Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea
Rosio Picta Calethea

Rosio Picta Calethea

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Rose Painted Calathea (Calathea Roseopicta)

Some plants are difficult to describe with mere words. The magnificent Rose Painted Calathea (Calathea Roseopicta) is difficult to describe even with words, pictures, and a nature-film-style narrator. It’s just so unique, so exquisite, so just plain fancy that anything short of seeing it in real life fails to do it justice.


But we’ll give it a shot. 


Native to the rainforests of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru—where it’s basically a ground cover, believe it or not—Rose Painted Calathea is a 2’-3’ mound of foliage so intricately detailed it really could pass for art. Its leaves are near-perfect ovals, often 4”x6” or larger, with some of the most subtly elegant coloration you’ll ever see.


It starts with a chunky stripe of deep medium green that runs around the outer leaf edge. Just inside that is a thin, feathery stripe of tasteful white-green. Next comes a dark, pine green section complemented by an irregular yellow-green splash that runs up the midrib and sometimes reaches up the side veins as well. Oh, and that’s just the mature leaves. Newly emerged leaves are dark black-green with a neon pink midrib and feather-stripe … which matches the leaves’ rich maroon-pink undersides.


If it sounds overwhelming, that’s because it is, but in the best possible way. (We warned you words couldn’t do it.) But we can testify this one is a show-stopper in the home, displaying those big, beautiful patterns in the daytime and flashing those undersides when it folds its leaves up at night (this is part of the prayer plant family, after all).


True, Rose Painted Calathea does require a bit of attention and TLC. It needs plenty of bright indirect light, high humidity (misting, pebble tray, etc), temperatures above 60°F, and soil that is consistently moist but never soggy. But if you give it what it needs, this plant puts on a show like few others. It’s a worthwhile trade.



Characteristics and traits of a Rose Painted Calathea (Calathea Roseopicta)

Scientific Name: Calathea Roseopicta (syn: Goeppertia Roseopicta - may be newer and more correct)

Genus: Calathea

Family: Marantaceae

Common Name: Rose Painted Calathea, Prayer Plant (one of many),

Indoor:   Year round as long as temps remain above 60°F

Outdoor Zones: 10-11

Type: Perennial evergreen; Propagated by division

Mature Height: 20” - 30”

Mature Width: 20” - 24”

Plant Height when Shipped: XXXXXX

Growth Rate: Slow-medium

Flower: Very rare on indoor plants. Small, crocus-like green-white flowers that appear deep down among the leaves.

Foliage: Thick, rounded-oval leaves of deep green with a pink-white midrib and “halo” stripe, lighter green splashes along the midrib and along the leaf veins, and purple undersides. 



Plant Care and Advice for Rose Painted Calathea (Calathea Roseopicta)


Grown In:  Inside: all zones year round, Outside: zones 10-11

Light Requirements: Bright indirect to medium light, no direct sun in summer.

Water Requirements: In summer (March-August), give clean, room-temperature water when the top ½”-1” of soil feels dry. Decrease water during cooler months. 

Drought Tolerance: Fair

Temperature: Prefers indoor room temp. 65°F-75°F. Bring indoors when temps fall below 50°F.  

Air Purification: Good

Toxicity: Non-toxic

Fertilizer: Half-strength fertilizer every 2-6 weeks during spring and summer, none in fall/winter.

Container Friendly: Yes - with adequate drainage.




Rose Painted Calathea doesn’t enjoy having its roots disturbed, so don’t repot unless those roots are poking out the pot’s drainage hole (probably every couple years). When the time comes—preferably in early spring, which is the best time to repot—select a new pot 1”-2” wider than the plant’s existing pot and make sure it has a drainage hole.


One of the keys to a happy Rose Painted Calathea is to give it a light, quick-draining soil. Most growers recommend a mix of 2 parts peat-based potting soil and 1 part perlite for added drainage. Others prefer a grittier mix such as African violet soil or a 2:2:1 blend of peat moss, perlite, and compost. Whatever soil you choose, avoid stone mulches, which can impede evaporation and decrease humidity around the plant. 



Plant Care:


Rose Painted Calathea does best in bright, but indirect light. Direct summer sun can scorch their leaves, which are optimized to gather diffused or dappled light. Winter sunlight is less intense, so the plant can handle more of it and may actually appreciate some direct sun from time to time.


When watering Rose Painted Calathea, give the plant a deep drink any time the top ½”-1” of soil feels dry, then let it drain thoroughly to avoid root rot. Decrease water during fall and winter. Also, this plant is a bit picky about its water, which it likes to be room-temperature and free of impurities such as added fluoride or chlorine. Distilled water and rainwater work best, but you can also use regular tap water that you’ve allowed to sit uncovered for 24 hours, so the impurities can dissipate out. Finally, try to water the soil directly, as leaving large amounts of water on the leaves can cause a fungal infection.


Just like a person, Rose Painted Calathea is comfortable in normal room temperatures of 65°F-75°F. It does poorly when subjected to temps below 60°F, sudden temperature changes, cold drafts, or blasts of warm air (think heat vents).


Why would warm air bother the plant? Because moving air decreases humidity, which Rose Painted Calatheas adore. They respond well to frequent (even daily) light misting, and to being placed on a tray filled with a layer of water (which adds humidity as it evaporates) and a slightly taller layer of pebbles (to keep the pot from sitting in the water). 


Rose Painted Calathea is not a heavy feeder, but it can benefit from a dose of half-strength fertilizer every so often during the spring and summer growing season. Exactly how often to fertilize is a matter of some debate. While some growers feed every 2 weeks, most choose to fertilize every 4-6 weeks, and a few don’t fertilize at all. Whichever schedule you choose, keep an eye out for pale leaves, which signal a need for more fertilizer, and for yellow leaves, which can sometimes be caused by fertilizer overdose. Also, there’s no need to fertilize during fall and winter.



