Houseplant Care Tips

Various Houseplant Care Tips Including Watering and Lighting Requirements.

Houseplant Care Tips

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane) Plant Care

Common Name: Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane)
Scientific Name: Dieffenbachia Species
Lighting: Moderate to Low
Watering: Moderate to Heavy

The Dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane) is an extremely common houseplant. It is also one of the easiest to care for. The foliage entails elliptical shaped leaves however the colors can vary greatly between type. Some foliage may be all green, cream with green borders or a mix between the two.

Dieffenbachia requires moist soil, so water frequently. You may also place a tray under the pot with water in it to help in keeping the plants soil moist at all times. This houseplant also requires high humidity levels so misting daily will also help keep the Dumb Cane healthy.

This houseplant prefers to be within 5 to 8 feet of a window, but will survive lower light levels. However please caution against placing the plant anywhere near drafty areas. The Dieffenbachia also prefers temperatures above 60 F.

The Dieffenbachia contains a toxic sap thus giving the name Dumb Cane, so please keep out of reach of children or animals that may try and eat the plant. It is one of the many poisonous houseplants you may have in your home.

Common varieties of the Dieffenbachia include the Exotica Compacta, Australian, Tropic Marianne, Paradise, Camille and Tropic Snow.

Overall, Dieffenbachia is fairly simple to care for. Please view my top 10 easy to grow houseplants for other non-time consuming options.

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Blogger donlomb said...

my boy friend bought two small plants about 12'' from a store last sept on clearance . his care was the total opposite from what any site suggests. full sun in a drafty plexy glass window of an old school next to a heater. anyway he brought them home and they looked good but were in ugly black pots so i decided to plant them both together in a big pot. cheap potting soil and have them in indirect sun i water them once a week . both plants have a lot of new shoots coming out the bottom and new green growth on the top but one plant is looking a lot of leaves from the bottom .im not good a plants so i thought since i used cheap soil i would fertilize i think it was helped abit plant looks greener any suggestions

7:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What do you do with these plants once they grow too tall and start to fall over? Other than "splinting" them, are there other alternatives?

9:08 PM  
Blogger drayas said...

If they are growing to tall and falling over, are they reaching for light? Typically they will get fuller before taller.

Other than splitting them, I'm not sure how else you could shorten them.


4:25 PM  
Blogger Barbara J. said...

I'm in Florida and I have a healthy deiffenbachia on my lanai but I am getting yellowed leaves on the bottom older leaves. Help!

9:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My neighbor moved to an apt. in Manhattan and had no place for her dieffenbachia which she has had for 40 yrs. The leaves are 18" plus. It stands over 8 feet tall but I have a skylight to over 20 feet. At any rate, the original owner would water the plant every month to month & a half. The soil is dry but I continue to see new growth. These are tips that are totally not in line with the suggested care of this plant. The plant continues to grow and I have watered it once since late August 2008. Good luck.

1:30 PM  
Blogger nancy7000 said...

I have a dieffenbachia that, in the past couple of weeks, has had a leaf turn yellow and dies, several times. Is there something wrong with my plant? And, also, how do I know when to re-pot my plant. My plant is about three feet tall. Nancy

11:24 AM  
Blogger drayas said...


Yellowing leaves are a fairly common symptom. It could mean the plant is not receiving enough light or water or the plant is simply shedding its older foliage.

Have you had the plant long? Have you changed anything in terms of watering or lighting?


10:10 AM  
Blogger luckydog2 said...

What do I do with the pods that are growing out of my dieffenbachia? There are 3 of them. If I cut them off, will it damage the plant? Help

10:30 AM  
Blogger Barbara J. said...

I don't know what kind of pods are on a Dieffenbachia. I have never seen them in all my years enjoying the plant

9:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i even cut off a super tall plant that had fallen over and just stuck the top in water with rocks in the bottom. looks pretty cool to see the roots growing through the rocks.

my dad covered the 2 foot stem with no leaves and 3 or 4 completely new plants sprouted.

i also agree that drier soil than suggested works just fine.

i've had success in low and high sunlight.

hope this helps.

1:33 PM  
Blogger drayas said...


Could you describe the "pods" you're witnessing? Like Barbara said, I have never seen pods on a Dumb Cane before.


2:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a dieffenbachia that is almost 3 years old. It has not flowered (long white pods)since I first got it. Lately, most of the leaves have turned yellow and there is no sign of new growth. I water it once every two weeks and it is positioned about 3 feet from a window, which receives direct sunlight. Please help me resurrect my plant.

5:58 PM  
Blogger drayas said...


I would try watering it more often. Dieffenbachia require heavy water levels. Try watering once a week instead of every two weeks and see if it improves. Keep us posted.


8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i have one of these plants. i have had it for about 6 months. recently i notices a bunch of my big leaves turning yellow. why is this. also how do u trim them off so u dont hurt the rest of the plant?

2:31 PM  
Blogger drayas said...


Have you changed your watering routine? Typically yellowing means it may be overwatered. Also, you can remove the yellowed leaves without damaging the plant.


12:53 PM  
Anonymous JD1FanLB said...

My plant also has been sprouting "pods". They sprout where the white "flowers" are, are green, look like a bean of some kind. One of them has also turned red and looks like a pistachio nut. I have had this plant for 8 years and the "pods" have only been sprouting in the last 3-4 months. I have repotted it once, and it needs repotted again.

8:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hello, I have had a dieffenbachia since 1999. I only learned this year what type of plant it was. It fell over and curved then started growing back up years ago. A month ago, I came into my office and it had fell over again. All the years except three yellowed and fell off. I thought he was dieing!! Now it has started new leaves at the very top, has bumps on it and now a new growth is sprouting from the soil. What is going on and how can I amke sure my plant wont die? I have had him for ten long year! HELP Malissa

7:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you dieffenbachia leaves are turning yellow and dropping , ck the underside of your leaves for tiny red spots (spider mites) I had a problem recently I used dish detergent diluted with plenty water and srayed the undersides of all the leaves also try using a cotton swab moistened with the solution,this should be done like once a week untill you no longer see any small red spots on the leaves or stalk. good luck..

1:16 PM  
Blogger wendy said...

I need to know if my dieffenbachia can be replanted. It has 3 feet of thin stalk and 1 foot healthy leaves. I have to use 2 bamboo sticks to support it. Can I cut off the top foot and replant immediatly or does it need to be in water til it reroots itself. Can the stalk be cut up and either rerooted or planted directly. plant is 33 years old and we got it the 1st year we were married. Hate to lose it, if it dies do we.. HaHaHa!!!! just kidding. hope you have some suggestions.

3:08 PM  
Anonymous artosie said...

I have had our Dumb Cane for 6 yrs now and it is close to 7' tall... and it leans and I do have it tied to the ceiling, how do I cut it and replant it?
I have been searching for the propper method everywhere and, No luck

6:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have had our dum plant for 3 years. It was a broken piece of plant when we rec'ved it not its nearly 6ft tall. It is just growing straight up and my husband mentioned it should be bushier-3ft stalk with no leaves on it. Can anyone suggest how we make it bushier?

8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello, I need help with rescuing my plant. Background info: I have had it in a window and watered it with my other plants every other week and use some fertilizer. Also I have re potted twice in the last 20mo. My plant is four stalks, each with three leaves at the top all the others have turned yellow and died months ago, and it is only about 12in tall. I could see I don't know what I am doing. So I Googled and found this site -awesome. How do you suggest I save the poor thing. I would really appreciate more defining of MEDIUM LIGHT which is what the tag states it needs. My windows don't have rays of sunshine coming in so that is why I thought it needed to be in the window.

