The Bambino plant is an exquisite houseplant popular among plant owners for its unique features. However, there are many things you must know to grow it indoors. Below are some care guidelines and tips to ensure your bambino grows well.
An Introduction to the Bambino Plant
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The Alocasia amazonica Bambino is part of the genus Alocasia and plants family Araceae. The genus Alocasia consists of tuberous flowering plants, with 79 plant species recorded.
The Alocasia bambino is native to the tropical regions of Southeast Asia and is known for its characteristic long leaves and bright green veins. The bambino is a dwarf subspecies of the Alocasia and is often confused with Ficus Lyrata of the Moraceae family.
The bambino is known by many names among plant growers, including:
- Bambino Fiddle Leaf Fig
- Dwarf Fiddle Leaf Fig
- F. Bambino
- African Mask
- Elephant Ears
- Jewel Alocasia
- Bambino Arrow
Features of the Dwarf fiddle leaf fig
The alocasia amazonica bambino may be confused with other parts of the same subfamily Aroideae. Still, it supports many distinctive features that help a fiddle leaf fig lover tell it apart.
One of the main reasons the Dwarf fiddle leaf fig is a popular indoor plant is because of its beautiful foliage. The plant supports dark green leaves with bright green veins. The underside of the alocasia amazonica bambino leaf appears dark purple.
Additionally, the bambino arrow does not grow to great heights. It grows around 12 inches in height, making it easier to grow as an indoor plant as it does not require much space.
The Jewel Alocasia is an evergreen flowering plant and usually blooms in summer or spring. The flowers are bright pink but appear more purple as they grow. While it commonly produces fruits in their native habitat, they are less likely to do so as indoor plants.
In the right conditions, the bambino arrow plant is a fast-growing plant that can grow a couple of inches a year. They grow cordate leaves and long flowering petioles.
While these plants are generally beautiful, they are toxic to cats, dogs, and people. The fiddle leaf fig releases a white latex sap that can cause mild skin irritation if it comes in contact with the skin.
If ingested, the fiddle leaf can cause intense stomach aches and nausea. It would be best to contact a doctor if you ingest the fiddle leaf plant.
Bambino Plant Care Guideline
The dwarf fiddle leaf fig is an easy plant to take care of and does not require much to grow. However, to make the plant flourish, you must provide it with certain conditions. Below are some care guidelines to keep in mind when you grow the bambino arrow plant.
In their native habitat, the Alocasia plants adapted to grow well in bright filtered sunlight that came through the dense canopy of the forest. Hence, these tropical plants grow well in bright indirect light as indoor plants.
However, keep the plant away from direct sunlight as it could burn the leaves, and the plant starts to show brown leaves.
You can place the dwarf fiddle leaf fig in a brightly lit room that receives plenty of indirect sunlight. You can also place it near a west or south-facing window.
The bambino arrowhead plant requires frequent watering as they are fond of moisture. Generally, you should water the plant once every week in the growing season and once every few weeks in the winter.
However, it would help if you were careful when watering the plant. Underwatering could lead to dehydration and wilting, and overwatering could lead to soggy roots, which causes them to suffocate.
An excellent way of knowing when to water the dwarf leaf fig is to check the top few inches of the soil with your finger and only water the plant if the soil feels dry.
Generally, the jewel Alocasia prefers loose and well-draining soil that allows the roots to grow and absorb moisture without suffocation. Additionally, the dwarf fiddle leaf fig thrives in acidic soil of pH levels 5-7.
A suitable soil mix for the alocasia plant would be a potting mix with peat, perlite, coco coir, or similar materials to allow water drainage and moisture retention, as dwarf fiddle leaf figs prefer moist soil.
These plants do not tolerate frost or cold temperatures and generally do well in temperatures around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
You can place the plan in a warm house area like the kitchen. In the winter, you must be extra careful so the plant does not freeze and get damaged.
The plants are accustomed to the high humidity levels in the tropical rainforest and generally require humid environments to thrive. Keep your bambino arrow plant in humidity levels of around 60% f you want to make it flourish.
You can mist the plant yourself or place a pebble tray filled with water underneath the plant. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier to maintain optimum humidity levels.
If you own many plants, you can cluster them together in an area of the home so they share their humidity.
