If you are looking for a unique and gorgeous plant that is included in the houseplant category, then Philodendron Pink Princess would be just the ideal pick. The plant is collectible, and collectors are after it for many reasons. If you are interested in having one, you need to learn how to care for it properly and correctly.
Many people say that caring is pretty straightforward, but still, you need to know the basic of it. It would minimize errors and mistakes, rewarding you with one of the most beautiful variants that will spark up your living space. Moreover, knowing how to handle it properly can help in maintaining the unique pinkish variegation.
- Botanical name: Philodendron Erubescens (Pink Princess)
- Common (popular) name: Philodendron Pink Princess or Blushing Philodendron
- Family: Araceae
- Plant type: Perennial
- Mature size: 2 to 4 feet tall as well as 2 to 4 feet wide
- Soil pH: Acidic
- Sun exposure: Partial
- Soil type: Moist and loamy, but well-draining
- Bloom time: Summer, spring
- Flower color: White, green
Philodendron Pink Princess Origin
Philodendron Pink Princess is basically a variegated and rare member of the Philodendrons. It’s native to Colombia. The plant can grow up to 22 centimeters (or 9 inches) in length and 12 centimeters (or 5 inches) in width. The variegated nature is the main reason why many people are after this plant. No plant would be identical nor share extremely similar appearance.
Despite its popularity, the plant itself is relatively easy to care and maintain. There’s nothing fancy, but you need to pay attention to the proper method. Basically, the plant needs enough water, enough sun, and the right humidity and temperature, and you can be sure that it will grow healthy and fine.
Philodendrons thrive best in high porous, loose, and well drained soil containing tons of organic matter. Do you have a peat moss? That’s good because the Philodendron Pink Princess will 100% survive it. But make sure that you use the rich soil only in the growing season, during the warm months. If you can combine the good quality soil with good draining container, the result would be just amazing.
Some people may use the potting mix with 20% of perlite. Perlite is taken from volcanic minerals and then processed into grainy and light bits looking similar to (tiny pieces of) foam. When you mix the perlite with soil, it creates a nice environment with impeccably drained soil. But don’t forget to wear a mask whenever you handle the potting soil.
Philodendron Pink Princess loves water, but not to the point where you can flood it. Even soggy soil can be bad for its growth because it can cause rooting rot. The plant should be watered enough; it’s not too little, but it’s not too much either. If your Pink Princess loses its pinkish hue and reverts more to green, it means that it doesn’t have enough water and sunlight.
Check the top soil level before watering it, which is around 2-3 centimeters from the top. If it dries, then you should add water. If it’s still damp, then don’t. Insert your finger to your first knuckle to see how the soil is. If you are new to this, it may take some time before you can figure out the watering regime. In most cases, you will have to water more often during summer (or spring) months than the colder months (in autumn and winter).
All plants need sunlight to grow and survive, but how much of the light needed depends on the types of the plant. Philodendron Pink Princess loves bright, but indirect, sunlight. It won’t be able to stand direct sunlight, especially during the day, because it can lead to sunburn and the plant being scorched.
The best way for the plant to thrive is to never let it too far from the windows, especially behind sheer curtain. The plant will love the indirect and bright morning sun as well as the sunlight in the afternoon. Some people will place their plant in the window sill facing the east, and then place it in the sill facing the west before the sunset. During the day, the plant is kept ‘hidden’ behind the curtain to get shaded light. You can try not to put the plant on the sill during the day, but not far from the window.
Stem cuttings is the easiest propagation method. You can get both new plant as well as making it bushier. Stem cutting can even encourage variegation. Doing it is very simple.
- Choose the location where you want to cut the stem. Make sure that the cut has around 2 to 3 leaves, as well as 2 to 3 aerial roots close to the cutting’s bottom.
- Use sharp and sterilized scissors or pruning shears.
- Set it aside so the cut edge can callus over.
- After the callus is created, place it into water. Put it in a location that gets indirect and bright light. The aerial roots should be submerged the entire time
- You should see new roots coming out from the cuts in 2 to 3 weeks
- Wait until the roots have grown up to an inch. Then transfer the cutting to a soil. Use the proper soil and container, and then water it correctly.
Read also : Philodendron Birkin : An Exotic Tropical Plant
Diseases and Pests
It’s common for the Philodendron Pink Princess to experience infestation. After all, diseases and pests like to attack any kind of houseplant. Some of the common pests may include mealybugs, spider mites, whiteflies, or aphids. They like to suck the stem and leaf tissues, resulting in leaf distortion and spotted discoloration. Check the leaves’ underside because most pests like to hide there. Remove these pests with horticultural oil, such as neem oil.
Feed your plant with fertilizer regularly especially during the growing seasons, especially in spring and summer. You can do it once a month by using liquid fertilizer or the water based type. In the colder months of autumn and winter, you won’t have to fertilize the plant because it would slow down in growth and development.
