Purple Waffle Plant: How To Grow and Care for Hemigraphis Alternata

Waffle Plants are colorful, happy in most home environments and only a little bit fussy. Learn how to care for this beautiful plant!

The Waffle Plant (Hemigraphis alternata) is a climbing plant native to Indonesia and New Guinea. It gets its name from its puckered leaves which range from a deep green to a metallic gray/purple with purplish red undersides.

Waffle plants do flower once a year but they are insignificant and can be removed. The plant’s growth habit includes the tendency for the sides of the leaves to curl slightly, providing a beautiful contrast between the deep green top and purplish red underside.

Care for Waffle Plant

Waffle Plants do well in hanging baskets and prefer bright light but little to no direct sun. They prefer temps between 60-70F and high humidity.

Keep soil moist at all times and in hot, dry weather use a humidity tray or mist regularly. Plants grow to a height of up to 2ft and are fast growing.

Repotting at the beginning of each growing season is recommended. Use a high quality potting soil, African Violet mix or an even mix of peat and vermiculite.

Water liberally during the growing season but in the winter months when it goes dormant only water enough to keep the soil mix from completely drying out. They tend to get leggy with age and can either be pruned back or discarded after stem cuttings are taken. Water with warm water and avoid getting the leaves wet to avoid stains. When misting use distilled water.

Propagation

Waffle Plants are easy to propagate via stem cuttings. Root in water and then transplant into soil.

Pests

Waffle Plants are not bothered by most pests.

Disease

Waffle Plants are not prone to disease but the leaves will quickly brown and fall off if the plant is allowed to dry out completely. The soil should be kept moist but not wet at all times during the growing season to avoid this.

Safety

Waffle Plants are not toxic to cats or dogs but may cause minor skin irritation to humans when handled. Wash hands well after handling the plant.

Uses

Waffle Plant does well as a hanging or container plant and also outdoors as a groundcover. Some fish enthusiasts add it to their aquariums although it is not a true aquatic plant and as a result is short lived underwater.

Waffle Plants are attractive houseplants that will flourish in most environments as long as they are watered regularly and kept out of direct sunlight. They make an excellent addition to any houseplant collection.

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