Expert Advice:


While you’re admiring Calathea Roseopicta’s amazing leaves, it’s a good idea to also keep your eyes open for warning signs.


Curling, spotty leaves typically signal that your Calathea Roseopicta just needs more water. However, it could also be a sign that it’s getting enough water, but that water contains too much added fluoride, sodium, or some other substance. Switching to distilled water, rainwater, or tap water that’s been left out for 24 hours or more should help.


Brown tips or edges on leaves are probably the result of low humidity (see Plant Care for solutions). However, they could also be caused by excess heat, too much direct sunlight, impurities in the water, or a combination of too much warm air and not enough humidity (especially during winter, when central heating is going). Examine your care practices and you should track down the cause.


Dropping leaves? Yet another symptom usually traced to dry air. Increase humidity and remove any drafts and your Calathea Roseopicta should recover nicely. Similarly, if the plant’s stems become limp, it’s likely either too cold or getting too much water. Also, while this is rare, if your plant’s leaves become pale (not yellow, but washed-out), the plant may be low on nitrogen and/or iron, which you can provide with a dose of fertilizer.


Yellow leaves are probably the hardest symptom to diagnose. If only the older, outer leaves of the plant are yellowing, this is probably the natural process of growth and maturity. However, if younger leaves are also yellowing, it may be due to overwatering, overfertilization, impure water, salt build-up in the soil (likely from fertilizer), too much or too little sunlight, or even disease (see below). Tracking down the culprit may take some detective work.


One of the reasons humidity is so important to Calathea Roseopicta is that it helps stave off infections by pests such as spider mites, mealybugs, thrips, and scale. Most of these pests are easily handled with neem oil, Mite-X, insecticidal soap, or even strict mechanical removal with a wet cloth.


Calathea Roseopicta is quite resistant to disease unless it is overwatered or its leaves are allowed to remain wet for extended periods of time. If that happens, bacterial and fungal infections such as leaf spot and cucumber mosaic virus can appear.


If the foliage shows large dark green or black lesions, there is a (slim) chance the plant can be saved. Isolate the plant to avoid spreading the infection, trim off the affected leaves, and treat the plant with copper-based bactericide/fungicide. 


If these steps don’t work, the best plan is to sacrifice the plant, soil and all, in order to keep the rest of your plants free from infection. Sadly, this is also the only solution for a plant that has contracted cucumber mosaic virus, which causes irregular yellow streaking on the leaves and has no known cure.


If the leaves of your Calathea Roseopicta are yellowing and wilting, there’s a chance the plant has contracted fusarium blight. Ready for triage? Isolate the plant and trim infected foliage just as before, then remove the plant from its pot, wash its roots completely clean of soil, and dispose of the soil. Repot in fresh soil and a clean pot (the old pot can be sterilized with a 1:9 bleach/water solution) and dose with copper-based fungicide weekly for the next month. If the plant shows no further symptoms, it can rejoin the herd.


Calathea Roseopicta is easy to propagate via division. When repotting, gently separate the plant into two or more smaller plants (each with their own roots and stems), place them in their own pots, and resume care as you normally would. Be careful to not overwater.

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 when you buy any 3 or more plants!

That's right - As soon as your shopping cart contains any 3 plants, your shipping is FREE!  Eligible for ground shipped orders going to the same address only.

And if you only order one or two plants, shipping is just $7.50 per plant!




  • We ship orders out of our nursery on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
  • If your order arrives by Tuesday night, we'll get it out within 24 hours, otherwise it will go out the following Monday.
  • We ship using UPS.
  • Depending on your location, you should receive your plants within 2-7 days from the date we ship them. Most orders average 2-3 days.
  • Our system automatically emails a notification to you with shipping and tracking information as soon as we ship your plants. Be sure your email is entered in correctly when you are checking out, this is the main cause for not getting notified.  If you do not received your order, please email us at

Changing your delivery address

  1. If you want to change the delivery address of your order and it has not already left our greenhouses, we will do our best to modify the delivery. Please send us an email to: No guarantee, but we will try our best.

  2. If the order has already shipped, please go to or Sign up there to make changes to delivery addresses.

Packages arriving in bad condition

On occasion, UPS and FedEx may handle some packages a bit too rough for your plant's liking. Please open your package immediately and document any damage with your camera. Call us at 800-668-3358 or email us at (preferably with your photos) and let us know what happened. Also refer to our Guarantee.

Holding Orders

If you need us to hold an order for you, we can for a short time. In the warm months we can only hold orders for a week or two. The plants grow so fast they can become too large to ship very quickly. In the Winter things grow a lot slower and we hold orders due to bad weather a lot better. So if you are not going to be home the week you order, just drop us an email and we will be glad to hold your order.

Winter Shipping

  1. Do you ship all year long? Yes! In the cold Winter and hot Summer months we check each order destination to be sure the temperature is safe to ship your live plant. When the temperature borders on the "too cold" to ship side, we may choose to ship your plants with a heat pack at no extra charge. If the temperature is still "too cold" to ship, we will hold your order in the warmth of our greenhouses until we can find a safe window of shipping weather and you will be notified via email.

  2. Do you ship with heat packs? No need to request one. We will check the weather in your area and add one if the temperature is below safe shipping levels.

  3. Do you charge extra for heat packs? No.

  4. What do I do if my plants are damaged by the cold? Please take good photos of the box, packing materials and the plants and send them to: