The philodendron hope selloum is commonly found in rainforest environments, especially in South America, Brazil, and Argentina. The plant has unique foliage with a prehistoric look, lobed leaves making it the favorite choice as a houseplant. The plant’s leaves can potentially grow up to 5 feet long. However, this is rarely to happen as a houseplant, but still, you have to provide some space.
The philodendron hope selloum grows by producing stems from the central root base at first, making it look like a bushy floor plant. When the plant grows more mature, it will develop a trunk-like structure. Usually, the leaves obscure the trunk because they are so big. Its foliage comes in a glossy, dark-green, and deeply lobed appearance.
- Botanical Name: Thaumatophyllum bipinnatifidum
- Popular Name: Philodendron Selloum, Hope Philodendron, Philodendron Bipinnatifidum, Horsehead Philodendron, and Tree Philodendron
- Mature size: Up to 5 feet
- Plant Type: Broadleaf evergreen
- Sun Exposure: Indirect sunlight
- Soil Type: Moist and well-drained
- Soil pH: Neutral, alkaline
- Toxicity: Humans and pets
Philodendron Hope Selloum Care Guide
Caring for philodendron hope selloum is easy, but it needs specific care to help it thrive. As long as you give the plant an environment that is close to the real one, the philodendron selloum will live happily.
This plant grows best with 100% peat-based soil which is alkaline. You will need to make sure that you provide a well-draining mix and place the plant under filtered sunlight. In terms of watering, use the rule of thumb and do it once a week. This will give the plant sufficient moisture. For temperature, the philodendron hope selloum grows best at 60-75 degrees Fahrenheit or 16-24 degrees Celcius.
Philodendron is a tropical plant, making it necessary to give sufficient water. When the plant is underwater, you will see the plant change its color, the leaves start to wilt and drop.
On the other hand, when it is overwatered, it can waterlog the plant which is an ideal condition for root rot that can harm the plant. To avoid this, ensure to plant the philodendron in a well-drained pot where the water can run through. As you water the plant, thoroughly water it until its soil moisture is enough, and then discard the excessive water.
If the room has high humidity, you don’t need to water the plant very often. But if the room is too dry, water it more often to keep the moisture staying. The philodendron loves humid and warm temperatures. Therefore, if you find the plant less moisture, you can mist it regularly or buy a humidifier.
The same as other rainforest plants, the tree philodendron lives healthily when it is placed in bright, indirect sunlight. In its natural habitat, the plant lives under tall trees which blocks the direct sunlight.
Note that it is crucial to maintain the light condition for your philodendron. It is fine to bring the plant under the direct sunlight for just a few hours in the morning, but limit it to only a few hours or you will see some unhappy signs.
When the plant gets too much direct sunlight, it will cause the foliage to turn yellow and even burn them.
Meanwhile, not enough light can cause stunting with dark green leaves which make the plant lose its shine.
Originated from South America, this plant thrives well in warm tropical climates. It is no surprise if the philodendron hope selloum prefers humidity levels between 70-90%.
If your room is dry, misting the plant daily is necessary. Or, you can place pebbles on the tray that has been filled with water. After that, place the philodendron on top of it. This way can increase the humidity level because the water in the tray will evaporate.
Another alternative to increase the humidity level is using a humidifier, You also need to water your plant more often if you live in a dry area and vice versa.
Philodendron Hope Selloum Temperature Requirement
The ideal temperature for the hope philodendron is between 16-24 degrees Celcius or 60-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Your plant should be away from air conditioning, drafts, or heating units that may cause extreme temperature fluctuation.
If you find the leaves start getting crispy at the edges and yellowing, this could be a sign that the plant needs a higher humidity level. Consider some efforts to increase the humidity level.
The best time to add fertilizer is during the growing season which is during spring and summer. Feed your plant with a water-soluble fertilizer that is diluted to half strength.
If you add too much fertilizer to the plant, it will give excess salt to the soil which later can negatively impact your plant’s growth such as burning leaves.
The right amount for fertilizer is using a 20-20-20 system that indicates the potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen levels. These three elements are necessary for the growth of flower, root, and leave so the plant can thrive. Additionally, never feed your plant during winter when the plant is dormant.
Grooming/Pruning Philodendron Hope Selloum
Maintenance or pruning should be done regularly. Other than that, you don’t need to groom your plant except to maintain its shape and control its growth. Some plant owners only cut the leaves from the bottom stem to make it look like a tree.
Pruning is beneficial to make sure the plant grows healthily and to cut off disease spread. It is best to prune your plant during the spring or fall months.
Repotting Philodendron Hope Selloum
Repotting can be done every 18-24 months. Use a pot 2-4 inches bigger so the philodendron has more room to grow. Note that when you move the plant to a larger pot, it will make the plant grow bigger.
Repotting becomes something important because the soil starts running out of nutrients and becomes compacted. When the soil becomes compacted, it will be more difficult for the plant to absorb water.
