Anthuriums are an incredibly popular houseplant for several reasons including their durability, but how long do Anthurium plants live on average and how can you make them live longer?
Most Anthuriums – including the ‘standard’ anthurium andraeanum – live between 3 and 6 years on average. This is affected mainly by the conditions that the plant is kept in such as humidity and temperature, as well as how fortunate you are with disease and pest issues.
In this guide, I’ll walk you through the 8 most important factors when it comes to Anthurium lifespan, so you can keep yours for as long as possible.
- 8 Factors That Affect Anthurium Plant Lifespan
- Can Anthuriums Live Longer Than 6 Years?
- How Can You Tell How Old An Anthurium Is?
- Final Thoughts
8 Factors That Affect Anthurium Plant Lifespan
My Anthurium Andraeanum has been with me for a little over 4 years now – making it over 5 years old – and it is still thriving. Along the way, I’ve just about figured out the right conditions to keep it healthy through the years.
You’ll never be able to get the conditions absolutely perfect, but if you can provide at least a decent level of care your Anthurium should live well into the 3 to 6-year range. Keep in mind that most of these are focused on the most common types of Anthurium that are bought as houseplants.
As Anthuriums are native to places such as Columbia and Ecuador, they thrive with relatively high temperatures.
Providing temperature between 75°F and 90°F (roughly 23°C to 32°C) during the day, and down to around 60°F (around 15°C) at night is essential in allowing it to live longer.
Anthuriums thrive in humid environments as they absorb moisture from the air readily, and you should aim to provide a minimum humidity of around 50% to 60%, up to as much as 80%.
Luckily, it’s pretty easy to increase humidity. You can either opt to place your Anthurium in a more humid part of the home such as the bathroom or use a pebble tray/humidifier.
I would personally avoid misting as it only provides short-term benefits.
3. Soil Quality
Anthuriums are epiphytes, which essentially means they grow on other plants naturally.
The result of this is that they have mainly aerial root systems which are developed to absorb moisture both from the air and damp pieces of organic matter.
This is very important to consider as it means they require a very well-draining soil mix with lots of small pockets of air and nutritious organic material. Failing to provide this type of soil mix can lead to a lack of nutrient absorption and root rot in severe cases.
Fertilization is not a top priority for Anthuriums if you provide a nutrient-dense soil mix, but it is generally recommended to fertilize every so often (without overdoing it), especially over the long term as the nutrient density of the soil mix depletes.
I fertilize my Anthurium once per month in the summer using a complete liquid fertilizing mix and that’s about it. Fertilizing is much like watering in that you don’t want to overdo it.
Pests such as aphids, mealybugs, mites, gnats and several more can cause significant damage to Anthuriums.
These are usually acquired when you introduce new plants into the house and are something that you need to keep a keen eye out for. Pesticides can be used to deal with most pests, as well as reducing the amount of water you provide.
Bacterial and fungal diseases can kill Anthuriums very quickly if not dealt with.
The most common fungal issues include leaf spot and root rot, and bacterial issues can include soft rot and Xanthomonas blight. Most of these problems stem from overwatering and must be treated as soon as possible.
Any stems or leaves that are affected must be removed. If the soil has become affected, the plant will need to be repotted and treated with a fungicide.
The best method for dealing with any disease is to prevent it in the first place by only watering when the top two inches of the soil become dry. Remember that underwatering an Anthurium is better than overwatering.
As a tropical plant Anthuriums will survive the longest with lots of bright, indirect sunlight similar to the conditions in jungle canopies.
8. Type Of Anthurium
Anthurium Andraeanums are the most common type of Anthurium to keep as a houseplant and these fall into the 3-6 year average.
There are over 1,000 Anthurium species, and there are certain species that can live much longer, however, these are not very common to be kept as houseplants. For example, certain species grown in rainforests have been documented to live for more than ten years.
Can Anthuriums Live Longer Than 6 Years?
3 to 6 years is just the average range for the most common types of Anthurium, including Anthurium Andraeanum.
It would not be surprising for an Anthurium to exceed this range, particularly if you take great care in providing ideal growing conditions while keeping the plant free from disease and pests.
I fully expect my Anthurium to live past 6 years, for example, given how well it is doing at just over 5 years of age.
How Can You Tell How Old An Anthurium Is?
It can be tricky to accurately age an Anthurium as they will grow at different rates depending on the conditions that they are provided.
In general, a mature Anthurium should be anywhere from 12 to 18 inches tall and 9 to 12 inches wide. An Anthurium of this size could be assumed to be at least 3 years old, and if there is a decrease in blooming frequency this will also indicate that the plant is older assuming care conditions are optimal.
How Long Do Anthurium Flowers Last
Anthuriums bloom once every two or three months and bloom less as they approach older age.
If you are having difficulties getting your Anthurium to bloom increase the amount of sunlight that it receives. Do this gradually to avoid symptoms of sun scorch and you should find that it will bloom more often under this new condition.
How Long Do Anthurium Cuttings Last
Anthuriums, like most houseplants, can be propagated by taking cuttings and submerging the bottom of the cuttings into water.
After a few weeks, roots will start to grow and you can then plant the cutting into soil and grow a new Anthurium plant, or you can keep it in the water.
New cuttings that are successfully propagated and planted back into soil are pretty much like a new Anthurium plant and can live up to that 3 to 6-year range.
In water, there are a lot more difficulties and maintenance, and it is likely for an Anthurium to live for up to three years in water on average if the root system propagates (this can be exceeded in some cases). If you want to keep Anthurium flower cuttings in a vase, expect them to last for up to three weeks.
How Can You Tell Your Anthurium Is Dying
When your Anthurium is coming to the end of its life it will first decrease its blooming frequency.
From there, the leaves will begin to wilt and die off. The roots will shrink and slowly die, followed by the stems.
Anthuriums tend to be very easy to keep, and this is why beginner houseplant owners love them so much.
Keeping your Anthurium disease and pest-free while providing decent growing conditions will give it a great chance of living for a long time.