Discover the Ease and Beauty of Low-Maintenance Houseplants: The Oxalis Triangularis Guide


Oxalis triangularis, also known as the “false shamrock” or “purple shamrock”, makes a great low-maintenance houseplant. This unique plant has leaves that fold up at night and open again in the morning, resembling a bunch of butterfly wings. It belongs to the Oxalidaceae family and is native to Brazil. The leaves of the Oxalis triangularis plant have three distinct sides, hence its name “triangularis”.

Oxalis triangularis is a fast-growing plant and can quickly become a vine if not properly pruned. It produces delicate purple flowers from late spring to early autumn, which add a splash of color to any indoor space. The leaves of the Oxalis triangularis are also quite large, making it a beautiful addition to any room.

One of the great things about Oxalis triangularis is that it is relatively easy to care for. This plant prefers bright, indirect sunlight but can tolerate lower light conditions. It is important to avoid direct sunlight as it can burn the leaves. Oxalis triangularis thrives in well-draining soil, such as potting soil mixed with peat moss or perlite. It is also important to water this plant regularly, but be careful not to overwater as it can cause root rot.

Beginner’s Guide to Growing Oxalis Triangularis

If you’re a beginner in gardening or just looking for a low-maintenance houseplant, Oxalis Triangularis is a great choice. This beautiful plant, also known as the Purple Shamrock, is native to Brazil and belongs to the wood sorrel family. Its unique triangular-shaped leaves and pink or white flowers make it an intriguing addition to any indoor space.

Oxalis Triangularis is known for its ability to thrive in low light conditions, which makes it a perfect choice for those with smaller windows or less access to direct sunlight. However, it can also tolerate brighter light, as long as it is not exposed to direct sunlight for long periods of time, as this can burn its delicate leaves. Morning sunlight or filtered light through a curtain is ideal.

When it comes to care, Oxalis Triangularis is relatively easy to maintain. Here are some tips to help you successfully grow this beautiful plant:

Care Lightly water your Oxalis Triangularis when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. During its dormancy period (usually in the winter months), reduce watering and allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
Soil Oxalis Triangularis prefers well-draining soil. A mixture of potting soil and sand or perlite works well. Avoid heavy or water-retaining soils, as these can lead to root rot.
Fertilizing Feed your Oxalis Triangularis with a balanced houseplant fertilizer once every 4-6 weeks during the growing season (spring and summer). Avoid over-fertilizing, as this can cause the leaves to become pale and the plant to become leggy.
Pests Oxalis Triangularis is generally not prone to pests, but if you do encounter any, a gentle insecticidal soap or neem oil spray can help control them. Keep an eye out for common houseplant pests like spider mites or aphids.
Propagation You can propagate your Oxalis Triangularis by division. Start by gently lifting the plant from its pot and separating the rhizomes. Each division should have some roots attached. Plant the divisions in fresh soil and water lightly. They should soon start growing again.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to grow Oxalis Triangularis with ease. Its unique appearance and low maintenance nature make it a great addition to any indoor garden or as a gift for someone special.

So, if you’re looking for a new plant to add to your collection or if you’re just starting out with gardening, consider giving Oxalis Triangularis a try. Its vibrant colors and easy care requirements make it a perfect choice for both experienced gardeners and beginners alike!

Oxalis Triangularis Care

If you live a busy lifestyle or often forget to water your plants, Oxalis Triangularis might be the perfect low-maintenance houseplant for you. Also known as the “Purple Shamrock,” these plants have beautiful triangular leaves that fold up at night and open again during the day. While they may look delicate and intriguing, Oxalis Triangularis is actually quite easy to care for.

Oxalis Triangularis prefers bright, indirect light, but can tolerate some shade. Place your plant in a position where it will receive bright but filtered light throughout the day. Avoid placing it in direct sunlight, as it can scorch the leaves.

