Should You Leave Aglaonema Flowers on the Plant?

by | Jan 22, 2020 | 88 comments

Aglaonema plants are some of the hottest plants available today. They are easy to grow, take low light levels, and the colors of the leaves are amazing. If they have good bright light conditions, you may find that they will send out flowers. There is controversy among houseplant growers about whether you should remove the flowers or leave them on the plant.

A large selection of aglaonemas

A large selection of aglaonemas at a local garden center

A popular foliage plant

I was at a local garden center today and there was an entire table filled with aglaonemas, as you can see above. They are such wonderful plants. Many were blooming and that’s where the conversation begins. Should you take the flowers off or leave them on?

All in the family

So what about the flowers? Aglaonemas are in the arum family which includes anthuriums, philodendrons, monsteras, peace lilies, and dieffenbachias. They all have flowers that form a spadix and often are surrounded by a green or colored spathe. You probably will never see a flower on your monstera or philodendron but will see them often on peace lilies and anthuriums.

Anthurium

Anthuriums are relatives of the aglaonema

Is it a flower or a leaf?

As you can see below, it may seem like there is just a new leaf coming out, but it will soon become apparent that it isn’t unfurling like a normal leaf.

Aglaonema flower bud

Is it a flower or a leaf?

Unfurling leaves

Below are the unfurling leaves. As you can see when you compare the pictures above (flower bud) and below (leaf), the leaves are much thinner than the flower bud.

Aglaonema flowers

Below are some pictures of the aglaonema flowers. They aren’t that attractive but not ugly, either. So should you cut them off? Maybe you are asking why it matters or had never thought of cutting them off. That is fine. Some argue that the flowers should be cut off. Why? Because aglaonemas are grown for their amazing foliage and flowers take energy from the plant. So, many cut them off so that all the energy goes into growing more gorgeous leaves. It makes sense to me. I personally cut the flowers off. I don’t think they are attractive. Making flowers does take enormous amounts of energy because after they flower, what happens? They make seeds. More energy being used.

Aglaonema flower

An aglaonema flower a bit more mature

Leave them on if you prefer

All that being said, if you like the flowers, leave them on. It really is up to you. If your plant is flowering, it definitely likes where it is. It is getting good light and sending out flowers. Life is good for your aglaonema, but it does take energy to make them. So, tell me, do you leave them or cut them off?

Have a great week, plant friends!

More From My Blog

Leave a Comment

88 Comments

  1. Kim V

    Thanks for this article. I had never thought about what to do with the flowers. After nearly killing my aglaonema with overwatering followed by repotting, I was so excited to see it double in size (it had been very root bound) and flourish. The flowers were the icing on the cake that the plant was now happy. I left them on until they wilted since I wasn’t sure what to do with them. I think in the future, I will enjoy them for a few days and then cut them off.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Kim. I think that sounds like a good idea and I’m glad your aglaonema is doing well! Thanks for the comment!

      Reply
      • Aastha

        I have a beautiful aglaonema n recently flower bloom too. But 1 strange thing i have observed is whenever a new leaf comes one oldnleave turns pale n goes off. What could be the reason? Can any1 help me.

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          It shouldn’t do that every time you get a new leaf, but there will be old leaves that will turn yellow and need to be taken off. Make sure they aren’t getting too much water and staying wet for too long.

          Reply
        • Jelitza

          I’m having the same issue!

          Reply
          • Alyssa Gonzalez

            It’s very normal for aglanoemas to drop their bottom leaves. If you notice that it’s usually the bottom most leaves on your stalk, that’s normal because they constantly give new leaves (not at the same rate necessarily!) but if they don’t easily pull off, you can snip them so the plant does bother using energy on it if it’s just dying off anyway

          • Lisa Steinkopf

            Hi Alyssa,
            Thanks for your comments. I think that is a great idea. They are dying anyway and not contributing anything to the plant if they are yellowing. Lisa

    • Dianna

      Once they bloom can you propigate it from the seeds?

      Reply
      • Lisa Steinkopf

        Hi Dianna,
        Honestly, I don’t know. I’ve never tried it. I have read that they are not self-pollinating so I don’t think they would produce seeds. Lisa

        Reply
    • Remz

      I do the same.

