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25 Amazing Spathoglottis Plicata Indoor Care Ideas

Spathoglottis Plicata is popular among plant collectors because it’s tropical, easy to care for, and distinctly attractive!

This post will discuss this plant’s requirements, origin, and growth behavior to help you take care of yours! Ready to bring a Spathoglottis Plicata home? Check out the purchasing options we’ve listed below.

What Is Spathoglottis Plicata?

Spathoglottis Plicata, commonly known as Philippine Ground Orchid, Large Purple Orchid, and Ground Orchid, is popular among plant lovers for its showy flowers.

The Plicata are tropical orchids that cannot survive frost as they are warm-loving plants. They are terrestrial orchids ideal to be planted in ground beds in tropical gardens. However, they can also be cultivated in pots, given enough sun and moisture.

It is recommended to place this tropical near a south-facing window to flourish indoors.

Origin And Family

The Philippine Ground Orchid belongs to the Spathoglottis genus in the Orchidaceae family. It comes from the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Guinea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Tonga, and Samoa’s swampy regions, seepages, small streams, and other moist areas. This plant has become popular in recent years, thriving in most households with high humidity.

Carl Ludwig Blume first described the Philippine Ground Orchid in 1825. It produces medium magenta flowers with yellow and pink markings from early spring to summer.

Where To Buy

Spathoglottis Plicatas are relatively affordable, with prices ranging from $25 for small plants to $80+ for larger or more mature plants.

The Spathoglottis Plicata is available for sale on Etsy, which is one of the most reliable sites when purchasing plants online. We buy most of our indoor plants here at this point.

Spathoglottis Plicata Plant Size

Indoors, the Spathoglottis Plicata reaches a height of 15-20 inches. This Spathoglottis grows at a fast rate and beautifully thrives when placed near a south-facing window.

Spathoglottis Plicata Care Needs

Most plants are easy to grow with the proper care, including Spathoglottis orchids.

Known for its showy flowers, it prefers humidity and evenly moist soil.

When watering this Plicata, give it a drink when its growing media’s top layer is dry to the touch or when its leaves and roots feel thin, dry, and appear discolored. Like most plants, you want suitable drainage holes in your plastic, terracotta, or clay pot.

Read on for more Spathoglottis Plicata details.

Care Difficulty

The Large Purple Orchid is often regarded as easy-to-care-for. If you are serious about successfully growing this plant, ensure it gets the proper water and well-draining soil.

Growth Rate

When grown indoors, the Ground Orchid plant grows to a height of 15-20 inches, and it grows the fastest during spring.

Most Spathoglottis species, including the Plicata, have a fast-growing speed.


This Plicata plant wants good drainage, and a large-sized plastic, terracotta, or clay pot works fine.

Water the plant when the growing media’s top layer is dry to the touch or when its leaves and roots feel thin, dry, and appear discolored. Drainage holes are a must for the Philippine Ground Orchids.


Repotting isn’t necessary if you’re growing Spathoglottis Plicata in a terrestrial environment. For potted Spathoglottis Plicata, potting should be done when the soil has become depleted or in about 2-3 years. When this happens, you can transfer the plant into a bigger pot. This plant has an extensive root system that adapts quicker when planted on the substrate.


For the Large Purple Orchid, orchid potting soil is a suitable choice. Add components such as orchid mix, a soilless potting mix, garden loam, and peat moss to make your soil mix. Remember that this plant prefers an evenly moist growing medium and well-drained soil.

Make sure you choose a soil type that accommodates aeration and good drainage so the roots can breathe well.

We suggest the following potting mixes:

Photo Title Price Buy
Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting...image Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting Mix 6 qt., Grows beautiful Houseplants, 2-Pack $13.37 ($0.03 / Ounce)
Burpee, 9 Quarts...image Burpee, 9 Quarts | Premium Organic Potting Natural Soil Mix Food Ideal for Container Garden-Vegetable, Flower & Herb Use for Indoor Outdoor Plant $12.99 ($0.04 / Ounce)
Sun Gro Horticulture...image Sun Gro Horticulture 8-Quart Black Gold 1310102 Purpose Potting Soil With Control, Brown/A $16.28 ($0.06 / Fl Oz)
Miracle-Gro Potting Mix,...image Miracle-Gro Potting Mix, Potting Soil for Outdoor and Indoor Plants, Enriched with Plant Food, 2 cu. ft. $34.26
FoxFarm Ocean Forest...image FoxFarm Ocean Forest Potting Soil Mix Indoor Outdoor for Garden and Plants | Plant Fertilizer | 12 Quarts | The Hydroponic City Stake $23.99 ($0.06 / Fl Oz)


For the Ground Orchid, you’ll want your soil to have a pH of roughly 6.0-7.5. This range is deemed neutral to acidic, and since orchid potting soil has an acidity level that is close to the optimal range, it shouldn’t be a major concern.

