Houseplant of the Week: Piggyback Plant

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Tolmiea menziesii is an unusual houseplant for a lot of reasons. First of all, unlike most houseplants, which tend to originate from tropical areas, this plant is a native of the Pacific Northwest. In its native environment, it’s a groundcover in forests along the coastline.

It also has an unusual way of growing leaves, with new leaves sprouting directly from the center of large, mature leaves at the point where the stem attaches to the leaf. That’s where the plant gets its more common nickname, the piggyback plant.

Caring for Your Piggyback Plant

  • Humidity & Temperature: This is a plant that likes conditions that mimic its Pacific Northwest roots. It thrives with high humidity, so a pebble tray should be used to make it happy. It also likes cooler temps, ranging from 50 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Light: Piggybacks prefer indirect light.
  • Water: Keep your plant consistently moist all year long and mist if your home gets dry.
  • Fertilizer: Feed once a month during the plants growing season in the spring and summer.