      Reply
      • Lisa Steinkopf

        Great minds think alike! Lisa

        Reply
    • Tonya

      Can you use the seeds to make more plants off the flower of the aglaonema

      Reply
      • Lisa Steinkopf

        Hi Tonya, I found an article about pollinating your flowers so they will make seeds. https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/publication/ep382 Read this and see if it is something you would like to try.
        Lisa

        Reply
        • Cientxa

          Thank you for that link. I am in love with my 6 year old Agloanema and have never seen a flower.

          Reply
          • Lisa Steinkopf

            Hi Cientxa,
            I wouldn’t worry about not having a flower. If your plant is doing well, its probably in the perfect place, but without enough light to flower. I love aglos!
            Lisa

  2. Allyson

    Hi there my Aglaonema has three new leaves that have not unfurled in weeks. Is there something I am doing wrong?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Could you send me a picture? lisa@thehousplantguru.com. It may be flowers. They look different and are white, but kind of resemble unfurled leaves. Or maybe it is just being stubborn and slow! lol

      Reply
      • allyson

        Sent

        Reply
      • allyson

        The email was returned to me

        Reply
        • Mellissa

          Can you propagate Aglaonema using its seeds?
          Some anthuriums can propagate using seeds.

          Reply
          • Lisa Steinkopf

            Hi Mellissa,
            I read that the flowers aren’t self-pollinating but the flowers are on the same spadix. Maybe try it.
            Lisa

      • Anna

        I wonder what was the outcome on this one? My plant already had 3 new leaves that took forever to start to unfurl and they all died before ever completely unfurling 🙁

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          Hi Anna, What was the outcome? Do you mean when I took the flowers off? It just kept on growing, not spending any energy on making flowers. Why do you think your leaves don’t unfurl?
          Lisa

          Reply
  3. Valerie

    This is the first time mine is blooming. Looking forward to seeing how it looks, then I’ll decided to keep it or not.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      That’s a good idea. If your plant is healthy the flowers won’t hurt it. If you like them, keep them on.

      Reply
      • Alexandra

        Hi, grear article. My aglaonema just surprised me with a gorgeous big bloom. I have had it for about 6 months now, and it came with a long trunk and 2 leafs in the top. Now it has beginnings of growths all over the trunk, about 3 babies around her, and after the 4 new leaves she had since with me, now this bloom. I would be interested in leaving it for the seeds, but i don’t really know if special requirements for that to happen: seeds to be viable.. any advice, please? Thank you-

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          I’m not too sure how to grow them from seeds, but did find a good article from aroid.org, the International Aroid Society. Hope that is helpful! Good luck!

          Reply
  4. Katherine

    Hi! I have an aglaonema Katrina and it has an incoming flower but it hasn’t opened up..it’s been about a month, how long does it usually take to open up? I’m quite curious to see its beauty…

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      They don’t really “open” like other flowers. The spathe stays kind of curled around it and the spadix peeks out.

      Reply
      • Sheryl

        I am a plant technician and I was taught to cut the flowers off. This lets more energy go to the whole plant as a whole. The flowers are usually in a set of three, cut all the way to the stem where they are growing rom.
        Your Ag will be much happier and grow much fuller.
        🌺

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          Hi Sheryl, I used to be a plant technician and it was my favorite job. Unfortunately, my back didn’t like the job at all. Anyway, thanks for the comment. I always cut mine off, too. Lisa

          Reply
  5. Harish Narang

    Mine are flowing for the first time. I will save the flowers. Can seeds from them be used for growing new plants?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      I have never tried that, so I can’t honestly say I know.

      Reply
  6. Emily

    Hi! Where exactly should I cut the flower? Right below? As far down as I can reach?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      I cut it down as far as I can without injuring the plant.

      Reply
  7. Samantha

    I was so excited to see that my ag was putting out flowers and seemed happy! It took the flower forever to open until the spadix was visible (probably 4-5 weeks?) but as soon as the spadix was open to the air, the flower rapidly decomposed and died within a few days. Is that typical?

    And do you know how the flowers can be made into seeds? I’d be interested in trying that out!

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Samantha, I honestly don’t know. I usually cut mine off. I would have thought it would last a while. I’m not sure about the seeds, either. I’m sorry.