If you want to examine your soil’s pH value, there are several affordable options online for pH meters.

If necessary, add a pinch of baking soda, calcitic lime, dolomitic lime, or wood ash to boost the soil’s pH. Alternatively, sulfur or aluminum sulfate can be used to lower it.


Philippine Ground Orchid is a humidity-loving plant that needs evenly moist soil throughout the year.

During the spring, they prefer some heavy watering. Water your plant when it feels thin, dry, and discolored. Drench the soil until it drains out the hole at the bottom of the plastic, terracotta, or clay pot. If you’re using a collection tray, toss the water to fend off root rot.

When grown in a protected environment, water the plant twice a week and increase the frequency in warm or breezy areas for best results.

In the winter, you won’t need to water as much. Continue to water your plants deeply but do it less frequently.


You’ll want to simulate the natural habitat of Spathoglottis Plicata, which would be the swampy regions, seepages, small streams, and other moist areas in Asia and the Pacific Islands.

These terrestrial plants can tolerate full sun to partial shade and thrive under light shade conditions as long as they receive direct sunlight for a few hours daily.

You can also place this plant near a south-facing window.

On the contrary, if this plant doesn’t get enough light, its leaves may droop.


Large Purple Orchids are heavy feeders and require regular fertilization. Use a slow-release fertilizer every 4-6 months during its growing season in the spring to give them some extra nutrients and boost.

Here are some plant food options you can use:

Photo Title Price Buy
Fiddle Leaf Fig...image Fiddle Leaf Fig Slow-Release Fertilizer by Perfect Plants - Resealable 5oz. Bag - Consistent Nutrient Enrichment - for Indoor and Outdoor Use on All Ficus Varieties $9.95 ($1.99 / Ounce)
Osmocote Smart-Release Plant...image Osmocote Smart-Release Plant Food Plus Outdoor & Indoor, 8 lb. $31.84 ($0.25 / Ounce)
EcoScraps Slow-Release Fertilizer,...image EcoScraps Slow-Release Fertilizer, Made with Recycled Nutrients and Organic Matter, Covers up to 2,500 sq. ft., 45 lbs. $16.99 ($0.02 / Ounce)
Osmocote 14-14-14 Classic...image Osmocote 14-14-14 Classic Slow Release Fertilizer - 50 Lbs.
Osmocote Fertilizer 15-9-12,...image Osmocote Fertilizer 15-9-12, Slow Release 3-4 Months, 50lbs. Bag $170.44 ($0.21 / Ounce)

When growth naturally slows down in the wintertime, you only need to fertilize twice a month.

Avoid supplying fertilizers to your Philippine Ground Orchid, as it may severely damage or even kill it.

Propagating Spathoglottis Plicata

Perhaps you’re impatient to see your Purple Ground Orchid sprout new leaves. One planting technique is to prune back the stem to encourage new growing points. Usually, the cuttings you’ve pruned back can propagate so that you can produce a new baby plant!


Ground orchids can be propagated through a process called division. While this method is used for vegetables with typical bulbs, stolons, rhizomes, tubers, and suckers, it can also be applied to houseplants with stems that grow in clumps.

1. Dig up. Take your Philippine Ground Orchid out of its pot. Remember, when handling plants and soil, wear gardening gloves.

2. Separate. Gently pull apart where the roots and stems spontaneously separate using your fingers. Cut the roots where the sections connect.

3. Repot. Put each section of your Spathoglottis Plicata in new pots that are filled with the same soil as before.

Humidity And Aeration

Spathoglottis Plicata is a popular plant that loves high humidity. Keep the humidity level between 60%-70% at all times.

Use a simple hygrometer to check the air moisture level in your S. Plicata area. If the reading is too low, you can improve the humidity through the following methods:

• Plants release moisture from their leaves through the process of transpiration, so they’ll benefit from each other if you keep houseplants closely together.

• Place a flat tray of pebbles and water underneath your plant’s pot. The evaporating water provides some nourishment to the plant.

• Purchase a humidifier for your plants. This will constantly release steam and raise the humidity in a room.


The ideal temperature for your Ground Orchid is between 60-90 degrees Fahrenheit, and this tropical houseplant loves being kept in warm locations.

More importantly, watch out for any unexpected temperature increases or decreases. Never use hot or cold water to water your Ground Orchid so its roots won’t go into shock.


Most plants will typically bloom only when exposed to the natural elements. Nonetheless, your Philippine Ground Orchid blooms naturally even after just six months of planting, and it will produce attractive purple flowers with yellow and pink markings from spring to summer.


Large Purple Orchids won’t poison children and pets. According to the ASPCA, ingesting it will not hurt dogs or cats, and there are no toxic components in the plant.

