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With lovely parents, there’s no question where the Splendid gets its looks, a blend of the P. verrucosum’s veins and the P. melanochrysum’s bronze powdered leaves.
In caring for any Philodendron Splendid, focus on light requirements, hydration management, temperatures, humidity, and soil quality.
Get these variables right and have a happy plant for several decades. Hybrids like the Philodendron Splendid share their parent’s similar needs.
- Philodendron Basic Care
- Caring for Philodendron Verrucosum
- Caring for Philodendron Melanochrysum
- Caring for Philodendron Splendid
- Potential Problems with Philodendron Splendid
- Splendid FAQs
- In Closing
- My Book Composting Masterclass Is Available Now!
Philodendron Basic Care
Our success at growing any plant indoors depends on:
- How accurately can we replicate its natural habitat
- How able are we at defending it against local treats (pests and diseases)
The essential elements vary according to the plant species and their evolutionary adaptation to the specific conditions of their natural habitat. While we can acclimatize plants through hardening off, we cannot change their physical requirements. Below are guidelines for Philodendrons in general.
|Light:||Bright indirect light or semi-shadow|
|Watering:||Avoid scheduled watering, but rather be informed by the dryness of the soil – see the guide below|
|Soil:||Use a humus rich, well-draining soil – see the detailed guide below|
|Temperature:||Night: 54 to 68 °F (12 to 20 °C)|
Day: 68 to 85 °F (20 to 30 °C)
|Humidity:||Philodendron thrives in high humidity but requires adequate air circulation to avoid spreading diseases.|
|Propagation:||Propagate by cuttings or division, ideally when temperatures are between 70 to 75 °F (~21 to 24 °C). Full details below|
|Pruning:||Only prune to limit growth or to propagate cuttings.|
|Fertilizer:||Use organic, slow-release fertilizer in spring.|
|Repotting:||Repotting is generally required every two years. Best done in spring, summer, or early fall. Let root density inform repotting schedules.|
|Pests:||Common pests include mealybugs, scale, and aphids. Sprinkle them off with a bit of water.|
|Toxicity:||All Philodendrons are poisonous if ingested, and the sap can irritate the skin. To keep your pets or children safe, place the plant on a high shelf out of their reach.|
Caring for Philodendron Verrucosum
The parent of Splendid, the Philodendron verrucosum, is a large, woody climber that grows to a maximum height of three feet.
It features deep green leaves with pronounced veins and a strong, hairy stalk. The leaves are roughly 10 inches long and 5 inches wide.
This type of Philodendron is drought-tolerant and can go over extended periods without water.
It makes it the perfect plant for those who frequently forget to water their plants or live in arid locations.
This Philodendron is a fantastic option if you’re searching for a low-maintenance plant that can survive difficult circumstances.
Overwatering this plant does not work well.
The roots will begin to decay if the soil is consistently moist, and the soil should entirely dry out between waterings.
Second, it dislikes chlorine or fluoride, which can cause the leaves to turn brown.
A soil mixture retaining moisture and allowing water to drain away swiftly is ideal for Philodendron melanochrysums.
Activated charcoal, perlite, coco coir, orchid bark, and worm castings are typically present in these mixtures in a good balance.
When exposed to plenty of moderate to bright, indirect light, the melanochrysum will flourish. You can boost growth by increasing light exposure (but not direct light).
The philodendron melanochrysum can withstand temperature variances better than a drop in humidity. This plant will thrive if kept between 60 and 77 °F (16 and 25 °C).
Just don’t let the temperature at night fall below 53 °F. (12 °C), as low temperatures will cause extended stunting.
Caring for Philodendron Splendid
Now that we have looked at the parent’s needs, we know what our Splendid needs. Let’s break it down.
According to the University of Illinois, Philodendrons are low-light plants, meaning you can keep them at the North-facing window (in the Northern hemisphere).
In the Northern hemisphere, medium bright light (250 – 1000 foot-candle) indoors will be provided by the sun entering an east or west-facing window.
The sun entering south-facing or west-facing windows will provide high light (500 – 1000 FC) indoors.
Most plants require a period of darkness to develop correctly, so illuminate them for no more than 16 hours each day, especially if artificial light is combined with natural light.
Plants generally need light above 750 foot-candles for optimum development. You can provide that by giving them artificial light that is 15 watts or more per square foot of growing space.
For plants that require low to medium light levels, a fixture with two fluorescent tubes is enough.
Overwatering is the main reason why potted plants die. When surrounded by water, roots can’t breathe – as crucial to roots as to humans.