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I married my husband, his plants were in need of some TLC. One is a deiffenbachia which has 8 stalks, each are about 4 feet of stalk and about 2 feet of leaves. It lays all over the floor. Should I cut it down-will it make new leaves or do I have to help it stand up? Please help

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cut the fallen plant and put it in water until the roots sprout. Then plant it in potting soil, its practically fool proof.

8:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a dieffenbachia that I got about a month ago, and have watered about once a week. In the past few days, the leaves have started to droop and fall over, but they aren't turning yellow or anything. It gets a bit of sunlight, but not a whole lot. And the temperature in my room gets down to about 50 degrees at times (i live in a really crappy dorm) but it's usually fairly warm. Any suggestions?

11:03 PM  
Anonymous Stephanie said...

I have a dieffenbachia and when I bought it it had beautiful green leaves with white centers. Now, it only has green leaves, I'm wondering if there's anything I can do to get the white centers back or if the plant will be green forever? Thanks!

11:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I noticed that a few people mentioned "pods". I just resently bought a plant about a month ago. And immediatly repotted the plant the same day. I now have four new leaves already and as of a few days ago noticed two "pods" and possibly a third coming up. Every place I looked and everyone I have asked never heard or seen of this. I am just trying to find out if it will stay a pod - does it flower? Will it fall off? Kinda curious to know more about this plant.

2:32 PM  
Blogger Rosa said...

hi i just bought a Dieffenbachia it was in bad condetion i thought i may save that poor plant from that bad handling. i thought if i just take care of it ,it will turn good but i discovred latly that it has tiny flying insects around its soil and the lower leaves are begining to become yellow one after another .its originaly was with brown cuts at its edges and brown notches on the leaves , i dont know what to do to save that poor plant :(

2:23 PM  
Blogger nub said...

my plants leafs are getting tears in them and some of them have even for better lack of words been completely torn in half with no sign of the other half. i have sprayed it with a pest control recommended from lowes but still notice the tearing, but I am also getting alot of new growth now more than i have in the past.Are the pests what caused the tearing and do they appear to be eliminated with new healthy growth?

1:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a Diefenbachia plant about 5' high, leaves on top, am about to take a clever to it, chop it up and put it in H2O...I'll report in a couple months to let yous know how she's doing.

7:37 PM  
Blogger nub said...

my plant has gotten tears in the leaves and some have completely been torn in half. i have sprayed for pests and done all other recommendations. my new leafs come in strong and look fine. are these just old leafs that are getting ready to fall off, is it under watered, over watered, lack of fertilization, or pests causing these problems to my plant. please help so my dieffencachia can look as beautiful as the plant itself is.

9:37 PM  
Blogger drayas said...

Hello everyone,

Sorry for the delay. As a mom of now 2 (3 year old and 4 month old) things have been a little hectic and I've fallen a bit behind. Below are answers to I believe everyone's questions. If I missed something, just comment and I'll try my best to provide some houseplant advice.

Wendy, Artosie

Yes, you can cut off the tops of dieffenbachia. I would root in water before planting in the dirt, at least that's what I've always done. By cutting the tops off not only do you get new plants, you also will help the plant become more bushier by trimming it up.

Wendy - Congrats on 33 years. If you've made it that long, I think you'll be just fine even if your dumb cane doesn't!

Yellowing of the foliage can have multiple causes, it takes trial and error to find out which. Keep your dieffenbachia between 5 and 8 feet from a window that recieves some sun. Try and keep it out of direct sunlight. Another cause of yellowing could be watering. For watering, give it a good watering with proper drainage. Then do not water again until the top inch of soil is dry.

Stephanie - Usually it means the plant is lacking something. How much light does it receive? Aim to keep it between 5 and 8 feet from a window that receives some sun.

Pods are a type of blooming for this houseplant from what I've found. Mine has not done this, however others have said they eventually sprout into white flowers. Any pics anyone could send would be great. I'd post it on the site here. If anyone has any information on the pods, please share!!

Rosa - I would repot your dieffenbachia into new soil. Clean the pot you have it in with hot water before repotting to prevent any bugs from being carried over into the new soil.

Nub - It may because of low humidity levels. Do you mist the plant at all? Are you providing it with enough water? I don't know of any pests that would cause the tearing. Any of my readers help us out??

Thanks for reading,

10:55 PM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

Help! I have broken my Dumb Cane as i was transplating to a bigger pot and it broke in two! I have part of it in water for now and the other part in the new pot, so what to do now? Please Help me!!!

11:46 AM  
Blogger drayas said...


Put the broken sections in water to try and root. Typically rooting in water works better than soil, at least from what I've tried.

They should reroot and you're plant should recover fine.

Keep us posted.


9:50 PM  
Anonymous tony said...

I got a dum plant and it is blooming

10:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In answer to blooms on Dieffenbachia, I found a site, "plantsarethe". Many pics and much info.

12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a my Dumb Cane plant for about 5 months now. it was doing fine til recently one day i had to move it outdoors for my young sons birthday pary. however, i kinda forgot about it for a couple of days. when i brought it back indoors the leaves turn very yellow and very lifeless. there are remaining leaves that are intact with new growth. How can save the dying?

11:23 PM  
Anonymous Sydney said...

My dum has brown patches and is wilting.I have followed all the directions listed but,sadly, my plant is DYING! please try to help me!

7:58 AM  
Blogger Cary Patrick Martin said...

I’m looking for a plant for my bathroom. Mine doesn’t have a window, and would provide only sporadic artificial light. Would this plant be a good choice?

9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dum has brown patches on the tips of the leaves and a few of the leaves have tuned yellow and fallen off. Is this normal and should I just snip the brown tips off. I have the plant sitting in between two floor to ceiling windows on a file cabinet, so it does not sit in direct sun light. I also mist my plant once every week. The foliage is small however the plant is growing upwards. Any help is appreciated.

10:44 AM  
Anonymous robert r said...

I've had my dumb cane for over two years.It alwyas seemed to do well . I kept it near a window over the last year, but I think the coldair had a negative impact--so I moved it. It dropped all of its leaves off of both stalks, then started to grow leaves fromone of the stalks. but the good stalk got yellowish-orange at the bottom. This morning I just broke it off and put the toppart in water. Will that be ok? The other stalk is still in soil but no leeaves. Please advise.

Thank You,

2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have only had this planbt one month,why are some of the leave tips turning brown and some are yellowing??It told me to only water it once a week,I did that,its in front of a side window and gets light but no direct sun as we live in N>Carolina and its too hot whats wrong??

7:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our family has passed around "babies" from our dieffenbachia plant for 40 years. Cutting it down every other year or so and repotting it. This is the second time I have had one that bloomed. However the first time, it died within the year after blooming. I have photos but I was not able to post them on this site.

7:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have what i beleve is an exoica compacta it has the same shape leaves as the dumb cane but smaller and many stalks it is a very bushy plant my girlfriend brought it home frome work because it was needing to be repotted and they neglected it badly frome trial and error we and almost killing it we found out that it loves sun and wet soil we just resently found out that it was a variety of dumb cane and iwas woundering if some one knew where i could find photos of the exotica compacta so i can be sure that is what it is

11:03 AM  
Anonymous sanomar said...

