How To Take Care Of A Rattlesnake Plant – Tips For Healthy Indoor Gardening

It is essential to know How to Take Care of a Rattlesnake Plant, especially if you plan on growing them in your garden. Goeppertia insignis as it is known by its scientific name is a tropical evergreen perennial native to Brazil. It is commonly grown as an indoor houseplant for the beauty of its luscious foliage.

Although it can be a difficult plant to care for, if you do, you will be rewarded with an impressive display of foliage with a wavy pattern along the edges, variegated with shades of green. The undersides of the foliage are purply red and are also very eye-catching. This beautiful evergreen would therefore be a great addition to any environment if it is afforded the proper care and maintenance.

In its natural habitat, the rattlesnake plant blooms in late spring with small yellow flowers. However, because it rarely blooms indoors, it is grown as a houseplant solely for its long, elegant, ornamental foliage. When grown indoors, they typically reach a height of about 20 inches. The rattlesnake plant grows at a moderate rate, but growth will slow down or stop if the conditions are unfavorable.

 how to take care of a rattlesnake plant

Care Tips For Rattlesnake Plant Yellow Leaves

The most common cause of rattlesnake plant leaves turning yellow is the inconsistency in the watering schedule. Therefore, any information you can gather on how to take care of a rattlesnake plant can be useful to you in growing it healthily. When the leaves of the plant turn yellow or the tips start to brown, this indicates that the health of the plant has deteriorated.

This could be caused by too much moisture or the use of normal tap water which could also contribute to the problem. The recommended type of water for these gorgeous perennials is filtered water, rainwater, or distilled water. If you do find the leaves of your plant yellowing, there are a few things that you can do to prevent them from deteriorating further.

To begin with, when wiping the leaves of your plant, you should use a soft damp cloth. Avoid using detergents or any plant shine products as it could worsen the problem. Roughly moist soil is ideal for rattlesnake plants, but they dislike being waterlogged or overly dry. Only water the plant when the soil’s surface feels dry, or watering them once a week should be sufficient, depending on your climate. In a dry region, regular watering is recommended.

Rattlesnake Calathea Care – Best Strategies

Rattlesnake Calatheas require special care to thrive. Below are a few useful strategies that you can apply when taking care of rattlesnake plants. The information below will be useful in helping you grow a healthy and happy houseplant with no hassles. Seeing that it is a great addition to any surrounding, affording these perennials a little extra time and care will keep them thriving.

 rattlesnake calathea care

How to Take Care of a Rattlesnake Plant:


When growing rattlesnake plants, keep in mind that they thrive in warm rooms with temperatures consistently above 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Since this plant loves humidity, the bathroom is an ideal place for them to thrive.


During spring through to autumn, the soil needs to be kept moist. Provide the plant with humidity by misting the leaves daily or by standing the plant on a tray of moist pebbles. Keep in mind that the soil must be moist and not overly saturated. The roots of the plant must not be submerged in the water.


Place the rattlesnake plant in a spot with indirect sunlight. The warmth of the morning sun is ideal; however, try and avoid the direct afternoon sunlight as it can scorch their foliage.

 rattlesnake plant light


It is recommended that you water your Calathea Rattlesnake more frequently in the spring and summer. During the winter, only water when the topsoil feels dry. Most plants need to be watered every few days. Keep in mind that rattlesnake plants require filtered water, distilled water, or rainwater so you should avoid using tap water.

Bottom watering

Rattlesnake plants can be watered deeply every few weeks by watering from the bottom. Bottom water your snake plants by filling a shallow container or tray with rain or filtered water up to about an inch (2.5 cm) of water.


Feed your rattlesnake plant with a balanced fertilizer every couple of months. This type of scheduled feeding will aid them in reaching their full potential and staying lush.

Foliage Cleaning

To remove dust from the leaves, simply wipe them off with a damp cloth. Using leaf shine or detergents will cause the tips of the leaves to turn brown which will damage your beautiful plant.

 rattlesnake plant soil

Rattlesnake Plant Light Requirements

Sunlight is required to keep the rattlesnake plant’s vibrant colors lush. However, too much light will cause the dark-green spots to scorch and fade, and with too little light, the leaves will shrivel. If your plant receives insufficient light, the coloring may appear dull, and it may stop growing. Below are a few tips on how to care for a rattlesnake plant with specific light requirements.


  • Rattlesnake plants can tolerate lower light levels than many other tropical plants, so it’s best to err on the side of lower light rather than over-lighting your plant and risking scorching.
  • Place your rattlesnake near a bright window where it will get some morning sun but will not be directly exposed to the afternoon sunlight which can be quite harsh.
  • If necessary, you may need to use sheer curtains to filter the light. An east-facing window is ideal, but a south- or west-facing window can also work if you use curtains or move the plant a few feet back to avoid direct sunlight.
  • Rattlesnake plants prefer warm, humid conditions similar to those found in their native rainforests. The more closely you can replicate these conditions, the more content your plant will be.

For more information about these stunning plants, here’s an information-rich link

 rattlesnake plant yellow leaves

Best Rattlesnake Plant Soil

When it comes to taking care of a rattlesnake plant, always bear in mind that they do not like standing water. Therefore, when choosing a pot for this foliage plant, make sure to choose one with adequate drainage holes. The plant prefers moist soil that drains easily while retaining just enough water to keep it hydrated.

For this reason, it is best to choose soil that contains orchid bark or small bits of gravel to help loosen the mixture and allow the roots to develop more quickly. Additionally, these plants thrive in soil that is slightly acidic to neutral. Therefore, it is vital to test the soil for rattlesnake plants before use.

When using a soil testing kit, ensure that the growing medium has a pH range of 5.5 to 7 which is ideal. In my opinion, the best rattlesnake plant soil is cactus soil. It is a great option that is widely used because of the favorable results afforded to your plant. Not only is it rich in nutrients, but it also has all the properties that are preferred by rattlesnake plants. Alternatively, you could opt for a mixture of perlite or orchid bark together with an indoor potting mix.


The rattlesnake plant is a beautiful foliage that can enhance the beauty of any home. Whether you choose to plant them in decorative pots or plain containers, their outstanding elegance will still be of great benefit to enhance any setting.

Knowing how to take care of a rattlesnake plant can be very rewarding. Although Calatheas thrive in bright, indirect light, they are also known to tolerate some shade. Maintain a minimum temperature of 15°C and avoid rooms with frequent temperature changes when growing these gorgeous perennials for best results.

In the winter months, water the plant less frequently but ensure that the soil is moist. Always drain out all the excess water for the plant to remain healthy. After every couple of years, you can repot your rattlesnake plant to keep it in prime shape. Watch the next video for more rattlesnake plant care tips.