You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!
Philodendron Hope Selloum could be called “Frill-odendron Hope” due to its frilly ruffle-shaped leaves! The scientific name of Philo Hope is “Philodendron bipinnatifidum,” and it belongs to the Aracae family. This beginner-level house plant is native to the tropical regions of South America. While it may start out small and fit in a sunny corner, it can grow to be up to five feet tall – and wide! The leaves alone can grow to be up to three feet in size. While this plant has been known to flower, even when planted outdoors in its natural habitat, flowers will not bloom until the plant is between 15 and 20 years old. But, Philo Hope definitely makes up for its lack of flowers with stunning foliage.
To keep the foliage of this philodendron in their dark, shiny state, wait until the top two inches of soil are dry to the touch before watering. The leaves of this philodendron, also known as the Tree Philodendron, can be trained to grow upward instead of outward by using stakes. Fun Fact – these leaves, when cut as one might cut a flower to bring it inside, can survive for months at a time in a vase filled with water!
The roots, on the other hand, do not want to sit in water. To avoid problems with over-watering, select a pot that drains well. If your pot has no drainage, put a layer of rocks into the bottom of the pot to keep the roots from sitting in water. It’s also a good idea to invest (usually less than $20) in a Moisture Meter. This tool can be used in any soil – indoor, outdoor, raised beds, pots, and even directly in the ground. A Moisture Meter really is the most accurate way to determine the moisture level of soil in any location, and at any depth. For your Philo Hope, use a soil that is rich and will retain moisture (but never let your soil stay soggy!).
Philo Hope is said to help clean the air in your home, but keep your furry friends away from the plant if they are chewers. Philo Hope is not dangerous unless pets ingest it, but better to be safe than sorry for our four legged friends. If Philo Hope is right for your home, put it in a spot that gets plenty of sun that is dappled or indirect, and is not near heat or air conditioning vents. Philo Hope likes temperatures similar to those we humans prefer – between 65 and 75 degrees is ideal. If you want to go a little farther, keep your Philo Hope near a humidifier. As with other houseplants, be sure to dust the leaves from time to time using a damp cloth. Keeping the leaves clean will help keep pests like spider mites away and will also help the plant to absorb more sun.