Stromanthe Triostar: Care and Growing Tips!

By Andrea Beck | Updated: April 4, 2023

Scientific name

Stromanthe sanguinea 'Triostar'

Common name

Stromanthe Triostar



Checked by Jennifer Schutter, Certified Master Gardener

Stromanthe Triostar


Let dry out slightly between watering


Bright indirect light


Well-draining aroid potting mix


Ideally near east or north-facing windows




Diluted liquid fertilizer monthly during growing season


Bright indirect light




Diluted liquid fertilizer monthly during growing season

With its tantalizing colors and ability to be grown both indoors and out, Stromanthe Triostar is kind of the talk of the town.

Imagine a plant with leaves so vibrant, they seem to be painted by a master artist. The Stromanthe Triostar’s got that kind of magic, boasting mesmerizing patterns and a color palette that’ll leave you speechless.

But hey, looking fabulous isn’t its only superpower. This stunning plant is the real deal when it comes to air purification, too.

We’ll cover everything you need to know about this gorgeous plant, from its one-of-a-kind appearance to tips on helping it thrive.

Stick around, dear reader, as we dive into the wonderful world of Stromanthe Triostar care. You’ll walk away feeling like an expert, ready to transform your space with this extraordinary plant.

Let’s do this!

Stromanthe Triostar Plant Care Guide

History, habitat, and characteristics

Meet the Stromanthe Triostar (Stromanthe sanguinea ‘Triostar’) – your new favorite conversation starter and a beautiful addition to the prayer plant family! This eye-catching houseplant hails from the rainforests of Brazil and is related to the Marantas, Calatheas, and Tenontheas.

Quite a family, huh?

People often mistake the Stromanthe Triostar for Calathea and other tricolor prayer plants, but who can blame them, with those striking colors and resemblances? This tricolor prayer plant’s leaves showcase a unique blend of cream, green, and pink, while the underside, oh, the underside… dark pink and hot pink.

Ever heard of a plant changing clothes?

The Stromanthe Triostar does just that! A variegated variety of Stromanthe sanguinea, this plant starts with leaves that have a yellowish tint, which gradually fade to pink or white. Talk about a wardrobe change! And don’t be surprised if you find your Stromanthe Triostar plants dancing around…

Why do we say dancing? Well, during the day, the leaves spread wide to catch some sun. But when night falls, the leaves fold up as if they’re ready for bed, just like other members of the prayer plant family. This daily dance is something called nyctinasty – go ahead, look it up.

Pretty cool, right?

Stromanthe Triostar is not only a lovely houseplant but also a living, breathing, color-changing work of art. Are you ready to add this dazzling companion to your collection?


Stromanthe sanguinea and Stromanthe Triostar are sometimes used interchangeably, but Stromanthe Triostar is a cultivar of Stromanthe sanguinea.

Stromanthe sanguinea typically has solid green leaves with red undersides and a less defined variegation pattern. Sometimes a Triostar Stromanthe in low light will start to look like its completely green unvariegated plant parent, a pretty good sign that more light is needed.

Stromanthe Magic Star is another similar variety, with a more intricate and speckled pattern on its leaves, with shades of green and cream decorating the upper surface and the classic magenta hue gracing the undersides.


Now, let’s dive into Stromanthe Triostar care, specifically the lighting requirements to keep your plant happy and thriving. It’s all about striking the right balance…

How about placing your Triostar near an east or north-facing window to get some of that sweet indirect light? If you put it near a south or west-facing one, a sheer curtain works great to diffuse direct light, ensuring your colorful plant companion stays safe and sound.

You might be wondering why the colors underneath the leaves matter – well, they actually help the plant photosynthesize in lower light conditions! The sun’s rays bounce off the back of the leaves, making the most of what’s available.

Now, how can you tell if your Stromanthe Triostar is craving more light or, on the contrary, getting too much direct sun? Here’s some helpful advice:

Is your Triostar’s growth slow, and are the colors looking a bit dull or faded? That might mean it needs more light. You can try moving it closer to a window or giving it a little artificial light boost.

If your plant is getting an overdose of direct sunlight, you might see its leaves curl up – ouch! Scorching or burning could happen, and those amazing colors could fade. To fix this, consider moving your Triostar away from harsh light, or use a sheer curtain to filter out that intense sun.


Let’s talk about watering your Stromanthe Triostar. You know, it’s not just about pouring some water and calling it a day. Factors like the size of your pot, how porous it is, and which soil you’re using are going to play a big part in how often you should water your house plant.

The trick here is to wait until the top 2-3 inches of soil dry out before giving it a good soak. Just poke your finger into the soil to see if it feels dry at that depth… if it does, then it’s time to water.

Remember to water your plant thoroughly, but let the excess water drain to avoid drowning those precious roots.

Oh, and one more thing – it’s best to use distilled or filtered water for your Stromanthe Triostar. Tap water can cause brown tips on the Stromanthe Triostar leaves, and we definitely don’t want that.

So, what happens if your plant isn’t getting enough water? The Triostar leaves will curl inwards.