To check if the philodendron needs repotting, you can check the bottom of the pot. If you see the roots are coming out of drainage holes, then you need to change it to a bigger pot soon. Besides, only do repot during summer because at this time your plant is growing at the strongest.
The simplest way of propagating method for tree philodendron is using stem cutting. You can cut the 4-6 inches of the stem. Make sure it is the healthy one. Cut the one beneath the leaf node with sterilized scissors.
After that, you can apply the high-quality root hormone and then plant the stem in the potting soil. Make sure to cover the container or pot with the plastic bag with a little bit of airflow to keep humidity in.
Mist the soil twice per day and after three weeks you should be able to check its resistance. If some roots are growing, you know the plant is established.
Remove the plastic bag and start to continue raising the plant normally by continue giving it water to keep the soil moist.
The philodendron hope selloum contains calcium oxalate crystals which are toxic to humans and pets. When it is ingested, you will exhibit symptoms like burning and swelling sensation on the tongue, lips, and throat which cause you to have difficulties in speaking. Furthermore, in worse cases, you might have nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Frequent contact with the cell sap will cause skin irritation.
This is why whenever you are in contact with the plant, you are advised to use gloves and wash your hands afterward.
Pests and Disease
Even though the philodendron hope selloum is hardy, this plant is still susceptible to bugs and disease. You will likely find the plant gets attacked by mealybugs, spider mites, aphids, scale, and root rot.
Mealybugs, spider mites, and aphids attract often damage the foliage. To fix this issue, you can use a mix of 1-liter water with dish soap. Spray the plant with the mixture regularly until the bugs are gone.
If you see the honeydew residue, you probably are dealing with the scale. To remove this problem is easy. You just need to use the cotton swab that is dipped in the rubbing alcohol and then wipe it thoroughly to remove the scale infestations.
For the root rot, it is one of the most common problems. This happens when the pot is too soggy. This is why you need to make sure that the medium is airy and easy for the water to go out. One of the easy ways is to get a pot with a drainage hole at the bottom. Besides, when you water the plant, let the water go thoroughly first before rewatering it again. Once the soil is wet, then it is enough.
Philodendron Hope Selloum Varieties
There are three types of philodendron hope selloum variety which are philodendron hope selloum variegated, philodendron hope selloum gold and philodendron hope selloum atom.
- Philodendron hope selloum variegated – A rarer version of philodendron hope selloum. Variegated philodendron hope selloum often hunted by plant collectors because of the uniqueness.
- Philodendron hope selloum gold – This beauty comes with large and medium green leaves. The plant has white flower color but it is rare to flower when it is placed indoors. Just like other philodendron plants, the plant loves filtered sunlight with a well-drained medium.
- Philodendron hope selloum atom – The main feature of this plant is its wavy leaves and lush green. Having this plant will make you remember the depth of the rainforest. It can produce spathe-like flowers but it is rare to happen when it is grown indoors. This plant loves indirect sunlight as much as airy-moist soil.
Read also : Philodendron Birkin : An Exotic Tropical Plant
Philodendron Hope Selloum Growth Rate
In terms of growth rate, the philodendron takes around three weeks to one month to grow its roots in a full form. Once you see these roots, then you can start propagating the plant. When it comes to flowers, the philodendron takes a very long time to grow. It takes around 15-20 years to flower for an individual plant that is grown indoors. If you give it enough indirect sunlight, the chance to grow flowers can be faster.
Leaf, Flower, and Other Characteristic
This plant is well-known for its green color with its glossy, slippery, and smooth texture. It comes with large leaves in the form of a unique lobe. The interesting part of this plant is its foliage which can grow up to 5 feet long when it is grown in the wild.
It takes around 15-20 years for the philodendron hope selloum to flower when it is grown indoors. Even Almost not flowering. However, once it is flowering, it can reach 1-foot length with white florets on its stalk. The flower of the philodendron comes with a club-shaped stalk and a leaf that is called a spathe surrounding the flower. This spathe also serves as a hood.
The philodendron hope selloum is categorized in the Araceae family which the plant is accustomed to growing on a tree. Therefore, the roots absorb nutrients from the air and surrounding, making it important to place the plant in well-draining soil.
When the plant is soggy, it will put the philodendron at a higher chance of getting root rot. People often mistakenly plan the plant on regular potting soil. In this case, watering will just make the soil soggy for even days. When this happens, immediately check the roots. If you find any sign of root rot, exchange any potting soil as soon as possible. Root rot will spread very quickly and damage your plant.
A tip for you to keep the plant safe from this case is adding peat moss and perlite to maintain proper drainage. Besides, choose a pot with a hole at the bottom so the water can go thoroughly.
What Can I Do If My Selloum Is Turning Yellow?
