The Anthurium Rugusolum is a beautiful species from the cloud forests of Ecuador. This rare species is considered, according to the IUCN 2006, “Red-line” endangered due to the de-cultivation of its native habitat.
Its rarity perhaps makes this Anthurium all the more sought-after. It boasts heavily-textured leaves that reveal small bumps that resemble fine leather grains.
However, be warned that caring for the Anthurium Rugulosum is not easy. Growing at high altitudes near the Andes Mountains, this rare species requires i) cooler temperatures between 65-78 degrees F (18-26 degrees C) to thrive. It also needs ii) very high humidity of >85%.
Without these 2 essential conditions, your plant will struggle to grow well and will eventually die (TRUST US, we know!). So, unless you can meet those 2 conditions, our frank advice is to look at less fussy Anthuriums to grow, like the Anthurium Radicans.
But if you’re comfortable with the risks and happy to take on the challenge, read on! We’ll show you everything you need to know to grow an Anthurium Rugulosum. 🙂
Table of Contents
Caring for your Anthurium Rugulosum
Like most Anthuriums, your Anthurium Rugulosum requires bright but indirect light. When kept indoors, it can tolerate 1-3 hours of direct light, but not more than that.
East-facing windowsills are a great choice. Your plant enjoys gentle, direct morning sun and indirect light for the rest of the day.
West and South-facing windows work too if you place your Anthurium about 6.6 feet (2 meters) away from the window pane to reduce light intensity.
If you’re planting the Anthurium Rugulosum outdoors, choose a bright spot that is away from any direct light.
When watering your Anthurium Rugulosum, there are a few things you need to know to ensure your plant is well-nourished but never waterlogged. When watering,
- Always check the soil moisture before watering your plant. Seasons, growth rate, and how quickly water escapes from the soil impact how often your plant needs to be watered. The only way to determine if your plant is thirsty is when the top 2 inches of soil is dry to the touch. This is why we are against blindly following a watering schedule.
- Ideally, water using a long-spouted watering can to avoid wetting the leaves.
- Water slowly and deeply until the soil is saturated and excess water starts running off the drainage holes.
- Empty the saucer after watering.
Humidity & Air Circulation
This Anthurium Rugulosum needs extremely high humidity levels. Aim for >85% humidity. Realistically, you will need to use a humidifier to achieve these high levels!
Temperature is a very important part of Anthurium Rugulosum care. Being native to high altitudes, your plant is used to cooler temperatures between 65-78 degrees F (18-26 degrees C) to thrive.
Another important aspect is to ensure that temperatures are stable. Anthuriums, in particular, hate wild temperature fluctuations. For this reason, it’s better to keep your plant indoors year-round if the climate isn’t naturally cool and constant.
While very rare when growing out of its native habitat, flowers may appear. This is confirmation that your plant is ABSOLUTELY THRIVING… they don’t produce flowers unless growing conditions are optimal!
Blooms are in the form of simple and small inflorescences. That is, a boat-like spathe and a central long spadix. Flowers are tiny and numerous, growing along the length of the spadix.
Inflorescences typically last for around 2-3 months.
This slow-grower takes quite a while to produce leaves. When fully grown, your plant should reach around 16 inches (41cm) tall and 12 inches (30cm) wide.
Small and stout, but nonetheless stunning. 🙂
Soil or Growing Medium
A loose, slightly acidic growing medium is best, with a pH of around 6.5. You can use a soil kit to check the exact pH if you wish.
We like using a mixture of:
This chunky mixture keeps the roots aerated and well-draining, reducing the risk of a waterlogged plant.
At the same time, the orchid potting mix provides essential nutrients to help your Anthurium Rugulosum grow well.
In terms of fertilizing, we like to use Osmocote with our Anthurium Rugulosum. A balanced slow-release fertilizer protects sensitive roots while nourishing your plant.
Follow the instructions on the label to provide the right amount of Osmocote for the volume of soil.
You’ll need to repot your Anthurium Rugulosum when it outgrows its pot. You’ll know it’s time when you spot little roots growing out of the drainage hole.
- Choose a pot that is just 2 inches (5cm) larger. Don’t “overpot”, as this increases the risk of overwatering. A larger pot means a higher volume of soil, which retains too much water.
- Always use a pot with drainage holes.
- Water your plant the day before repotting. This helps your Anthurium Rugulosum more easily dislodge from its pot, and also helps to reduce transplant shock.
