Pink Syngonium Neon Care Guide
Pink, pink, pink... and easy care! And did we mention pink? The Pink Syngonium is just damn beautiful. We love her pointy, heart-shaped leaves (that shape is what gives the Syngonium their 'arrowhead' name) and fast growth. She may be pretty as a princess but her delicate pink leaves are fooling you - she's actually a super low maintenance chick. We give her an LTLC rating of 2 out of 5. Find out more below...
Light, Temperature & Humidity
The whole Syngonium fam are surprisingly tolerant of low light, but we'd recommend medium light for the pink varieties. Definitely no direct light though, or you risk burning her gorgeous leaves. Not a fan of draughts or doorways, or being in the path of your air con or heat pump. Other than that, these girl's are pretty tolerant of a wide range of temperatures and fit in nicely in NZ homes. Ideally 15 to 26 degrees, but if you get the rest of her conditions right, she'll tolerate cooler and warmer. We'd aim to stay above 10 degrees though.
These babes do love a bit of humidity too. A good 40% to 50% humidity is okay, but 60% to 70% will be really appreciated. Not an issue in a typical kiwi summer! Just keep an eye on that heat pump or HRV / DVS in winter drying out the air. Consider frequent light misting, a humidifier or pebble tray in winter.
Yes, she's pink, which might make you think she needs bright indirect light like other pinky babes, and yes, overseas guides recommend bright light, but personally we find those papery-thin leaves will actually suck up sunlight no issue in medium light. In fact, given too much light, we find that pretty pink will start to fade and the green will take over. Maybe it's because NZ's light is extra intense? Whatever the reason, we'd say go with the medium end of bright to keep up that pink here in NZ.
This chick's part of the Araceae family, so related to the Philodendron. Her soil preferences are similar to the Phil's too. We find our Syngonium fam suck up the moisture pretty fast where we keep them, so we keep ours in a mix about 3/4 potting mix and 1/4 perlite. Free'ish draining but still with enough richer potting mix for decent water retention is ideal - don't go to succulent or orchid level or she'll dry out too fast.
Not too dry, not too wet, evenly moist is just right. Better too dry than too wet though if you have to choose, but she won't like being left dry for too long. We keep our girls consistently moist and water when the top's dry again. No wet feet for this babe. A definite candidate for a pot with drainage hole. Don't risk a soggy bum! We water our girls about once a week in winter and up to twice a week in summer. We find ours grow all year round, so we feed with a half dose of Groconut every time we water, but if yours slow down over winter, skip the fertiliser and stick to water till she starts up again in spring.
Pink Syngonium Pro Tips & Problem Solving
Fading pink leaves / more green leaves
Look at your light conditions to solve this one. In our experience those pretty pink leaves will fade if there's too much light. Too little light and we find our girls chuck out more green leaves. Try a new spot for a while and see what the new growth does. We find a spot around the medium end of bright is ideal for our gang. It is normal to get a mix of some purely pink, some green, and some in-betweener leaves, so just judge based on what's normal for your plant.
Keep in mind also that there are variations of pink. Our original girls are overall pinker, but paler pink, compared to the newer bunch we've seen lately with a deeper pink colour. You'll mainly find the Syngonium Neon in NZ, and there's also the Syngonium Neon Robusta as well which is a pinker version, but we're unsure if that's in NZ yet or there are just some pinker Neon's around due to nurseries nailing the growing conditions. We've also seen the Syngonium Mickey in NZ (which is a paler pink with cute, smaller, much longer, pointier leaves), but so far we've only spotted that one on TradeMe.
Not sure if we'd call this a problem as such, but make your Syngonium Neon happy and she'll likely start vining. One of our girls in particular just loves life and is determined to vine. We chop and prop (we find they propagate super easy straight in to soil), when a vine gets too heavy and starts to droop. If you're feeling lazy, chop off a few leaves and just plant straight back in to the same pot. Not all leaves will root, but we've had great luck doing that and our girls are very lush and bushy as a result. You'll want to chop at least one node with the leaf though, not just a stem, and pop that node just under the soil to get those roots growing. If you like her vining, you can let her trail, or climb by giving her support. She might even try attaching to the wall given the chance.
Without enough light these girls can get a bit leggy trying to reach for more light. Try a brighter spot to get more compact growth with shorter stems and more leaves. If you have to, trim off those leggy bits and propagate. New growth should come through nice and bushy in the right spot.
Sadly no, like her Philodendron cousins, all Syngnonium are not pet safe. Same as the Phil fam, Syngonium have calcium oxalate crystals which can irritate the lips, mouth, throat and tummy if ingested. No nibbling or eating those leaves! Keep them up safely out of reach of curious pets and kids (they irritate us too if eaten). Not likely to be serious, but any irritation could cause swelling, and swelling and breathing don't really go together. Best kept safely up high.
LTLC Rating (Love That Leaf Care Rating)
If you can keep a Philodendron happy you should feel confident moving up to a Syngonium. We would have given this chick a 1 instead of a 2 out of 5 LTLC Rating except she can be slightly fussier with the soil staying evenly moist. Honestly though, don't let that put you off. If you're worried, then get a normal green Syngonium first. Given these girls seem to appear in stores in a flourish then promptly sell out for months, if you do see one, personally we'd suggest grabbing her before she's gone again. Don't let her delicate pink leaves put you off!
The LTLC Rating is a thoroughly unscientific rating based on our own experience here in NZ. We'd give a Peace Lily or ZZ Plant a 1 for example, and a Boston Fern or String of Pearls a good 4 or 5 (we have a love hate relationship with our SOP - hint: the key is far more direct sun than you think).