Who can look at Anthurium Crystallinum or Anthurium Clarinervium without surprise? Those thick silver veins on the large green leaves look amazing. My first encounter with them was a few years ago and I remember then it was hard to take my eyes off them.
Let’s figure out the difference between the two once and for all. I will also tell you what they have in common.
Anthurium crystallinum is native to the jungles of central and southern America. This is why we can’t grow it outside.
Anthurium clarinervium on the other hand is common in Mexico, where the climate is closer to the US climate. But still, it is recommended to grow only as an indoor plant.
|Anthurium crystallinum||Anthurium clarinervium|
|Mature height||30” (0.75 m)||25” (0.65 m)|
|Mature width||15” (0.4 m)||15” (0.4 m)|
|Light exposure||indirect, bright||indirect, bright|
|Watering||2 times per week||2 times per week|
|Pests||insects, mites||insects, mites|
Leaves have some differences
Although at first glance, the leaves of these two plants are similar, but for an experienced botanist, the difference will be noticeable.
The first is that Anthurium crystallinum has thinner leaves that are easier to damage. At the same time, Anthurium clarinervium has thicker (leathery) leaves and they are a bit more robust. As a result, the silver vein pattern is more textured in Anthurium crystallinum than in its competitor.
Both of these Anthuriums have heart-shaped leaves. But Anthurium clarinervium’s heart-shape is more prominent. Wheres Anthurium crystallinum has more elongated leaves.
The next thing is that the color of the leaves of Anthurium crystallinum is a little brighter whereas Anthurium clarinervium is a little darker. As a result, the pattern on the Anthurium crystallinum is a little more vivid.
Anthurium clarinervium grows slower
Both of these plants are about the same size. In nature, they can be larger, but in the room, they are usually no taller than 30 inches. (Anthurium clarinervium is slightly smaller). And they grow up to 15 to 20 inches wide.
But what sets them apart is their growth rate. Anthurium crystallinum grows noticeably faster than Anthurium clarinervium. Under the same conditions, Anthurium crystallinum will grow to its maximum size several times faster than its competitor.
Anthurium crystallinum also has more buds and aerial roots. Accordingly, it is denser and multiplies faster. This means that if you want a plant that grows fast and can be propagated quickly, you should choose Anthurium crystallinum.
The slow growth and slow propagation of Anthurium clarinervium have some other consequences. It is a little more difficult to get this plant in your collection. It is also usually more expensive than Anthurium crystallinum.
Their berries have different colors
The next indicator by which the Anthurium species is identified is the color of the berries.
In the beginning, Anthurium crystallinum berries are white, but as they mature, they turn purple. At the same time, the mature Anthurium clarinervium berries are orange.
The second difference is that Anthurium clarinervium berries are larger because they contain several seeds. Whereas the berries of Anthurium crystallinum have only one seed each.
Lastly, Anthurium clarinervium blooms more often and with more flowers. That is, it produces more seeds than its competitor. This is the reason for the slow growth of this species.
In Anthurium crystallinum the vegetative way of reproduction prevails and in Anthurium clarinervium the generative way.
Both of these Anthuriums have approximately the same requirements for soil.
The first is that the soil must be well-drained. These are the conditions under which these plants grow in the jungle. Their roots spread in the upper layer of soil where water is not trapped or they are attached to the bark of large trees.
Secondly, the soil must be loose. In heavy clay soil, Anthurium will be difficult to grow and root rot can occur.
As the topsoil in which Anthuriums naturally grow contains a lot of undecomposed plant residues, the acidity of this type of soil is quite high. As a result, these plants need slightly acidic soil (pH 5.5-6.8).
To get soil that meets all requirements you should take 50% sphagnum moss and add 25% perlite and 25% bark. The moss will provide sponginess, the perlite will hold the necessary amount of moisture and the bark will make the substrate a bit more acidic.
You can also go the easy way and buy orchid growing soil. It works well too and you don’t have to bother with anything.
The Anthurium also has special requirements for lighting. As I said, this plant grows under large trees, so it does not get direct sunlight. But this does not mean that it can be placed in total shade. The canopy of tropical trees provides enough light to photosynthesize the Anthurium.
To achieve the optimum balance of light, you should never place either Anthurium crystallinum or Anthurium clarinervium in direct sunlight. That is, do not place it in front of a south-facing window.
It is better to place it at the side of a sunny window. You can also place it in front of an east or west window. The main thing is to give the plants at least six hours of indirect light.
The north windows of the house may be a little unsuitable for Anthurium depending on the climate zone in which you live. If there is a lack of light, you will need to install backlighting.
Watering is also the same for both of these varieties.
They need more water when they are actively growing (from spring to fall). During this time, they should be watered once or twice a week. If the summer is very hot or you live in the south of the country, you might even need to water three times a week.
In general, Anthuriums grow in such conditions that when there is no rain the substrate dries out by almost a quarter. You should do the same with your potted Anthurium. Check the moisture content of the substrate with your fingers or a moisture meter and if it is 25 percent dry, you need to water the plant.
Watering too often will lead to root rot. To avoid this you should use pots with drainage holes.
During the dormant period (winter) you should not water more often than once every 10-14 days. The amount of water should be kept to a minimum.
Since both of these plants are tropical, they need warmth. The best temperature for their cultivation is above 65 F. The maximum temperature that these plants can tolerate is 85 F, if the temperature is higher they will stagnate.
Anthuriums do not need as high a temperature in the winter as they do in the spring or summer. This does not mean that they are cold-tolerant plants. They will not tolerate temperatures below 55 F and will get damaged. So don’t move them into a cold room during the winter.
The second thing is the humidity. Compared to other indoor plants, Anthurium crystallinum and Anthurium clarinervium do not tolerate too dry air. Humidity should be at least 55-65% but 75-85% is ideal.
A humidifier needs to be installed near the plant to achieve such conditions. It is not a cheap but very convenient solution. Alternatively, you can mist the leaves at least once a day.
Finally, you can put a tray with water and stones near the plant and the moisture will evaporate. As result, you will achieve the desired goal.
Nutrition plays an important role in Anthurium life, but not as important as in some other indoor plants.
The first thing you should do is fertilize the plants immediately after transplanting. The amount of fertilizer should not be too much. It must contain twice as much phosphorus as potassium and nitrogen. Phosphorus will help the plant develop a good root system faster.
Then you need to apply a small amount of fertilizer every 45 to 60 days from spring until the end of summer. You do not need to fertilize the plant during the winter.
There are many good fertilizers on the market. Some are specially made just for Anthurium. Choose the best one because saving money in this area can end badly.