If you’re looking to add a pop of pink to your houseplant collection, or maybe you already have some and are ready for more, the Pink Syngonium is definitely a plant you need to consider. The Pink Syngonium is well known for its beautiful, soft-pink foliage, however many don’t realize that you can actually alter the shade of pink depending on how you care for it.
In this guide, I’ll lead you through everything you need to know to first off take care of the plant and make sure it lives well and thrives, but also explain the ways you can alter the color of its pink and green foliage.
About the Plant
The pretty Pink Syngonium, also sometimes called Goosefoot, is a climbing vine that can pretty easily take over a corner of your room with little care. The Pink Syngonium is a variation of the Syngonium podophyllum with pinker foliage, however there are also variations where this vine has green and white colored foliage.
Most people grow Syngonium as a houseplant, since it can’t handle temperatures below 60 degrees F. Syngonium is a tropical plant so it requires constant warmth and humidity to grow well, so unless you live in the southeast in USDA zones 10-12, you’ll likely want to grow this plant indoors.
When the vine is given something to climb up or along, it can reach up to 6 feet- although this takes several years to reach. Pink Syngonium is also a flowering vine, but it’s not likely to flower indoors due to lack of pollinators.
Pink Syngonium is definitely a climbing vine and will grow along with whatever structures you give it, however it doesn’t naturally reach out. Syngonium actually isn’t a trailing vine and without a trellis or structure it grows in more of a bushy shape.
Some people prefer the Syngonium as a bushy plant rather than a long, extended vine. You can prune it to alter its shape, and later in this article I’ll explain exactly how to do this!
Syngonium is a member of the Araceae family, along with the Monstera Minima and Philodendrons, and has the same heart-shaped or arrowhead leaves. Over time, the shape of the leaves will soften and they’ll lose their pointed edge, but this takes several years and optimal indoor growing conditions.
Subtropical Plant Needs
These plants are native to the dense and humid tropics of northern South America, so conditions as similar to this as possible will be ideal for their growth. However, this doesn’t mean you need to turn your home into the Amazon. These pants are actually quite low maintenance and are pretty resilient, being able to adapt to many different conditions.
Pink Syngoniums love lots of sunlight, but since they’re low growing and climbing vines, they’re used to growing on the rainforest floor and under tree cover. In terms of growing in your home, this means several hours of indirect light.
They also love humidity, so the more you can provide, the better! There are several ways you can add humidity to your home, and I’ll explain the various ways you can do this.
It’s very important to be aware that this plant is toxic and should not be ingested at all. It’s not very severely poisonous, but this means it affects pets and children more. Syngoniums contain Calcium oxalates, which disrupt the digestive system, causing irritation in the mouth and often vomiting.
Planting and Placement
Syngoniums love moisture, but don’t like to be soaked, so planting them in a well-draining pot is one of the best things you can do to keep this plant healthy. Although, these plants can also be grown directly in water! So, if you have a propagation station, you can totally grow a Pink Syngonium that way.
One way to provide humidity for your Pink Syngonium is to place it in the bathroom, where it can soak up the moisture in the air. If you have pets or young kids, it’s even more important to place it somewhere out of reach. Pink Syngoniums look beautiful as hanging plants, especially if you let their vines grow out.
You can also place your Pink Syngonium on a shelf where it can grow sideways and reach out, or guide it to climb upwards. When given something to latch onto, these vines will happily climb up.
Keep in mind that these plants are not cold hardy, so they shouldn’t be in rooms that get below 50 degrees F, nor placed by air conditioning vents or windows with a draft. If you often open the windows in your room, then you might not want to place your Pink Syngonium in there.
As with many tropical plants, Pink Syngoniums prefer well-draining soil that’s moist, but doesn’t hold pockets of water. Slightly loose soil that allows free flow of water and air will be best for these plants in making sure they get enough nutrients.
A good recipe for tropical soil is two parts peat moss, one part organic compost, and one part perlite or coconut coir. The perlite or coconut coir both add a rougher texture to the soil mix, which helps it aerate.
Vermiculite is also a helpful addition to your soil mixture, because vermiculite helps retain water which makes the soil moist without there being water sitting in the soil. However, your soil mixture shouldn’t be as dry as cactus and succulent soil, which allows the pot to completely dry out.
As I started to explain at the beginning of this article, Pink Syngoniums need lots of sun, but it’s important that that’s indirect sunlight. These plants really suffer in direct light and their leaves will scorch, which is a shame since their foliage is so gorgeous!