HI! I have a Dieffenbachia plant. It was beautiful in the office. 8 feet from window lots of indirect sunlight. I move it to my apt 10 feet from window it have direct sunlight 20 min a day and very poor very low indirect sunlight. On top of that I repotted terribly. I took all the packed earth from roots in order to divide it in different pots. New pot is too big for office, reason why I move the plant and I put the plant next to the window yesterday, but on winter I have to move it back to 10 feet. The plant had like 40 leaves and now it's like half of them. I keep cutting out yellow leaves to try to save it, but I don't know what else to do. Please help.

10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My plant is about 6ft tall and in the middle of the stem it is cracking and dry?? The plant looks healthy everywhere else?? What is happening?? Not enough humidity??? I need help..

10:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My plant died so I held it by the stalks and shook out the excess soil before I threw it away. The stalks were still very moist and almost immediately my hands started to itch and burn. Three days later they are still very irritated. I did no other gardening that day or touched any other chemicals. Please be sure to wear gloves when handling this plant.

11:16 AM  
Blogger C C said...

To the person whose plant keeps falling over: Cut the top off leaving enough room to bury to the bottom of a new pot, and leaving about 6 inches between the leaves and the pot edge. Press the soil well and water like any mature houseplant. It will take awhile, but a new root system will develop. Leave the stumps in the other pot and water those as usual too. It will take much longer , but you will soon have a new plant,(plants) . When it has 4-5 leaves, cut the stumps down to below soil level and add more soil if needed. You will end up with two new plants. I like to keep two plants in a larger pot, as they add support to each other, and if leaves fall off , the other plant fills it out! GOOD LUCK! I have also taken the leafless stumps and buried them in the soil , leaving a little stump exposed , and watered and gotten plants after a time too!!Trust me it works-but new good potting soil is a must!!

12:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi, i just bought my first houseplant (dieffenbachia). Ive potted it and watered it, but it has a few dry brown spots on the leaves. Is this something i should be worried about? I also found some small balls in the soil that are liquid this the sap? Or is it something that was already in my potting soil?

5:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can somebody, please tell me why my perfectly healthy Dieffenbachia is dripping clear liquid off the tips of the leaves,and is getting the liquid on you just as dangerous as eating the leaves. I have kids and a cat who walk bye this plant. thanks Mike

1:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

very poisons.indian use for the plant for kill the indian with the poison.very dangerous.Do not play with the plant.

8:40 PM  
Blogger romalyo said...

Please Help? I have followed the care instructions carefully and the leaves keep turn yellow and dry out.. My Dieffenbachia is dying...

2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to the person in Florida...move the plant further away from the window and the leaves will get green again. I live in SoCal and mine started to get yellow and burned when I moved to to the kitchen window's on the island now and went back to being nice and dark green!

4:23 PM  
Blogger alicja said...

My dieffenbachia was very small when I got it. The plant seemed healthy and it grew pretty fast. Every week I could see new leaf coming out. Suddenly, all leafs started having yellow spots and eventually died. I thougt that maybe I watered it too much (one a week) and I started watering every two weeks. However, the plant continue on dying. Also, I noticed littel flies around the plant. I thought that those flies (gnots?) damaged my plant so I repoted it. While repotting it, I noticed that the root is all white, rotten. Why did that happen? What did I do wrong? What should I do now? Please help!
Thank you for assistance.

8:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have one of these but have never had a problem with it. I would suggest for the previous post about the "spotted", dying leaves with gnats that you might also want to look for signs of spider mites. They are practically impossable to see but will kill a plant quick and can be a common problem with houseplants. The toxic sap might deter them, I am unsure of its immunity to pests. Still, with gnats you might want to try a pestacide. i can't recall the brand but there is a "home & garden" spray in a green can at walmart that should take care of most houseplant pest problems.

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a dumb cane.She's about 5 or 6 years. It sits in a corner of our dining room which gets indirect light all day. I water her once a week with 4 cups of tap water and use Peters houseplant powder or miricle grow houseplant spikes quarterly.She is about 61/2 feet and full of leaves with 3 stalks,1 tall main, 1 medium and 1 short. I haven't had any pest problems but I do get weeping from the leaves. She does loose a leaf every so often. The leaves are very close together, almost on top of each other. They are dark green outside with lighter green inside. She is very impressive and takes up the whole corner where she lives. She happily shares space with an asperigus plant that grows in and around her. The main stem needs staking and will not hold her weight. How tall will she get? Will she ever flower? What can I do if she gets to big?

8:25 AM  
Blogger missclara said...

I have a dumb cane that is about to drive me crazy . His leaves will turn yellow and slimmy then his cane will go soft, and fallm out of the soil like he has root rot. I tried not watering as much and this still didn't help any idea what is going on.

2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bought one good looking and healthy "Dieffenbachia" from a nearby nursery and after two years it started to grow out of proportion, so i decided to use it to propagate some new plants from it. Now i have five of these good looking plants in separate pots and i have grouped them together to make a lovely display. I like this plant when it's still young and good to look at. Yellowing of lower leaves is due to over watering, underfertilizig and dry air draft. I hope i am right.

4:37 AM  
Blogger ssarsok said...

I just purchased a dumb cane for the office. I believe it needs to be repotted, you can see the roots at the top of the soil. What is the best way to do this? I don't have a green thumb at all. The plant came in a 10" container and I purchased a 15" but the new planter does not have a drain hole. Is there a way to use this planter without the drainhole to keep from using something under the pot to keep water from dripping on the carpet?

10:00 AM  
Blogger paula said...

my dumb came has a weired bubble between the leaf and the leaf stem and it leaves are kinda ruffeled i think it is fine because i just repotted it and i s growing more healthy leaves sooo i dont know what is wrong with it

2:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you are still responding to this blog, I need some serious help with my plant. I have had this plant for about 3 years now. The plant only had 1 cane that had 2 stalks growing out of it. About 3 months ago the stalks started splitting and getting soggy and mushy. I took the cane out of the dirt and the root where the stalks connected was rotten. I looked very close to see why it was rotting and saw this tiny mite-looking bugs eating away at the root. I cut away the root and the bugs, dipped the cane in alcohol, and put it in water to re-root. Within a few days I could see the root growing out from the cane. I planted 1 of the canes in some new soil once I thought enough root had grown, and the other I left in the water. Just a few days ago the cane I planted fell over soggy and mushy at the root. I looked at the one in the water and all but 2 inches from the leaves of the cane has gotten soggy and mushy in the water. What to do? I don't want her to die. How can I help her heal?

6:30 AM  
Blogger Radi said...

My students gave me a dieffenbachia on 8 March. I was so happy. I followed the rules but a lot of leaves fell. There were no any new. Today I saw that the soil is very wet and the roots are rotten. Can I save my plant?

9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dumb cane is fading leaves in the botton from reading most comment son thsi blog it seems it is due to excess light am i correct ?

2:12 PM  
Anonymous Annette B. said...

I recently got a diefenbachia. It didn't have a plant care card. I repotted it into a bigger pot. I added Miracle Grow fertilizer spikes. From reading on this site, I have learned that he is suppose to be a house plant. I have him outside in an area that receives minimum light. My concern is that I should move him inside. I live in Texas, so he has plenty of humidy, and I take care to water him. If I move him inside he will not get much sunlight because my husband has to sleep odd hours and I have darkening curtains everywhere. He seems to be doing fine, but should I move him inside? Please help...thanks

12:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've had my Dumb Cane plant for about 3 months now. I researched it's care when I first received it (it was a gift, and I am the farthest thing from a green thumb) and it said that they were tropical plants. I live in Texas so I figured that was perfect. I put it on my patio where it receives morning and early afternoon light, thinking this would be ok. We water it once every couple of days (when the soil looks like its starting to dry on the top. All of my efforts seem like they are only halfway working! The stalks are about 1 ft high and as soon as the leaves grow full and big, they yellow, then brown then die. I have replanted it into a bigger pot thinking maybe its because the roots needed more room to grow, but it continues to do this. Even though a lot of the leaves are yellowing, there are more leaves sprouting from the dirt, and some that remain green. Am I doing something wrong? Please help because I don't want to kill the plant!!!