There are two possible reasons why your selloum turning yellow; first is over watering and second is underwatering. Check if you find brown and yellow on the same leaf. If this happens, that means you are overwatering. But when you spot yellow leaves with additional brown crips on some leaves, this can be a sign of underwatering. To check if your diagnosis is true, check the soil using your finger.
My Philodendron Is Growing So Big, What Can I Do?
You always can trim back your philodendron. Remember that this plant is very hardy and of course, it can handle some good trim. The best thing about this plant is you always can train it to grow whichever your desire by using ties and stakes.
How Often Do I Need To Fertilize My Selloum?
Generally, the house plant will thrive well when it is fertilized during spring through fall. You can fertilize it once a month using organic fertilizer and make sure you follow the package information in terms of dilution and how to apply it. Generally, an organic potting mix along with the slow-release fertilizer is the best combo. When you apply this method, you don’t need to fertilize the plant for the next 6 months.
How Often Does The Philodendron Hope Selloum Need To Be Repotting?
Repotting normally can be done every 18-24 months. You will need to choose a pot that is 2-4 inches larger to allow the plant to grow perfectly. But if you want to keep the current size of the plant, report it with the same pot and then trim away some foliage and roots. Don’t forget to change the soil too.
Ideally, repotting is done during spring and summer because, at this time, the plant is growing at its strongest.
How To Know If I Need To Prune My Philodendron?
Pruning can be essential for your plant as it is a great way to reshape the plant and prevent disease that is coming along the way.
The best time to prune your philodendron is when you find the plant is too large. If you see your philodendron is taking up too much space you need to cut it back. Besides, it is also good to prune the plant during spring and fall.
How Many Times Does A Philodendron Bloom?
While most philodendron varieties can bloom, some of them can take too long to produce a flower. Even for a philodendron hope selloum, this can take from 15-20 years. Once the plant starts to grow flower, it means the plant is mature enough and ready to reproduce.
To make the plant bloom, you need to make sure that this is placed in the right condition. Once it reaches its maturity, a flowering age, the philodendron can flower at least once a year.
Is Philodendron Hope Selloum Easy To Care For?
The tree philodendron is considered easy to care for. However, there are certain criteria to make the plant grows healthily such as the soil requirements, temperature, humidity, fertilizing, lights, and many more. If you mimic the natural habitat, the plant can grow as you like.
Can A Philodendron Hope Selloum Full Sun?
Although the plant loves lights, you cannot place them under direct sunlight for a long time. Placing the plant under the direct morning sunlight is OK if it is just a few hours. After that, you need to move the plant to a place where filtered light can help the plant grow.
On the other hand, keeping the plant in a shady place will stunt the growth and lose its shine.
How To Make My Selloum Grow More Leaves?
Growing more leaves means you should see the whole picture when it comes to taking care of the selloum. You will not only pay attention to the lights but also other factors such as nutrients, soil, and humidity. When a plant is living in a place that mimics the natural habitat, this will be easier for them to grow more leaves.
Furthermore, check also if you find potential threats toward the plants like bugs attacks and disease. Once you notice the symptoms, look for the solution as soon as you can because such things can spread easily.
Why Is My Philodendron Drooping?
Drooping philodendron can be caused by several reasons. For this reason, we recommend you analyze it carefully.
Poor watering is one of the main reasons for droppy selloum. Even though you don’t need to water it every day, however, make sure you maintain a routine. Besides, always check the condition of the soil whether it is wet or dry. If it is wet, you don’t need to water it more so it will not be soggy.
When the plant is underwatering, it will show some symptoms like yellowing leaves, wilting, and dry and crisp leaves.
What Is The Best Soil Mix For Philodendron Hope Selloum?
As we mentioned, the best soil mix for philodendron hope selloum is the well-draining and organic mix. Besides, the plant will also grow perfectly with the combination of peat-vermiculite or peat-perlite. You can also choose a soil mix designed for succulents or orchids. The selloum has a similar characteristic in terms of soil requirements.
A note to remember is to make sure you get a good quality mix because the plant will entirely absorb nutrients from there and this will affect its growth. Or you can make your mix to make sure the plant gets sufficient nutrients.
The best soil mixture is 1/3 coconut coir with 1/3 succulent soil mix and also 1/3 perlite. If you have compost, add several handfuls to boost its growth.
How To Make My Selloum Look Bushy?
Having a philodendron that looks bushy is everyone’s dream. It is a job that you can do easily! You can make your philodendron look bushier by doing the trimming. As you can see that the older selloum will develop a trunk. You can cut it away by pruning the lower leaves so you will get a tree-like appearance.
What Are The Common Pests And Diseases On Selloum?
The same as other philodendron types, the selloum is susceptible to pests and diseases. Some of the most common are including the aphid and mealybug. This disease will rumple the new growth and create yellow spots and leaves white residues on the stems and leaves. However, they can be removed easily by rinsing or wiping the affected area using cotton swabs that are dipped in alcohol.