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How to Grow Cup Plant Indoors

Updated: February 17, 2023

Cup plant, scientifically known as Silphium perfoliatum, is a native North American plant that produces bright yellow flowers in the summer. The plant has a unique feature where the stem clasps the leaves, forming a cup-like structure that can hold water. Cup plants have a high tolerance for wet soil, making them an excellent choice for gardeners who struggle with waterlogged soil. In this article, we’ll discuss how to grow cup plants indoors.

Choosing the Right Pot

When growing cup plants indoors, it’s essential to choose the right pot. The container should be at least 12 inches deep and wide enough to accommodate the plant’s root system. Cup plants require moist soil, so choose a pot with good drainage holes to avoid waterlogging.

Soil Requirements

Cup plants grow well in fertile, well-draining soil. A mixture of peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite in equal parts is an excellent choice for growing cup plants indoors. You can also add compost to increase the soil’s organic matter content.

Light Requirements

Cup plants require full sun to grow and bloom correctly. Place your cup plant in a south-facing window where it can receive at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. If you don’t have access to enough natural light, you can supplement with artificial light using grow lights.


Cup plants need consistent moisture to thrive. Water your plant regularly, ensuring that the soil remains consistently moist but not waterlogged. The plant may require more frequent watering during hot weather or if grown in a dry environment.


Cup plants do not require frequent fertilization. However, you can apply a balanced fertilizer every four weeks during the growing season (spring and summer) to encourage healthy growth and blooming.


Cup plants propagate easily from seed or division. You can collect the seeds from mature flower heads and sow them in a pot filled with well-draining soil. Alternatively, you can divide mature plants in the spring by separating the root system and planting each section in a new pot.

Pests and Diseases

Cup plants are relatively disease-resistant and pest-free. However, they may occasionally suffer from aphid or spider mite infestations. You can control these pests by spraying the plant with a solution of water and dish soap or using insecticidal soap.


1. How tall do cup plants grow indoors?

Cup plants can grow up to six feet tall indoors, depending on the growing conditions.

2. Can cup plants grow in low light conditions?

Cup plants require full sun to grow correctly; however, they can tolerate some shade.

3. How often should I fertilize my cup plant?

You should fertilize your cup plant every four weeks during the growing season (spring and summer).

4. Can I grow cup plants in a small pot?

No, cup plants require pots that are at least 12 inches deep to accommodate their root system.

5. How do I propagate my cup plant?

You can propagate your cup plant by collecting seeds from mature flower heads or dividing mature plants in the spring.

In conclusion, growing cup plants indoors is an excellent way to enjoy their beautiful yellow flowers all year round. By following the tips outlined above, you can successfully grow this unique plant in your home.