10:41 AM  
Blogger Gert said...

I started with one plant. When it grew too tall I cut it off and put the top part in water. It grew roots in about 3 months. I planted that part. The original plant bottom sprouted from the soil and a new plant grew. I now have 9 plants that are 5-6 feet tall.
I water my plants once a week.

12:21 PM  
Anonymous greenthumb said...

My dieffenbachia is about 12 yrs old and 6 feet tall. It is blooming for the first time and I have 3 bloom shoots. I didn't even know they bloomed. Mine is kept in a constant 72 degree house on the north side with indirect light and watered about once or twice per month. I was reading some of the problems with gnats. Sprinkle a little Sevin dust on top of the soil, this should kill the gnats and may help with some of the other pests as well. Remember indirect sunlight is prefered and will stop the burning of leaves.

11:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i have had mine for quite a while it is 7 feet long i use a long stick to hold it up i have to brace it with wire to plant stand too because of the weight but is a beautiful plant you can cut them and stick the top part back into the dirt it will grow new roots the part in the dirt will probably die off but the plant will continue to grow

6:50 PM  
Blogger Leo said...

To shorten one that has gotten to tall you wrap moist peat moss around the stem a foot or two below the bottom leaf (cover about a 8 to12 inch section). You then wrap clear plastic wrap around that and secure it with tape. That allows the peat moss to retain the moisture. watch out for the peat moss drying out. You might have to add some maisture. After a month or so you should start to see some roots showing through the peat moss. You can then cut the plant off just below that point and repot it. I have done this several times and thus have made some nice plants as gifts as the old plant sends up new shoots at the base.

5:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have had a Dieffenbachia for 4 years, it had 14 leaves on it until this past weekend. My grandson (4)decided he wanted to karate chop all the leaves off except for 1. My question is will the leaves root if put in water and will new leaves regrow where they were chopped off?

8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you all know that Dieffenbachia is poisonous to dogs. Look it up!

3:45 PM  
Blogger Jess said...

My plant is dying and I have no idea what I should do to make it healthy. Its had plenty of water, it stays at a stable temperature of roughly 70 degrees. Granted it is kept in my office, but I put it in direct sunlight for several hours once a week. It just looks like its dying...any suggestions?

8:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have had my plant for about 10 years. The leaves appear healthy but the stem is turning yellow and appears to be deflating/dieing. There appears to be no re-rooting along the existing stem. Is there a way to re-root before the stems die all together?

9:51 PM  
Blogger pmclain41 said...

I'm moving from FL to GA & going to have my dumb cane in a rental truck for 2days. is this going to hurt it?

9:05 PM  
Blogger luminous beam said...

I have a similar problem to "oneness" and some of the other folks who've found tiny black bugs on the plant, thrips perhaps? I had noticed that near the bottom of the main cane and one of the stalks the plant was yellowing and dying, there were some holes in them and perhaps were rotting. I'm assuming now that these bugs were the main culprit. I accidentally broke off one of the main stalks that were being eaten by the bugs. If I were to submerse the stalk into the soil could it grow roots once I trim the damaged end? Would I need to buy a special chemical to get this stalk with leaves to take root?

3:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a deffenbachia that is 8ft tall and starting to sag but I dont want to cut it down is there and thing I can do to help it or get it to straighten up

7:11 AM  
Anonymous Dee said...

i have always had trouble with this type of plant. I have many other plants that thrive but this one is trouble for me. I am trying again. I have a new dumb cane and it is about 1 foot tall. It has two huge leaves on it but it doesnt seem to be growing. No new leaves etc. It is about 3 feet from a window that gets bright indirect light. I water it when the top inch or so of soil is dry. How can i make it thrive and grow?

1:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Dieffenbachia is falling down. I bought it about 4 months ago, and repotted it roughly a month ago. It was majorly root bound, I "unbunched" the roots when I repotted it, but within a day it started to fall over. I have it propped up for now. What's going on? Will it eventually stand on it's own? How do I avoid this?

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Camille Dumb Cane stack (trunk) is turning yellow ... any advise?

5:43 PM  
Anonymous Domanihatu said...

I have been working with difenbachia plants since my grandmother gave me a piece of cut stalk she called 'waste'... That was nearly 25 years ago! I planted the 'waste' stalk in some dirt that I dug up from my parents' yard. 2 weeks after, I had my first leaf shoot! Ever since then the plant grows for about 5 to 6 years and the stalk will be about an inch and a half in diameter and about 4 feet tall. At that point the top of the plant is too heavy for the stalk to support. At which time, I cut the stalk just below the soil line and about a foot below the foliage (making sure their is at least 3 root nodes remaining) and plant the foliage in new soil. I have never started rooting the plant in water and I have never lost a plant. Today, I split 2 plants into 7 pots. I expect the new plants to have new growth within 2 to 3 weeks! Additionally, living in central Pennsylvania, I am attempting an experiment! All the 'waste' from my plants I have burried in soil beside a stream... And, I am hoping will root before the end of summer. I want to know if I can get the root system to grow healthy enough to survive a PA winter?!

9:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have 3 dumb canes from a friend. Because they are almost 6 feet tall, I had to stack them very well. One month ago one of them got flowers (pods. I found out that they flower when are happy and get red berries if they are pollinated. I got 3 flowers and I brought it outside to see if I can get berries. I live in Michigan

6:50 PM  
Blogger robertdibler said...

my girlfriend got a Dieffenbachia
from her grandpas funeral nthe leaves r droopinn a few of small n big leaves dyin we water it when the soil gets dry about half an inch down but i dont put any fertilizer n with it n is right next to a window i dont know what the flower shop used to do for care of the plants or when it was repotted so im unsure what im doin wrong any suggestions

11:40 AM  
Blogger robertdibler said...

i have a Dieffenbachia that i got from a funneral n dont know what care was given to it b4 i got it i dont know the feeding schedule if fertilizer was used when it was repotted but 5 of the leaves r turning yellow n dying n i water it when the soil is dry half inchfrom the top it is right next to a window so any suggestions or ideas

12:33 PM  
Anonymous Jeff Torbay said...

I have had my plant for 30 years. It was given to me by a friend because it appeared to be dying, and did not respond to anything they did. Let me say now I am a down to earth, level headed person, and the following is simply true. I started talking to it. After a few weeks it started to put out new leaves and grew into a really healthy plant.
All went well for about 5 years, but then it started to lose its leaves and was looking very poorly.
My daughter was distraught, she had grown up with 'Lily'. I decided to try something radical, so put it in my daughters room and she promised to talk to the plant as often as she could. Once again within a few weeks it began growing back to the same healthy plant.
I was always nervous about re-potting it, just gave it a little Baby Bio occasionally and it remained healthy.
Two years ago, remember the plant was at least 28 years old by then, my daughter left to go to University. 'Lily' quickly declined, and had only 3 leaves left. After all the years of making sure I chatted to it regularly I felt I was losing a friend, so with a heavy heart and very little hope I repotted it in fresh compost. Within 3 months it had not only recovered, but began to grow more vigorously than ever.
Just a week ago, and overnight it put out three pods. It had never done that before. I am waiting to see what happens when the pods open.
OK, I am just an ageing nutcase, but I know my Dieffenbachia not only needs light, warmth, good soil, and water .. it also needs to feel loved.

