How to Grow and Care for Philodendron Florida Green

overhead view of small florida green philodendron potted plant with dark green deeply lobed leaves and short stems outdoors on white table

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Philodendron Florida Green (Philodendron squamiferum x pedatum) is a lush, vining tropical plant with an intriguing backstory—and some rare relatives. It's a cross between two species, Philodendron squamiferum and Philodendron pedatum, and this somewhat rare hybrid plant has the deeply lobed leaves of the former and the reddish petioles, or leaf stems, of the latter.

It's thought that philodendron Florida Green was developed by botanist Robert McColley in Florida in the 1950s. McColley also developed two other hybrids from these species: philodendron Florida Beauty is variegated with pale and dark green, and ultra-rare philodendron Florida Ghost, whose leaves are very light green when they unfurl but grow darker over time.

Common Name: Philodendron Florida, philodendron Florida Green
Botanical Name:  Philodendron squamiferum x pedatum
Family:  Araceae
Plant Type:  Perennial
Mature Size: 5-8 ft. tall
Sun Exposure:  Part shade
Soil Type:  Loamy, quick-draining soil
Soil pH:  Acidic
Native Area:  Central and South America
Toxicity:  Toxic to people and pets

Philodendron Florida Green Care

Despite the fact that it's a somewhat rare plant, philodendron Florida Green is pretty easy to grow, as long as you provide it with the right conditions and care. Lots of bright, indirect light and humidity will help it grow more quickly. Use a sphagnum moss pole or trellis to support the vine as it grows taller.

Light

Give your philodendron Florida Green lots of bright, indirect light. An east-facing window is ideal, but avoid harsh, direct sunlight, which can burn the leaves and harm the plant. Use a sheer curtain to filter stronger light from south-facing or west-facing windows.

Soil

Plant your philodendron Florida Green in a rich, loose potting mix that drains quickly but retains moisture, such as two-thirds peat moss and one-third perlite with a few handfuls of orchid bark for aeration.

Water

Keep the soil of your philodendron Florida Green moist but not soggy. Water deeply when the top inch or so of soil begins to dry out, then allow it to drain well. Check drip trays and cache pots to ensure the plant never sits in water.

Temperature and Humidity

Temperatures between 65 and 85 degrees and humidity above 60% are ideal. Group it together with other humidity-loving plants to help create a humid microclimate, or run a humidifier to add moisture to the air around your plants. This climbing vine will grow faster with the proper humidity, so it's a good idea to have a plan for adding support such as a trellis or moss pole, even if the plant is small when you bring it home.

Fertilizer

 Feed your philodendron Florida Green with a balanced liquid houseplant fertilizer diluted to half strength once per month during the spring and summer growing season. Stop fertilizing in fall, then start back up again in late winter the following year.

Pruning

Cut away dead or damaged foliage as needed to keep your plant looking healthy and promote new growth. If you're not able to accommodate a long, climbing philodendron Florida Green in your space, you can prune back the foliage to keep it a manageable size. It's best to do this during the growing season. Save cuttings to propagate into new plants.

Propagating Philodendron Florida Green

Since philodendron Florida Green can be rare—and sometimes expensive—it's a great idea to propagate your plant and grow new ones, as long as the mother plant is mature and healthy. You can propagate your plant by rooting stem cuttings in water or in soil. Here's how to propagate philodendron Florida Green.

To propagate in water:

  1. Gather your mature plant, a clear glass or jar, and clean, sharp knife or sterilized pruners.
  2. Identify a healthy stem on the mother plant. Make a cut just below a leaf node so that the cutting is at least six inches long. Remove all but the top two leaves from the cutting.
  3. Place the cutting in the jar and add water so that the leaf nodes are submerged. Put the jar in a warm place with bright, indirect light. Add water as needed, and change the water if it begins to look cloudy.
  4. After a few weeks, you should begin to see little white roots growing from the nodes. When the roots are about an inch long, you can plant the cutting in a pot and care for it as usual.

To propagate in soil:

  1. You'll need a mature philodendron Florida Green, a small plant pot with drainage holes, potting mix, sterilized pruners, a clear plastic bag, and optional rooting hormone powder.
  2. Choose a stem on the mother plant and cut a six-inch stem, cutting just below a leaf node. Cut away the lower leaves.
  3. Fill your pot with soil and water well to moisten it. Use your finger to poke a hole into the soil a few inches deep.
  4. Dip the cut end of the cutting in the rooting hormone powder, if using. Plant the cutting in the pot, ensuring that the nodes on the stem are beneath the soil line.
  5. Place the cutting in a warm place with lots of bright, indirect light. Tent the plastic bag over the cutting, making sure the bag isn't coming into contact with the leaves. This will help hold in moisture and create a humid microclimate.
  6. Keep the soil evenly moist. After anywhere from one to two months, you should see new leaf growth, which indicates that the cutting has rooted. You can also give a gentle tug on the stem; if the plant stays in place, roots have formed and you can care for the plant as usual.

Potting and Repotting Philodendron Florida Green

You'll want to repot your plant every two to three years to replenish depleted soil, but otherwise, philodendron Florida Green doesn't need to be repotted unless it's rootbound. Check to see if roots are growing out of the bottom drainage hole of the planter. Another sign that your plant is root bound is that water runs off of the soil rather than being absorbed. Plan to repot in the spring for best results.

Common Pests & Plant Diseases 

Several common houseplant pests can affect philodendron Florida Green. Keep an eye out for signs of insects like mealybugs, scale, spider mites, and white fly. Control pests using insecticidal soap or neem oil.

Common Problems With Philodendron Florida Green

While philodendron Florida Green is pretty easy to grow with the proper conditions and basic care, you may come across some issues. Here are a few signs to watch for and ways to address them.

Leaves Turning Yellow

Too little light and too much light can both contribute to yellowing leaves in philodendron Florida Green. If the yellowing happens very quickly, root rot could be the cause. Check for this by smelling the soil and digging gently to see if the roots are black or mushy.

Drooping Leaves

Both underwatering and overwatering can cause leaves to droop. Check the soil moisture and adjust your watering schedule accordingly.

Browning Tips

Browning leaf tips can be a sign that your plant's environment is too dry, especially if the brown areas are ringed with yellow. Move the plant away from any air vents and group it together with other humidity-loving plants, or run a humidifier in the area to add moisture to the air. Another cause of browning edges can be watering with very cold water—it's best to use tepid or room-temperature water with houseplants.

FAQ
  • What’s the difference between philodendron Florida Green and Philodendron pedatum?

    Philodendron Florida Green is a hybrid of two philodendron species, P. pedatum and P. squamiferum. The result of this crossbreeding between two different species is a hybrid with a leaf shape similar to P. pedatum and the rough, red petioles of P. squamiferum.

  • Where should I put philodendron Florida Green?

    Put philodendron Florida Green in a warm, humid place with lots of bright, indirect light.

  • Can philodendron Florida Green grow indoors?

    Yes, philodendron Florida Green makes an excellent houseplant as long as it gets enough light and proper trellising.

Article Sources
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  1. Dieffenbachia and Philodendron, Poison Control

  2. Split Leaf Philodendron, ASPCA