Alocasia Maharani aka Alocasia Grey Dragon is a very popular houseplant. It has beautiful green color and thick leaves with interesting vein patterns on them. It is different from the alocasia dragon scale and green dragon plant.
It is easy to grow indoors in small to medium size plant containers. If you have a good knowledge of gardening then you can grow it without facing many problems.
Today you will learn how to grow this Maharani Alocasia for the first time in plant containers. There are only a few things that you need to keep in mind while growing it. Everything is well explained in this growing guide.
Read it till the end and start growing the alocasia plant today.
About the plant
Because it is a tropical jungle plant, it needs warm weather to grow outside. Growing it indoors is not a problem because it is easy to control the indoor environment.
You can grow it as a tabletop plant because it only grows up to 1 foot in height and needs less bright light.
Moreover, its fabulous looks make it the best decorative plant for homes and offices.
The best part with small plants is you have many options like terrariums or vivariums. They are made for small size plants and maharani alocasia is the perfect size plant.
The plant cannot tolerate cold winds and temperatures below 55 degrees F. It means you cannot place it outside in the winter season.
Maharani also produces flowers but only in rare cases. Because we cannot mimic the jungle-like growing environment.
White creamy flowers look beautiful on this plant. But I like the foliage more than the flowers.
If you do not want scorched leaves then do not place it in direct sunlight. Remember that all tropical plants like to live in low bright light.
Even if you are growing it indoors you still need to protect it from direct sunlight. Do not place it on a sunny window.
In fact, put it a few feet away from a sunny window. This way only a limited amount of light can reach the plant. Which is enough for its survival. It can grow in dappled shade but cannot survive in direct sharp light.
But on one condition you can expose it to the sunlight. Stretchy growth indicates that your plant is not getting enough light. In this situation, you can expose your maharani alocasia to early morning sunlight only.
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Choosing the right type of potting soil is a hard job. This is not a plant that enjoys normal potting soil. You need to change the soil qualities according to its needs.
The potting soil should be:
Rich in Organic material
I use 1 part perlite + 1 part peat moss + 1 part normal potting soil. This mixture is perfect to grow all tropical plants that need good aeration and well-draining.
This soil also prevents many unwanted problems like root rot and root compression due to heaviness in the soil.
Other ingredients that you can use in the formula instead of perlite and peat are:
Watering Alocasia Maharani
Maharani Alocasia needs moist soil all the time. This is only possible if you give it more water but excessive use of water leads to root rot.
Therefore, you need to learn the right watering technique to prevent all these common problems.
The first thing is plants need more water in warm weather as compared to cold weather. So, give more water in summer and less in winter.
To avoid overwatering-related issues I use a soil check trick. Before watering my plant, I use a soil moisture meter to check the moisture percentage in the soil.
If the top 1 or 2 inches of the soil become dry, this indicates that your plant is thirsty and it needs immediate water.
For watering it, please use filtered water or you will end up with clogged roots. Because tap water contains some unwanted things like chlorine and fluoride. In some places, it is not even safe for human consumption.
I prefer filtered water for all types of houseplants to avoid the maximum water-related problems.
No need to fertilize it if you are using organically rich soil. Some people prefer pre-fertilized soil and they do not need to use fertilizers. Because the soil contains all the essential ingredients that are necessary to grow green foliage plants.
But if the soil you use is not pre-fertilized. Then you should buy a liquid fertilizer made for green foliage plants.
Such fertilizers are also called general houseplant fertilizers. Dilute the required amount in clean water and pour it into the base of the plant. Give it a nutrient boost only once on 30 days in its active growing seasons (Spring and summer)
No need to buy costly nutrient supplements they are not required for growing and caring for alocasia plants.
Temperature & Humidity
55 to 85 degrees F is the best temperature range for it. If you are living in USDA hardiness zones 10 to 11. Then you can grow it outdoors for 365 days.
In other zones take it inside when the temperature drops below 55 degrees F. Your maharani plant cannot survive in low temperatures.
Generally, we have a comfortable indoor temperature even in winter (thanx to room heaters.) But your plant doesn’t need warm airflow.
Therefore, place it away from the direct heat flow of heating vents.
For humidity copy the tropical jungle-like conditions. I know you can’t because it is not possible to give 90% air humidity to your plants. This percentage of air moisture is not good for human health.
The good news is maharani alocasia can survive in moderate humidity. Keep the humidity level between 60% to 70 %. This range is good for humans and plants.
To increase humidity, use a plant humidifier or group your plants together. Pebble tray is also a good traditional technique of increasing air moisture.
Maharani is a small size slow growing plant. Therefore, you do not need to prune it frequently.
You should only prune it in its active growing season and only remove yellow, brown, and dead leaves. Because in the active season it is easy for the plant to grow more new leaves.
