How To Care For Your Philodendron Splendid
My husband was so happy when we received our Philodendron Splendid in the mail – it has been on our wishlist for ages!
Did you know that a Philodendron Splendid is a cross between two notoriously fussy plants? Not only does it have the most beautiful, velvety leaves, but we have heard that it is super easy to take care of.
This guide will teach you how to grow a beautiful, luscious, rewarding Splendid and avoid common problems.
The Philodendron Splendid is a hybrid plant crossed between a Philodendron Melanochrysum and a Philodendron Verrucosum. Hybrid plants are generally very easy to care for as they take the best traits of their parent plants.
While a Melanochrysum needs high and consistent humidity to thrive, a Philodendron Splendid can thrive in much lower humidity conditions.
If you forget to water a Verrucosum consistently, it can cause its leaves to shrivel up and die off. But luckily, the Splendid won’t mind if you miss a watering day or two.
This makes it perfect for a forgetful plant parent.
The new leaves on a Splendid come out bright green with a stunning red color on the underside of the leaf. This coloring shines through to the front of the leaf in between lime green veining. The Splendid takes these traits from its parent plant, the Philodendron Verrucosum.
As the new leaf hardens off, it starts to look more like its other parent, the Philodendron Melanochrysum. The leaves turn dark green while still retaining the striking green veining. The leaves are an elongated heart shape with a velvety texture, just like the Melanochrysum.
Care Summary Table
|Light||Bright, indirect light|
|Watering||Once the soil is completely dry|
|Soil mix||Chunky aroid mix|
|Pot||Plastic with drainage holes|
|Temperature||19 – 27 °C degrees Celsius|
|Pests||It can be susceptible to spider mites if plant is unhealthy.|
|Propagation||Cuttings made above and below each node.|
|Fertilization||Once a month during watering or yearly with a slow-release fertilizer|
Lighting & Placement
The Splendid naturally climbs upwards toward the sun, so it loves bright indirect light! Make sure to keep it close to your sun-facing window. Be careful, though; direct sunlight can be very harmful.
Inspect your plant’s placement when the sun is at its highest point, and make sure it’s not getting any direct sunlight.
- Direct light: The leaves will burn and can become black and crispy.
- Too little light: The plant will start to make large internodal spacings, and the new leaves will be very small.
Your biggest worry when it comes to Philodendrons, in general, is over-watering! Depending on your plant’s environment and soil, you don’t want to water it more than once a week.
In winter, you can water your Splendid even less frequently.
I recommend planting your Splendid in a chunky aroid mix that retains moisture but doesn’t stay waterlogged.
Having your Splendid grow on a moss pole helps alert you when your plant needs watering. Give the moss pole a squeeze, and if it sounds crunchy, then it’s time to water!
You should water your moss pole generously, allowing excess water to drain into the soil and out of the pot.
Soil & Potting
I recommend planting all your Philodendrons in a chunky mix. The soil mix should be made mostly of perlite, bark, pumice, or volcanic rock and coco chips with a dash of coco coir and vermiculite.
Climbing plants need a sturdy base when they are attached to moss poles. I recommend planting your Splendid in a clear plastic pot (clear pots allow you to keep an eye on your plant’s roots) with drainage holes. Then place the clear pot into a heavy ceramic pot with no drainage holes to catch the excess water when watering.
Just remember to empty that excess water to prevent any root rot!
My favorite soil recipe for my Philodendrons is:
- 25% Pumice/Volcanic rock/Leca
- 25% Small bark chips
- 25% Coco chips
- 25% Perlite
You can also add a dash of coco coir/vermiculite to help with water retention and nutrient supply for younger plants!
Temperature & Humidity
The Philodendron Splendid is a hardy plant and will survive most conditions.
70% humidity and 23°C are the optimal conditions to help your Splendid to grow quickly, big, and beautifully.
The Splendid can tolerate 40% humidity and 18°C, but I wouldn’t recommend going any lower. If your conditions drop below those numbers, I recommend investing in a humidifier or heater.
The Philodendron Splendid likes to be fertilized.
I recommend adding a slow-release fertilizer into your soil mix, especially if you often forget to fertilize!
On top of that, you can add liquid fertilizer to your water every 4 to 6 weeks. The chemicals in liquid fertilizers are usually quite strong so do not over-fertilize, as you may burn your plant’s roots.
Growth Rate & Repotting Needs
The Philodendron Splendid is not an exceptionally fast grower but is not slow, either. Depending on growing conditions, you can expect a new leaf every month.
You should be prepared to repot your plant every year. However, since the Splendid is a climber, it will grow a sustainable root system into its moss pole, so repotting is less important compared to other Philodendrons.
While the Philodendron Splendid is quite a resilient plant, a few common problems can still damage or even kill your plant.
The biggest problem with your Splendid is the dreaded root rot, usually due to a dense soil mix and over-watering.
If you notice the lower leaves of your plant are starting to yellow and fall off, it may be time to inspect its roots thoroughly.
Roots should be creamy in color and firm. If they are brown and soft, cut them off, repot your plant into a smaller pot and consider the quality of its soil.
Another problem you may encounter is a spider mite infestation.
Inspect the leaves weekly. If you see tiny white or red bugs accompanied by webs and small dots on the leaf, then you have spider mites!
Give the leaves a gentle wash with a damp cloth and spray the leaves and stem of the plant with an insecticide with a high concentration of bifenthrin to kill them quickly.
The last thing you want is an infestation on the rest of your houseplants. Spider mites ruin leaves and can be a huge nuisance in your home.
Propagation is very easy with a Philodendron Splendid. The Splendid is propagated with stem cuttings.
If your Splendid is growing on a moss pole, it will already have well-established roots at each node. Simply cut at least 1 inch above and below these nodes and plant directly into soil or sphagnum moss. You’ll have a new Splendid in no time!
Alternatively, and my favorite part of climbing plants, is that you can grow your plant on a 1.8m moss pole made of two 90cm poles that are easily detachable from one another. Once it reaches the top of the pole, simply cut your plant in half and plant the top half into the soil.
Continuously doing this will help your Splendid’s leaves keep growing bigger and bigger without the plant getting too tall. This is a perfect way to grow plants with big leaves if you live in a small apartment.
Common & Related Questions
Is a Philodendron Splendid rare?
It is considered a rare plant because it is not readily available in nurseries and plant chain stores.
Is a Philodendron Splendid easy to care for?
Because it is a hybrid plant, it is easy to care for!
Is a Philodendron Splendid a fast grower?
It is not considered a particularly fast grower, but it is not slow either – expect about one new leaf per month.
How do I make my Philodendron Splendid leaves bigger?
If you give it the right growing conditions and use a moss pole, it will grow big and luscious leaves.