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Silver philodendron problems

Posted by CJ-Speciosa 7a (My Page) on
Thu, Dec 19, 13 at 19:12

The two silver phils I've had for the past.....almost year seem to have nothing but problems. They are my most problematic plants hands down and it's starting to frustrate me.

They just seem to not do well in general, while all of my other specimens thrive. What started out as a rather thickly planted pot has slowly dwindled to a just a few sickly vines. All of the others rotted off at the base at the soil???

Maybe some type of fungus? Maybe the plant was sick to begin with? I've tried keeping them drier, which seemed to help, but now one of them has completely curled leaves.....I tried watering it, but the leaves have stayed curled.....

It just seems these things are doomed. Anyone want to take a stab at this???


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Hi CJ,

Sorry to hear you're having trouble.

"What started out as a rather thickly planted pot has slowly dwindled to a just a few sickly vines. "

Sounds like a drainage &/or bad mix problem.

Begs the question what kind of soil are you using, when was it last changed? Hopefully the pot has drainage holes.

Can you pls. share pix w/ us? They help us tremendously in trying to diagnose problems.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

The first thing to come mind is a water problem....which is usually the case.
Good question put by Pirate Girl, does the pot drain well and do you let the water that drains sit under the plant's roots for long periods instead of dumping it.
Water got rid of should be ......got rid of.

Sopping soil might never dry out but instead begin to rot the roots---which then, cant take up any more water and instead sits there.....the bottom leaves usually are the first sign of such.

Too much fertilizer when the plant cant use it---its winter--its not growing.
NEVER feed a sick plant---get it back into health---then feed it according to how its growing.
Water first.....then use water soluble fertilizer. The first watering then acts as a capillary action and draws the food down to the roots.
Pests might also be eating --sucking the juices from stems which then affects the health--prevents it using food or taking up water as it needs.
If the soil does indeed "dry out"....the soil can quickly shrink --especially from the sides of the pot which---when you water--it goes straight down to the drainage holes and doesn't make it to the roots which needs it.

Not enough sun---the winter solstice is Sunday...December 21...shortest day of the year---and as such it can be given increased sun by putting it closer to the window...with due regard for how the sun comes through the window glass.
Failing too much watering----try misting it.....which, of course, doesn't take the place of proper watering.
Let the plant dry down between waterings---which at this time....can be much longer between waterings.

One other thing.....is the plant by chance in a pot that is much too big for it----which forces it to take up too much water from a large soil volume. Get it back into a pot that suits its size....and when you go up in size....do so by only one size at a time....don't go whole hog.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Goren,

You hit the nail on the head with this one. I have these two in pots that drain but have those pots sitting in decorative pots that do NOT drain. There is two inches between the bottom of the two pots where water drains from one, and sits in the bottom of the other one.

It's always in there.....I never dumped it.....I should say, I rarely dumped it. No wonder why I'm having complete moisture and rot problems. They were never really FULLY drying out.

Add to the that the decrease in light and the subsequent drop in water usage, and it's no wonder why they are dying.

For now, I'm going to take them out of the decorative pots and put them in trays. Air will be able to get around and through the bottom of the pot.

I'm pretty sure that's going to fix my problem.

Thanks you guys!


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

I suspect your plant is Scindapsus.

In addition to what sounds like a root rot issue, your expectations of the plants' appearance may be impossible without proactive guidance. Philodendron/Pothos/Scindapsus vines hardly ever make side branches unless the tip is removed. As a vine, it's 'programmed' to explore as far as it can in search of something to climb. To begin the inspiration of new branches, snipping off the growth tip will do that.

These vines don't make extensive root systems and are easily rotted. In natural environment, they would encounter very light/airy but yet moist humus/duff on the forest floor.

They are easily saved by removing the still-green parts and using them as cuttings (for the parts attached to rotted roots.)

If you can add a pic to this discussion, the advice could be more specific.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

purple,

I've got it figured out. I'm no novice when it comes to plants, despite the novice mistake I made with this one. And I'm familiar with the growth patterns of these types of plants as I have/had many of them.

