Picasso Peace Lily: Care Guide
The Picasso spathiphyllum peace lily is a true gem among plants, and a stunning alternative to its more common spathiphyllum counterparts. With its striking tricolor variegation, each leaf of the Picasso is a one-of-a-kind piece of art. While these rare plants may be elusive in the U.S, your search is over – you've found the real deal.
To ensure that your variegated peace lily thrives in its new home, it's important to provide the right care. But don't worry, once you've mastered the basics, these plants are easy to care for and will quickly become a treasured addition to any rare plant collection.
Interestingly, the only problem you might encounter with a Picasso peace lily is caring for it too much! These plants are incredibly hardy and can withstand periods of neglect, so you can rest assured that your Picasso will continue to thrive even if you miss a watering or two.
Join us as we explore what makes the Picasso spathiphyllum peace lily such a unique and sought-after plant. We'll share our tips for care and maintenance, and show you why this plant is a must-have for any plant enthusiast. Get ready to fall in love with the stunning beauty of the Picasso peace lily!
Lighting: As highly variegated plants, Picasso spathiphyllum peace lilies prefer bright, indirect sunlight, ideally from a south-facing window. However, they can also tolerate lower light levels, although this can cause the white variegation to temporarily revert to green in order to absorb more sun. Regardless, as long as your Picasso receives bright light, it will thrive, and the more light it receives, the more variegation it will produce. Just be sure to avoid placing it in direct sunlight, as this can burn the leaves.
If you're lucky enough to have a bathroom with a window, your Picasso will make an excellent bathroom plant and will appreciate the extra humidity.
Using Grow-Lights: If you're planning to use grow-lights, we recommend white LED lights rather than purple ones, which tend to be too strong for Picasso's liking. Be sure to keep the lights at least 12 inches away from the leaves to avoid burning them. With the right lighting, your Picasso spathiphyllum peace lily will continue to grow and produce its stunning variegated foliage, making it a standout addition to your plant collection.
Below is an example:
Having a grow-light in general is a fantastic way to supplement all your houseplants during long winters!
Watering: Picasso spathiphyllum peace lilies thrive with a consistent watering routine that mimics their natural habitat. They prefer to have consistently moist soil but not waterlogged, as this can cause the roots to rot. Allowing the soil to dry out too much in between waterings can cause the leaves to droop, but they will perk up again after being watered. While they may be a little dramatic at times, their personality only adds to their charm.
Tap Water or Distilled Water? Spathiphyllums are sensitive to fluoride and chlorine found in tap water, which can eventually burn their leaves and roots. If possible, we recommend using distilled water or a water filtration system like a Brita filter. However, it's not strictly necessary and tap water can still be used as long as it's allowed to sit out for a few hours to allow the chemicals to evaporate.
Best Soil To Grow In? Picasso peace lilies are quite flexible when it comes to soil types. We've grown them successfully in leca, perlite, sphagnum moss, peat moss, and coco coir. As long as the soil is fast-draining with moderate water-holding capabilities, your Picasso will be happy. A good rule of thumb is to look for a soil mixture that feels chunky and won't compact when squeezed in your hands.
We've also experimented with growing Picasso peace lilies solely in leca, which can be quite expensive. As a more affordable alternative, we've had success with an 80% perlite and 20% chopped-up sphagnum moss mixture. After a few months of observation, our Picassos thrived in this soil mix, proving their adaptability is one of their many strengths.
Growing your Picasso peace lily hydroponically in water is a viable option to explore. In fact, I conducted an experiment with one of my Picassos and placed it in an aquarium for four weeks. To my delight, the roots grew rapidly, and the plant showed perky growth with sturdy stems, and new growth emerging at a decent rate. I attribute the success to the constant supply of nutrients and water circulation provided by the fish tank filter. To prevent algae and rotting, change the water at least once a week. Alternatively, growing your Picasso peace lily in an aquarium can also be a great option. So go ahead and explore this exciting new way of growing your plant!
To ensure your Picasso peace lilies grow strong and healthy, it's important to maintain a consistent temperature above 60 degrees Fahrenheit year-round. Any colder than that, and you may notice slow growth and droopy leaves. It's especially important to protect their roots from cold temperatures, so be sure to keep them away from any drafts during the winter. Once their roots are damaged, it can be challenging for the plant to recover. While a room temperature of around 70 degrees is ideal, it's not strictly necessary as long as you can keep the temperature above 60 degrees. By providing a warm and stable environment, you'll help your Picasso peace lilies thrive.
Picasso peace lilies thrive in high humidity, ideally between 70-80%. If you live in a dry climate, providing occasional misting with distilled water twice a day can help increase humidity levels. Another option is to place the plant in a humid room, such as a bathroom, or use a pebble tray under the pot. For those with indoor greenhouses, it's easy to raise the humidity to optimal levels.