12:02 PM  
Blogger cosmoekitty said...

I have a Dieffenbachia that was given to me in 2008. It had two stems and got HUGE. At about 5' or so, the one side started to fall over, so I staked it up and it was fine. I usually turn it once a week so that the leaves that are reaching for the window reach toward the inner part of the room and then they start the cycle over again.

This morning, after I turned it, a few minutes later as I walked by, I notcecied the entire plant had fallen over. Now, this plant is about 8' tall, and has two little baby plants at the bottom already. It won't stake back up, and I'm scared to cut through the 2+"-round stems. I don't want to kill it...and it's so pretty and looks so nice in our living room. What's the best thing to do. I mean, I will cut it if I have to, but what's the best way to go about this so that I don't totally kill the plant or put it into too severe of a shock?

9:41 AM  
Blogger drayas / Logical Mama said...


WOW! 8 feet! Nice job on caring for your Dumb Cane for it to grow that tall! I honestly am not sure what you can do besides cutting it if you can't stake it. I did find that the best time to cut your dieffenbachia is in late winter to early spring.

If you don't cut it, the plant will eventually snap and then you won't have a clean cut. I understand not wanting to lose the height but if you can't stake it, not sure what other option you'd have.


9:05 AM  
Blogger drayas / Logical Mama said...

To all of my readers!!

I mentioned this earlier this year, but comments I'm receiving are not seeing it. I'm honored that my blog has gotten so popular, however I am having an extremely hard time answering all the comments. I will try my best to answer, but will not be able to get to everyone. I am a mother of two children under the age of 6 and work full time. I apologize for not being able to answer everyone. I truly wish I could. I am still here, and I do publish all the comments.

Thank you for reading and I enjoy all of you who love plants as much as I do. I just wish I could help more people out!

Thank you!

9:09 AM  
Anonymous kayjim16 said...

I had adiffenbachia that was tall and straggly with only a few leaves left at the top. I cut it right down to the ground, left the root in the pot for the winter and then started watering and fertilizing it in the spring.

That was ten years ago and today it is a lovely lush plant that is 6 feet tall, but I'm concerned that some of the healthy green lower leaves have just fallen off - any one know why?

11:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i heard a kid almost got killed of this plant when he accidently ate the leaf. his tongue swelled almost suffocating him.. better ged rid esp if you have kids.

2:33 AM  
Blogger justic18 said...

My mom got me a dieffenbachia about 3 years ago and its been great. Its slowly gotten bigger and been easy to take care of, however, a few months ago my roommate decieded to replant it in a bigger pot and now its starting to fall over the edges of pot. It looks weak. Is this a normal shape? I though as it got bigger it would grow upward and look sturdy? What should I do? I love this plant and want to keep it in good shape.

6:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have had a "giant" dieffenbachia for 35 years now. On a visit to Jamaica in the 1970s I saw them growing wild in the jungle/forests. They really seemed to be a vine & not a plant with a trunk. They wend their way up & up & up on other sturdier plants. I've literally chopped mine off every few years & stuck their "stumps" in a bucket of water. When they grow roots I put them back in the dirt - where - BTW the rest of the "trunk" left in the dirt has sprouted new leaves.

11:45 AM  
Blogger deekey said...

I bought 2 Diffenbachia plants ,9 yrs back, now i am having 67 of them ,at my roof.Some of them are 6-7 feet tall with 2/2.5 feet leaves size. I want to know the biggest leave ever of this Plant. anybody knows it Devesh

10:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All these comments about these 8' tall plants with really huge leaves and pods really make me wonder if what I have is really a deiffenbachia. I am pretty sure it is, because thats what the tag indicates. I had gotten this plant 8 months ago as a gift from my sister and it was a very beautiful plant, when I got it, however when I brought it home from the hospital it seemed to have transformed itself into a twig. My plant is only 7" tall if that and has 6 small leaves on it, 4 of which are just about to wilter and die off. they dont turn yellow, they just turn dark green-brownish and die. I have done everything that this site has advised me to do, but it doesnt seem to make a difference whatsoever, I have also checked the leaves to see if there were any gnats or mites on or around my plant and that too was negative. What am I doing wrong with this plant and What can I do to make it look like its supposed to look??? HELP PLEASE??

10:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WIKI says this plant is POISONOUS.

2:30 AM  
Anonymous Domanihatu said...

Greetings everyone! I posted a while back about my adventures with difenbachia and wanted to post an update to the "new" plants! As I stated, I created 7 plants out of 2. And, I used my tried and tested method. I cut the plants below the leaf cluster and just below the soil level. Now, almost 6 months later, I have 7 healthy beautiful plants! I will post next spring if the ones planted outside will survive the cold PA winter or not. And, to the anonymous poster who warned about the dangers of difenbachia... A simple amount of training and attention on the part of parents, you will have no problems... My grandmother had raised 4 children around it, my mother raised 5 children around it and I am raising my 2 daughters around it without any problems EVER. Just as my mother did with me, I have warned my girls of the potential danger of the plant since they first started crawling. No, need to remove the beauty of the plant, just education for and attention to your children!

4:24 PM  
Blogger Karli said...

Hello, my father passed away 6 months ago and I now have about ten plants, all of which are doing good except my dum. About 4 or 5 months ago it started another new plant and since then the bigger one hasnt been doing good at all. it is over 8 feet tall, the leaves are almost 2 feet long and it also flowers quite often as others have been saying. now 2 of the leaves have died. the plant is also hitting the roof. what would be the proper care of this plant and can i chop about 2 feet off and re-root it and if i can how can i do that.

9:03 PM  
Blogger lorri said...

Hi my name is Lorri and I find myself at a dumb cane emergency. My plant grew to about 9 feet tall with foliage at the top kind of resembling a palm tree. I had to put a broom handle in the pot to secure the plant to it because it became top heavy. I was moving the pot and the broom handle started to fall so I grabbed it and pushed it further into the soil, not thinking at all about the root's. By the next morning the foliage part that was not secured to the broom handle had doubled over. At this point and obviously too late I realized I had damaged the root. So I cut the stalk at an angel and put it in water. 2-3 day's later I checked on it and discovered that it had developed root rot. So I cut about 2 more inches off of it put it in clean fresh water with plant food drop's. Do you have any ideas how I can save my plant?? I got this plant from a plant sale and it had laid in a box out of water for about 4 hours, and it was literally a small stalk with a few small straggly root's and 1 leaf. I thought the leaf was so pretty with the cream outlined in dark green and was curious what kind of plant it would possibly become. So I brought it home immediately put it in a pot the had belonged to a deceased plant prior, lol And from the rescue to here 7 years later it had grown to about 9 feet tall. I really love this plant and don't want to lose it, if you are able please help. I have the rest of the stalk still in the original pot and I am still watering it just in case the foliage end didn't survive. It is about a 5 foot stalk tied to a broom handle absent any foliage. I would also like to know if I can make many new start's from the stalk???? Please help save my beautiful plant!!

Thank you,

Lorri L. Bain

11:02 PM  
Blogger mosert26 said...

my cat broke the stem off the plant what do i do i dont want it to die it has a new leaf that is comeing in i have had this plant for 4 years doing realy great how do i keep it from dieing and the stem that has no leaves will it grow anything please email me back at thank you

4:27 AM  
Blogger Kenyata said...