On the other hand, if you’re a bit too generous with the water, you’ll notice yellow leaves, mushy stems, and soil that just won’t dry. This can lead to rot, which we’ll cover how to fix in our last section.

Temperature and humidity

Let’s explore the ideal temperature range and humidity levels that will help your Triostar thrive.

Stromanthe Triostar appreciates room temperatures between 65-70 degrees Fahrenheit, which is comfortable for most households. A little bit warmer, and you’ll see faster, fuller growth (it is a tropical plant, after all).

Avoid placing your Stromanthe Triostar near cold drafts, air conditioning vents, or radiators, as these can all negatively impact its health. If you notice your plant’s leaves curling or becoming discolored, it may be an indicator of temperature stress.

Continuing our tropical houseplant theme, Stromanthe Triostar thrives in elevated high humidity in its native rainforest habitat. Just be careful in the winter when radiators tend to dry out the air — supplemental moisture may be necessary. If the plant’s leaves start developing brown edges or curling, it may be a sign that they need more humidity.

To increase humidity, you can place your Stromanthe Triostar on a tray filled with pebbles and water, or use a humidifier near the plant. Another option is to group several humidity-loving plants together, creating a micro-environment that benefits all of them.

If you’ve just brought your Triostar home or moved it to a new location, you can place a plastic bag over the plant to help it acclimate to its surroundings. However, make sure to monitor it closely and remove the bag once the plant settles in.

Soil and planting

The Stromanthe Triostar thrives in a well-draining yet moisture-retaining soil mix. To achieve this ideal soil composition, you’ll want potting soil with a coco coir/peat moss base, keeping the plant’s roots hydrated but still allowing water to drain and evaporate.

However, avoid using too much perlite or orchid bark, as this can result in soil that drains too quickly and leaves the plant parched.

Although it’s not recommended to repot Stromanthe or prayer plants during the winter months due to colder temperatures and shorter days, it may be necessary from time to time. Spring and summer are the optimal times for repotting, as the plant is actively growing during these seasons and will experience less stress.

Consider avoiding terracotta pots. Many plants like them, but Stromanthe Triostar plants prefer the moisture retention of plastic or glazed ceramic.


When it comes to fertilizer, opt for organic options like worm castings, since harsher chemical fertilizers can burn the delicate foliage of the Stromanthe Triostar, causing leaf edges and leaf tips to turn brown.

Too much fertilizer will cause yellowing leaves, burnt leaf tips, and a slower growth rate. If you suspect your plant has been over-fertilized, flush the soil with water to remove excess nutrients, and reduce the frequency of fertilizer application.

Propagation Guide

So, you’ve got a Stromanthe Triostar that’s ready for some pruning and propagating action? Well, you’re in luck!

We’ve got two easy-peasy methods to propagate your plant, although we should warn you that Stromanthe Triostar can be a bit temperamental.

Propagating Stromanthe Triostar plants via stem cutting:

  1. Find a stem worth snipping: Look for a healthy stem with a few green leaves and at least one joint. That joint is where the roots will sprout, so it’s pretty important.
  2. Time to get those sterilized gardening shears! Gently cut the stem just below the joint, but be careful not to harm the rest of the plant.
  3. Pop your stem cuttings into a small container filled with filtered water. Make sure you remove any leaves that would end up underwater – we don’t want any rot on our hands!
  4. Change the water every 2-3 days and find a nice spot with bright, indirect light, but not too much direct light, to keep your cutting company.
  5. When you see new roots that are at least 2 inches long, it’s time to move your stem cuttings into some potting soil. Just remember to keep it evenly moist with frequent watering during the first weeks, but don’t drown the poor thing.

Propagating by offshoot separation

This method is nearly identical to what you’d do for snake plants and prayer plants.

  1. Remove your Stromanthe Triostar from its pot and check out its root system. Hunt for healthy offshoots ripe for propagation.
  2. Gently separate the chosen offshoot from the mother plant. Try to keep the root system intact, but if things get tangled, sterilized scissors will do the trick.
  3. Repot the separated offshoot into a container with a well-draining potting mix.
  4. Give the newly potted offshoot a good drink and find a bright, indirect light spot for it to settle in.

Our propagation tips:

  • Patience is key: Stromanthe propagation isn’t the fastest thing in the world, so give your stem cuttings or offshoots enough time to grow roots before transplanting.
  • Crank up the humidity: Stromanthe Triostar loves humidity, so keeping it high during propagation can up your chances of success.
  • Choose the healthiest bits: Always pick healthy-looking stems for cuttings or offshoots to separate.

Common issues

Let’s chat about some common issues you might run into with your Stromanthe prayer plant.

Yellow leaves

Yellowing leaves usually indicate an issue with water. Give the soil a feel (poke a finger about an inch down) to check its moisture level… if it feels dry, your plant needs a solid drink. But if the soil’s always wet, well, you might be overdoing it.

Curled leaves

Curled leaves are often a sign of underwatering or too much direct sunlight. If you think it’s a dryness issue, water your plant and keep a regular watering schedule from now on.

But if the leaves are curled and a bit crispy… it’s time to move your plant to a cooler spot with bright, indirect light (away from those pesky heat sources!).

