One of the qualities that define dieffenbachia is how low maintenance it is. Purchasing low-maintenance plants is always a good idea for beginners or those with hectic schedules.
These plants can tolerate low light and less water. In other words, if you miss one day of watering, they won’t get mad at you and wilt.
So, if you’re looking for plants similar to dieffenbachia you’ve come to the right place!
What Kind of Care Does Dieffenbachia Require?
The short answer is, not much. Dieffenbachia doesn’t come with many demands, only pretty looks, which is why it’s one of the most popular indoor plants.
Dieffenbachia comes in 24 different varieties, each with its own amazingly distinct pattern and creamy-to-green ratio.
Besides, it’s a fast-growing plant that can grow two feet tall within a year.
However, you should be cautious because it contains calcium oxalate crystals. If these crystals are digested, they cause inflammation in the mouth.
Now I’ll walk you through the care that dieffenbachia requires, so you can compare it to similar species listed below:
Lighting and Temperature
Dieffenbachia loves low-light areas and thrives in temperatures between 60° and 80°F. Avoid keeping the plant at lower temperatures as it can lose its leaves.
Moreover, this plant doesn’t like direct sunlight, as it’ll cause its leaves to turn yellow and fold.
A word of advice, overwatering is never a good idea, as it’ll eventually cause the root to rot.
Dieffenbachia, in particular, doesn’t require a lot of water because it retains moisture. Water it once a week and every two weeks during the winter.
The soil should be damp but not saturated. Before watering, always check that the topsoil is dry.
Just make sure that the environment is humid. Misting the plant or placing the pot on wet pebbles are excellent ways to provide humidity.
Because dieffenbachias are heavy feeders, fertilize them every four to six weeks. They should be fed only during their active growing season, which lasts from March to October.
Plants Similar to Dieffenbachia
If you’re considering companions for your dieffenbachia, they should have similar needs. I’ve narrowed down some of the best plants to pair with dieffenbachia:
1 – Peace Lily
A peace lily plant could be just what you need to round off the aesthetic of your home. It has shiny dark green leaves and, with proper care, can bloom white or pink flowers.
Peace lilies thrive in the shade or areas with indirect sunlight. However, if you want them to bloom, you should consider placing them somewhere with more light.
Peace lilies, like dieffenbachia, are tropical plants so they require merely damp soil, not soggy. It’s better to keep them in temperatures above 60°F and away from the cold areas of your house.
This plant grows from stem-like rhizomes and can reach a height of one to four feet. You’d have to move your peace lily to a larger pot at some point.
Because peace lilies grow wide, you’ll notice them outgrowing their current pot, which means it’s time to place them in a bigger pot.
This plant contains calcium oxalate crystals that are also found in dieffenbachia, so be careful.
Peace lilies aren’t heavy feeders, so they don’t require regular fertilizing. To promote spring and summer growth, fertilize them every 6 weeks beginning in late winter.
2 – Cast Iron Plant
The Cast Iron plant, also known as Aspidistra elatior, is one of the most resilient houseplants.
It’s drought-tolerant and requires very little light. As a result, this level of endurance truly merits the name “Cast Iron.”
This tough one can reach two to three feet tall and two to three feet wide. However, it’s considered a slow grower and can take several years to mature.
This plant prefers shady, low-light environments rather than direct sunlight. Be careful, direct sunlight can cause the plant’s leaves to burn and bleach. What’s more, it’s best to keep the temperature between 60° and 75°F.
You should water until the soil is moist but not saturated, and the soil should be allowed to dry between waterings.
During the spring and summer, the Cast Iron needs to be fed once a month. Yet, it’s not necessary to fertilize it in the fall and winter.
3 – Kentia Palm
These tall beauties will match perfectly with dieffenbachia. Kentia palms can endure drought, but they can’t stand it for long if the soil becomes too dry.
They flourish in indirect sunlight and can reach heights of 12 feet. However, just like Cast Iron plants, Kentia Palms are slow growers.
Kenita palms can withstand temperatures as low as 25°F and as high as 100°F. Nonetheless, during freezing winters, keep them in warmer areas. It’s also better to keep them away from direct sunlight during the summer.
These palms follow the same watering and fertilization guidelines as the Cast Iron plant.
4 – Spider Plant
The spider plant is one of the easiest houseplants to maintain. Besides, the way it grows is just fascinating, which is how it got its name.
You see, as it grows, it produces small replicas of the mother plant that are attached to it as a web. It grows quickly and can reach a height of two to three feet.
Like all of the plants mentioned above, it requires very little water and thrives in indirect light. Spider plants prefer cooler temperatures, ideally between 55° and 65°F.
Finally, they’re just like Cast Iron plants when it comes to fertilization and watering.
Is Aglaonema a Dieffenbachia Genus?
Aglaonema, also known as Chinese evergreen, is similar to dieffenbachia in appearance, which is why it’s hard to tell them apart.
Both plants have similar leaf shapes with green dark edges and a bright-colored center.
So, is aglaonema a type of dieffenbachia? No, it isn’t, yet it’s one of the plants that’s similar to dieffenbachia in terms of care.
If you want to tell the difference between aglaonema and dieffenbachia, look for two characteristics:
1 – Color Blend
If you notice any shades of pink in the plant, it’s almost certainly an aglaonema.
However, aglaonemas can also have a gray-green blend, which is similar to a couple of dieffenbachia types.
Both dieffenbachia panthers and tiki have a silvery tinge to their foliage. In that case, the second characteristic will help you distinguish between the two plants.
2 – Number of Veins
Count the number of major veins that run from the center to the edge of the leaf. Major veins are wider and deeper than minor veins. If the number exceeds eight, it’s a dieffenbachia.
A dieffenbachia can have 20 to 30 veins, whereas an aglaonema only has five to eight.
Plants similar to dieffenbachia share all of the captivating qualities you look for in indoor plants. Now it’s up to you to decide how you want your plant corner to look.
Just be aware that the leaves of aglaonema, dieffenbachia, and peace lily plants contain calcium oxalate crystals.
When ingested or licked off, these crystals irritate the mouth. So, if you have pets or children, you can go with any of the other choices.
Growing up with a mom who filled her home (inside and out) with all sorts of plants, Lisa got her start in gardening at a young age. Living now on her own with a home and yard full of plants (including an indoor greenhouse), she shares all the gardening tips she’s gained over the years.