If you only have a south-facing window or are in a position where you only get strong, direct light, try placing your Syngonium a few feet away from your windows. Or, you can use a sheer curtain in front of your window to protect the Syngonium and other plants from sunburn.
These low growing plants really love several hours daily of bright indirect light, however, they are adaptable to lower amounts of light. If they receive indirect light that it’s very bright or only get a few hours a day, they will droop a bit and their growth will be slower, but they’ll still be healthy.
Given that they’re used to tropical conditions, it’s important to keep constant moisture in the soil with these plants. Syngoniums appreciate regular but light watering once the soil has begun to dry out.
However, the soil should never be completely dried between waterings- you should feel the soil and if the top few inches are dried then the Syngonium needs to be watered. Syngoniums are vulnerable to root rot, so it’s always better with these plants to underwater them than to overwater and clog water in the pot.
This is why it’s so important with Pink Syngoniums to plant them in a well-draining pot with a drainage tray. When you water, do it slowly until you see water draining out of the pot. It’s best to toss the excess water in the tray after watering.
In general, water about once a week in the warmer months and adjust as needed. In the fall and winter, you only need to water about twice a month.
Since this plant is native to super humid regions, it’s ideal to recreate this as best as you can- your plant will thank you for it with gorgeous foliage. For Pink Syngoniums, it’s best to produce 50-70% humidity in the air.
There are a few ways you can create humidity for your plant, one of them being just placing it in the bathroom, as I mentioned earlier. You can also mist its leaves every few days to give the plant moisture all over.
A passive way to create humidity is by creating a pebble tray, which just means placing small stones in the drainage tray. The stones will soak up the water that drains out and by retaining some of the moisture, they create a bit of humidity in the air.
Lastly, you can always just use a humidifier and place it near your plants to ensure that there’s really enough humidity in the air. If you have other tropical plants, like the Monstera Minima or Fiddle Leaf Fig, you can place them all together with a humidifier and create a small tropical garden!
Signs That You’re Underwatering
The most tell-tale sign that you’re underwatering your plants is if their leaves droop and seem wilted. Thankfully, Pink Syngoniums are very resilient and once you water them, they’ll perk up again.
If you’ve really gone too long without watering, the leaves will start to curl down and inwards. Once the soil is really deprived of water, the leaves will become brown and crispy, starting around the edges and continuing up towards the stem.
If you notice your plant doing these things, you definitely need to increase your watering schedule, however you should remember that these plants are very vulnerable to root rot. Therefore you want to gradually increase the frequency of watering so your Syngonium can really soak up the water.
Signs That You’re Overwatering
You really want to avoid overwatering your Pink Syngonium since it won’t soak up excess water and therefore will have sitting water stuck in the pot- which is exactly how root rot forms. Root rot is a fungus that grows in root bundles when they’re too tightly squeezed together and water is stuck in the soil.
If you’re watering too often and not allowing the water to fully drain out, it will build up in the pot and possibly lead to this fungus. With Pink Syngoniums it’s always better to underwater and then adjust.
The clearest way to know that you’re overwatering is if the leaves turn brown and are mushy. The leaves also turn brown if the Syngonium dries out, but the leaves will be crispy. Whereas with overwatering the foliage and the stems are brown and mushy and it’s clear the plant has too much water in it.
Changing Foliage Color
The pink color in the foliage of the Pink Syngonium highly depends on the amount of sunlight it gets. For the Pink Syngonium, there’s a sweet spot of sunlight where it produces maximum pink variegation.
This is something that Pink Syngonium owners love, because you can move the plant around your home and give it different levels of sunlight to produce different shades of pink until you find a tone you love!
This isn’t to say that you can get the plant to produce a bright magenta color- there is a specific range of color that it will produce, but it will vary within this range. The pink coloration of the foliage is a mutation of the Syngonium, which naturally has green foliage. So as the foliage changes, it will be a blending of pink and green tones.
Pink Syngonium with light pink, faded foliage due to lots of direct sunlight.
Making the Foliage Lighter
If the Pink Syngonium gets a lot of sunlight, the color on its leaves will fade and the pink won’t be as strong. In this case, the leaves are more like a light pink. However, if your plant has too much sunlight, the leaves will start to turn brown from sunburn.
What’s so cool about this plant’s responsive foliage is that you can choose which shade of pink you like best. So, if you don’t really like the light pink shade that comes with lots of sunlight, just take it a bit further from the window and watch its foliage become a richer pink.
