Calathea Medallion Plant Care

Having a Calathea Medallion plant added to your collection is sure to mesmerize you during the day. Keep reading to find out why.

Now, don’t confuse the Calathea Medallion with prayer-plants. While it does the same as the prayer plant, it’s not a Maranta. Yes, it does fold up its leaves as if in prayer at night. But what it does in the day is what’s more interesting.

When kept indoors, it presents you with beauty. Depending on how much light it gets, the leaves start to move down or upwards. Interesting, right? So, how do you care for this exotic plant?

Please keep reading to find out as we have all the inside news here.

Calathea Medallion Plant Introduction

calathea medallion plantCalathea Medallion can easily become your favorite houseplant. It’s a low-light plant from the tropics in Brazil. It has green patterns on top of the medallion leaves. Underneath, you notice a burgundy shade revealed at night as it folds up.

Your plant can also have green, intricate patterns or a more purple underside.

Check out the full spectrum of this tropical plant here.

Calathea Medallion care card

Calathea Medallion Plant Care

Calathea Medallion plants are tricky tropical plants to care for. But it’s not impossible to make this plant grow. With some perseverance in creating the right environment, your Calathea plants will definitely thrive.

Here, we have everything you need to know to make your indoor plant happy.

Ideal soil mix

potting mixMedallion plants enjoy permeable soil that is well-drained as most other Calatheas. The potting soil needs to be nutrient-rich. You can mix it with peat moss, perlite, or vermiculite.

If you buy a compact potting mix like African Violet, loosen it up first before use. Other ingredients you can use are charcoal, coco coir, and orchid bark. These amendments will create more space in the soil.

To improve the potting quality, it helps to choose a pot with enough drainage holes. You can layer pebbles at the bottom as well. Also, look at the pot you use as plastic, and ceramic pots do not dry out as fast as terracotta ones.

Watering Needs

The best watering tip is to stick to a watering schedule. Only water your tropical plants when the top layer of about one inch (2.5cm) has dried out. Regularly check the soil’s moisture using your fingers.

Give it good watering without leaving the roots soggy as it can lead to root rot. It’s better to underwater than overwater your medallion plant. And, it’s best not to leave your Medallion Calathea standing in the water.

If you use tap water, leave it to stand overnight first. This will allow the chlorine to evaporate. Use room temperature water to prevent root stress.

Ideal Lighting

plant lighting requirementYour Medallion Calathea needs similar lighting as that of their natural habitat in the tropics. Keep your Calathea in medium to low light without direct sunlight. If placed in the sun, it can suffer leaf burn causing brown edges.

While they can grow in low indirect light, they would thrive best in bright indirect light. So, the most desirable place for your Calathea veitchiana is a place with enough light. If you have a variegated plant, it needs more sunlight to keep the patterns vibrant on the leaves.

A north-facing room or a shaded corner is also a good place for your medallion plant. If you notice dead or brown leaves, you can prune them to help improve your plant’s appearance.

Calathea Roseopicta Medallion Temperature

The ideal temperature for your Calathea Medallion is 65°F – 80°F (18°C – 27°C.)

As an indoor plant, the average room temperature is suitable as well. So keep it protected by placing your plant away from cold drafts and hot sunlight.

The plant is delicate to temperature changes. When they get hot, the leaves curl, and the leaf droops or wilts when too cold.

It’s best to keep your tropical plant away from cold temperatures. When temperatures drop to 60°F (15°C), bring it inside if grown outdoors.

Calathea Medallion Humidity

Most Calathea plants enjoy high humidity levels. Still, you may find the air in your home too dry for your Calathea Medallion plants. If you do notice the leaves drooping or curling, you can follow these tips:

  • Group your Calathea plant with your other indoor plants. It helps create additional moisture for the plant.
  • Another great way is to do misting using distilled water instead of tap water. But do not spray directly onto the leaves to avoid the growth of fungi.
  • Place your Calathea plants on a deep pebble tray. Fill halfway with water to prevent the plant from sitting in it.
  • Using a humidifier with your indoor plants helps keep the air moisture right around 50%.

Calathea Medallion Fertilizer

During the growing season (spring and summer), feed your houseplant fertilizer every four weeks to your calathea plant. Dilute it to half strength to avoid overfeeding as it can become leggy or suffer from root burn.

Do not feed your Calathea in the winter months as your plant becomes dormant and needs no feeding. Instead, you can flush the soil to get rid of the mineral salt buildup. You can take your plant to the sink and pour water through the soil for three minutes.

Leave your plant to drain out the water and place it back where you keep your Medallion. Then, you can resume feeding after a couple of weeks.