Toxic To Pets? Care Specifics
Botanical Name Spathoglottis Plicata
Common Name Philippine Ground Orchid, Large Purple Orchid, Ground Orchid
Plant Family Orchidaceae
Origin the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Guinea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Tonga and Samoa
Plant Type perennial
Leaf Shape strap-like
Leaf Color light-green and pleated
Recommended Home Placement near a south-facing window
Growth Rate fast
Light full sun to light shade
Soil orchid potting soil
When To Water Water When the growing media’s top layer is dry to touch or when its leaves and roots feel thin, dry, and appear discolored.
When To Fertilize every 4-6 months during growing season
Preferred pH 6.0-7.5
Humidity Range 60%-70%
Toxic To Pets? No
Common Pests & Diseases spider mites, brown tips, fungus gnuts, yellow leabes, root rot, mealy bugs, drooping leaves

Pests, Diseases, And Other Problems

Spathoglottis Plicata is a plant resistant to several bugs, issues, and diseases. In the sections below, I’ll lay out some of the common problems for Spathoglottis Plicata, as well as some tips and tricks for treating them.

Spider Mites

Unfortunately, spider mites are widespread, and Ground Orchid is particularly vulnerable. Spider mite damage appears on the plant’s leaves as tiny brown or yellow patches. You might also see fine silk webbing when the infestation is severe.

Start by spraying your Ground Orchid with water from a sink nozzle or a pressure sprayer. This dislodges the spider mites from the plant. If the first method fails, an organic pyrethrin spray will serve you well.

If you desire a more organic approach, releasing ladybugs in your indoor growing space can aid in reducing spider mite populations. There’s also a beetle known as the “Spider Mite Destroyer,” which may be challenging to acquire, but the name speaks for itself!

Fungus Gnats

Plant roots are consumed by fungus gnat larvae, not the fungus gnats themselves. Your Philippine Ground Orchid is especially at risk since it prefers evenly damp soil since these pests love moisture.

Fungus gnats are well-named for their propensity to bring fungal illnesses to your plant in addition to sucking the nutrients from the roots. To catch these bugs as they fly and to identify their emergence and place yellow sticky traps.

Another option is to use a cider-vinegar trap to entice gnats. Add a dash of liquid soap to the cup along with equal parts water and apple cider vinegar to act as an emulsifier. Watch these bothersome insects drown by setting the trap next to the affected plant.


Mealybugs are white, fuzzy insects that suck the nutrients from plants and are the botanical equivalent of head lice on humans. These pests can stunt plant growth or even kill your bedding plants.

To send these nasty crawlers packing, you can directly spray them with neem oil (but remember to dilute it in water first). Another option is to take a cotton ball, soak it in Isopropyl alcohol, and rub it over the leaves and stem.

If you have several houseplants, you may need to quarantine your infected Ground Orchid until there are no more signs of mealybugs.

Brown Leaf Tips

Browning edges on your Spathoglottis Garden Orchids leaves can be triggered by many factors. Possible causes are lack of humidity, excessive exposure to bright light, salt and mineral build-up from chemically-treated tap water, and fertilizer burn.

Drooping Leaves

A wilting, droopy appearance on your Spathoglottis Plicata indicates distress. Possible causes of drooping leaves are overwatering, underwatering, excessive light exposure, lack of light, and low humidity.

Yellow Leaves

Sometimes, you may see yellow leaves on your Large Purple Orchid, which can signify trouble. Factors that cause this problem are moisture stress, improper lighting, insect infestations, bacterial or viral infections, inconsistent temperatures, and many others.

To narrow down the problem, you must consider recent weather changes or how you care for your plant.

Root Rot

A typical cause of death for the Ground Orchid is root rot, which occurs when you overwater your plant. Remember that you should water when the growing media’s top layer is dry to the touch or when its leaves and roots feel thin, dry, and appear discolored.

Poor drainage is another source of root rot, and this Spathoglottis needs orchid potting soil that drains well.

When choosing a pot for your plant, ensure there are drainage holes to allow excess water to flow through. Clay pots and unglazed ceramic planters can also help absorb moisture from the soil and slowly release it into the air.

Similar Blogs

Want to learn more about orchid care? Here are other articles to read:

Did you know you can grow orchids in water? Read this blog: and find out how.

Repotting orchids with air roots? Here’s our guide:.

Curious if orchids are poisonous to cats? Check out this article:.

Want to buy your first orchid? Here are 23 of the best places to buy orchids online:.


The Spathoglottis Plicata, with its showy flowers, is a terrific addition to any plant lover’s collection.

Whether you’re just starting as an indoor gardener or a long-time hobbyist learning more about this particular plant, we hope you’ve learned some helpful tips to grow your Spathoglottis Plicata successfully!

Help us grow! This post contains affiliate links, which means we receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something recommended. All opinions, however, are our own, and we do not accept payments for positive reviews.

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