I have a dieffenbachia (dumb cane) I have had this plant 4 about 5 yrs it is about 5ft. I keepnthis plant n the kitchen so it can get the proper sunlight that it requires. A few days ago I went ito my kitchen n noticed that my plant is leaning. It is standing straight up in soil, but at the top it has fallen over. It looks like the letter (r). Is their n e thing I can do to make my plant straight again. It looks retarded now. I started to cut it n repot it, but it dnt need repotting. HELP THIS IS MY FAVORITE PLANT

6:13 PM  
Blogger tigress said...

Ive had my dieffenbachia plant for almost 12 years. In my experience, as it grows taller, the new growth will become heavy and fall over. So I just take that part, root it or just stick it in the dirt. However, I have noticed little growth lately. So Im going to try new fertilizer and make new cuts for new sprouts.I am hoping for a lush and full plant.

2:25 PM  
Anonymous Possible said...

Many people have commented on the pod like flowers on their diffenbachia. A friend recently asked me if I wanted a cutting she had of hers and I jumped at the chance. I brought it home, placed it in my east facing shaded bay window, and in just 4 months I have new leaves and flowers. They are very simple and remind me of a jack in the pulpit flower. I have two that have opened, and one that has not. Someone requested photos, if you would like to see them, post your email address. I would be happy to share.

3:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've had my plant for 2 years and it was growing wonderfully---but then it was put in a very cold room and it looks like I might lose it-any suggestions? can I cut off at the base and start over? or do I let it go?:(

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have had my dumb cane plant for almost eight years. I re-potted it in a bigger pot and it started getting taller and fuller. I even have some stalks that have grown out to 6-10 inches long. I have it about 3 feet away from my sliding glass door and leave my blinds open slightly for indirect sunlight. What else could be causing the stalks to 'vine' and droop over my pot?

4:51 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

I have a Diff plant that I started by rooting in water.
It's about six feet tall right now and putting out leaves that are about 18" in length. At some point I suppose I'll have to cut it down. How close to the soil shall I cut the plant so that I can expect new growth from the stump?

5:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi dumb cane dont need moist soil the soil will get to wet then the plant will lose leaves i am trying to grow leaves that are big my plant had leaves that were big. dumb canes are the hardest of all if you want big leaves then you have a big challenge. my family waters one cup once a week for a big pot. all pot sizes and plant sizes affect how much water is need along with how often. plant food once a month. and direct sunlight in the morning to noon.

11:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you can keep them in just water as i did that for years but finally put them out in the garbage..the roots were tangled as i had them in a large Styrofoam cup on my window seal

2:47 PM  
Blogger Jack Solayao said...

if this plan has a poisonous effect.. what is the use of this plant then?

9:03 AM  
Anonymous bunyhugr said...

Dieffenbachias do best when left alone and not worked with too much. When they get too tall, all you have to do is cut the top off and stick it water or dirt. You may also place them flat on a bed of vermiculite that covers about half the stalk, keep moist and see how many plants you grow. If a leaf turns yellow, its probably because it has been watered too much or is exposed to too much sunlight I've had them in the middle of a room and they have done just fine. it"s best to fertilize during the spring and summer months with Miracle Grow whenever you water. Let them rest during the winter but continue to water.

1:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To those without green thumbs, some tips-- nearly all houseplants like to get a little dry between waterings. The leaves or stems might be turning yellow and rotting because you are not allowing the plant to get dry between waterings. Let it get pretty dry, and then douse it once. Repeat. This advice is pretty useful for most houseplants.

Another consideration is the type of pot. Are you using a plastic pot or a clay pot? A clay pot will dry out a lot faster, a plastic pot will take a lot longer to dry out. Either one is fine, but be careful with each. Remember, dry out, douse.

Also, if you are using a plastic pot, please be careful not to over-fertilize. Plastic pots do not let any unused fertilizer nutrients escape, so you have to be super careful to only give the plant what it can use. Most plants only like to be fertilized in the spring/summer (and then, only occasionally). The winter it needs to be allowed to rest, like in nature. Less watering, less fertilizing. (And less sun, which takes care of itself :) When late spring comes around and you start increasing water and using fertilizer, your plant will respond well.

Some other tips: for plants that like humidity on their leaves (classic sign: brown tips), a bathroom home often works. They really like the humidity from showers. Also, an easy place to water! On that note, at least once a year give all of your plants a shower. Their leaves can get dusty, which makes it hard for their respiration (plant breathing), necessary for their life. You can also wipe off the leaves with a damp sponge or cloth, but I find it more effective as well as easer to run them under the shower for a few seconds each.

8:55 AM  
Blogger Emily said...

i just bought this beautiful plant also known as Dumb Cane, any advice on watering and feeding? also i dont have it inside my home, i have it outside, it can get sunny all morning i live in florida but by 12 noon its all shade, and again at sundown she will prob get a little more sun and then shade for the rest of the day. i know is a houseplant i just thought if its under shade most of the day would be ok. thank you.

12:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you live in San Diego, can a Dieffenbachia plant live outside? My plant got too big for my place. I put him outside and now his leaves turned yellow and he looks sad. Help?

8:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I need to know if they like being root bound or in a bigger planter when root bound?

9:12 AM  
Anonymous Hanna said...

Thank you so much! Running to take my plant more far from window :) Thanks

3:19 AM  
Blogger Keolai said...

Once and for all I need a defenative answer about my dieffenbachia. When I water it the plant leaves drip for days. I am worried it will make the edges turn brown, so I sop it up everytime I walk by. Is this normal, should I worry? What causes this, help!!!
Thanks, Jennifer

4:43 PM  
Blogger Keolai said...

Once and for all... Can someone explain why when i water the dieffenbachia I get drips from the leaves. I'm not sure if it is normal or not. Will it cause brown spots on the leaves? I've been sopping them up but they just keep coming. Should I just ignore the drips? Or am I doing something wrong???
Thanks so much, jennifer

9:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I recently inherited an established plant from someone moving. I will be separating and re-potting most of it. Anyway...this plant also had these so-called 'pod's' on it (which I've never seen before). They were either new with sticky droplets or old and dried out and those appeared to have a seed in the center. I just cut them off while wearing gloves.
My point is...this is such a forgiving plant. I had one in the past and other then pulling off older yellow leaves, it grew just fine. I think like most other plants that might be leggy or tall vs wide - you just need to cut off the tops and allow it to spread. Anytime my houseplants get out of control...I cut it back or separate and re-pot the portion I want to keep. I think any hot direct sunlight is not a friend of this plant. I keep it in a corner that gets indirect sunlight. Works for me!

8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have the same question as Jennifer: my dieffenbachias produces drops of clear fluid at the tips of leaves. It literally drips down on the floor. Suggestions for management? Anybody? Does it mean too much water? The plants look very healthy, have grown to great lengths, but I worry about my newly installed hardwood:))

11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was the plant killer extraordinaire... tried and tried so naturally I thought I was cursed with a brown thumb. My Mom gave me this plant from cuttings of hers because its so hearty.
I placed it in a south facing window, which got direct sunlight all day every day. I live in Alaska so in the winter it gets limited sun but stil thrives. I also kept the soil very damp, watering at least every 3 days.
When I researched it though, I was doing the opposite almost of what it liked. Being next to the window the leaves grew to over 20 inches long and always seemed to reach for the sun. In the winter it got too cold and I insulated the base with a towel and it pepped back up.
My mothers plant still is the same height and has only 5 inch leaves, while mine continues to grow humongous. I think its a jungle plant that liked monsoons and grew giant leaves possibly to shade itself from the sun.
When the leaves drip water I think its sufficiently watered, they'll yellow and droop when dry.
Mine just began a sulfer rotten egg smell, as soon as I moved it 6 feet from the window. I'm going to use fresh soil and water less.

