calathea roseopicta

Calathea Roseopicta: How to Care for the Rose Painted Calathea

Calathea Roseopicta is an, oh, so pretty plant from the tropical regions of Brazil. It is a member of the prayer plant family, which means it will lift up its leaves in the evening and lay them flat in the morning. As is the case with most Calathea plants, it has a few fussy requirements but it is overall not too difficult.

How to Identify Rose Painted Calathea

Calathea Roseopicta

The key identifiers of this plant are:

  • Leaves that are elliptical in shape
  • Leaves that are striped or ribbed with several shades of green, pink, or a creamy white color
  • Leaves that a purplish-maroon color underneath

How to Grow Rose Painted Calathea from Seed

It is far more common to propagate this plant via division than via seed; however, it can be done. It will require some patience, but the steps to grow a Rose Painted Calathea from seed are:

  1. Purchase seeds from a reputable seller (sellers who price their seeds between $1 and $2)
  2. Create a mixture of soil and peat mixed with coarse sand  (the ratio should 1:1 soil to peat/sand mixture)
  3. Fill a plant container with the soil and peat/sand mixture
  4. Place the seeds half an inch into the soil
  5. Lightly water the soil
  6. Cover the plant container with a plastic bag to retain moisture
  7. Set the plant container in a warm area that receives bright but indirect sunlight
  8. Remove the plastic bag for a few hours every other day to allow the seeds access to fresh air
  9. Once the seeds have germinated and sprouted to two inches tall, they can be transplanted to larger containers

How to Propagate Rose Painted Calathea

This plant is best propagated new in the spring or early summer to limit shock. The most common method used to propagate a Rose Painted Calathea is plant division.  The steps for doing this are:

  1. Carefully remove the plant from its current container
  2. Gently pull apart the plant’s roots so that each root section has at least one leaf, or, use a sterile cutting utensil to divide the plant’s rhizome.
  3. Fill new plant containers with potting soil
  4. Place the plant sections into the new containers and spread the soil around their roots to secure them into the containers
  5. Water the new plants
  6. Place the plant in a warm area that receives plenty of bright, but indirect sunlight
  7. Cover the plants with a plastic bag
  8. Once the plants begin to grow in a few weeks, the plastic bag can be removed

Rose Painted Calathea Growing Conditions

Since this plant is native to tropical regions of South America it prefers an environment that resembles its native lands.  It should be set in an area that has temperatures that stay above 65 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity levels that are at least 50%.  It should be kept away from cold drafts and air conditioner and heater vents.

A plant humidifier or pebble tray and a heat mat can be utilized to provide the heat and humidity this plant needs without creating an indoor environment that is uncomfortable for humans and pets.

How to Plant Rose Painted Calathea

When this plant shows signs of slowed growth, requires more than two watering sessions a week, is growing roots out of its container’s drainage holes, or has foliage looks too heavy for its current container, it is time to repot it.

Repotting should only be done in the spring or summer to reduce stress and the chance of shock.  This process will benefit the plant by providing it with fresh soil and more room for its root system to grow.  The steps for repotting a Velvet Calathea plant are:

  1. Choose a plant container that is 2 inches larger in diameter than its current container
  2. Fill the plant container potting soil
  3. Create a hole in the soil for the plant to set inside
  4. Carefully remove the plant from its current container
  5. Gently dust off any excess soil from its roots
  6. Using a sterile cutting utensil, cut off any rotten roots
  7. Set the plant into the hole in the new container
  8. Spread the soil around so that the plant is secure in its new container
  9. Water the plant
  10. Set it in a warm spot with plenty of sunlight

Rose Painted Calathea Potting & Soil

rose painted calathea

This plant requires soil that drains water well but can still retain some moisture.  It doesn’t like to sit in dry or soggy soil so it needs soil that will remain moist.  The soil should contain two parts peat and one part perlite.

These are both great options to use for any Calathea plant:

Rose Painted Water Requirements

This type of plant needs moist soil all the time. It will not grow well in dry or soggy soil.  The best way to confirm that a Rose Painted Calathea needs a drink is to test its soil moisture.  If the top inch of its soil is dried out, it needs a drink; however, if the top inch of soil is soggy, it does not need a drink.

When watering this type of plant it is highly recommended that rainwater or distilled water that is lukewarm be used.  Since this plant is very sensitive to salt and minerals tap water should be set out for at least 24 hours so that excess minerals have time to evaporate.

A plant watering app is a useful tool that will help track when a plant has been watered, set reminders to water it, and get answers to common plant care questions.

Rose Painted Calathea Light Requirements

This plant should be set in an area that receives plenty of bright, but indirect sunlight.  It should never be set in direct sunlight. Use a light meter to ensure that this indoor plant is receiving adequate amounts of sunlight.

Best Painted Calathea Fertilizer

Use a balanced fertilizer to feed this plant every other week between April and October. The doses should be diluted to half strength. Smiling Worm is an excellent choice of fertilizer for all varieties of Calathea plants.

Best Rose Painted Calathea

The best way to provide a tropical plant with extra humidity is to give it a companion or two. Clustering plants together is more than just style and expression, it is also healthy plant care. The following three plants are just a sampling of the many wonderful tropical plants that would make an ideal companion planting for a Rose Painted Calathea.

Velvet Calathea

Calathea Roseopicta

This plant is also a member of the prayer plant family so it also features leaves that fold upward at night and lay flat in the morning. Because it is closely related to Rose Painted Calathea, it will require a similar type of care and this makes it easier to keep these two types of plants together.