The general rule is to only water when necessary. To decide when to water, one may utilize the following techniques:
- Tap the Pot: When potting mix in a clay pot starts to dry up, it shrinks away from the pot’s sides. Use a stick or your knuckles to tap the pot’s side. If the sound is hollow, add water; if the sound is dull, the soil is damp and thus still pressing against the pot.
- Touch-Test: The most accurate test for soil moisture is to feel how dry the potting soil feels. If the mixture is dry at your fingertip after inserting your finger up to the second digit, it needs water.
- Estimate weight: It’s easy to see a weight reduction as potting mixtures dry up.
- Assess soil color: As potting combinations dry, their color will shift from dark to lighter.
Deep watering removes accumulated salts and ensures that most of the roots in the bottom two-thirds of the pot get enough water. Empty the tray, and don’t let the pot sit in the accumulated water.
You need to use a pot with plenty of drainage holes on the bottom corners for the best results. The tray often blocks drainage holes only on the bottom – unless you space them off the tray.
The Role of Water in Plant Care
Water serves many critical functions in all living organisms. In plants, water plays a pivotal role in photosynthesis and serves as a transport vehicle for mineral salts (ions) and carbohydrates. Water also performs other functions in your plant’s life:
- Water as a Constituent – 80–90% of the fresh weight of herbaceous plants is made up of water.
- Water as a Solvent – most compounds readily dissolve in water and serve as a medium where biological reactants dissolve in cells for chemical reactions.
- Water as a Reactant – for biochemical reactions such as photosynthesis. Water is also a reactant in the hydrolysis of plant food reserves like starch.
- Water as Essential Transport – circulation carries the minerals from the soil across the root, up the stem, and throughout the plant.
- Water as a Component of Growth – Small cavities (vacuoles) form during cell division, absorbing water that transports mineral deposits. As the water diffuses into the tiny vacuoles, it creates pressure inside the cell, causing them to expand and increase.
- Water and Turgidity – water pressure against mature cells’ interior helps keep their form. If the pressure is lost (for example, due to excessive evaporation, mortality, or exposure to salt solutions), the cells may lose their Turgidity and become flaccid.
- Water and the Plant’s Thermal Stability – plants may absorb a large quantity of heat (such as from sunshine) without radical temperature increases. The high water content in a plant helps stabilize temperature fluctuations.
Splendid Philodendron needs soil that drains well yet can retain moisture.
Our ideal soil will provide our plant with adequate aeration (avoiding anaerobic conditions), maintain the proper pH, and ensure the soil has sufficient cation exchange capacity (CEC).
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A good potting mix for your Splendid Philodendron should include the following ingredients in the given proportions:
- One part compost (25%)
- Two parts coconut coir (50%)
- Half a part of pumice (or perlite) (12.5%)
- Half an amount of expanded shale, or LECA (lightweight expanded clay aggregate) (12.5%)
Adding compost to potting soil has several benefits; an essential one is the soil’s increased ability to keep nutrients available for plant access.
Cation exchange capacity (CEC) can be seen as magnetizing the soil to keep water and some cation-charged nutrients in the soil.
Soils with low CEC (like sand) cannot retain moisture and nutrients; they flow through the soil.
While sphagnum peat moss is often given as the default potting mix, I’ve found that coconut coir is a better option. One of the main reasons I prefer coconut coir is its ready inclination to accept watering.
Coconut coir has outstanding water retention and drainage abilities, with most forms of coir holding up to nine times their weight in water.
This natural air-to-water ratio helps nourish plant root systems without oversaturating them or putting them at risk of root rot.
Unlike perlite, pumice manages water well while boosting aeration.
Expanded shale, like pumice, does not break down like organic materials, so the soil stays aerated for years. It helps make potting soils airy, light, and water-retentive.
Potting Soil Basics
You have several options to replicate your spider plant’s natural soil environment. While the spider plant is native to forested moist river valleys, the succulent roots enable the plant to cope during extended dry spells.
Even though this article focuses on watering the Philodendron Splendid, you can use the guidelines for any houseplant.
We’ll be reviewing the technical aspects of potting soil’s water and air management capacities, different substrates, and everything that contributes to growing healthy indoor plants.
In growing any plant indoors, six factors relating to potting soils need consideration:
- Moisture management – a balance between drainage and moisture retention
- Air Management – avoidance of anaerobic conditions
- Nutrient management – an ability to store and release essential plant nutrients
- The role of microorganisms in plant resilience and needs
- Plant requirements for acidic or alkaline soil (pH requirements)
- Plant anchorage – ensuring the media isn’t so light that the plant cannot remain reasonably erect in winds
The M. Splendid is a tropical plant and prefers warmer temperatures. Indoor plants should be exposed to minimum temperatures of between 54 to 68⁰ F (12 to 20⁰ C) and daytime temperatures between 68 to 85 ⁰F (20 to 30 ⁰C).
