Calathea Roseopicta (Rose Painted Calathea): Ultimate Care Guide

Adding beauty and attraction to your plant collection is the calathea roseopicta, or the rose painted calathea.  From the family of the Marantaceae, the appearance of the calathea roseopicta can vary from one plant to another.  The most common of characteristics is its obviously the explosion of color on the leaves and flowers.  The calathea roseopicta has these big elliptic leaves that have pinkish to white coloring along the border of the leaves. This gives the leaves a nice double-colored style with dark green contrasting. Calathea roseopicta start off with a pinkish stripe all around the leaf, which turns white as the plant gets more mature.  The calathea have a well-known reputation of having “prayer plant,” which occurs at night when the leaves do a sagging or curling bend which makes the leaves look like praying hands.

The calathea roseopicta is a tropical plant from Brazil that comes with many varieties, including the “Medallion,” “Eclipse,” and “Dottie.”  This eye-catching houseplant also flowers tiny white and purple-colored flowers during the summertime.  As a member of the calathea genus, the roseopicta does a really good job filtering out a room and providing clean, fresher environments.  The calathea roseopicta is a rare gem to have in or outdoors.   

Calathea Roseopicta Care

While many calathea are relatively easy to take care of, the roseopicta is a bit more particular.  The houseplant will quite often show uneven growth patterns and many other types of disturbed progress if the plant does not get proper care. 


As an outdoor plant, you have to be more considerate of where your calathea roseopicta is being planted.  This beautiful houseplant does not do well in direct sunlight, as it might burn the leaves and leave them looking quite dull.  Therefore, if you plant it outside, make sure it is getting bright, but indirect light.  The same goes for indoor placement.  Try putting your calathea roseopicta in a north or south facing window so that it does not face directly at the sun at any time during the day.  Place it about six to ten inches from the window so it is protected from direct sunlight.  It might also help the plant if you move it closer to the window during the winter season and farther away during the summer.  The darker the leaves are on the plant, the greater the light they require to keep the color.  So be mindful of where exactly you are placing the plant.

Calathea Roseopicta (Rose Painted Calathea)
Calathea Roseopicta (Rose Painted Calathea)

Soil and pH

Calathea have very specific needs when it comes to its soil.  Like most calathea, the roseopicta requires well-draining soil system to ensure that the roots will not sit in still water.  The soil must also be allowed to properly aerate, so that the soil is damp, but not at all water-logged.  For the best results, try a peat-based potting mix or you can just use regular potting mix and add some perlite.  Anything with a third of perlite will help improve the drainage of the soil.  The calathea roseopicta are used to forest floors and therefore need an environment where they are wet, but not exactly soggy. 

Watering and Humidity

When watering your calathea roseopicta, the best indicator is going to be your soil.  Their natural environment has a lot of humidity, so the plant’s soil needs to damp, but not over watered.  You can also pay close attention to the leaves to see if it is getting enough moisture.  If the leaves start to curl inward during the day, add more water.  If the top of the soil is dry, then add more water.  The plant does best with filtered water or if you can collect rainwater, as the minerals in most tap waters will have an effect on the plant.  If you put your finger into the soil, you can start to learn how much water the calathea roseopicta will need.  So keep an eye on the soil. 

As mentioned before, the calathea roseopicta is a tropical plant and thrives on the humidity in the room.  The gorgeous houseplant needs to remain in humidity levels of between forty and sixty percent.  Anything lower than that will cause harm to the roseopicta.  If you do not live in a humid environment, then consider a room humidifier that you can place by the plant.  You can also use a pebble-filled water tray and gather extra plants around it to enhance the humidity levels.  The higher is the humidity level, the better. 


Since it is a tropical plant, the ideal temperature for a calathea roseopicta individual is between 64 and 75ºF (18 and 24ºC).  Any issues with the temperature will occurs if it drops below 60ºF (15ºC), as the plant does not handle colder temperatures well.  Room temperature should be fine, but dry to avoid any places that have a draft or are close by to a heater or air conditioning unit. The calathea roseopicta needs a very specific entry of sunlight, water, humidity, and temperature.  Any comfortable, warm environment should allow the roseopicta to thrive.  If you are planting outside, the roseopicta has a maximum hardiness zone of eleven.  Indoor, the plant is easy to control the environment and make it more suitable for the plant.


If you want to help the growing process along during the spring and summer, then a fertilizer works wonders for the calathea roseopicta.  Any basic houseplant fertilizers will do as long as it has been diluted down to about half-strength.  During the growing period, you can do this every four to six weeks.  During the winter, you will not really need to fertilize the plant very much, maybe once every three months or so. 