      Reply
  8. Jaymie Pabellano-Jota

    Hi, I “inherited” an Aglaonema Cutlass from a neighbor who was about to through it out and it’s unlike any I’ve seen as it looks really old and it doesn’t have a lot of leaves and they were really wilted. I did what I could and repotted it. It eventually grew some leaves and it gave out a flower that’s now brown and dying so I’ll do what you do and cut it off. My concern now is that it barely has any leaves and is quite tall with a brown thick stem and really thin elongated leaves. I wonder what I can do to make it blossom.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Jaymie,
      Could you send me a picture? My email is on my website or send a picture through my Facebook page.

      Reply
  9. Kayla

    Thanks for the article! My beautiful silver bay that I’ve had for a few months must be really happy, it’s putting out flowers, lots of new leaves and new shoots! It’s definitely one of my favourites!

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      It sounds like it is super happy and healthy!

      Reply
  10. Ingrid Russell

    I appreciate the article. I wasn’t sure if it was good or bad that my aglaonemas plant flowered, but assumed it was okay since new leaves were sprouting. I do have a question about watering which I hope you could answer. I know it needs to prefer to be dried out before re-watering and enjoys shaded areas… but I watched a video on youtube from a plant lover and educator who stated one should thoroughly water each plant until water seeps from the drainage holes and about 20-30% of that water seeps out. I just did this but now I am concerned it might be too much for this particular plant since it won’t be in the sun? Also, do you know if it enjoys some humidity like most plants? I either crack a window (plants are on windowsill or near it) or use a humidifier. I’m wondering if I should put it close to the humidifier or not.

    Thank you in advance for your answers! <3

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      It is best to water a plant until water runs out the drainage hole. That is the way you should always water every plant. The key is it may not need water again for a long time if it is a cacti or other succulent, but need water again next week if it is a fern or other water-loving plant. They do enjoy humidity, but I don’t elevate humidity for my aglos. They have pretty thick leaves, so they seem to do fine.

      Reply
  11. Carla

    The leaves on my Aglaonema have started to fade and are becoming pale (they were bright pink before). There is a flower that is almost about to bloom (I bought it this way and just learned it may be bad) – I will be cutting off the flower after reading your article. However, my question is, do you think the flower is the reason why the leaves are going pale? Or could it be for another reason? I’m not overwatering it since I wait until the top of the soil is dry in between waterings, but I’m concerned it may not be getting enough sun and that’s why it’s losing its color? Your help would be appreciated!

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Carla, I wouldn’t necessarily say it is “bad” for the plant, but it is stealing energy from the leaves. If it flowered, it is getting enough sun, or it would not have flowered. My oldest leaves do become yellow and I remove them. At the same time the plant can get leggy (develop long stems with no leaves). That is kind of the nature of the plant. You can cut one or two of the stems right back to the soil line and usually, it will push out a new shoot, thus renewing the plant. Then take the cut off part and root it in the pot it came from or in water and then replant it with the leggy plant. Does that make sense? Lisa

      Reply
  12. Akshada

    Mine is flowering for the first time and I am to know that my plant is feeling happy and telling it by blooming.
    Thanks for all the information.
    Regards,
    Akshada

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Akshada,
      I’m glad your plant is doing so well! Thanks for sharing! Lisa

      Reply
    • Syeda Rida

      I want to know if i start with the seed how long will it take to reach 12inch ?

      Reply
      • Lisa Steinkopf

        Hi Syeda,
        I have never tried to grow one from seed, so I can’t tell you how long it will take or even if the seeds will grow.
        Lisa

        Reply
  13. Jane

    Hi Lisa! Mine has been pushing flowers very frequently (About a new flower comes out every two weeks at the moment) and I’ve noticed that since it started flowering, my plant just keeps losing leaves and is now not as lush anymore! I’ve checked the roots and they are perfectly healthy and I have wondered if it was because it is just using up way too much energy to keep producing flowers.

    When you cut the flowers off your aglaonema, do you just cut as close as possible to the base of the flower?

    Thanks so much for your advice!

