The Philodendron’ Lemon Lime’ is an underrated indoor plant. Not only is it one of the easiest plants to propagate and care for, but it is also affordable and readily available. A plant doesn’t have to be rare and expensive to be beautiful!
I recently added one to my collection, and the bright foliage has brought a unique element to my plant collection.
All About ‘Lemon Lime’ Heartleaf Philodendron
The Philodendron ‘Lemon Lime’, scientifically called Philodendron Hederaceum ‘Lemon Lime’, gets its name from its appearance.
During the growing season, the leaves emerge a pinky-gold color and mature into gorgeous golden lime to emerald green heart-shaped leaves. Its native habitat is Southern Brazil, and it is available for purchase all over the world.
It can be grown indoors or outdoors. The leaves can range in size from small to quite large and become more pointed when they mature.
The ‘Lemon Lime’ produces long vines that can either trail in a hanging basket or grow upwards on a trellis, moss pole, or even directly on your wall if you let it!
However, the ‘Lemon Lime’ is not to be confused with the Neon Pothos. Although they look like the same plant at first glance, the main difference is the shape of their leaves. The ‘Lemon Lime’ has thin, more heart-shaped leaves, while the Neon Pothos has larger, thick leaves.
How to Care for Philodendron Lemon Lime
|Light||Bright, indirect light|
|Watering||When the top 3cm of soil is dry|
|Soil mix||Chunky Aroid mix|
|Pot||Plastic with drainage holes or hanging basket|
|Humidity||40 – 60%|
|Temperature||18 – 26 °C|
|Repotting||Every 2-3 years|
|Pests||Can be susceptible to mealybugs and aphids if the plant is unhealthy.|
|Fertilization||Once every four to six weeks (spring/summer) or yearly with a slow-release fertilizer|
Lighting & Placement
In their natural habitat, these plants grow beneath the forest canopy along the base of the trees. Therefore, they prefer bright indirect light and can be scorched by too much direct sunlight.
They can withstand lower light conditions but will grow much faster if given more light.
The light also affects the color of the plant. If you give Philodendron Lemon Lime enough bright light, the leaves will be more lemon/ neon. If it’s in low light, the color will be pale & more green.
We recommend finding a sun-facing window with bright but filtered light for this plant.
The ‘Lemon Lime’ can easily grow over 2 meters long, so consider this when choosing a spot for it in your home. Regular pruning might be necessary if you do not have a lot of space for it.
As with most Philodendrons, this plant needs less water than you think. I recommend only watering when the top 3cm of soil is dry.
Overwatering these plants can result in root rot, so the ‘less is more’ approach is better. Water your plant thoroughly. Make sure the water drains through the pot and remove any excess water from the drip tray or decorative pot the plant is in.
Soil & Potting
I planted my Philodendron ‘Lemon Lime’ in a chunky Aroid mix. Still, they can grow in pretty much any soil as long as it does not retain too much moisture and isn’t heavily clay based.
My chunky Aroid potting mix recipe is:
- 2 parts perlite
- 1.5 parts pumice/volcanic rock/Leca balls
- 1.5 parts small bark/coco chips
- 1 part coco coir
You have much more freedom with these plants when it comes to pots. I have one in a hanging basket, one in a normal plastic pot with drainage holes, and one in a balcony planter. The best result has been with the hanging planter with a drip tray attached to it. This plant can either trail or grow upwards, so your options are endless!
If your plant is in a hanging basket, the leaves become a bit smaller, and the internodal spacing might get larger.
Temperature & Humidity
The ‘Lemon Lime’ will grow extremely well in tropical environments but can adapt to a range of temperatures.
They are most comfortable at 15-27 ℃ but can withstand a bit lower or higher. I have never needed to use a heater in the room where my ‘Lemon Lime’ is growing, but its growth does slow down rapidly in winter.
They can also tolerate low to moderate humidity levels of around 40-60%, so I have never needed to add a humidifier near my plant. Avoid placing it near any drafty areas as the air can get too dry for them.