While high humidity is preferred, Spathiphyllums are known for their adaptability and can tolerate slightly lower humidity levels. However, it's important to note that a dry environment may cause some stress on the plant. For example, we live in Spokane, Washington, where indoor humidity levels hover around 45%, and our Picasso peace lilies are still thriving.
Peace lilies are native to the rainforest floor, where the frequent rainfall washes away most of the nutrients from the soil, resulting in a relatively nutrient-poor environment. As a result, they are naturally adapted to growing in these conditions and don't require a lot of extra nutrients. In fact, they can be sensitive to certain chemicals in fertilizers and can be less tolerant of high nutrient levels than other houseplants.
While fertilizing isn't necessary, if you do choose to fertilize your peace lily, we recommend using a water-soluble fertilizer that's been diluted to half-strength, and fertilizing every other month or so. Overfeeding your peace lily can result in fast, lush growth that can be difficult to manage.
We suggest repotting your peace lily every year using fresh soil mix, which will provide enough slow-release nutrients to last until the next year. This way, you can ensure that your plant has access to the nutrients it needs without risking overfeeding.
Our Advanced Growing Parameters:
At our nursery, we use professional growing techniques to cultivate our peace lilies, which may not be feasible for home growers. However, the care instructions we have shared above are just as effective in maintaining healthy plants.
For optimal growth, we use an indoor greenhouse equipped with LED grow lights, a fan, digital thermometer, and a digital humidity tracker. We monitor the temperature and humidity 24/7 using a thermometer connected to an app. We also mist our peace lilies in the morning, afternoon, and before turning off the grow lights.
Lighting Hours: We use a timer to program the amount of daylight hours for our plants. Our grow lights turn on at 7 AM and turn off at 10 PM, providing them with a total of 15 hours of light.
Temperature: We keep the greenhouse temperature at 75-80 degrees (F) during the day and reduce it to 65-70 degrees (F) at night by venting the greenhouse for about 30 minutes. We track the temperature using a digital thermometer.
Humidity: Peace lilies thrive in high humidity environments, so we maintain a humidity level of 75-80% during the day and 70% at night by venting the greenhouse. If you're growing peace lilies at home, misting them with distilled water twice a day or placing them in a humid room, like a bathroom, can help increase humidity levels.
Remember, our methods may be more involved than necessary for home growers, but following the care instructions provided earlier will help keep your peace lilies healthy and thriving.
As your peace lily grows, you may notice that some of the lower leaves start to turn yellow and eventually die. This is a natural process and nothing to worry about. Simply remove the yellowing leaves with clean, sharp scissors to promote new growth.
In addition, peace lilies tend to outgrow their pots over time. When you notice that the roots are starting to crowd the pot or grow out of the drainage holes, it's time to repot the plant into a slightly larger container. This will give the roots more space to grow and allow the plant to continue thriving.
The Picasso peace lily is generally a robust and pest-resistant houseplant. However, like all plants, neglecting to water it regularly or exposing it to very low humidity can cause its leaves to become dry and crispy, which may attract pests. On the other hand, overwatering can lead to root rot, or worse, kill the plant entirely. So, it's important to strike a balance between watering and providing adequate humidity to keep your peace lily healthy.
For instance, if you let the humidity drop too low or allow the plant to dry out too much, it can damage the foliage and make it susceptible to pests.
Here's an example of low humidity & drying out too much:
While it's not common for the Picasso peace lily to attract pests, dead or dry leaves can become a breeding ground for spider mites or thrips. To prevent this, it's important to remove any dead foliage regularly. If you notice brown or crispy edges on the leaves, it may be a sign of water stress, so try increasing your misting or watering frequency. Keeping a close eye on your plant's health and promptly addressing any issues can help prevent pests from taking hold.
If you notice a sudden discoloration of multiple leaves, including new ones near the top of the plant, it could be a sign of oxygen deprivation to the roots, resulting in a fungal or bacterial infection. This may occur if the soil mix is easily waterlogged, and the pot lacks drainage holes, especially after watering. Unfortunately, it may be too late to save the plant at this point, but you can try immediately repotting it into fresh soil, trimming off any dead or mushy roots.
Alternatively, you can water the plant again, this time using a diluted hydrogen peroxide solution (1 part hydrogen peroxide to 3 parts water). Hydrogen peroxide decomposes into oxygen and water, providing much-needed oxygen to the roots in addition to its antibacterial and antiviral properties.
We don't like to use the term "common" when referring to plant issues, but if you notice dry or dead leaves on your Picasso peace lily, be sure to remove them promptly. Also, keep an eye out for signs of water stress, such as brown, crispy leaf edges, and adjust your watering or misting frequency accordingly.
We hope these tips help you succeed with your new plant! Let us know your thoughts and experiences in the comments below – we always love hearing from you.