I already have many cuttings which I've been rooting so that I didn't lose the plant completely. I can tell you that they don't root as easily as my "regular" phils do in water, but they are rooting non the less.

But, if you would all like to see the plants in question......I will oblige.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Here is the other one which is fairing a little bit better.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

I agree that a photo would really help, especially if you're growing Scindapsus. This plant isn't hard to grow, but in my experience it's more particular than some of the other vining aroids.

Is this what you have? (You can see some curled leaves on mine at the top, from when I was figuring out how to care for it.)

Amanda

(Edited to fix my typo/spelling of 'Scindapsus.')

This post was edited by asarumgreenpanda on Fri, Dec 20, 13 at 11:25


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Sorry, CJ Speciosa--we were posting at the same time.

Amanda


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Hopefully this fix turns them around. I can't wait to "thicken" these up with the cuttings I have.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

That's great you got the cuttings to root--I agree, they don't root all that readily. On mine, the leaves curl from cold as well as from soil issues. I look forward to seeing/reading how yours progress as you thicken them up. They're beautiful plants.

Amanda


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

I think I have the same plant. Mine is Exotic Angel, and has identical leaves to CJ's. The tag just said "Philodendron Silver". I guess this is one of those funny common name vs botanical name things that happen so much with Philodendrons. (ie: Split Leaf Philo is actually a Monstera, not a Philo). Exotic Angel's plant Library says this about "Philodendron Silver":

Botanical Name: Scindapsus Pictus Argyraeus

Gee, thanks plant gods, or whoever it is that names plants. Or maybe this is just Exotic Angel's fault. shrug.

Are there cultural/care differences between Philodendrons and Scindapsus?


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Yes, these plants are Scindapsus. Any names found at EA need to be confirmed through additional sources. As you can see, they will not stop capitalizing species names, and sometimes give plants 2 of those, which is never correct. Binomial nomenclature means, crudely, 2-word naming system.

What EA meant:
Scindapsus pictus var. argyreus

CJ, not sure what you mean by thicken? More vines coming from the surface? Side branches on existing vines? Leaves closer together on the stem?

The most pressing and common danger for my plants is sunburn. Haven't had any trouble on Scindapsus but you can see some sunburn on the Philos in pic below.

Rooftop, they seem happy together to me, same spots/care. For a while next to each other, then literally together.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

By thicken I just mean to thicken the look of the plant by adding more vines into the pot from the cuttings I had made.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Above pic is 2 mos ago, here's just now. Looks like Scindapsus and Philo 'Brasil' are growing faster than the burgundy Philos with bigger leaves. I purposely didn't put regular heart-leaf Philo (P. scandens) vine in this pot because I think it grows a lot faster. We will see what happens with this...

In a north window with roof over porch outside. I think it looks overall happier than when it was outside, colors are better - for how *I* want them to be. Growth seems faster but that's just a thought, really don't know.

Philos are the first thing that comes to mind when I think about plants that are happier inside for winter than outside for summer. I tend to burn them & it gets extremely hot here.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Unless I'm mistaken, I believe CJ's plant is a Philodendron and asarumgreenpanda's plant is a Pothos. There are both 'Silver Philodendron' and 'Silver Pothos.' The Pothos "version" has silver blotches that more or less cover the leaves, whereas the Philodendron "version" is more spotty. Not that the care for either is different, just an FYI. I used to own a book called "The Houseplant Expert" and it showed pictures of both, one for the 'Silver Philodendron' and one for the 'Silver Pothos,' respectively.

Planto

This post was edited by plantomaniac08 on Fri, Dec 20, 13 at 22:06


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

I thought hers looked a bit different.....thanks for the input. That book came in handy after all.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

CJ,
I wasn't aware you purchased that book, haha. I got rid of mine not too long ago, the "back" broke on it and the pages kept falling out when I opened it. Kinda a hassle looking through a book where half of it was in the wrong places.

Planto


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

The different plants pictured here may be different species or cultivars of Scindapsus, but I don't believe any of them are Epipremnum or Philodendron. There has been a lot of confusion until geneticists started sorting these plants out. Because juvenile leaves can be wildly different in size and shape from the mature form ones, some that are actually identical were thought to be different plants. Old house plant books are handy for starting an investigation to look for the most current name. So many of them have been changed, and/or found to simply be synonyms for the same plant.

