Plant the roots in a well-draining soil mix and water when dry.
- You should see new growth in a few weeks.
Another method involves dividing and cutting below nodes on the stalk as a top cutting, but this method is more challenging and has a lower success rate.
If you wish to try it, follow these steps:
- Obtain a plant cutting with at least two nodes, 2″ to 4″ inches long.
- Apply fungicide to the cut end and rooting hormone to aid healing.
- Plant the cutting in fresh soilless planting mix and water it.
- Cover the pot with a plastic sheet for moisture.
- Keep the cutting in a warm shaded spot with gentle sunlight.
- Water sparingly to avoid soggy soil.
- Roots will appear in a few weeks, and you can transfer the cutting to a regular pot.
With practice and some risk, you can grow multiple cloned Anthuriums from stem chunks and nodes.
The presenter of this video demonstrates propagating Anthurium magnificum using this method and the air-layering method.
Anthurium Magnificum Care and Propagation
If you do not have a mature plant to gather stem cuttings, create divisions, or clone, you may be able to purchase seed.
If your plant blooms and the tiny blooms are pollinated, you can grow a Tailflower plant from seed:
- Extract seeds from your plants’ berries.
- Treat the seeds with fungicide for protection.
- Layer a seed starting tray with moist peat moss and sand.
- Place seeds on the peat moss and sand mixture and spray gently with water.
- Cover the tray with plastic sheeting and place it in a warm setting with bright, indirect sunlight.
If the seeds are viable, they should germinate in a couple of weeks, and you can transfer them into larger containers of the peat moss and sand mixture.
When they develop a healthy root system, transplant them into a soilless mixture and care for them as mature plants.
Harvesting Your Own Anthurium Magnificum Seeds
If you want to be able to gather seeds from your plant (on the off chance it blooms), remember these plants are not self-pollinating. If your plant is indoors with no pollinators to help out, you will need to lend a helping hand.
To do this, you must be able to identify the pollen and receptive female flowers.
As demonstrated in this video, you can gather the pollen with your fingertips or a soft brush and deliver it to the female flowers.
You’ll need to repeat the process several times for the best results.
Velvet Plant Pest or Disease Problems
Like many other plants, anthuriums can be susceptible to aphids, mealybugs, thrips, and red spider mites. It’s advisable to isolate new plants for a few weeks to monitor for pests.
Treat infestation with neem oil spray or insecticidal soap as needed.
Overwatering or poor drainage can cause problems with fungal and bacterial infections.
Yellowing leaves can be an early indication of this problem. Be sure to water correctly and always use well-draining substrates in containers that provide good drainage.
Watch out for scorched spots and dry, crumbly leaves in the summertime. This is a sign of too much sun, heat, and/or wind. Adjust your care practices to protect your plant from the sun and wind.
Bacterial blight is caused by the bacteria Xanthomonas, a destructive plant disease. The initial symptoms include:
- Water-soaked lesions on the leaves, petioles, and stems
- Wilting and browning of leaves
- Rotting of the plant parts.
The disease spreads rapidly under humid and warm conditions.
- Keep the foliage of the plant dry and provide good air circulation.
- Prune and remove infected plant parts to prevent further spread.
- Use disease-free plant material for propagation
- Applying bactericides is recommended
- In severe cases, discard the anthurium plant to save the surrounding plants.
Is Magnificum Considered Toxic or Poisonous to People, Kids, and Pets?
Anthurium magnificum is considered toxic if large quantities are eaten. It can cause severe pain in the mouth if ingested and minor skin irritation. All parts of the plant are poisonous and contain calcium oxalate crystals.
Be sure to wear gloves and eye protection when pruning, repotting, and handling your Velvet Plant because contact with the sap can cause contact dermatitis and irritation to the skin and eyes.
Is Magnificum Considered Invasive?
Anthurium magnificum is not considered an invasive plant.
Anthurium Magnificum Suggested Uses
Although the Tailflower plant can be grown outdoors in USDA hardiness zones 9-11, it is best to keep it as a container plant that can be brought inside during winter.
This rainforest floor dweller is sensitive to harsh weather conditions unless grown in a sheltered setting with protection against rain, wind, and sun that is naturally provided in deep forest settings.
During the spring and summer, if your weather is consistently warm, you can enjoy your plant on a covered porch, in a sheltered patio setting, or in an area that gives it the protection and shelter a solid fence or wall provides.
Young plants are commonly used as houseplants. Mature plants need a setting that provides plenty of room to grow. This large, dramatic plant is an excellent addition to a greenhouse or sunroom. Velvet Anthuriums’ remarkable appearance in your home makes it an impressive showpiece.
With its striking foliage and occasional showy blooms, Anthurium magnificum is, indeed, a stunning beauty that makes an eye-catching addition to any indoor plant collection.