Calathea Freddie Care: The Complete And Best Guide

Calatheas are cool plants that have awesome leafy patterns. One particular variety of Calathea, called Freddie, is pretty eye-catching. Its leaves have a darker shade of zebra stripes and borders and are long and greenish.

So whether you’re new to this or have been doing it for years, read on for tips and advice that will help you get the most out of your Calathea Freddie! Let’s take a closer look at this ”Calathea Freddie Care: The Complete And Best Guide”

About Calathea Freddie

Other names for Freddie are also used. The awesome striped leaf of this plant from the Marantaceae family is well-known. It has oval dark-green leaves that are bordered by lighter green stripes.

This pretty tropical plant belongs to the Marantaceae or Arrowroot family of plants and is originally from tropical South America rainforest floors, more specifically the northwest regions of Brazil.

The Freddie Plant is also called a prayer plant, like most members of this family. They tend to fold up and down in response to temp and light, like they’re praying.

Some say Freddie doesn’t move much, but you can still see small changes in leaf position during the day. However, like all Calatheas, it’s super sensitive.

The Calathea Freddie Flowers are white. Each flower grows on a special stem. The usual indoor plant height is 2 to 3 feet.

Around the stem, the pointed leaves grow alternatively. A full-grown leaf is 4-7 inches.


calathea freddie

Calathea Freddie Care Quick Overview

Botanical Name Calathea Freddie
Common Name Calathea Concinna, Concinna Freddie Prayer Plant, Freddie Plant
Family Marantaceae
Origin Brazil
Plant Type perennial
Leaf Shape oval
Leaf Color greenish with dark-green stripes and borders
Flower White
Growth Rate moderate
Light bright indirect light
Soil regular store-bought soil
When To Water Water when the top soil inch is dry
When To Fertilize once a month when it’s growing
Preferred pH 6.0-6.5
Humidity Range Likes humidity around 0.7
Toxicity It’s not toxic

Calathea Freddie Care Tips

Ideal Humidity

Calathea Freddie is a fav indoor plant that can thrive in most climates. Right humidity levels are needed to keep this plant healthy and happy. To be super healthy, the Calathea Freddie should be around 50-70% humidity.

Increasing humidity by:

  • This can be done by spraying the leaves often with water
  • Keeping a humidifier near your plant.
  • Providing the plant with a rock and water tray can help to up the humidity.
  • Bunching plants together can also make your home more humid.

We don’t recommend spraying often. Instead, use other ways to up the moisture.

humidity for calathea freddie


Water every week or so, letting the soil dry in between waterings. Water generously at each watering so that water can get to the roots.

It’s best to use clean water for your Calathea Freddie to stop mineral stuff building up in the soil. Water at the base of the plant instead of over-spraying, which can cause ugly spots on the leaves.

Water in the morning so that any extra water can dry up during the day. If your Calathea Freddie develops brown bits on its leaves, it’s a sign that you may be giving it too much water and should cut back.

You must first, keep a close eye on the soil. This will help you in getting a good watering schedule down. The weather and how humid it is affects how often plants need to be watered. For spring and summer, once to three times should be plenty. In the winter, the Calatheas only need watering 3-4 times a week.

There is an easy way to see if your plant needs watering. If wet, mucky soil is still sticking to the pot, check it with a stick. Alternatively, you can just use your finger to feel if it’s damp. It’s time to water your plant when the top inch of soil is dry.

Ideal light

Talking about light conditions for Calathea Freddie, it loves bright, not direct light. It can handle lower light but won’t do so hot in these conditions. Roughly 6 to 8 hours per day of not too direct light work best for this plant.

  • Stick your plant near a window that gets lots of natural sun during the day, but be sure to use light curtains or shades to keep out too strong sun.
  • Steer clear of placing Calathea Freddie in strong sunlight ’cause this could burn its leaves or make the colors fade.
  • Your Freddy Plant should hang out in a window facing north, west, or east. Best to steer clear of windows that face south ’cause they usually get strong sun.
  • Make sure to turn the plant a lot so all parts of the leaves get equal exposure to light.

Ideal light for Calathea Freddie includes bright, not direct sunlight or fake light from a grow light. Keep an eye out for droopy or yellow leaves which can be signs of too much light or not enough moisture.

light for calathea freddie

Required temperature

The needed temp for Calathea Freddie plants is between 65-80 degrees Fahrenheit (18-27 Celsius).

To make sure it grows best, it’s important to keep the temperature steady and steer clear of quick changes. Because they’re tropical plants, they like higher humidity and don’t handle cold too well.

The Zebra Calathea doesn’t really like cold and frost, just like other Calatheas. A temperature below 15 C might cause the plant to freeze and maybe die. Before it gets cold, bring the outside guys to some warm places inside.