Since the dwarf plant does not grow to great heights, it is still considered a fast grower. Hence, while you don’t have to do it frequently, you must repot the plant once every couple of years.
If the plant outgrows the pots, it starts to damage its roots as they have no place left to grow. Additionally, the root ball can cause poor water drainage and lead to problems related to overwatering.
A clear sign that you must repot your plant is when you see roots growing out of the surface of the soil mix or out of the drainage holes.
When repotting, choose a pot bigger than the previous one and has adequate drainage holes. Generally, a clay pot with potting soil works best as it has good moisture-retaining abilities and is less costly.
While they do not require fertilizing, adding a slow-release fertilizer to your alocasia bambino can help it grow beautiful leaves and thick stems. Generally, liquid fertilizer with equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium works best.
However, you must be careful not to overfeed the plant. Overfeeding can lead to blocked roots and damage the plant’s growth. Only fertilize the plant in growing seasons when it takes up more nutrients.
Since they tend to grow small as it is, you won’t have to prune the plant much. However, there are some conditions where you will have to cut off a bit of it. One such circumstance is when you notice a diseased or damaged part of the plant. Cut the parts using sterile pruning scissors.
One of the most common diseases that affect the bambino is root rot. Root rot is a fungal infection in the roots, which is often caused by overwatering and can lead to the decomposition of the roots.
A fungal infection in the roots can eventually spread to the stem and leaves, creating black spots. Hence, you must act fast before it reaches such a stage.
If you notice black spots on the plant or a sulfur-like smell coming from the pot, isolate the alocasia bambino and remove it from the pot. Cut off any deteriorated parts and treat the rest with an antifungal soap. Do not repot the plant in the contaminated soil, even if you treat the soil beforehand.
The alocasia bambino is susceptible to multiple pest infestations that feed on the plant. One of the most pests that attach to the alocasia bambino is spider mites. Spider mites sink their proboscis into the stem and leaf, creating yellow spots.
Another common pest that infests dwarf fiddle leaf figs is fungus gnats, which are larvae that usually occur when there is too much water in the grow pots. Similarly, the alocasia bambino plants are also affected by scale insects that appear as brown lumps on the plant.
You can treat these plants by removing them from the pot and applying pesticidal soap. Repot the plant in fresh potting soil to avoid infestation.
You can also use hydrogen peroxide or neem oil to prevent further infestation. You can spray neem oil on your mature plants to keep pests like mealy bugs away.
You can propagate alocasia bambino in water or soil. While the starting procedure is the same for both, they have different requirements.
First, cut off a part of the stem using scissors, ensuring that you cut it from the node and that the stem cutting has a few leaves.
To propagate the bambino in soil, place the stem in the soil, with the node facing downwards. Provide it with plenty of water and humidity levels.
To propagate the bambino in water, put the stem cuttings in water, ensuring that only the node is submerged, not the leaves.
You will notice new roots in a few weeks. You can then shift the plant to a new pot and fresh potting mix and care for it, as mentioned in the guideline above.
Common Problems in Bambino Fiddle leaf fig
When caring for the dwarf bambino, you must know what to look for. Certain problems haunt the plant, but if you know how to fix them, they aren’t much of an issue.
Brown tips are a common problem in the fiddle leaf fid. They are mainly caused if your plant is in direct sun or is getting too much bright light. Keep your tropical plant in bright indirect light and avoid placing it in direct light.
Brown tips can also be caused by underwatering and overfeeding, leading to dehydration. Check the drainage hole on your grow pot to ensure appropriate drainage.
Drooping or wilting leaves is a clear sign that your plant is dehydrated. Check to see if the plant receives enough humidity and if you water it frequently. Curling the leaves downwards is a defense mechanism of the bambino fiddle leaf fig to avoid excess water loss.
Additionally, it can also be because the plant is not receiving enough light. Put it in bright indirect light to make the plant happy.
Yellow leaves signify that your fiddle leaf fig is either infected or infested with pests. Check the plant and the soil for signs of pests. If you notice any diseased or damaged parts, cut them off using pruning scissors.
The Bambino arrowhead plant is an exquisite indoor plant that can add an aesthetic appeal to your home. However, you must care for the plans appropriately if you want them to flourish. Look out for problems to ensure that your bambino stays healthy and happy.