Light Requirements

Velvet Calathea should be set in an area that receives plenty of bright, but indirect sunlight.  It cannot handle a lot of direct sunlight.

Soil Requirements

Velvet Calathea requires soil that drains water well but can still retain some moisture.  It doesn’t like to sit in dry or soggy soil so it needs soil that will remain moist.

Water Requirements

Velvet Calathea should only be watered when the top inch of its soil is dried out.


  • Its care requirements are similar to those of Rose Painted Calathea
  • It is a beautiful tropical plant
  • It is not toxic


  • It is fussy about its water regimen
  • It is susceptible to infestations of mealybugs, scale insects, and spider mites

Calathea Freddie

This is a fussy, but lovely-looking plant from Brazil.  It features leaves that are striped in dark and light shades of green, hence its nickname, Zebra Plant.

Light Requirements

Calathea Freddie is sensitive to sunlight and should not be set in direct sunlight.  It will grow best when set in an area that receives plenty of bright, but indirect sunlight.

Soil Requirements

Calathea Freddie requires soil that is well-draining.

Water Requirements

Calathea Freddie requires precision watering.  It needs moist soil at all times, but it does not grow well in soggy soil.  This is why properly draining soil and plant containers with drainage holes are necessary.


  • It is a beautiful and unique-looking plant
  • It is not toxic
  • It produces flowers


  • It is finicky about its water regimen
  • It is susceptible to root rot
  • It is difficult to propagate
  • It requires a lot of humidity

Madagascar Dragon Tree

Madagascar Dragon Tree

This plant is hardy and hassle-free. It will look great next to a Rose Painted Calathea and take the pressure off of learning how to deal with a slightly fussy plant companion.

Light Requirements

Madagascar Dragon Tree should be set in an area that receives plenty of bright light with some shade. It cannot handle direct sunlight.

Soil Requirements

Madagascar Dragon Tree does not have any fussy soil requirements; an all-purpose mix will be fine.

Water Requirements

Madagascar Dragon Tree prefers moist soil. It is a hardy plant and can tolerate dry soil for a time, but this is not ideal for it to grow strong and healthy.


  • It has air purifying qualities
  • It does not need to be repotted very often
  • It can be propagated via stem cuttings
  • It can handle normal household humidity levels


  • It is toxic
  • It can grow fairly tall (up to 8 feet)
  • It is susceptible to infestations of mealybugs and scale insects

Rose Painted Calathea Diseases and Common Problems

When caring for a plant it is best to treat them quickly when they show signs of an infestation or a disease.  This will give them a chance to recover and it may prevent other, nearby plants from being infected as well.

When caring for one of these plants, look for these common issues:

  • Leaves that curl
  • Leaves that drop off
  • Leaves with brown tips
  • Leaves with spots
  • Scale Insects
  • Spider Mites
  • Stems that are limp

Rose Painted Calathea Treatments and Maintenance

Learning how to properly water, feed, and provide sunlight for each type of plant is the best way to prevent plant infestations and diseases.  Along with this, it is best to schedule a regular pest and disease inspection to catch any infestation quickly and prevent it from spreading throughout the plant or to other nearby plants. Many types of pest infestations can be prevented by regular cleanings with neem oil.

If, however, a Rose Painted Calathea does show signs of an infestation or a disease, follow these steps:

Leaves that curl

This is a sign that the plant is underwatered.  Tweak the plant’s water regimen and provide it with extra humidity in its environment.

Leaves that drop off

This is a typical sign of a plant that needs more humidity. Provide it with a humidifier or mist it more often. Also, it may need to be moved to an area that has less dry air blowing on it.

Leaves with brown tips

This is another sign of a plant that needs more humidity. Simply provide it with the moisture it needs and it should recover.

Leaves with spots

This is a sign that the plant is overwatered.  Tweak the plant’s water regimen and allow its soil to dry out more between each watering session.

Scale Insects

This type of infestation looks like tiny brown bumps on the backs of the plant’s leaves.  To deal with this type of infestation, follow these steps:

  1. Spray them off with a hose
  2. Wipe the remainder off with neem oil and a cloth
  3. Prevent them from returning by coating the leaves with neem oil regularly

Spider Mites

This type of infestation looks like webbing spread over the plant’s leaves and stems. To deal with this type of infestation, follow these steps:

  1. Spray the plant with a mixture of 1 quart of warm water, 1 tsp. of dish soap, and 2 tsps. Of neem oil
  2. Wipe off the leaves and stems
  3. Repeat as necessary

Stems that are limp

This is a sign that the plant is overwatered and has been exposed to too cool of temperatures. Tweak its watering regimen and move it to a warmer area.

Where to Buy Rose Painted Calathea Seeds Online

As is the case with most Calathea varieties, the seeds of this plant can be difficult to locate, but these shops are great places to begin searching for them.

Where to Buy Mature Rose Painted Calathea Online

Rose Painted Calathea flower

These are pretty and popular plants, so they are easy to find online. The following stores offer a great selection:


Question: Is Rose Painted Calathea Toxic?

Answer: No, this plant is not toxic.

Question: Does Rose Painted Calathea Have Air Purifying Qualities?

Answer: Yes, this plant can remove common household toxins from the air.

Question: How Big Does Rose Painted Calathea Grow?

Answer: This plant stays small and compact. It can grow to approximately 20 inches tall.

Concluding Thoughts

“Oh, these are pretty” will be the first words out of anyone’s mouth when they set eyes upon a Rose Painted Calathea. It is a gorgeous plant and is perfect to use for décor, for Instagram fame, or to just enjoy nature.

Research Citations

The City Wild

House Plants Expert

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