Don’t over-fertilize the plant. Depending on the type of fertilizer you use, make sure that you follow the instructions to the letter. It’s better to under-fertilize the plant than over-fertilize it because overdoing it can lead to roots burning.
If your Philodendron Pink Princess grows healthily and well, you will have to re-pot it once in a year (or in two years). Do it in the spring as it would be the best time. Whenever you re-pot, make sure that you use a rather bigger container than the current one. A word of advice: Choose a pot that is 5 centimeters bigger than the current one.
How to re-pot the plant?
- A day before you do it, water the plant. It would minimize the possible stress.
- Remove the plant. Check the roots to see whether they are healthy or not. They shouldn’t be root bound either. If it happens, loosen them. Just use your fingers.
- Put a layer of small rocks in the bottom side of the new pot. It’s useful for drainage
- Put the potting mix within the new pot. Make a hole so the Pink Princess can sit in nicely
- Place the plant gently in the hole. Make sure that the roots are all covered with soil
- Pack the potting mix firmly around the plant. There shouldn’t be any air pocket in it
- Water thoroughly
It can help the plant healthy and it also encourages new growth. Pruning is also handy if you have quite restricted space so you don’t want your plant to be overly big. The best time to prune is in spring, but you can do it in the summer whenever needed.
If your Philodendron Pink Princess has new leaves that are completely green or pink (instead of the combo pink and green), you can trim it to the point where the variegated takes place. Pruning the plant back would result in each leaf having a more balanced hue. Pruning is also beneficial when you spot a damaged or diseased leaf. It will preserve the energy of the plant, keeping it healthy.
When you prune, cut the stem just above the node. A node is the point where leaves are being attached to the stem. You will see new leaves sprout from that node. To prune, use sharp scissors or shears. Disinfect the shears between cuts to prevent disease spreading. Use bleach or alcohol for it.
Philodendron Pink Princess Known Varieties
You should know that Philodendron Pink Princess is considered a true and natural royalty in Philodendron family. It’s because of the unique color splashes that can come in burgundy, white, pink, and even black on the leaves. And keep in mind that it happens naturally, so you shouldn’t inject anything to the leaves to achieve the desired colors.
One thing to remember that the unique variegation happens naturally, which means that each leaf is one of a kind. It would be impossible to have two identical leaves. There are also several possible variants that you can consider if you want to have one at home.
- Pink Princess (the common variegation)
Consider this as the most common type where you can find pink variegation ‘big chunks’ that go along with the green leaves. In the most ideal condition, you want to keep everything balanced. The dark green leaves are for photosynthesis, while the pink leaves are for the aesthetic part. The plant may even have half moon leaves: one half is completely green, and the other is completely pink.
In order to do this, balance out good lighting and regular pruning. You don’t want to overdo things. If there is too much green, the plant can revert to its not-so-unique appearance. If it is too much pink, your plant will not have enough chlorophyll, which can also affect the health.
- Pink Princess Marble
The Philodendron Pink Princess Marble may seem similar to the regular Pink Princess, but there’s a tad difference. The pink splashes come as speckles, so they aren’t solid or full completely. When you see the dark leaves, and there are random splashes and speckles of pink (and sometimes white) across the leaves, then you may likely see a Pink Princess Marble.
Not only the mottled pattern is somewhat more attractive and fun to see, but it’s also healthier for the longer term – especially when compared to the dominantly variegated type. The plant still has enough green in it, which is crucial for pigment. With proper care, this plant should have no issue managing the small patches. After all, small patches are simpler (and easier) than the big chunks.
- Pink Anderson (or White Anderson)
There is not much information about this variant of Philodendron Pink Princess, and it is still considered unregistered cultivar. Some say that it’s a hybrid variant between the Philodendron White Knight and Pink Princess.
What’s unique about this one is the light pink variegation that will finally turn white when the leaves have reached maturity. In the meantime, the color patterns, leaf shape, and burgundy petioles are similar to the parent plant, Pink Princess. You should distinguish it from the Red Anderson variety.
Red Anderson Philodendron comes with red stem and orange red leaves, while the White Anderson (or Pink Anderson) comes with pink and green leaves, but you will see the pink turn to white. If you see the white and green leaves, then it’s most likely that this is the already mature White Anderson.
- Pink Princess Black Cherry
As the name suggests, this Philodendron Pink Princess Black Cherry has super rich and vibrant red that is combined with the dark green leaves. When compared to the regular Pink Princess leaves, the leaves of Black Cherry seem to be thicker, more solid, and more robust.
The young leaves of this Black Cherry would show up as burgundy, and NOT the dark green. With proper care and maintenance, the leaves will stay in its dark colored hue when they reach maturity. Thus, resulting in the name of the Black Cherry.
Despite the beautiful appearance, you should be aware that Philodendron Pink Princess is toxic – and it applies to both animals and humans. All Philodendrons have plant sap and the sap contains the so-called calcium oxalate crystals. It can be irritating on the skin and it is quite toxic when ingested.