Calathea Freddie plants need soil that drains well but keeps water too. The soil should be packed with organic stuff and have a bit acidic pH.

A soil mix of one part peat moss, one part loam soil, and one part perlite or coarse sand will give the best outcome. Add fertilizer to the soil when planting and every 3-4 weeks after that.

The soil mixture uses pebbles at the bottom rather than the top. By holding moisture and supplying aeration, this shows good stuff. On the other hand, any pebbles on the soil’s surface can stop air and choke the roots.

Make sure the soil type you pick lets enough drainage and air through so that the roots have better airflow.

Remember that this Calathea prefers a growing medium that stays moist all the time. Water the soil when it feels dry to the touch, but be careful not to let the soil stay wet for too long ’cause this can lead to roots rotting. Ensure that water is draining away from the plant after watering and don’t let any leftover water stay in the soil.

Unearth the secrets of the best soil for Calathea. Optimize your plant’s growth today!


Fertilizer is a must for Calathea Freddie as it gives the plant the good stuff it needs to grow.

You should apply fertilizer once a month during the growing season and you can chuck it directly into the soil or spray it on top. Fertilizers come in liquid or granular form and should be used as per the maker’s directions.

Giving your Calathea Freddie a well-rounded fertilizer regularly will help it to stay fit and bright. Be easy with the fertilizer since too much can damage the roots or turn the leaves yellow, so be careful not to overdo it.

During the winter, when this plant’s growth takes a break, you don’t need to fertilize it.


Repotting Calathea Freddie is pretty simple, but there are a few steps to keep in mind when doing it:

  • Pick a pot that is only a bit larger than the one it is currently in.
  • Repotting into a pot that’s too big can mess with good draining and lead to root rot.
  • Once you’ve picked a good-sized pot, fill it with a well-draining potting soil that has lots of organic stuff.
  • When placing the plant into its new home, make sure to keep the root ball as is and spread out any circling roots before backfilling with soil.
  • Give it a good watering and place it somewhere with bright, indirect light.

Repotting should be done once a year at the start of spring, before the plant begins to grow, and should happen every 1-2 years, or as needed.

repot calathea freddie


Pruning is a key bit of keeping Calathea Freddie fit and happy. Pruning helps to promote new growth, make it branch out more and make a thicker plant with prettier leaves. Pruning also helps to keep the plant small and easy-to-handle.

To prune your Calathea Freddie:

  • Start by snipping off any dead or hurt leaves with sharp scissors or pruners.
  • Trim back long stems to the height and shape you want.
  • You can also carefully pinch off any new buds or shoots that pop up, as this will make it branch out more and create a thicker plant.

Give your Calathea Freddie a prune at the end of winter or start of spring to help it stay healthy and look its best.

Calathea Freddie Care propagation

Growing more Calathea Freddie is a piece of cake. It can be done either by splitting up the root section.

For propagation by division:

  • Choose a plant that’s strong and lively. Grab the plant by easing up the soil at its base.
  • Shake the plant once more to get rid of any extra soil hanging on the roots.
  • Gently split the root section of your plant with a sharp knife when it becomes too packed.
    Each split part should include at least three leaves.
  • Plant the split bit into new soil and water. Place it in a warm spot with soft and indirect light.
  • To stop it from drying out, cover the pot with plastic or polythene. You can also lightly water the soil to keep it moist.
  • Use a compost mix that’s rich, drains well and lets water through.
  • The young Calathea will start growing on its own in 3 to 4 weeks. You can now take off the plastic and let it grow as it likes.

Tips: The best practice is to propagate the plant while repotting. The best time to repot Calathea this peep is the early days of the spring season.

propagation calathea freddie

Calathea Freddie Common Pests & Common Problems

Common Pests

  • Spider mites are tiny 8-legged tiny creatures that feed on plant juice, causing leaves turning yellow and changing color.
  • Whiteflies are little, white-flying insects that also feed on plant juice and can cause damage.
  • Scale insects are some of the most common pests of Calathea Freddie. These small, sap-sucking bugs group together on the stems and leaves of this plant, and can cause slow growth or leaves changing color if left unchecked.
  • Aphids are another usual pest of Calathea Freddie. These small, pear-shaped bugs can be found on the stems or undersides of leaves, and they will suck sap from the plant causing discoloration, yellowing leaves and stunted growth.
  • Mealybugs look like small white clumps around the stems, leaves and buds of the plant, while scales look like bumps on the stem or leaf surfaces.

If left unchecked, these pests can cause leaves changing color, slow growth and even death of the plant.

To stop bugs from showing up:

  • Check your Calathea often for signs of bugs and take steps to keep bugs away, such as regularly wiping down the leaves with a damp cloth or spraying the plant with neem oil.
  • If bugs show up, treat it immediately to keep your Calathea healthy and thriving.
  • You might need bug sprays in some cases; however, it’s best to use natural ways like bug-killing soaps or plant oils first if possible.
  • Cutting back areas with bugs is also an effective way to reduce bug numbers.
  • Also, make sure you keep new plants separate before introducing them into your existing collection of houseplants to stop bugs from spreading.