- Use fresh soil to replenish nutrients in the potting mix.
- As always, spring is the best time for repotting. 🙂
Unfortunately, Anthurium Rugulosum is toxic when ingested. All Anthuriums have insoluble calcium oxalate crystals in their stems and leaves.
These sharp crystals pierce skin tissues, so use gardening gloves when pruning your Anthurium. When ingested, this can cause nausea, vomiting, and gastrointestinal issues.
It’s a good idea to place this plant out of reach from pets and small children.
Stem cuttings are the easiest way to propagate your Anthurium Rugulosum. Here’s how:
- Identify a healthy portion of the stem that has at least one node and one leaf. Nodes are where new growth will form. Even better if you can take a cutting with aerial roots attached, but are not necessary.
- Using clean garden shears, cut the identified stem below the node.
- Plant the stem cutting in lightly moist soil mix, ensuring that the nodes are buried under the surface. Of course, the leaf needs to stay above the surface!
- Place the cutting in a spot that has plenty of bright but filtered light. If you can, place a humidifier next to the plant, and set it at 90% humidity.
- Ensure that the soil mix remains lightly moist.
- In about 5 weeks, roots will start growing from the cut stem. Confirm this by giving your plant a very gentle tug – you should feel a little resistance.
- Treat as you would any other Anthurium Rugulosum.
Due to its slow-growing nature, your plant does not need much pruning. However, if you notice any dead or wilted leaves, use clean gardening shears to snip these off just above the node.
We like using a 70% isopropyl solution to sterilize our gardening tools before and after use. This is especially important for Anthuriums to prevent the spread of Anthurium Blight.
Common Pests and Diseases
Anthurium Blight is a common disease to be wary of. It is caused by bacteria and can be spread through the use of infected gardening tools, or through wet leaves. For this reason, we don’t recommend misting your Anthurium.
Root rot is another common issue for Anthuriums, due to overwatering your plant. Prevention is better than cure, so ensure your watering practices are in tip-top shape as the #1 priority!
According to the American Phytopathological Society, Anthurium Blight starts off as water-soaked legions at leaf edges. Later, infected leaves develop characteristic yellow halos on browning leaf edges.
Act as quickly as you can when confronted with Anthurium blight. There’s no cure, although copper-based fungicides can control its spread.
- First, prune off all infected leaves and parts and dispose of these securely. Use sterilized tools.
- Isolate infected plants well away from healthy plants.
- Apply a copper-based fungicide to infected plants to contain its spread. Copper is effective against the Xanthomonas bacteria (source: The University of Florida), the specific bacteria that causes blight in Anthuriums.
Since there is no cure, its far better to prevent the disease. Here are some tips:
- Sterilize gardening tools using 70% isopropyl solution before and after use.
- Ensure your plants are spaced slightly apart and have some air circulation.
- Keep your plants healthy, paying attention to watering practices and care.
- Don’t mist your Anthurium Rugulosum. Bacteria can spread through wet foliage. If you need to increase humidity, use a humidifier.
Root rot can also be an issue due to an overwatered Anthurium Rugulosum. Check out our step-by-step guide on saving your overwatered plant here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Types of Anthurium Rugulosums
- Anthurium Rugulosum ‘Crinitum’
- Anthurium Rugulosum ‘Lluruqui’
Other Aroids with Textured Leaves
Other Anthuriums we Love
- Anthurium Veitchii
- Queen Anthurium (also known as Anthurium Warocqueanum!)
- Anthurium Forgetii
- Anthurium Magnificum
- Anthurium Andraeanum – a flowering Anthurium with bright red spathes!
- Anthurium Rivulare. Another rare Anthurium with large heart-shaped leaves.
- Anthurium Lappoanum. This houseplant has similarly textured pebble leaves, and also comes from Ecuador.
- Anthurium Metallicum.
The Anthurium Rugulosum is a very rare plant that requires i) extremely high humidity (>85%) and ii) cool and stable temperatures between 65-78 degrees F (18-26 degrees C).
For your plant to grow well, care for it by:
- Using a chunky soil mix that is slightly acidic. We like using orchid mix and adding perlite and charcoal in equal parts.
- Water only when topsoil is dry.
- Fertilize using a slow-release, balanced fertilizer like Osomocote.
- Avoid the spread of Anthurium Blight by using a long-spouted watering can (preventing wet leaves), and sterilizing gardening tools with 70% isopropyl solution.
Deborah is a plant enthusiast and founder of Gardening Collective.