Long story short, this hearty plant helped me learn how to talk to my plants in a sense. Now I've got a jungle of my own!

6:49 AM  
Anonymous ann said...

My plant has 3 stalks in a pot 2 of which are straight and about an inch to an inch in a half thick but the 3rd is only about a half in inch thick at the bottom and it grows up and then over and up again it can't support itself and is staked up but it gets thicker at the top. is there anything i can do to straighten it up or do I have to cut it off and replant it? The plants are pretty heathy with nice full leafs. I really don't want to have to cut it and lose the fullness of the 3 stalks.

2:41 PM  
Blogger peter laing said...

I have just re planted my dieffenbachias into a store bought potting mix,should I introduce a fertiliser such as blood n bone or chook manure to help it along?

2:18 AM  
Blogger peter laing said...

should I add a fertiliser to the potting mix when transplanting my dieffenbachius ?

2:19 AM  
Blogger Christina Peach said...

My mom gave me a "dumb tree" LOL that is what she called so I did too (not knowing it was a dumb cane house plant. Anyway, I also have a cat that decides to relieve herself in the pot so I quickly repotted the tree but only gave small amounts of water. It sprouted pods and lots of new leaves but the bottom leaves continued to turn yellow and fall off...after reading this site (thank you!!) I am giving it more water. But, I wanted to report that mom says that these are blooms and they are very rare so I took a picture and I will try to post it is a really beautiful "dumb tree" lol

8:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have one of these dieffenbachia (dumb cane) for a long time and I snapped it in half moving it. What can I do to save it?

9:58 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

I don't think you are crazy. I have had a similar experience with my plant. There is so much more to this world than we can see. Kudos to you for accepting this plant as having the ability to love

1:12 AM  
Blogger EmmaJoanne said...

I purchased a dieffenbachia this past summer. I had a very sunny apartment at the time, and it did well in a corner across the room from the windows. I moved to a less sunnier apartment in August, and put the plant right in front of a lower window. However, the windows also have a curtain on them, so the light is definitely filtered. Plus the window does not get much direct sunlight because of its direction. The plant had been doing very well, but because I am a student, during my winter break I was away for about five weeks, and it was watered once in those five weeks. I also had my heat turned down to 55. When I came back, probably about a third of the leaves were yellowing and they were all droopy. I watered it twice within the next two days, and today I took off six dying leaves - 3 larges ones, one medium, and two rather small. I did notice, however, that the plant is very loose in the soil and seems in danger of tipping over. I was thinking of repotting in a wider and taller pot. Is this "wigglyness" because it has just gotten taller and needs a higher soil level? Or did I weaken the roots too much because of the lack of watering? The plant is also close to a floor vent, but it doesn't seem to have bothered the plant thus far. Any help would be great, thanks!

8:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When my Dieffenbachia grows, I always turn it so it will grow straight upward, then when it is grown like 6 or more feet tall, I cut it at an angle towards the bottom and stick it back in the same pot tieing it to the piece I cut it from and it will grow very well while the bottom is getting fuller. When you do this tow times it is ready for transplanting in a larger pot. you will need a second person to help you with the transplant.

6:48 PM  
Anonymous karli said...

Just wanted to share my story of my dumb cane! It stands over 8 feet tall, has 20+ leafs, my dad cared for it for almost 15 years. It used to flower every summer!! He passed away almost 2 years ago and i have had the plant ever since! When i moved it into my apartment after my dad passed it was too tall and hit the ceiling so after some research, i chopped 2 feet off at the bottom! (Call me crazy), put a ton of stim-root all over the bottom and put it back in its pot. I ended up shocking it and lost all its origional leaves that were almost 2 feet long but has since grown 8 new leaves and it doing great. Hope it will flower again soon!

6:48 PM  
Blogger rednk-n-eurp said...

Hey - I rescued a dieffenbachia from the graduate student lounge at school. A little water, and the thing came right back to life. The one we have regularly blooms (spring, maybe?). There are the original cluster of adult plants and now many new "babies" in the pot. Almost every plant in the pot has pods on it. Could post pics but not sure where.

7:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received my dieffenbachia 42 years ago. I've periodically cut the stems down into 12 inch chunks, rooted them in water & given them away to friends & family. Although it looks sad for awhile, it always grows back. I do miss the years when the leaves were the size of elephant's ears!
I've had it in low light & high, watered it frequently & much less often. Almost never fertilized it. It has survived everything! But I've never had pods. I wonder what conditions allow them to sprout.

9:24 AM  
Blogger Molly Mouxe said...

I have had a Dieffenbachia for two years. It always seems to need a larger pot, and it didn't grow very much. I repotted it last spring 2013.

This summer 2013, I got frustrated with it, and decided to put it outside on my front porch. It got a lot of morning sun, and regular watering.

The plant did very well, actually. It seemed to thrive in the environment.

Since it was doing better, I brought it back into the house. Leaves started turning yellow, and some were curling, but basically my plant has grown and looks healthy. It disturbed me to find the yellow leaves, so I searched for this site to find some answers.

I think it must have undergone a shock from all of the sunlight, and natural environment, and probably needs to be repotted, again, to add more nourishment to it's soil.

I've read many of the comments here, and appreciate all of the information.

2:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Mom has two dieffenbachia that were beautiful and doing fine.... Until my sister put them outside for several hours, in direct sunlight! Now it's just a mess... leaves are wilted and yellow/brown. What to do???

4:09 PM  
Blogger Marcel Laudy said...

I've read this site completely and have yet to see anyone with my "problem" I get white scum on top of the dirt of one plant but not my other one. They are both taken care of the same way from the same transplant and same everything.

4:38 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Farquhar said...

My Dieffenbachia's has just flower for the he fist time in five years. As long as I have had them. The Lilly of one pd opened up yesterday and today it has closed right up again and the Lilly appears to have become darker in colour? Is this normal. I had one that was leggy and growing sideways so I didnt reserch just cut it up leaving twofeet of stem on the bottom half and the head in another pot. Then I resercheda week later and chopped it off at soil level and planted four 10cm blocks a week or more later. Do you think they will shoot roots?

4:13 PM  
Anonymous Garden Plant said...

I have plants it and now very big and beautiful.

6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Im not running into alot of answers, but more questions or problems...sooo where do I and everyone else find the answers??

My plant has a leaf that started to turn brown. NOw its totally brown and wilted. I think its about to die, that leaf at least, however another one is right around the corner. What is the problem?

It started with what looked as if the leaf got wet... it went down hill after that.


12:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My plant is growing like a vine. It is very healthy and green just very thin and long stems and lots of leaves. They are so long that they are hanging. What do I do? It does not look like the photos I see.

9:35 AM  
Anonymous Tammy said...

Hi I have had my dumbcane for so many years I have lost count, lol! The stalk is bare up the the top I have tried the rooting in water method(got the cutting from a friend) however the cut stem just ended up rotting. I am so afraid of cutting this one I have had for soo many years and the same thing happening. Any advice on how to prevent this tragedy from happening to my favourite plant would be greatly appreciated.