Spending time looking after your Calathea Freddie will make sure that you get many years of enjoyment from this beautiful houseplant.

calathea freddie pests

Common Problems

You might come across a few common problems with your Calathea Freddie:

Root rot

Root rot can pop up if you’re giving your plant too much water, the water can’t escape properly, or fungus spores are hangin’ around in the soil. Since fixing root decay is a bit tricky, it’s a good idea to watch out for it.

Yellow Leaves

Your plant might be getting too much or too little water if you’re seeing yellow leaves. Or it could just be that your plant’s growing and the old leaves at the bottom are turning yellow because they’re out of energy. Just get rid of these yellowing leaves in this case so your plant can focus on making more new, green ones.

Brown Leaf 

Brown leaf edges on your Calathea often come from a build-up of salts and minerals in the soil. This usually happens when you use tap water that’s been given chemical treatments or you’re using too much fertilizer. Brown leaf tips can also come from not enough dampness. Make your home more humid and give your plant the water it needs.

Drooping Leaves

Calathea Freddie leaves that are looking droopy are usually telling you they’re thirsty. Your plant will usually bounce back once it’s watered in this case. Plus, it might help to make the air damper.

Your plant might start with droopy and curled leaves, but over time they’ll also start showing more signs like spots, slow growth, and a general slide in health. Always check under the leaves if you think bugs might be there.

These issues can often come from too much direct sunlight, not watering right, or the air’s too dry.

To dodge these issues:

  • Make sure your plant is getting indirect sunlight and watered regularly with lukewarm water. It’s also important to keep the right levels of dampness in the air.
  • Make sure to spray your plant often to up the humidity level and help stop any possible problems from popping up.
  • If you do find that your Calathea Freddie has any of the common problems I’ve mentioned above, it’s best to jump right in and sort out the issue with the right treatments.

FAQ About Calathea Freddie Care

Q: How much light does Calathea Freddie need?

A: Calathea Freddie likes bright, indirect light. Direct light can cause its leaves to scorch and fade in color, so it’s best to keep this plant out of direct sunlight.

Q: How often should I water Calathea Freddie?

A: Calathea Freddie needs to be watered often, but it’s important not to drown it. Water your plant when the top inch of soil feels dry and then let the extra water drain out.

Q: Does Calathea Freddie need fertilizer?

A: Yes, giving your Calathea Freddie plant food is super important for keeping it healthy and happy. Use a diluted plant food once a month during the growing season and cut it down to once every 3 months in the winter when growth slows down.

Q: How do I know if my Calathea Freddie needs more humidity?

A: Calathea Freddie likes damp environments, so if the leaves start to droop or get crispy around the edges, it’s likely a sign of too little dampness. Up the dampness level in the air by misting your plant with water or placing a pebble tray filled with water near it.

Q: How can I tell if my Calathea Freddie is getting too much light?

A: If your Calathea Freddie is getting too much light, its leaves may start to yellow and drop off. Move the plant to a spot with more indirect light or give it a bit more cover from direct sunlight.

Pro Tips for Calathea Freddie Care

  1. Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Use a moisture meter to keep track of soil dampness levels and water accordingly.
  2. Give enough dampness. Mist your Calathea often, especially if you live in a dry area, or use a humidifier to increase the dampness.
  3. Provide indirect, bright shine. Place your Calathea near an east-facing window or use sheer curtains to soften direct light and cut down the risk of sunburns.
  4. Feed with a well-rounded liquid plant food every 2-4 weeks during the growing season. Cut the plant food to half strength before giving it to your Calathea.
  5. Prune regularly to keep a good, full shape and get more leaves going. Chop off any brown or yellowed leaves at the base of the stem with clean scissors or pruning shears.
  6. Use lukewarm water when watering to stop leaf burn or root decay. Place a saucer underneath the pot and let extra water drain off before returning it to its spot.


Following these Pro Tips for Calathea Freddie Care will help make sure that your plant stays healthy and bright for years.

For all of your Calathea Freddie needs, hit up FamiPlants. From picking the best spot in your home or office to planting and looking after your plants, we can assist you with everything. We’re sure that, with our years of expertise, we can offer you the top-notch products and services to make sure you get the most out of your Calathea Freddie plants.

Learn more about Other Calathea care resources:

Hi, I'm Cathleen Clemens. I graduated from Cornell University with a degree in plant science. I gained detailed knowledge about various kinds of plants and how to properly care for them. My experience has enabled me to easily detect any issues such as pest infestations, nutrient deficiencies, or signs of diseases in the plants.

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