Making the Foliage Greener
If the plant doesn’t receive enough sunlight, it won’t produce the pink color as much and the leaves will be more green, as this is the natural color of the Syngonium’s foliage. The leaves will always have this green base and the pink coloring will depend on the health of the plant.
So, as your Pink Syngonium receives less light, its pink coloration will diminish and the green background will become more prominent. The pink color gradually fades away, so you can get it at a color where it’s green with a little hint of pink or to where the pink is barely fading and has a slightly green tint.
Getting the Most Pink
To get the strongest pink hue with the plant, you need to find the perfect balance between too much or too little sunlight. This will depend on your home and what kind of space you have and honestly just some trial and error.
To get a rich pink foliage, Pink Syngoniums need to be at maximum health, with several hours of indirect light and nutritious soil. They need all their resources to create all-pink foliage, so sunlight deficiency will inhibit having completely pink foliage. Yet, as I’ve explained, too much sunlight will cause the foliage to lose its pink color.
As you move your plant around to get different colored foliage, do so a bit at a time rather than bringing it from shade into direct light and vice versa. Pink Syngoniums are fairly responsive, so you’ll see the changes in foliage color after several days, but it’s important to stay patient.
In general, Pink Songoniums aren’t very needy and thankfully don’t require lots of additional maintenance. Here’s some tips to get your plant at its healthiest and prettiest.
They’re also fairly resistant to many diseases and pests and you don’t need to worry on those fronts- just keep in mind that they’re very prone to root rot. Despite Pink Syngoniums being very fast growers, they don’t outgrow their pots too often, so you don’t need to repot them very often.
Pink Syngoniums are very fast growers on their own, so fertilizing really isn’t necessary. The step is just to boost your plant’s health a bit more and is helpful if you have compost or worm castings on hand.
One of the best ways to fertilize your plant is to use compost when you first pot it. Since it doesn’t like too much water in the soil, liquid fertilizer can sometimes create too much moisture in the soil.
However, if you have organic liquid fertilizer on hand and would like to use that, go ahead and just use it gently! It’s best to fertilize in early spring, right before the growing season starts, to promote growth early on.
Along with changing foliage colors, Pink Syngonium also grows in many different forms, and you can alter its shape fairly easily depending on what you want in your space. This plant naturally grows in a bushy shape but can be strung out to be more vine-y if you prefer that look!
If you like the tight and bushy form, you can prune your Pink Syngonium by clipping the longer stems. Just remember not to clip off more than one third of each stem, otherwise you might send the plant into shock.
It’s alway best to prune your plant in mid to late spring, because pruning encourages the plant to create new growth, so it’s best to do this right before its peak growing period.
If you prefer the look of long vines, you’ll do the opposite and let the longer stems grow out. As your Pink Syngonium starts growing new stems, clip these off to redirect the plant’s resources towards the preexisting, longer stems.
Also, note that the plant will climb much more if it isn’t receiving enough sunlight as it will start to search for light. If you prefer the bushy shape rather than long vines, make sure you’re giving this plant enough light!
Of course, it’s also helpful to remove any of the dead and damaged stems anytime you see them. Taking out dead or dying stems helps the plant focus on maintaining the healthy stems- and definitely improves the aesthetics of the plant!
If you have any healthy stems that you’ve clipped off, remember to keep these to propagate and grow new Pink Syngonium plants! As long as one of the clippings has a leaf node on it, it will work for propagating.
Ideally, you should take a clipping with aerial roots because this will propagate best. Aerial roots are just roots that have begun growing above the soil. This is helpful because the clipping is already growing new roots, but you can propagate with other clippings.
All you need to do is place your clipping in a glass with water and wait for the roots to grow. After a few weeks the roots will have grown to several inches long and at this point the clippings are ready to be planted in soil!
Alternatively, some people will propagate clippings by placing them directly in soil. Although this method is more direct, it doesn’t always work as well and it’s more difficult to monitor the growth of new roots.
Whether you plant the clipping directly or propagate it in water, you want to be attentive once it’s planted. The plant is still a baby and is developing strong roots, so it’s even more important to water regularly and to make sure there’s enough warmth and moisture in the air.
Become a Pink Syngonium Parent!
These plants are so gorgeous and such a unique addition of color that you don’t often see with vines. Although they don’t have much of a chance in your outdoor garden, Pink Syngoniums are perfect houseplants or cottage plants that are winning over more and more plant owners.
They’re fairly low maintenance and super resilient, so you don’t have to exactly recreate tropical conditions in your room and they will still grow well. As long as you have consistent light coming into your home, you can grow these beautiful Pink vines!