Philodendron verrucosum, also known as Ecuador Philodendron, proves to be a classy addition to indoors due to its striking leaves and stylish appearance. This flowering aroid has enormous, velvety, emerald-green leaves with light-green venation. The burgundy shade between its veins is its real eye-catching feature.
It is a hemiepiphytic plant that grows on tall trees in the forests until it grows down and plants its roots in the soil. This gorgeous vine will give the perfect tropical look to your indoors and home gardens. Let’s dig deeper into its features and care requirements.
- Family: Araceae
- Subfamily: Aroideae
- Genus: Philodendron
Origin and Distribution
This spectacular species from the Araceae family is native to Ecuador, Panama, Peru, Costa Rica, and Colombia.
Philodendron Verrucosum Types
Several species are classified as Philodendron verrucosum types, but only two of them are distinct enough to be recognized. One of those two variants has red undersides, while the other one has green undersides.
Philodendron Verrucosum Features
Foliage and Stem
This lovely species has large velvety leaves. These leaves are dark-green in color and have lime-green veins. These leaves can reach up to 3 feet long. They have maroon-shaded areas between their veins, hence the name Philodendron verrucosum radianate. These heart-shaped leaves are held up by multiple stems that are about 8 to 10 inches long.
This verrucosum Philodendron is an evergreen vine. Its gorgeous foliage remains green, fresh, and functional throughout the year. Its magnificent leaves only fall when they are old enough.
The height of the Philodendron verrucosum plant depends on the size of its leaves. Its leaves are longer than its stems. This plant reaches a height of 3 feet or 90 inches. Its large leaves can provide a perfect backdrop for other plants.
This beaut can survive at many temperature levels. It can even tolerate a temperature as low as 4.5°C. However, it is not winter-hardy; it cannot tolerate frost and chilly temperatures. It must be moved indoors if the temperature falls below 40°F. Extreme heat should also be avoided as this plant prefers a warmer environment and not a hotter one.
This tropical Philo prefers high humidity. It cannot tolerate humidity below 60%. You should try different methods to regulate the humidity around it. Misting is the most effective method to increase moisture levels. You can also grow this plant in a terrarium to provide it with a highly-humid surrounding. Growing this aroid above a pebble tray also helps with humidity elevation.
Philodendron verrucosum is quite drought-tolerant. The thick, velvety leaves of this Philo are not just for the display; they also help this plant in harsh conditions. These thick leaves retain water and save it for droughts.
Disease and Pests Resistance
Resistance to diseases and pests is another incredible feature of this Philo. It attracts only some insects, such as spider mites, mealybugs, or scales. You can easily get rid of them by rubbing neem oil or insecticidal soap on its leaves and stems.
Philodendron verrucosum grows at an amazing pace. It is a fast-growing plant that reaches its maximum height in just a year. The juvenile stage of this plant resembles Philodendron pseudo verrucosum. If you get both plants in their initial stages, it would be difficult to tell them apart.
USDA has recommended the growth zones of 9b-11 for the proper growth of this plant.
Leaving your pet or child with this plant in the same room is not a good choice. This is because the large leaves of this beautiful plant are quite toxic and harmful. Their sap contains insoluble crystals of calcium oxalate that cause swelling and irritation of the mouth, throat, and GIT upon consumption.
No beginner has ever managed to kill a Philodendron. This is because Philos are so easy-to-maintain. Just like that, Philodendron verrucosum is a low-maintenance plant that does not require a lot of attention. It only asks for a limited number of favors from its grower and grows on its own afterward.
Winters are resting days for this plant. It goes dormant at the beginning of winter and stays dormant till the next growing season. Its watering and feeding should be cut down during these days.
Philodendron Verrucosum Care
Philodendron verrucosum care includes 60% humidity and 20°C temperature. Its soil must be kept moist all the time, and its pH must be kept around 5.1-6.0. Bright, indirect light is preferred for its proper growth. Feed this plant three times a year and mist it occasionally. The recommended growth zones are 9b-11.
This Philo verrucosum plant thrives in moist soil, but soggy soil is a big No-No. Extra moisture in the soil can lead to root rot and will do more harm than good. It is better if you allow one inch of its topsoil to dry before you water it again. Moist soil makes sure that enough humidity reaches its roots; dry soil does the opposite. One way to know if your plant is getting enough water is to observe its leaves. Droopy leaves mean that you are either overwatering your plant or not watering it sufficiently.
