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Latin name

Dieffenbachia spp. Several species are used as indoor plants; amongst the more popular are: Dieffenbachia amoena, Dieffenbachia maculata, Dieffenbachia seguina. A wide range of hybrids is also available. Most Dieffenbachias go under the common name “Dumb cane”, although “Leopard lily” is sometimes used for varieties with very mottled leaves.



Common name

Dumb Cane, Leopard Lily


Central and South America, Mexico, Caribbean

How easy am I to care for?

Buy one of my cousins from the nursery:

Most Dieffenbachias have sturdy, almost cane-like stems that bear large, smooth, oblong, pointed leaves on sheathed stalks. As new leaves unfurl from the centre, the plant spreads outward with a slight downward arch.

The leaves are basically green with splashes of cream or white on either side of the pronounced central vein. In some varieties (e.g. “Camilla”) the marking becomes so extensive that only small areas along the leaf margin remain green.

The plant is harmful if eaten, causing severe mouth and throat irritation. It should not be used in areas accessible to vulnerable people.

Caring for your plant



Does best in medium to high light. Benefits from direct sunlight in winter, but in summer this gives the leaves a bleached, washed-out appearance


The growing medium should be kept moist, but allowed to dry out between watering. Should be kept drier under cool, poorly lit conditions, otherwise stem rot may occur


Dead or damaged leaves should be cut off at the base using a sharp knife or secateurs


A weak solution of fertilizer can be added to the water every time you water the plant

Pest & Diseases

Prone to attack by the Two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae), scale insects and mealybug.

Mill Pond Nurseries,
Mill Road,
CM22 6AA

T: 0345 505 3333
E: enquiries@planteriagroup.com

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