These plants are a really great addition to your indoor jungle – they look beautiful, they provide oxygen – and, they’re not too hard to look after! If you are wondering how to care for a philodendron, then wonder no more – we have laid out the best information about this lovely plant, to help it grow in your house.
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How To Care For A Philodendron
Looking after these plants is actually not as daunting as you might think – as long as you have a few specific boxes ticked, they should thrive!
- Water it around once every 10 days. If it is very hot and dry, you might wish to water more often – just take care not to overwater.
- Fertilize it once a month. A balanced fertilizer applied monthly in the summer growth will give your Philly the boost it needs.
- Keep an eye out for pests. These hardy plants aren’t too susceptible to invaders, but you should definitely check for aphids and mealybugs every so often.
- Prune it regularly. This will not only stop your Philodendron getting out of control, but it can also help to stimulate new growth.
- Repot when needed. You shouldn’t have to do this too often, but if you spot your Philodendron getting too big for its pot then it’s time for a new home.
- Keep it out of reach of pets and children. The trailing leaves can be irresistible to critters, both furry and human, so keep it out of reach!
Once you have mastered the above, your Philodendron should reward you by being its best, brightest, bushiest self for years to come.
How Often Should You Water A Philodendron?
Obviously, plants need water for survival, but how much is just the right amount? It varies from plant to plant, and Phildodendron have their own special requirements.
You should be watering your Philodendron once a week in the summer, and allow it to dry out completely between waterings.
In the winter, your Philodendron will slow down its growth and will not need so much water, so just wait until the soil is dry before you water it.
No plant likes to be overwatered; in fact this can cause more problems than underwatering, so if you are unsure then hold off on the water for a few days.
Philodendron are also relatively drought tolerant, so they really won’t mind it if you miss a day or two’s watering!
Does Philodendron Need A Lot Of Sun?
You might think that because these plants come from tropical areas that they require full sun – but this is not the case.
Too much bright, direct sunlight will scorch and burn Philodendron’s leaves, so this is to be avoided at all costs.
Place them instead in an area which receives indirect, or dappled light, for the best results and strongest, healthiest growth.
If you notice more leaves than usual going yellow on your Philodendron, this may be a sign that it is getting too much light, and you should consider moving it.
Should I Mist My Philodendron?
If you were to ask your Philodendron this question, the answer would be a resounding “Yes please!”
They hail from tropical America, so they like a lot of humidity in order to thrive well, and misting is a great way to mimic these conditions.
Although your Philodendron will be quite happy in the humidity of your home as it is, it will likely put on some extra lush growth in return for a little misting.
As a general rule, you should mist your Philodendron twice a week during summer, dropping it down to every 10 days in winter.
A plain spray bottle filled with rainwater, spring water or even tap water will benefit your Philodendron no end.
This is a good, quick video showing all the benefits of misting your plants, and how you can do it:
How Do I Get My Philodendron To Flower?
I’m very sorry to tell you this, but it’s actually really tricky to get a Philodendron to flower in the house!
- First of all, they generally only flower when they reach maturity – that is, when they are at least 15 or 16 years old.
- They are very impressive when they do flower – 12 inches long, elegantly shaped and with a color-contrasting center. And apparently they smell good too!
- They do flower in their natural habitats, and some have been known to do so even in grown conditions.
- Philodendron rely on beetles to do their pollinating, and as gardeners generally don’t have a supply to hand, they use a hand pollinating method.
- These plants will flower from May to July, with each plant producing multiple blooms that each only last a day or two.
If you have a greenhouse or conservatory and you want to have a go at making your Philodendron flower, here are a few tips for you:
- Use the best quality potting soil, which is light and well draining, plus rich in organic nutrients to feed the plant.
- Keep the plant humid. Misting it every couple of days, or even investing in a humidifier, will help this plant immensely.
- Ensure you water frequently, especially in the summer, making sure the plant is neither too wet nor too dry.
- Give your Philodendron some good organic fertilizer once a month in the main growing season, and every couple of months in winter.
- Place it in a spot where it is sheltered from cold drafts, and where it will receive plenty of bright, indirect sunlight.
Here is an fascinating article which tells you everything you need to know about Philodendron flowers.
Now that you are armed with all the knowledge, hopefully you can grow your beautiful plant to its absolute best!
Philodendrons really are a lovely addition to any houseplant display, and as you can see they won’t take too much time or effort to care for either.
Philodendrons Key Facts
|Light Requirements||Bright but dappled, indirect light|
|Soil Requirements||Light, well draining soil. Slightly acidic|
|Temperature Requirements||Day: 75-85 F. Night: 65-70 F|
|Water Requirements||Water once a week and allow to dry out completely between waterings|
|Fertilizer Requirements||Balanced fertiliser, 20-20-20 ratio once a month in spring and summer, every 2 months in winter|
|Bloom Time||May to July, in mature plants only|
|Pests||Aphids, mealybugs, scales, spider mites|