The essential part of managing humidity for your Monstera Splendid is keeping it constant. Fluctuating humidity levels will cause your plant to lose leaves. Aim to maintain a humidity level of above 65%.
An ideal indoor humidity level for humans is between 30% and 50%. A 50% humidity level means that the air holds half the total amount of moisture it can contain.
To achieve a 60% relative humidity level, you will need to implement one of the following three solutions:
- Cluster plants together so that their combined transpiration boost RH
- Place the pot in a tray of LECA that is kept damp. The evaporation will boost RH
- Acquire a humidifier, opting for one that provides a reasonable cycle between needing a refill.
Feeding your Philodendron Splendid
The Importance of Seasonal Adjustments
There needs to be an adjustment to watering and fertilizing in winter when the plant is not growing. During dormancy, the plant is resting, an essential function of its well-being. Don’t fertilize plants from mid-October up to early spring.
Philodendron Splendid Fertilizer Needs
Philodendron Splendid doesn’t require much food, so I like to nourish my indoor plants with organic matter like blood meal, bone meal, kelp, and guano.
Nitrogen, phosphate, potash, and magnesium make up a healthy mixture. For the first year, apply a quarter-diluted solution every two months. As the vine grows, gradually increase the amount of fertilizer to a half-dilution every four to six months.
Fertilize the plant in the early spring and October when it has become established. When the plant needs to hibernate and is not actively growing, do not fertilize during the winter.
Potential Problems with Philodendron Splendid
Philodendrons are calm, adaptable plants that grow well inside and are very simple to reproduce.
When the prerequisites for water, sun, and soil are not satisfied, they are vulnerable to some health problems. Here are some warning signals to watch out for and how to respond.
The rapid yellowing of your plant’s leaves may indicate root rot. The plant might be saved if you act swiftly to stop it.
Dig up the root to check its health or smell the soil for a decaying stench.
The white or yellow portions of the roots should typically be replanted in a clean container with new soil once you’ve removed the black, mushy pieces of the rotting roots.
Yellow Splotches or Patterning on Leaves
The mosaic virus may be present if you see little yellow lesions or patterns on your plant’s leaves. By assisting the plant’s defense mechanisms, you might be able to eradicate the virus:
Bring the plant outside for diffused natural light if it’s still warm. Keep other plants at least two feet away from the affected plant.
Eliminate the severely damaged leaves. The remaining leaves should be hosed down to remove dust on their surface.
To assist the plant in recovering and becoming more robust, add a fertilizer rich in nitrogen to the soil.
Browning or Yellow Leaves
There are eight reasons you Philodendron Splendid can start developing yellow or brown leaves (both of which are a poor color match for pink)
Ineffective Potting Soil
Undoubtedly, this is one of the most common causes. If we have a very compact substrate that retains a lot of moisture, the roots of our plants will rot, which will cause their leaves to turn yellow or brown.
If we do not measure the amounts of fertilizer given, there is a reasonable probability we’ll burn the plant’s roots. Rot burn will affect your plant within days, causing the leaves to turn yellow or fall off.
Sometimes we think that the more direct sun, the better they will grow, but our Philodendron Pink Princess does not like direct sunlight.
As a hybrid of a tropical plant, it prefers medium light – too much light will burn the leaves.
Depending on the pest, it can affect the roots or the leaves. With roots, we can only see the damage when we repot.
If your leaves have chlorosis, check your roots to see if all the other environmental conditions haven’t recently changed.
Chlorinated is also one of the most common causes. If we over-irrigate or use water with a lot of chlorine (direct from the tap without resting), we will end up damaging the roots in the same way as if we have poor potting soil.
Too Much or Too Little Water
In this case, we can observe it at the tips of the leaves. It is likely due to a lack of humidity if they are brittle and brown.
It is likely due to excess moisture if they are brown or yellow and softer. It can cause fungus, so we must be cautious.
Not many people consider this point, but losing several leaves when buying a plant is not uncommon. There is no need to worry as the plant needs some time to adapt.
The vast majority of the time, when we have a plant with yellow leaves, it is due to this. We must remember that as the plant grows, the leaves below contribute less to it and receive less light than the rest of the leaves since they cover them.
The Philodendron Splendid is a rare and beautiful plant. Caring for it is relatively easy, as long as you don’t overwater it, monitor humidity levels, and don’t constantly move it.
Allow the Splendid to adapt to its environment before you decide to move it again – about three weeks.
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