Keep an eye on new growth on your plant and see how it responds to these changes.

Brown leaf tips and edges

Brown tips or edges on your Stromanthe Triostar’s leaves could be from using tap water (those additives can harm the delicate foliage). So first try switching to filtered or distilled water and see if they start to clear up.

Still having issues? Your plant might be craving more humidity. Remember, Triostars are fans of humid environments, so consider placing a humidifier nearby or setting your plant on a tray of water with pebbles (it’s like a mini oasis!).

Pests and diseases

Even the most well-cared-for plants can face some pesky problems.

Spider mites

You know those teeny-tiny critters, spider mites, that just love munching on your Stromanthe Triostar’s precious leaves? Yep, they can be a real headache, causing the leaves to yellow and develop an unattractive speckled look. They’re sneaky, too, often hiding on the underside of the leaves.

To spot these little troublemakers, look for super fine webbing on the leaves and stems. If you see small, reddish-brown dots on the move, that’s them!

Okay, so you’ve found spider mites. First step, isolate your plant from any other green roommates to prevent the mites from spreading. Gently wipe the leaves with a damp cloth (upper and lower surfaces), which should remove a good amount of the mites.

For heavier infestations, you might need to break out the neem oil spray or mild insecticidal soap (follow the instructions on the label). Make sure you cover the entire plant, especially the underside of the leaves… and be prepared to repeat the treatment if needed.

Mites really hate a humid environment, so this might be one of the few occasions we recommend misting down your leaves. Just wipe them off after.

Root rot

This is a common issue that many indoor plants, including your Stromanthe Triostar, might face. Overwatering and poor drainage lead to soggy soil… and that’s a recipe for some unhappy roots.

To see if rot is the culprit, take the plant out of its pot and check out the roots. Healthy roots should be white or light tan and firm to the touch. Brown, black, or mushy roots are a sure sign that you have an issue.

To treat, you’ll need to trim away the affected roots with sterilized scissors or pruners (always sanitize your tools before and after). Once you’ve removed those roots, repot your Stromanthe Triostar in some fresh, well-draining soil… and make sure the pot has proper drainage holes!


That’s a wrap for our Stromanthe Triostar care guide!

You are now ready to embark on a colorful journey with this dazzling addition to your plant collection. By following the tips provided, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle any challenges that come your way and keep your Stromanthe Triostar happy and healthy.

Stromanthe Triostar care tips:

  • Find the perfect balance of bright light to ensure vibrant foliage and healthy growth. Aim for bright, indirect light away from harsh direct sun or low light conditions.
  • Monitor your plant’s watering needs, allowing the top few inches of soil to dry out before giving it a proper soak.
  • Keep your plant in high humidity if possible — it will keep those leaves vivid and your plant growing happily.
  • Use a well-draining soil mix and be mindful of fertilizer usage to prevent damage to your plant’s delicate leaves.

We hope this guide has inspired you to welcome a Stromanthe Triostar into your home, and feel free to reach out if you have any questions or need further information.

Share this guide with fellow plant enthusiasts and watch as the world becomes a little more vibrant, one Stromanthe Triostar at a time.

Take care, and happy growing!


Can you grow Stromanthe Triostar outdoors? In which USDA zones?

Yes, but it’s important to keep in mind that it thrives in specific conditions. This plant is best suited for USDA hardiness zones 10 and 11, where the temperature remains consistently warm and there’s no risk of frost.

In these zones, find a spot with bright, indirect light, filtered by a canopy of trees, if you can!

Is Stromanthe Triostar a Calathea?

Although the Stromanthe Triostar may share some similarities with Calathea plants, they are, in fact, different varieties. Both belong to the Marantaceae family and are often referred to as “prayer plants” due to their shared habit of lifting and lowering their leaves throughout the day in response to light.

While Calatheas and Stromanthes have comparable care requirements, such as humidity and indirect light, there are distinctions in their leaf patterns and growth habits.

Calathea plants typically exhibit a wider range of leaf shapes and intricate patterns, while Stromanthe Triostars have a more uniform leaf structure.

Is Stromanthe Triostar difficult?

Stromanthe Triostar may seem a bit finicky at first, but it’s not too difficult to care for once you get the hang of its preferences. Remember, it’s a tropical plant, so mimicking its natural habitat as closely as possible will make it feel right at home.

Keep an eye on your plant for any changes in its leaves and adjust your care accordingly.

How do I get more pink on Stromanthe Triostar?

You’ll want to provide it with lots and lots of light. While direct sunlight can be too harsh and cause leaf scorching, the right amount of bright, filtered light can bring out those beautiful pink hues in the leaves.

Does Stromanthe like full sun?

Stromanthe Triostar is not a full sun-loving plant. In fact, it prefers bright, indirect light to avoid damage to its delicate leaves. Excess direct sunlight can cause the leaves to curl up, scorch, burn, and even fade those beautiful colors.


Our Expert
Jennifer Schutter

Jennifer Schutter is a certified master gardener with over 14 years of gardening experience. Her expertise is in indoor plant propagation and home ecology.