The common symptoms would include burning sensation on the tongue, throat, and lips. It’s also common to suffer swelling, diarrhea, vomiting, and even difficulty in breathing in extreme cases. If your skin comes in contact with it, it may be itchy or reddish. Don’t let your pets or children come close to your Pink Princess. Don’t touch it, unless if you are wearing gloves. If any symptom develops, it’s best to find medical assistance immediately.
FAQ about Philodendron Pink Princess
Do Pink Princess Philodendrons revert?
It’s possible. When you have just bought a plant or you re-pot the plant, and you notice that it starts losing its pinkish hue, it means that your Pink Princess is reverting. It’s highly likely that your plant doesn’t get enough light. Of course, you can’t place it on the direct and straight sunlight that blazes off the plant. The best way is to expose your plant in bright, but indirect light, for around 8 hours every day. It’s okay to expose the plant for an hour of morning sun directly, but then remove it to the shaded area. The best location is the window sill on east facing area, behind a sheer curtain to make sure that the plant still gets enough sunlight to maintain the pinkish color.
How big do Pink Princess Philodendrons get?
The plant can generally grow to 2 feet up to 4 feet in height, with also 2 to 4 feet in width.
How fast does Pink Princess Philodendrons grow?
Philodendrons are considered a fast growing type. You can expect around 4 inches of growth every week, especially during summers and springs. For the Pink Princess, it’s normal to expect new leaf once in every 3 weeks (4 weeks the latest) with the right growing condition: under bright and indirect sunlight, enough humidity, enough water, and enough ‘vitamins’ from the fertilizer.
How much is a Pink Princess Philodendron?
Prices may vary, but because of the rarity, even the small variant can cost you $50 a plant. In some markets, you may even have to pay for $100. Bigger variants may even cost you more; up to $200 or even $300 per plant.
How to get more pink in Pink Princess Philodendron?
Make sure that it has enough light. Make sure that your plant has enough sunlight for at least 8 hours a day. As it was mentioned before, the best situation is to get indirect (but bright) sunlight to maintain not only the pinkish hue, but also to get more of it. But in reality, it depends on the plant’s DNA. If the mutation ‘works’, then your plant will maintain its pink variegation. Some people even buy extra light to make sure that their plant gets enough of it.
But in general, why would you have more pink? If you read the previous section, you need to have everything balance, which means that the green and pink colors should be balance. If there is too much pink in the plant, you may put your plant into risk of not having enough chlorophyll, which can affect its overall health.
Is Pink Princess Philodendron rare?
You can say so. It’s because the plant doesn’t happen naturally. Philodendron Pink Princess is the result of crossbreed process, which means that it is man-made. Every plant should be carefully grown to be able to produce unique coloration, and this process alone is both scientifically rigorous and time consuming. Because of the unique mutation required for each plant, not many growers would want to undergo such a complicated process. Thus, causing the plant to be quite rare and not easily found. But feel free to grow one yourself, so you can have one (or two) at home.
Philodendron Anderson vs Pink Princess
Whereas the Philodendron Pink Princess is considered the newer hybrid variation of Philodendrons, the Philodendron Anderson Red is the older hybrid. So, Anderson is ‘older’ than Pink Princess. In terms of appearance, they are different. Pink Princess has green and (pale) pink leaves whereas the Anderson has orange-red leaves and red stems. But the leaves won’t stay as they would turn to green as the plant grow older.
Philodendron Pink Congo vs Pink Princess
People often mistaken both of them as being the same, but they are quite different. You see, the Philodendron Pink Princess has stable variegation because it happens naturally. The Pink Congo variegation, on the other hand, is unstable. A lot of people would call it as fake, because chemicals are being injected to the leaves. After several months, the leaves would revert back to its original condition (which is completely green). If you buy a Pink Princess and it stays with its unique variegation for months, then you have a real deal.
Philodendron Ruby vs Pink Pricess
In terms of care and maintenance, both are relatively the same. After all, both of them are coming from the same Araceae family and Philodendron genus. With 700 species, it’s normal if they share more than one or two similarities. But in terms of appearance, both of them have obvious difference. Philodendron Ruby has vibrant and bright leaves (in which most of the leaves don’t have any green at all). On the contrary, Pink Princess has the combination of green and pale pink leaves.
Pink Princess Philodendron leaves not unfurling
It’s most likely because it doesn’t get enough humidity. Keep in mind that Philodendrons need humidity between 50% and 75% to survive and thrive. You can always increase the humidity. Feel free to use the humidifier. Misting is also a possible alternative, but don’t do it too often. Simply mist the plant once in every two days, and see whether your plant has improved or not.
As you can see, caring for this plant isn’t complicated or fussy, but you do need to carefully do everything well. If you are able to pay attention to the correct method, your Philodendron Pink Princess would grow well, gorgeous, and healthy.