When it comes to watering, keep in mind that Oxalis Triangularis likes a slightly moist but well-drained soil. Water your plant thoroughly when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Be careful not to overwater, as this can lead to root rot and cause the plant to die. Having a balanced watering schedule is key to keeping your Oxalis Triangularis healthy.

Fertilizing is not necessary for Oxalis Triangularis, as it can grow well without it. However, if you wish to promote more vigorous growth, you can use a balanced houseplant fertilizer once a month during the growing season.

Oxalis Triangularis is generally a disease-resistant plant, but it can sometimes suffer from powdery mildew. If you notice any powdery white signs on the leaves, you can treat it with a fungicidal spray specifically designed for houseplants.

As for pests, Oxalis Triangularis can sometimes attract aphids and spider mites. If you see any of these little pests, you can use insecticidal soap or neem oil to get rid of them.

If you’re a beginner in gardening or just don’t have much time for plant care, Oxalis Triangularis is a great choice. It requires minimal attention and can thrive in average indoor conditions. Plus, it’s an easy plant to propagate, so you can share it with friends or have more plants for yourself!

To get started with Oxalis Triangularis, you can buy the plant from a local garden shop or find it online. Before purchasing, make sure to read up on the care guide for Oxalis Triangularis to know what to expect and how to care for it.

Native to Brazil, Oxalis Triangularis is a unique and beautiful addition to any indoor space. Its purple leaves make it a standout among other plants, and its folding behavior adds a touch of whimsy to your plant collection. Whether you’re a plant enthusiast or looking for a new hobby, Oxalis Triangularis is sure to make a great addition to your home or office.


The Oxalis plant, also known as Oxalis triangularis or the Purple Shamrock, is a popular choice for indoor gardening due to its unique foliage and low maintenance requirements. If you’re considering adding this fascinating plant to your collection, here is a guide on how to care for an Oxalis plant indoors.

Light Conditions Oxalis plants prefer bright, indirect light. Place your Oxalis plant near a north or east-facing window where it can receive moderate sunlight. Avoid placing it in direct sunlight as it can scorch the delicate leaves.
Watering Water your Oxalis plant regularly, keeping the soil evenly moist but not wet. It is recommended to water when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Be careful not to overwater, as this can cause root rot. During the dormant period, which typically occurs in winter, reduce watering and allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
Temperature and Humidity Oxalis plants thrive in average room temperature ranging from 65-75°F (18-24°C). They prefer moderate to high humidity levels, so it’s beneficial to mist the leaves with water during dry periods or place a humidifier nearby.
Fertilizer Feed your Oxalis plant with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing season (spring and summer). Be sure to follow the instructions on the fertilizer packaging, as over-fertilization can harm the plant.
Pests and Diseases Oxalis plants are generally resistant to pests and diseases. However, they can sometimes be affected by common houseplant pests such as thrips or aphids. If you notice any bugs, treat the plant with insecticidal soap or a natural alternative. Additionally, make sure the soil is well-draining to prevent root rot.
Propagation You can propagate your Oxalis plant through division or by growing new plants from corms. To divide the plant, gently separate the smaller bulbs from the main corm and plant them in separate containers. To grow from corms, place them in a pot with well-draining soil, covering them halfway. Keep the soil lightly moist, and new growth should emerge within a few weeks.
Additional Care Tips Here are a few additional care tips to ensure the health and happiness of your Oxalis plant:
  • Avoid placing the plant near drafts or heating vents, as it prefers stable temperatures.
  • Rotate the plant every few weeks to ensure even growth.
  • Prune off any yellow or wilted leaves to maintain a neat appearance.
  • It’s important to note that the Oxalis plant is toxic to pets if ingested, so keep it out of reach of curious animals.

By following this care guide, you can enjoy the beauty of an Oxalis plant in your indoor space. Whether you choose the classic Oxalis triangularis or explore other varieties like Oxalis aureum or Oxalis ceropegia, you can expect a stunning display of foliage and occasional delicate flowers. So, why wait? Bring home an Oxalis plant and experience the joy of caring for these captivating houseplants.

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Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.