6:55 PM  
Anonymous TonyaB. said...

Hi all my plant is turning yellowat the bottom in the soil. I pull the plant out the soi and little white bugs or worms were festing inside of it. Please help I really love my plant.

9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dieffenbachia (two years old, three feet tall) appears to be raising itself up from the soil(potting Mix). I added another layer of potting soil, but what is the plant doing? Thank you.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

I bought one of these plants about 3 months ago and repotted as root bound from the nursery. When a new shoot starts it rots on the end before opening. I've kept it on the dry side as one site said it doesn't like much water, only slightly moist. Any help would be appreciated.

12:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dieffenbachia is an easy plant to take care of if you know how. If they start to turn limp it usually means they need water. The soil should stay moist but not wet and it should never sit in water. They are native to a humid climate and therefore do very well when misted often, but they usually do fine in a dry climate as long as they have water. They don't like direct sunlight, but should be kept in bright indirect light. If it gets too dark they have problems as well. If the big leaves start turning yellow and falling off it might be a sign that it is too cold. Dieffenbachia prefers a temperature of around 75 degrees Fahrenheit and really should not be exposed to temperatures under 60 degrees, so don't forget your plant when you set the thermostat when you go on vacation! They should not be in temperatures too much higher than 80 or 85 degrees either. They can get very tall and when this happens they often only have leaves at the top and become so top heavy that they fall over. When this happens, you can cut the stalk about six inches or so from the soil. For several weeks you will only have some cane sticking out of the dirt but then new stalks will start to grow out of the eyes of the original cut off stalks. If you want to propagate the cuttings, take the top leafy six inches and put it in water. Remove the bottom leaves so that there are only three or four as this will conserve energy. No part of the attached leaves should be in the water. You can dip the cut end of the cutting in cinnamon as this is an effective antiseptic and will help prevent rot. It is also important to change the water every day because Dienffenbachia is very vulnerable to bacteria, and also for this reason it should NEVER BE KEPT OUTSIDE! The new plants can be planted into well-drained soil when the roots start sprouting. The roots will come from small white bumps in the side of the stalk and and start shooting outward. As for the middle section of stalk, you can cut it into 2 or 3 inch length pieces and put horizontally into a moist, well drained soil like sand, peat moss or vermiculite. When you look at the pieces, you will see small nodes, or eyes, just above the brown rings where the leaves were attached. Make sure that some nodes on the stalk are facing down, as this will produce roots, and that at least one is facing up, as this will produce a new stalk. The pieces should have about half of their diameter buried in the soil and the other half exposed to the surface. This method is not as reliable as rooting the leafy cuttings. Dipping any cuttings in rooting hormone will greatly aid the process and increase your chances, although honey is an effective alternative. Also remember that transplanting Dieffenbachia into larger pots will encourage it to grow taller and might take away from the bushy look. Fertilize plants about once a week with a 20-20-20 fertilizer and less often in the winter. Most of all, just give your plant the tender love and care it deserves! Hope this helps. I have also attached some websites that I found useful. Cheers!

9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have two of these in our lobby at work. Mine were greatly reducing in size due to yellowed leaves. I repotted them both into larger pots and now they're thriving! We're now considering splitting them and giving shoots to a few managers to put in their offices since they're getting so big. It's also been my experience with them that they seem to grow up more-so than out, when they're in a pot that's too small for them. When I repotted, I purchased the self-watering bases for them, which has definitely helped cut down on how much I have to water. There's a little hole on the side of the base that I add the water to. I can see how much I'm putting in, as well as how much is available for the plant to consume. My suggestion if you're getting large amounts of yellow leaves, repot. But before doing that, make sure you do your research, as the sap from these plants is poisonous when ingested!

6:56 AM  
Blogger Rachel Ford said...

Airlayering a diffenbachia on you tube it works well do it b 4 winter

2:09 PM  
Blogger Alice Harris-Scott said...

My Dieffenbachia plant has new leaves that won't open up. New ones are sprouting all the time but won't open and some never separate from the area they are growing out of. It's like they are caught in the birth canal and only the head emerges or it is breeched and the bottom comes out leaving the head stuck. The leaves eventually turn yellow and die.

Help!! What am I doing wrong?


11:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a recurring problem with scale on the stem and leaves. I spray with insecticidal soap or used just plain ole soap and water, they go away. Then within a couple of weeks they are back. What can I do to get rid of it permanently?

1:42 PM  
Blogger Carrie Destler said...

The dieffenbachia plant is one of the easiest to care for plants. I've had one for at least 20 years. I water it once in a while and it has diffused light. Easy as pie to trim. I just cut the stem off and stick it back into soil. I've only had flower pods for the last couple of years and I just leave them until they die. I have noticed that sometimes after watering, there are drops of sap that accumulate on the leaves and drip on the floor. I'm very careful about cleaning up this liquid and very quick to clean up the floor as the sap can erode some types of flooring.

7:55 AM  
Blogger FitzeesMrs said...

I inherited a plant from my elderly aunt. I googled it & think it's a dumb cane. It has these white flowers that turn into bright red seed pods. I have photos if that helps.
Does anyone know if dumb cane gets bright red seed pods?

9:03 AM  
Anonymous AmberBrooke said...

Aspidistra elatior, also known as Cast Iron Plant might do well there. Also Peace Lilys can take very low light.

12:30 PM  
Anonymous gloria J. said...

I have grown these plants for about 10 years now when they start to get to tall and fall over I cut the plant leaving the rooted stem in the soil about 2-3 inches high and then stick the cut off part directly into the soil and water as usual it will take time for it to catch on and start growing but as long as the leaves are still green and healthy the plant is doing good I also put a couple of the Jobe plant food sticks in the soil hope this helps you out

6:15 PM  
Blogger Kim Kovacic said...

my husband brought home a dieffenbachia he got on sale. many of the leaves are broken and split in the middle. do i cut those leaves off? if so, do i cut them where they are broken or at the base of its growth, at the stem?

11:42 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I use a natural plant spray particularly on the under side of the leaves, where mine often get goldfish brown looking "bumps" that can be wiped off with my finger. They are some type of bug and I deal with them
Around 3 times per year. I notice them when the leaves noticeably wilt and discolor. If they are too wilted and browned or torn, I cut them
Off at the base of the stem and spray the rest. The spray works every time and I have never had one of these die.

8:47 AM  
Blogger said...

I have a dieffenbachia which came from another plant that was cut and rooted and repotted. and this on has also been cut and part of it have been repotted. I gave part of the cut portion to my girlfriend and her plant is bit and beautiful, mine is big and pretty however my problem is that all my leaves are curled up and not sticking straight out like they are reaching for the sun at all, The plant looks healthly overall just the leaved are so curled up. how can I get the leaves to straighten out. please help plrease email me as well the response. thanks

4:21 PM  
Blogger said...

my plant is big looks pretty and healthy but the leaves are curled under, not standing straight out, why is this happening, how can I get them straight?

4:23 PM  
Blogger cesly torres said...

I found a yellow, floppy dieffenbachia plant outside as if my neighbor had thrown it out. So I resoiled it with soil from my moms tomato garden and put it in the window with moderate lighting. Is there anything else I should be doing to bring this thing back to life?

12:49 PM  
Blogger Stacy Studie said...

I'm having same problem as Alice, my leaves aren't opening before they die!

9:50 AM  
Blogger Gatlin Giese said...

recently transplanted my dieffenbachia. three stalks but none are sprouting new leaves. have not for several months. suggestions?

11:23 PM  

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