Dischidia ovata is part of the Apocynaceae family and its native range is New Guinea to N. Queensland. It is from the tribe Marsdenieae and it’s estimated there are about 80 species. This epiphyte is commonly referred to as the Watermelon Dischidia due its distinctive leaf pattern. They use adventitious roots to support their climbing growth habit and do well mounted on wood or bark.
Genus name comes from the Greek ‘dis’ meaning twice and the Latin ‘schidius’ meaning cleft or split. Specific epithet means egg-shaped, this is in reference to the leaf shape.
Pot: ø 14cm.
Foliage: Approximately 30cm in length.
Light: Dischidia grow in filtered sunlight in their native environment, in the home I would recommend an east facing window for some morning sun, this species will turn red if it’s getting lots of light. It is important for the plant to see the sky in order to thrive.
Water: If your Dischidia is in a well draining mix or mounted, you will need to water more frequently than if it is in a dense potting mix. They can dry out a little as they are very drought tolerant.
Potting mix: A chunky well draining mix composed of coco coir, perlite or vermiculite, orchid bark and worm castings; you could also add some horticultural charcoal to this epiphytic mix. You can also grow this plant in coco coir chips or mounted with sphagnum moss. Dischidia require excellent drainage and are used to good air circulation around their roots.
Fertilising: They’re not heavy feeders but you can your plant every few waterings during the growing season or when you observe active growth. You can dilute fertiliser to half the recommended amount but never add more.
Temperature: Day temperatures 12-30°C. Night temperature 12-18°C.
Humidity: Dischidia would prefer higher humidity, between 60-80% but do well to adjust to average home humidity. You can increase humidity by placing the plant on a watered pebble tray or using a humidifier.
Dischidia aren’t considered toxic, however, they may make your pet or child vomit if ingested, keep out of reach just to be safe.