Philodendron Verrucosum Soil
This plant prefers slightly acidic soil. Its pH must be around 5.1-6.0. This tropical plant is a hemiepiphyte, so the right soil is important for its proper growth. You should use a potting mix that has chunky ingredients; these increase its aeration and drainage. Better aeration will allow more airflow. You can add perlite to Philodendron verrucosum soil for this purpose. Orchid bark and charcoal also work well for this beautiful aroid. You can use their proportions as follows:
- Potting Soil (3 parts)
- Orchid Bark (3 parts)
- Perlite (3 parts)
- Charcoal (1 part)
Philodendron verrucosum is a gorgeous plant with striking leaves. Its large, greeny leaves need a sufficient amount of light exposure to carry out photosynthesis. If its light requirements are not met, its leaves start to lose their colors due to less chlorophyll produced. This is why you should place this gorgeo in a spot where it receives proper sunlight. It grows best in bright, indirect sunlight. An east-facing window is best for this beautiful plant as it is a place where it receives indirect light throughout the day and some hours of direct sunlight in the morning.
Verrucosum Philodendron can grow in a wide range of temperatures. However, it is best if you keep it in a warmer room. The optimum temperature for its proper growth is 20°C. At this temperature, it grows at its normal pace. If you want your Philo to grow faster and have more leaf growth, you should regulate the temperature at 25°C, along with high humidity. The more the warmth, the faster the growth. Providing warmth does not mean that you leave your Philo in a burning room. Heat and higher temperatures are still not appreciated.
Philodendron Verrucosum Humidity
This breathtaking species from the Araceae family is native to the subtropical and tropical regions. The humidity in the rainforests is normally above 90%. If grown indoors, this plant wants a similar-humid environment. If not 90%, you should at least keep the Philodendron verrucosum humidity level above 60%. You can do so by placing this beautiful plant in a terrarium. If you mist your plant inside the terrarium, the moisture level will increase inside it and will remain high due to the glass.
This elegant plant needs proper feeding to ensure its lush growth. You should fertilize it at least three times a year: once at the beginning of the growing season, once in spring, and once in summer. Fertilization in winters is of no use as this plant is not growing during those colder months.
Slow-release fertilizer suits the best for a Philo verrucosum plant. This is because it is available to the roots for an elongated period. This type of fertilizer is in the form of small colorful balls or small sticks. You should water the plant before adding fertilizer; this protects its roots from burning.
Grooming and Pruning
The dazzling Philodendron verrucosum does not need to be pruned. This stunning species has a natural classy appearance that does not need any additional grooming. However, if you want to limit the size of your Philo, you can cut some of its leaves. This can be done before the growing season so that its stem does not go into stress. All you need to do is take a sharp pair of scissors, sterilize them, and cut the side branches.
Rooting Philodendron Verrucosum
This fast-grower aroid has an extensive root system. It does not like to be root bound. So, you should always plant in a big pot in which it can grow and breathe freely. Clay pots are the best choice for rooting Philodendron verrucosum. This is because water drains faster in clay pots than in plastic ones. This also means that you will have to water your plant often if it has been planted in a clay pot.
This vining plant does not need to be re-potted every year. You can move it to a new pot only after every 2-3 years.
Propagating Philodendron Verrucosum
There is no need to buy a new Philo plant to increase your collection when you can just propagate them on your own. Propagating a Philodendron verrucosum is just as easy as propagating other Philo plants. This can be done through stem cuttings, seeds, and air layering. If you are a beginner, go for the stem cutting method, as it is the easiest one. Here is the step-by-step guide for your assistance:
- Take a sharp knife and sterilize it by using rubbing alcohol. If you don’t have rubbing alcohol, you can disinfect it by holding it in a fire for some moments.
- Cut an 8-inch stem cutting that has a node.
- Rub some cinnamon on the part of the stem that you just pruned. It helps the plant to heal quickly.
- Press hardly on the cutting to drain excess water.
- Take a container and fill it will sphagnum moss. You can also use water, soil, or perlite as a rooting medium.
- Put the cutting in its center.
- Put the container in a well-lit, warm spot.
Spring or summer is the best time for propagation. This baby stem cutting will grow new roots in about 3-4 weeks.
Who wouldn’t want to grow Philodendron verrucosum, a gorgeous houseplant with large green leaves and vibrant foliage that is also so easy-to-care and which happens to be a natural purifier too? This plant is a great addition to a home. It can be placed as a centerpiece in your living room or as a beautiful ornament on your patio. This lovely, vining plant looks good in every corner of a home.