The great thing about these tropical plants is you can multiply them. You do this by dividing the Calathea plants’ roots (rhizomes) early in their growing season.

You can use a cutting or seeds for propagation, but these methods aren’t the easy way.

Rhizome Division Method

rhizome division propagation

  1. Remove your Calathea plant from the container.
  2. Take a sharp, sterilized knife and cut the tuber, leaving one or two stems with roots attached.
  3. Use the appropriate potting mix and repot them in a new plant pot separated.
  4. Keep your plant warm with the soil moist, closing it with plastic.
  5. Do not place it in direct sunlight and mist daily until you notice new growth.

Growth Zone

You can grow your Calathea Medallion as an outdoor plant if you’re living in US Hardiness Zones 8 and up. The best growing zones are between 9 to 11. For growing outside, the weather needs to be humid and warm.

When grown indoors, they seldom flower but do have vivid colors on the leaves.


The good news is that Calathea rarely needs transplanting. You can do this once a year. Sometimes they can remain in the same pot for up to two years.

The best time to do repotting is before the growing season. Doing this provides your Calathea Medallion with fresh soil and allows the roots to have more room for growth. Here’s how to do repotting:

  1. Remove the Calathea from the pot.
  2. Shake the dirt off the roots and run it under the water.
  3. Now is the best time to check the plant roots for diseases and trim them as needed.
  4. Take a new two-inch pot (5cm) wider than your current one.
  5. Fill one-third with fresh soil and place the plant at the same height as the previous container.
  6. Please fill up the remaining space and press it down but be gentle.
  7. Water the well and place it in the same location as before.

If you decide to use the same container, wash it with soapy water. Remove one-third of the roots to provide them with room to grow.

Calathea Medallion Varieties and Similar Plants

The Calathea Medallion is one of the popular tropical plants. But you can find some other similar ones to keep in your home.

calathea ornata plantPinstripe plant or Calathea ornata has large dark glossy green leaves with striking pink or white stripes. Some growers refer to it as the Pinstripe Calathea, an evergreen perennial plant. The tropic plant livens up any office or living space.

calathea lancifolia plantThe rattlesnake plant or the Calathea lancifolia is another beautiful houseplant. It has pointed leaves decorated with green patterns in dark/light resemblance. The lance-shaped leaf is its main attraction, with a dark shade on top and purple on the underside.

calathea zebrina plant The zebra plant known as the Calathea zebrina is an eye-catcher in your home. The bright velvety foliage has stripes in bright hues of green and black making it magnificent to look at.

Calathea Medallion Diseases & Pests

Common problems with your Calathea Medallion are aphids, mealybugs, and spider mites. Inspect your houseplant under its leaves to spot them.

Pest Problems

Insects like to visit your Calathea Medallion, especially spider mites which are difficult to see. The pests like to destroy the stem and leaves, causing them to shrivel. Make sure to check the underside of leaves for signs of white dust.

To remove the creepy crawlies, you can give your plant a rinse with water using a hose. You can then gently rub the leaves off with soap and water.


When the soil has not had enough drainage, it leads to a build-up of water. This in turn causes root rot. As a result, you may notice the base of the plant becoming mushy and producing a foul odor. That’s a sign that the roots are getting rotten.

Avoid this from happening by making sure the soil is dry before watering again.

Crispy Brown Edges or Yellow Leaves

The above can mean many things in your Calatheas. So, it will take trial and error to find out. First, look if the soil is soggy or make sure it is not in direct sunlight. Then, check how you fertilize the plant and do it in the growing season at four weeks intervals.

Frequently Asked Questions

It is a sign that your Calathea Medallion is thirsty. You might not be watering it enough or there may be poor humidity. Please give it a good watering using distilled water and a regular misting around.

Another reason may be due to the chemicals incorporated in the tap water if you’re using one. Chlorine and fluorine can normally cause toxicity in plants.

It is the first sign that your plant is in distress. Check your:

  • Watering schedule,
  • Presence of Infestations
  • And move your plant to a warmer area if not getting enough light

A common reason for this to happen is the water quality your plants receiving. Another reason can be the humidity level, or it can be from pests on the leaves. So you need to check how often you water, what water you use, and make sure there is enough humidity in the room. When looking at these and adjusting them should help your plant thrive.

Great, you’re interested in getting the Medallion Calathea for your home. The excellent news is there is no need to go hunting online for one. Instead, you can choose your exotic plant here with us. Make sure to check out our other collections on Plantly as well.

Whether you want to buy, sell or simply reach out to other plant enthusiasts, Plantly is the right place to be!

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