How to grow and care for Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia) Indoors

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Houseplant, Million Hearts Plant

Botanical name: Dischidia ruscifolia
Family: Apocynaceae

Million Hearts Plant is an easy to grow plant which bears numerous heart-shaped leaves on trailing stems and hence the common name, 'Million Hearts Plant'.

The trailing stems in Million Hearts Plant cascade beautifully along the sides of a pot or in a hanging basket.

The Million Hearts Plant readily and oftenly flowers when grown indoors. The flowers are white, tiny and very fragrant.

Million Hearts Plant is native to Philippines where it grows as an epiphytes on top of trees, attaching itself to the trees by means of its tiny roots borne at the leaf nodes.

The Best Indoor Growing Conditions for Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia)

Light for Million Hearts Plant

Million Hearts Plant prefers bright light away from hot direct sunshine; some morning sunshine is beneficial to this plant. Low light results in a leggy plant while too much direct sunlight will cause the leaves to turn reddish. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

How to water Million Hearts Plant

Water your Million Hearts Plant moderately during the growing season and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.

Significantly reduce watering during the cold season to maintain the soil barely moist as the growth of your Million Hearts Plant is minimal at this time. Read more on how to water houseplants.

Ensure the pot for your Million Hearts Plant has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to avoid soggy soil as it can lead to rotting.


Temperature for Million Hearts Plant

Average warmth between 18-300C during the growing season is ideal for your Million Hearts Plant.

Keep your Million Hearts Plant away from draughts as it does not like sudden changes in the temperature. Check out this guide on understanding temperature for houseplants.

Humidity for Million Hearts Plant

Average room humidity is ideal for your Million Hearts Plant. Million Hearts Plant has no need for high humidity but is benefits from regular misting of the leaves.

Ensure good air circulation for your Million Hearts Plant to prevent fungal diseases.

Fertizer (Feeding) for Million Hearts Plant

Feed your Million Hearts Plant twice during the growing season with a succulents fertilizer. Million Hearts Plant is not a heavy feeder so be careful when feeding.

Withhold feeding for your Million Hearts Plant in the cold season as growth is minimal at this time. Read more on how to feed houseplants.

How to repot Million Hearts Plant

Million Hearts Plant has a small root system so frequent repotting is not necessary. Repot the plant at the beginning of the growing season only when it becomes crowded in its current pot.

Use a pot 1 size larger and one that has a drainage hole to avoid soggy soil as it can lead to rotting.

Use a shallow pot and be careful not to bury the stems to prevent rotting. The best soil should be loose and free-draining like bark soil.

How to prune Million Hearts Plant

Pruning your Million Hearts Plant involves removal of any dead leaves and stems to keep the plant neat and tidy.

Trim the stems of your Million Hearts Plant at the beginning of the growing season if they become straggly to rejuvenate growth.

How to Propagate Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia)

Million Hearts Plant can be propagated at the beginning of the growing season from stem cuttings.

How to propagate Million Hearts Plant from stem cuttings

Take 3-5 in. stem cuttings from a healthy Million Hearts Plant. Ensure each cutting has 2-3 leaf nodes. Allow the cuttings to dry (callous) for about 7 days to avoid rotting.

Press the cut end into moist free-draining soil or lay the string on top of the soil and lightly press the leaf nodes into the soil.

Place in a warm place and maintain the soil moist until they are rooted. Allow substancial growth before transplanting the new Million Hearts Plant.

Common Problems in Growing Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia) Indoors

Why is there sudden loss of leaves in my Million Hearts Plant?

Watering your Million Hearts Plant with very cold water is one cause of sudden leaf loss.

Water your Million Hearts Plant with water that is at room temperature to avoid shocking this tropical plant.

The second cause of sudden leaf loss in your Million Hearts Plant is underwatering.

Water your Million Hearts Plant moderately and allow the soil to dry out between waterings but never allow the soil ball to dry out completely.

Why does my Million Hearts Plant have brown dry leaf spots?

Brown dry leaf spots in your Million Hearts Plant are due to underwatering.

Water your Million Hearts Plant moderately during the growing season while allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. Do not allow the soil to dry out completely.

Why are the leaves of my Million Hearts Plant wilted and discolored?

Overwatering during the cold period is the cause of wilted and discolored leaves in your Million Hearts Plant.

Reduce watering for your Million Hearts Plant during the cold season to maintain the soil barely moist as growth is minimal at this time.

Also, ensure the pot for your Million Hearts Plant has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to avoid getting soggy soil.

Why is my Million Hearts Plant rotting at base of the stem?

Rotting plant base and stems collapse in your Million Hearts Plant is an indication of basal stem rot disease which is brought about by overwet conditions.

Avoid overwatering during the cold season. Use the upper stem to propagate new plants and discard the infected parts.

Why does my Million Hearts Plant have elongated stems and misshappen?

Elongated stems and misshappen in your Million Hearts Plant during the cold season is due to too much water; water less and maintain the soil barely moist.

If elongated stems and misshappen in your Million Hearts Plant happens during the growing season, then the cause is too little light.

Million Hearts Plant prefers bright light with some direct sunlight. Too little light will cause the plant to grow weak, elongated stems in an attempt to reach the light source.

Which plant diseases affect Million Hearts Plant?

Common diseases in Million Hearts Plant are Powdery Mildew and Leaf Spot.

Isolate the affected Million Hearts Plant to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it appropriately for the diseases.

Which are the common pests in Million Hearts Plant?

Common pests in Million Hearts Plant are Mealy Bugs, Aphids, Scale Insects and Spider Mites.

Isolate the affected Million Hearts Plant to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it appropriately for the pests.

Is Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia) toxic?

Million Hearts Plant (Dischidia ruscifolia) produces a milky sap which can irritate the skin. Always wear gloves when handling your Million Hearts Plant.

Million Hearts Plant is non-toxic to both humans and pets if ingested.

Other Dischidia Plants for Growing Indoors

  1. Watermelon Dischidia (Dischidia ovata)
  2. String of Nickels Plant (Dischidia nummularia)

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