CJ, we were posting at the same time yesterday, so I didn't see your comment about filling the pot more until now. You hit the nail on the head for having a pot with many more leaves at the surface - adding more cuttings. Snipping the tip of each will inspire each vine to make side branches as well. Once those have some length to them, the number of cuttings you could make will be much higher.

Sounds like a good time to get mine started too, so I did. Cutting the very tip leaf isn't quite enough. You need to get the nub of new leaf forming right where it attaches to the stem.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

You mean, nodes.....


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

My understanding is the same as purple's: these plants are both scindapsus. I grow them both. They are certainly different, but neither makes cataphylls, the modified leaves/leaf-sheaths which I understand are the characteristic feature of philos.

Adding to the name confusions over juvenile-mature foliage change that purple mentions, there is a cultivar of Philo mamei called 'Silver Cloud,' and I've seen both Philo sodoroi and Philo glaucaphyllum referred to as "silver philo." It's a jungle out there--in more ways than one :-)

Amanda


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

CJ, yes, nodes. I forgot to say, in that pic, I actually cut off 2 nodes since the one already had a missing leaf and I didn't want to leave such a long, naked thing sticking out. This discussion might interest you for more vine-growth info, and display ideas.

"neither makes cataphylls, the modified leaves/leaf-sheaths which I understand are the characteristic feature of philos."
Excellent point! "Like!"

Dried cataphyll at the node behind the new one (P. scandens.)


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

I could in fact be mistaken, but I pulled it from a Houseplant book I used to own that had them listed as different (one Pothos, one Phliodendron). *shrugs* No big deal, they grow the same and most likely treated the same, hehe.

Planto


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

That's a huge factor in why I don't have any house plant books anymore. As we now know, Scindapsus is different from Philodendron and Epipremnum (Pothos.) Any common name one prefers is fine, there's no right or wrong with those. EA is out there adding new ones to mix constantly.

With or without any books, trying to keep track of changing taxonomy can be mind-boggling and time-consuming. Fun to discuss though. Most of the plant names I knew from 60's and 70's house plant books have been changed.

Here is a link that might be useful: Scindapsus Epipremnum synonym


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Purple,
Haha, you might have something there. I only ever had one Houseplant book, so I guess you could say I never found any discrepencies (how could you with one book, right?). Kinda sad how two books can't agree on something lol.

Planto


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

LOL IKR! They used to do it visually, and with measurements'n'such, observations. Now geneticists are testing plants and renaming many of them. This provides more info, but in the most confusing possible way.


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Hopefully someone can answer this about the Silver Phil.
Had it less than a year. It's not dying nor is it really growing. It's just kind of stuck in it's growth! lol
Gets afternoon/morn sun. Soil is semi moist. I want to put in another pot. What is the best soil mix to use? And do I need to put something in the plant for it to climb or is it best to just let it dangle?
You can see I put another little plant with it so it didn't look too lonely. But neither is showing growth. Any advice would be great.

Thanks!!


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Cindy, are you calling the plant in your hand Silver Philodendron?

The Philodendron in the photo is P. scindapsis or Satin Pothos.

I have Philodendron hastatum 'Silver'.. It has large, 'small now,' blue-gray leaves. Hastatum needs direct sun, scindapsis lower light.

Assuming you're talking about the plant in the photo..

A couple reasons your Philo isn't growing..

1. Time of year.

2. The container is rather large. Roots need to fill up pot before new growth..I'm not saying a plant in an over-sized pot will not grow, but imo growth is much slower.

As soon as a new leaf forms, add 1/4-strength fertilizer.
BTW. Philodendron 'scindapsis,' is slow-growing, so please don't assume you're doing something wrong.
Give it time..soon you'll see a new leaf forming..Toni


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RE: Silver philodendron problems

Toni

Thanks for your help. Whatever this plant is called… it needs some help. I'm putting it in a smaller container today and hopefully the plant will do well.

Thanks again.


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