For trimming, use sharp sterilized garden tools and also wear gloves to protect your skin while cutting your plant.
Because the sap of this plant contains crystals of oxalate. It is a toxic substance and can cause skin irritation, redness, etc.
As I said the sap of maharani contains a harmful substance called calcium oxalate. It is equally harmful to humans and pets.
Therefore, keep it away from your pets and kids. The ingestion of any part of the maharani plant results in toxicity.
Common symptoms of toxicity are skin irritation, vomiting, excessive drooling, stomach pain, pain in the throat, etc.
To control the situation on time immediately call the poison control center or rush to your nearest hospital.
Fresh Air is Mandatory
Maharani Alocasia needs high humidity to grow healthy. But there are many side effects of increased air moisture.
A warm environment and high humidity also make a perfect environment for bacteria and fungus build-up.
To keep your plant fungus-free you should place it in a well-aerated room. If it is on the window sill then the coming fresh air is sufficient.
But if your plant is not growing near the window then you have to install a fan in the room to circulate the available air.
Spring and summer are the only time that you have for repotting it. Because plants grow rapidly at this time and develop new roots in less time.
Slower growers like Maharani Alocasia do not need frequent repotting. You will need to repot it after 2 years of its age.
When the potting soil becomes no longer useful for growing this plant.
Use a fancy terra cotta plant pot for repotting. The material of these plant pots helps to drain extra water in a few minutes. Also, allow fresh air to enter the soil and prevent any fungi-related diseases.
Propagating Alocasia Maharani
With this plant, you have one propagation method which is offset, division. Follow the below steps to propagate it successfully
Take the plant out of its pot carefully
Remove the soil from the roots and divide it into separate parts
Plant the offsets in different pots and give some water to keep the soil moist.
Within a few days, the offsets will develop new roots and stand stable in their pot.
Why my Alocasia Maharani leaves are turning yellow?
Overwatering, poor light, repotting shock are the main causes of the yellow leaves of the maharani alocasia plant. To prevent them follow the caring steps written in this guide.
If you already have a plant with yellow leaves then first check the soil to identify overwatering. Then use a plant light meter to measure the amount of light it is receiving.
Correct these two conditions and your plant will thrive again.
Common Problems in Alocasia Maharani Care
No doubt alocasia maharani care and maintenance are simple. But this plant sometimes faces some common problems. Following are the problems that you may face if you do not follow the care guide successfully.
Leaves Turning Yellow
Maharani Alocasia has beautiful grey-green leaves. If they are turning yellow this indicates that there is a problem with your watering technique.
Mainly overuse of water is the root cause of yellow maharani leaves.
Yellow leaves also indicate another deadly problem called root rot. It is a fungus that infects the roots of the plant.
Your plant starts dying and due to root rot, the healthy root ball gets damaged and stops working. As result, your plant leaves start turning yellow.
Therefore, once you see yellow leaves on your plant. You should immediately unpot your plant and check the root rot.
Crispy Brown Leaves
There are two reasons of leaves turn brown and crispy. One is underwatering and the second is lack of sufficient moisture in the air.
If the potting soil has no water, give some water to your plant and cut the brown leaves. Your plant will grow new leaves in a few days.
Dehydration is the leading cause of death of alocasia plants.
On the other hand, if there is sufficient moisture in the potting soil but still your plant has brown leaves and tips.
This indicates low humidity and to stop this problem use a plant humidifier or use other traditional methods and increase the humidity.
There are 3 causes of droopy leaves of alocasia maharani.
Check the soil of the plant if it is soggy then repot it in new potting soil. Also, check for the pest attack, and to identify it look underside of the leaves and near the leaf nodes.
At last check the light in the room. Low light results in droopy leaves. Because your plant does not get the proper amount of light to make its food.
The lack of food and essential nutrients makes your plant droopy and weak.
Lack of sufficient light is the only cause of the leggy growth of alocasia plants. Your plant produces longer stems and fewer leaves.
It stretches its stems to reach toward the light source to full fill its light requirement.
In this case, change the place of your plant or use grow light to grow it properly without facing low light like issues.
Aphids and spider mites are commonly found on Maharani Alocasia. They suck the sap of the plant and make your plant nutrient deficient.
They also damage the leaf tissues and lay their eggs in them. Their larvae suck the sap of the plant and get mature in 4 to 7 days.
This way you have many colonies of pests on your plant.
To get rid of pests wipe the leaves with rubbing alcohol and after the treatment spray neem oil on the plant.
Tropical plants like alocasia are easy to grow and care for. They look amazing on tables due to their small size and beautiful foliage.
Choose the soil carefully and give water as per the condition of the soil. If you do so your plant will grow happily without facing any problems.