    Jane

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Jane,
      It is putting energy into making the flowers. I do cut it as close as possible to the base of the flower as I can.
      Lisa

      Reply
      • Sonia

        After reading your article I have cut of the first flower of my ag. I bought it 2 months ago and in this time it only sprout this flower but no new leaves though it’s spring. Hoping to have new leaves now

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          Hi Sonia,
          You should see some new leaves soon. They should be showing up soon.
          Lisa

          Reply
  14. Janette

    Hello! Super useful info! My aglaonema is growing flowers but I’m Not sure how exactly to cut them off. How low do i go?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Janette,
      I just cut them off as close to the bottom of the stem as I can without cutting off a leaf.

      Reply
      • Sonia

        I just wanna know if this flower can be put in soil as it is to get new plant?

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          Hi Sonia,
          I have never tried that. I don’t think it will work, but you could give it a try…. Lisa

          Reply
  15. Palette simpson

    Questions and answers very informative. Where can I purchase ag seeds. I would lo c e to have the hybrid red and the white

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Palette, I don’t know where you find seeds. I bought it as a plant. Lisa

      Reply
      • Kelly

        I inherited an ag plant from a friend that is very leggy— it has one stock about 30 inches tall, and one shoot coming up near it. The tallest stock is covered in about six leaves. I repotted it upon receiving it because it was root bound in a shallow pot. In the past month, it is sent up a flower which is now unfurling. I plan to remove that after reading your suggestions above. Is there anything else I could do to encourage it to develop new foliage?

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          Hi Kelly,
          You could cut the plant back and use the cuttings to replant into the pot to make it fuller. Plus after cutting the stems back close to the soil line, the stems should send up new growth, renewing the plant. I would cut one stem at a time, so the plant still has leaves making energy for it while it is growing new stems. Hope this helps. Lisa

          Reply
  16. Julia

    Hi Lisa,

    My aglaonema is producing tons of flower buds, however, on the flower buds (and some of the leaves) there is sticky residue that looks like it crystalizes. I’ve heard that that’s normal when they are producing flower buds but I just wanted to double check and see if you’ve experienced this as well? There’s no pest that I can see and I keep a close eye on it. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Julia,
      That is normal, so no worries, unless you see some kind of insect. Keep a close eye on it, but it sounds like it is living its best life with you!
      Lisa

      Reply
  17. KimL.

    Both of my Aglaonema plants are flowering right now. I was completely surprised by this. I didn’t even know they flower, so that was cool. I wondered why this “new leaf” was fatter than usual. Ha! My Silver Bay is currently pushing out not one but three of them! Wow! I’m so happy to know she’s happy. She does want more water these days, understandably. I don’t usually fertilize, but I think I will once this Spring with a balanced, diluted water-soluble fertilizer — considering all the hard work these plants are putting in right now. Thanks for the information! Greatly appreciated. 🙂

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Thanks for the comments, Kim! I love that your plants are doing so well. They must love your care and the spot they are living in. Lisa

      Reply
  18. LESLIE PASTORIZA VICTORIA

    So thankful I came across this article, very informative ! One of my Ags is blooming 2 flowers, one is still closed. Me and my kids are excited and always checking on what more our “princess”‘s flowers could offer. But it seems that it’s all there is, LOL. Anyway, I planned to keep the flowers as long as they won’t hurt their mother, LOL.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Leslie,
      No, they sure don’t hurt the plant. It really is a preference. Enjoy them and how wonderful you are getting your kids involved with plants. Lisa

      Reply
  19. Dawn Williams

    Hi Lisa, thanks for your very informative articles and answers. Our Chinese evergreens have lots of lovely foliage and flower buds. However, the flower buds always turn yellow, then brown and die before opening. Why is this? I wait until the topsoil is dryish before watering, which is about once every 7 -9 days and I use just enough water, not too much

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Dawn,
      the flowers don’t really “open” all the way. So maybe it is just doing what it normally does…?
      Lisa

      Reply
  20. Mark M

    I bought the pink ag for a valentines gift to my wife. Used the info here to keep it going strong. There are 2 plants in one pot. They both seem to grow new leaves or flowers at the same time. When it did flower my wife wanted to let them grow to see what they turned out to be. After the flower opened enough to see it, I was surprised it lasted for weeks. Finally it started to turn so I cut them off. They have just unfurled the 2nd new leaf since the flower. I made a small chart to keep track of watering. I also check the soil and make sure it has dried out good before I water. Usually about every 10 days. I didn’t see how to include a picture or I would have. The ag is doing great with beautiful pink leaves. I think it is about time to fertilize. what do you recommend?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Mark,
      If you want to, you can send a picture to my email Lisa@thehouseplantguru.com. But, it sounds like your plant is doing well. I use a balanced water-soluble fertilizer such as a 20-20-20. You could also use an organic fertilizer such as fish emulsion or something comparable. I never use the full strength it calls for but usually about 1/2. Hope that helps.
      Lisa

