Incense plant: care | Gardening enabled

Frankincense plant: care

At Easter, one of the characteristic smells of this time is, without a doubt, incense. What you may not know is that the frankincense plant exists. Its maintenance is so simple that anyone, no matter how little hand they have with plants, can take care of it properly.

Would you like to have an incense plant at home? And what care will you need? We explain everything in this guide that we have prepared for you.


Incense plant: essential care

incense pot

We will start by saying that the incense plant is not difficult to maintain. It adapts to whatever you give it and doesn’t require you to be over the top.

scientific name Plectranthus coleoides, this plant is characterized by medium or small sized, perennial, green leaves with a white border. But maybe what you like the most is that if you brush the leaves, or if you take them between two fingers and rub, you will notice that an incense smell begins to emanate, which, by the way, by the way, is mosquito repellent.

Now, what exactly does this plant need? We tell you below.


The incense plant is usually sold as a houseplant, but the truth is that the most suitable place to have it is outside, outside. Of course, only if you can provide a suitable minimum temperature (we’ll talk about that below).

you can place outside in partial shade, so that it receives a little light but not too much because it will burn its leaves, especially at the beginning. If it is already adapted, it is possible that it tolerates more light.

That doesn’t mean you can’t have it inside the house but, if so, try to find one. very bright place, with a few hours of direct sunlight which are not the most impactful (early morning or late afternoon would be fine). And don’t forget to rotate the jar occasionally so that all sides get light.


In terms of temperature, the incense plant is native to India, Africa or Indonesia, which makes it be heat resistant. HoweverIt is not the same with the cold.

When the temperature drops above 10 degrees, it is common for the plant to suffer and suffer, so we recommend keeping it within a range ideal between 16 and 22ºC.

Does that mean it can’t stand more than 22 degrees? Quite the contrary. If you have it outside and sweltering summers are coming, if it is in the shade it can tolerate any temperature. In the sun it is better to protect it.

Inside the house, it is easier to maintain the temperature, but watch out for hot or cold air sources.

plectranthus plant branches


Whether you are going to plant it in the ground, or put it in a pot, the ideal substrate for this plant is a first layer of stones, leca or similar (to help drain well), and a universal substrate mix with perlite to aerate the roots.

An expert tip is that from time to time the first layer of soil is removed to further improve ventilation and due to irrigation it may have become more compact.

Watering and humidity

Irrigation is one of the frankincense plant care that needs to be monitored. The watering you can do in a pot is not the same as if it is planted in the garden. So let’s go in parts.

If you have it in a jar, be sure to water but not too much. When you see water coming out of the bottom holes, stop and wait 5 minutes before removing the plate. Another option is to baste from below, filling the dish and waiting 5-10 minutes to remove it. If you see that he drinks it very quickly, you can pour it a second time.

It is not a plant that needs a lot of watering, so with 1 to 2 times a week in summer you will have enough. In winter, watering can take up to a month.

Now, if you have it in the garden, ambient humidity, wind, etc. they can make the top layer of soil dry, but not the interior. So, before watering, we recommend removing this layer a little to see if it is wet inside.

Sometimes it’s the The plant itself is the one that alerts you that it needs watering, as you will notice drooping branches and leaves. As soon as you water and a few hours pass, it will go back to normal.


During the spring and summer months You should add some organic fertilizer to the irrigation water.

Other options are compost, earthworm humus or guano.

incense plant leaves

Plagues and diseases

One of the incense plant care that you will need to monitor more often is the plagues and diseases. And it is that it is a plant that is usually quite affected. To give you an idea, we are talking about snails, aphids and slugs like its main enemies, especially if you have it outside. To remedy this, try throwing some crushed eggshell around it.

Among the diseases, perhaps the most common is mold. For her nothing like applying a fungicide. Although some recommend using it even if the plant has not developed the problem, as a preventive measure.


If you take good care of the incense plant, it is possible that its branches will start to grow, you will see it more leafy, etc. Therefore, you will often have to prune it and these cuttings coming out are the best way to reproduce it.

You just need to take them and either plant them in a pot with rooting hormones or put them in water and wait for the roots to come out to plant them.

That yes, so that they have a slightly longer stem and do not spend so much energy maintaining the leaves, remove the lower ones before planting them.

As you can see, the care of the frankincense plant is not complicated, and it is very grateful. You don’t have to be on top of her and she also alerts you when she needs something. Do you dare to have one in your home and enjoy its aroma throughout the room?

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