Philodendron’ Lemon Lime’ is not a heavy feeder. Still, it can benefit from fertilizer every four to six weeks during the growing season. I recommend a well-balanced liquid fertilizer with a ratio of NPK 20-20-20 for feeding leafy plants.
Over-fertilizing can result in the roots being burned, so make sure you follow the instructions on your chosen product.
An alternative option is using a slow-release fertilizer in your soil mix when repotting. You’ll need to re-apply slow-release fertilizer every 3 to 6 months.
Growth rate & Repotting
Despite being moderate to fast growers, these plants don’t need to be repotted often. They can grow up to 3m long and put out multiple shoots from one plant.
The growth rate will depend on the conditions in which you grow your plant, but even a neglected plant grows moderately quickly.
If your plant begins to outgrow its pot, or you notice that growth is slowing down even during the growing season, it may be time to repot it.
I generally recommend repotting every 2-3 years. When repotting, always use fresh soil and a pot with drainage holes that is only 3cm larger than its current pot. This will prevent root rot and repotting shock.
The best way to propagate a ‘Lemon Lime’ Philodendron is through stem cuttings. They grow roots extremely quickly in water. We recommend taking a few cuttings at a time, as this will result in a full plant when you transfer it to the soil.
Here’s a quick propagation guide:
- Take a sterile blade and cut the stem just below the node. You can make multiple cuttings, and the stem doesn’t necessarily need a leaf on it to propagate.
- Leave the cuttings on a windowsill overnight to let the ‘wound’ callous over.
- Place the cuttings in either water or soil and make sure they receive adequate light throughout the day.
- If you propagate in water, change the water every 2-3 weeks.
- If you propagate in soil, make sure the soil stays fairly moist.
- Once you have a few roots, you can transplant them into your pot of choice.
If you find that the vines on your trailing plant are getting a bit long but don’t want to chop and prop them, you can twist them up and pin them back into the soil of the original pot. They will quickly root into the soil and start growing.
Luckily, this is a very hardy plant and can survive some neglect. However, every plant can come with problems which we will take a look at:
If your Philodendron ‘Lemon Lime’ has browning leaves, this might be a sign of underwatering.
Check the soil and see if it needs a good drink. If not, this could also be the plant’s natural process of getting rid of old leaves and is nothing to worry about.
Even though this plant naturally has yellowish leaves, if you notice one area of the leaves is more yellow than usual, this could be a sign of too much light or over-watering.
Check the soil to see if it is retaining too much moisture. If not, try moving it up to a meter further from your light source.
Long internodal spacing
It is common if your plant is trailing and you notice long internodal spacing. If you want your plant to have more compact leaves, you can trim the long vines to encourage new leaf growth or move it to a more well-lit area.
This may also be a sign of nutrient deficiency, so your plant might be due for fertilization!
The pest I struggle the most with when it comes to my Philodendron’ Lemon Lime’ is the mealybug. They are identified as fuzzy white bugs. These pests are so good at hiding in the crevices of plants.
Check your plant thoroughly when watering for early detection and treat with neem oil to suffocate them. You can then remove them with a cotton pad dipped in rubbing alcohol to make sure they are dead!
Powdery mildew has a chalk-like consistency and starts at the base of your plant, covering the leaves and turning them brown. It can spread quickly, so take action as soon as you notice it!
To treat, disinfect your pruning tool with rubbing alcohol. Remove all of the affected leaves and spray the plant with Stylet-Oil. You then need to throw the infected leaves into the trash.
Common & Related Questions:
Is the Philodendron’ Lemon Lime’ pet safe?
As with the rest of the Philodendron family, ‘Lemon Lime’ is not pet safe. Keep it away from your pets; a vet visit might be necessary if ingested.
What are the different types of Lemon Lime Philodendrons?
There is another plant called the Philodendron’ Lemon Lime’, but it has long, big leaves and does not vine. The correct name for this plant is Philodendron Golden Goddess or Philodendron’ Malay Gold’.