Calathea Roseopicta Plant
Calathea Roseopicta Plant


You can turn one houseplant into multiple houseplants by propagating the calathea roseopicta.  The most ideal time to do this is when you are looking to repot the plant and schedule the propagating close to that.  Be sure to water your plant fairly well a few days before doing this.  You can divide the roseopicta and check to see how well the plant is overall.  Shake off any excess soil and find a cluster of roots.  You might have to untangle some of the roots or cut them if they are too tangled up.  Then the roots will be ready for propagating.  Just be careful not to harm the plant too much during the process.  Therefore, it best to do this when it is the growing season and the roseopicta has warm weather to recover in.

Size and Growth

Unlike the other forms of calathea, the roseopicta is quite a bit smaller than the rest of its family.  The calathea roseopicta will grow about forty to sixty centimeters, but that can vary between the different varieties of the plant.  Its growth will primarily come in the spring and summer time but a lot of its growth will depend on how it’s been cared for.  It takes a while for it to grow taller and it doesn’t mature very quickly either.  The leaves of the roseopicta are wider than they are tall.

Pests and Diseases

Your biggest issue with the calathea roseopicta is how much humidity it will need.  Therefore, you may experience fungus gnats that can be a problem.  While they won’t do any significant damage to the plant, they are unsightly.  Simply apply some neem oil to the leaves as a natural deterrent.  Some other common pests to watch out for would be aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, thrips, and scale.  All of these can be treated with horticultural oil or insecticidal soap.  Calathea roseopicta plants are also prone to bacterial and fungal infections. 

Be careful not to overwater the plant as you put it in risk of getting root rot or allowing fungal diseases.  This is why aerating and draining the soil is so important.

If you see the leaves curling and drooping, then it would be best give it more water.  Due to the specific needs of the calathea roseopicta, curling is a clear indication that the plant needs more water.  Increase the volume of water or the frequency in which you are watering it. 

If the leaves are turning yellow or have brown edges, there might be too much sun hitting the leaves of the calathea roseopicta.  Any dead leaves should be removed immediately.  You will also need to move the calathea roseopicta into a new area since it is getting too much sun.  You will also need to do this if the patterns on the leaves are also disappearing. 

If your calathea roseopicta looks like it is dying, you may need to start over from scratch.  Therefore, it is best to make sure you don’t run into any of these problems after you have invested so much time into growing the plant.


One of the best ways to repot the calathea roseopicta is to use terracotta pots with a hole in the bottom to allow for easy removal of excess water.  Being such a slow grower, you will probably only need to repot the plant once every couple of years.  Once you carefully remove the plant from the original pot, find another pot that is slightly bigger to give it a bit more space to grow.  Make sure the roots are secure and fill the pot up with soil.  After the repotting process is complete, water the calathea roseopicta to make sure that it survived without issue.  Keep a good eye on the plant for a couple of weeks while it settles into its new potted home.

Other Calathea Roseopicta Facts

The calathea roseopicta flowers very tiny flowers during the spring and summertime.  These flowers are either white or purple and usually very small parts compared to the rest of the plant. 

At night, the leaves of your calathea roseopicta might fold ever so gently which make them look like they are praying.  This should be the only movement that the houseplant does.  If any other drooping or curling effect happens, then you may need to check your care for the plant.

The calathea roseopicta is completely safe and non-toxic.  However, Therefore, it will not harm any people or pets.  That being said, people and pets might be toxic to the calathea fusion white.  The leaves of the plant are delicate and can easily be damaged.  It would be best to keep the plant out of reach of plants and pets, so it can thrive without disturbance.

If you are looking to buy the calathea roseopicta, they are available at various shops like Etsy, eBay, Walmart, Lowe’s, and Target.  These plants will range in price from anywhere from $16-60.  This depends on how well the plant was cared for up to that point, plus, the size of the plant can affect the price. It might also be beneficial to buy yourself a different terracotta pot so you can repot the roseopicta.  Many of the store pots are really just for keeping the plants stable. There are many better options when it comes to the pot.  Keep in mind that there are many different types of calathea roseopictas, so take special care in which one you choose and if there are any changes in caring for it.  You can also buy seeds as well, but it will be more time consuming for you to grow them on your own.

However, if you are really trying to get the best advice and quality from your calathea roseopicta, it is recommended that you get the plant from a professional flower shop.  This way, you can be assured that the calathea roseopicta was taken care of before you got it.  Furthermore, the professionals running the store will have a lot of advice and knowledge that will help you grow your calathea roseopicta in the best way possible.  These places tend to have a lot more expertise behind them and can also have more knowledge in how to help you if you run into any kinds of trouble.  With such specific needs, you want to make sure you are confident in caring for the calathea roseopicta so that it lasts a long time.

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