Aglaonema

Scientific name

Aglaonema Schott

Common names

Chinese evergreen

Family

Araceae

Native distribution

tropical and subtropical southeastern Asia, from northeastern India across southern China and Indonesia through New Guinea

Species cultivated

(plus numerous cultivated varieties and hybrids)

Aglaonema “Silver Queen” is the most widely cultivated

Adventive distribution

Aglaonema commutatum Schott and A. pictum (Roxb.) Kunth are introduced into the United States

Weed status

not weedy

Habit

evergreen herb

Brief description

Stem erect, typically compact; sometimes creeping. Petiole length similar to leaf blade; sheath elongate, membraneous and clasping stem. Leaves alternate, typically thick; leaf blade lanceolate to elliptic or ovate; apex acute, base attenuate to rounded; venation pinnate; sometimes variegated. Cataphylls subtend inflorescence. Inflorescence axillary, spathe and spadix; peduncles erect, deflexed in fruit; spathe not differentiated into tube and blade, erect, ovate, green to whitish; spadix erect, cylindric to clavate. Berry ellipsoid, outer layer green, turning yellow then red.

Natural habitat

typically regions with well accessible water; damp, shady, forested areas or near streams

Additional comments

A genus of about 20 species plus numerous varieties and hybrids. Aglaonema “Silver Queen” is the most widely grown hybrid. This species is adaptable in very wet areas and temporary flooding, but is not considered truly aquatic.