Ctenanthe lubbersiana ‘Golden mosaic’

Never Never plant


This stunning plant features fanned clusters of large, elliptical leaves adorned with irregular golden yellow markings, adding a touch of exotic beauty to any indoor space. Originating from Brazil, this patriotic plant showcases hues reminiscent of its homeland’s flag.

With its pet-friendly nature, this floor plant thrives in humid environments and medium light, making it an ideal addition to bathrooms or any room in need of a refreshing burst of colour.


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Origin: Brazil
Genus: Ctenanthe
Species / Cultivar: lubbesiana var. Golden Mosaic
Common Name: Never Never plant
Synonym: Stromanthe lubbersiana

Plant Biography

Ctenanthe lubbesiana, native to tropical Brazil, is a member of the Marantaceae family and is related to the Calatheas (prayer plants).


Ctenanthe lubbersiana 'Golden mosaic'
Light: Bright Indirect
This plant likes sun, but keep out of direct sunlight. Best placed in an area near a window.
Soil: Indoor Potting Mix
Enjoys moist well drained soil with composted organics and some drainage material.
Temperature: 15 - 27°C
Temperature range at which this plant is healthiest and grows best.
Growth Rate: Medium
Expect to see moderate growth during growing season.
Water Requirement: Regular Watering
Water when soil surface is dry to the touch. Water must draining easily away.
Humidity: Low
Suited to fairly dry air, typically because it evolved in an arid climate.
Maintenance: Moderate
This plant has specific requirements. Incorrect care can quickly lead to signs of distress.
Eventual Height: 1.2m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Habit: Evergreen
Always in leaf throughout the year. It won't lose all its leaves at any one time.
Care guidance

Care guidance

A Ctenanthe is not an easy care plant and can be quite frustrating for a novice plant grower. However, with a bit of research and attention, this plant will reward you with a stunning display.


Keep the soil evenly moist but never soggy. Ctenanthes do not like to dry out, and do not like cold or hard water. Use filtered or rain water that is at least at room temperature if not a bit tepid.


Fertilize monthly in the spring and summer diluting the plant food at 1/2 the recommended strength. Fertilize every other month in the fall and winter.
Never feed a Ctenanthe immediately after repotting, wait at least 6 weeks.

Environment guidance

Environment guidance


Ctenanthes like bright indirect light. If there is insufficient light, new leaves appear solid green rather than patterned with attractive colours. If there is too much light, the colours in the leaves fade.


High humidity is very important. If the air is dry, place your Ctenanthe on a pebble tray filled with water. Be sure the plant is sitting on the pebbles and not in the water. Plants in dry rooms tend to curl their leaves inwards to preserve moisture. This is the first sign of a water stressed plant.



The Never Never Plant, may require repotting every 2-3 years to refresh the soil in the pot and to allow vigorous growth. This is also the time to divide the plant if it gets too crowded in the existing pot.

Start by taking the plant out of its pot and check the roots. Healthy roots should look creamy white and firm to the touch.

If the plant is severely pot bound, and you’re not planning on dividing it or repotting in a larger pot, a good solution is to give it a root pruning to reduce the amounts of roots.  Tease the roots to untangle them partially and shake off excess soil. You can cut about one third of the roots without affecting the plant’s health.

Repot in fresh indoor compost, making sure to shake the pot while backfilling to avoid air pockets. Water thoroughly after finishing repotting to get a good contact between the plant’s roots and the new soil.

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