      Reply
      • Mark

        Lisa, I sent the pic of it taken on 7-1. If that goes thru I can send one from February when I bought it. Also just noticed it has 2 more new leaves popping out.

        Reply
        • Lisa Steinkopf

          I’m not sure if I saw them. Did I respond? I’m sorry. I get a lot of emails. Send again if you want. I would love to see them.
          Lisa

          Reply
          • Mark

            I just saw your post. It has been very busy the last few weeks. I resent the email with 2 pictures this time. Hope they come thru for you.

  21. Mikko

    Hello! I have silver frost aglaonema and I see two flower buds blooming. I’m still contemplating whether I’d cut ’em off or leave them. I think that if I cut ’em off, my plant might become upset. Haha.

    But luckily, I also see two leaves waiting to be unfurled.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Mikko,
      What did you decide? I sometimes leave them and sometimes cut them off. Usually, it depends on whether I see them. Too many plants problem! lol
      Lisa

      Reply
  22. Karen Mills

    I was growing a very colorful aglaonema outside (Florida). It bloomed and the seeds swelled. I planted the seeds and got 7 new, all different plants that look more like Philodendrons then the parent plant. All are variegated greens and two are very miniature plants! Your thoughts are appreciated. As a plant lover I welcome the new plants but thought I’d get more color in the new plants.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Karen,
      Often seeds from a cultivar don’t grow true to the plant you have. I’m sure that is what happened.
      Lisa

      Reply
  23. Harriet

    My aglaonema recently started to bloom. Not just a flower here and there but all over the place. I am happy to see my plant enjoys its environment, but I don’t want to kill it. At first I removed the flowers, then I thought I wanted to see what they looked like, but I never dreamed they would be all over the plant, sometimes two at a time in one area. I am going to let them to till they open and cut and then cut them off. If I see the plant is stressed I will remove them as soon as I see them. I feel like nature would not have the plant flower if it was going to hurt it.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Harriet,
      It certainly doesn’t hurt it and in nature, it needs to flower to make seeds and reproduce itself. But, in our homes that isn’t needed, but there is no problem leaving them on the plant. I cut them off so they don’t expend energy making the flowers when they could be making more of those amazing leaves.
      I hope that it explains it better.
      Lisa

      Reply
  24. Diane

    I just received an Aglaonema “Lady Valentine.” Roots are coming out of the bottom and the flower looks like it will not be growing more…it looks like it has been somehow damaged. It’s in a 4 inch pot. Shall I repot to a 6 inch? Regular potting soil? Should I leave the flower on and see what happens?

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Diane,
      I would definitely up-pot it to the next size. It’s a great time of year to do it and it sounds like the roots could use some more room. I would use a good potting medium. I usually add some perlite to commercial mixes for better drainage. The flowers turn brown as they age and then they are done and can be cut off. Hope that helps. Lisa

      Reply
  25. Monica Timbal

    Hello Lisa,

    My plant made flowers but they didn’t open. They did not look right. After reading comments on your site, I cut them off and opened them up to see why they did not open. The spadix inside was rotten in all 6 flowers! Some even had mold on them.
    What could cause that, would you know? I’m very curious. Otherwise, my plant is growing beautifully and has dense green leaves.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Hi Monica,
      That is weird. I’ve never had that. Do you think they were just done and were ripening? I’m not sure about the mold. Another good reason to cut them off! Lol
      Lisa

      Reply
  26. Maria Del Mar

    I have my aglaonema in water, just plain spring water and she has a flower.. I think I’m not gonna cut it, let’s see.

    Reply
    • Lisa Steinkopf

      Maria,
      If it is your first, don’t cut it so you can see it. It isn’t a rule that you have to cut it. I just find it helps the plant put its energy back into growing beautiful foliage.
      Lisa

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest