Philodendron Squamiferum Houseplant Care Guide

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Philodendron Squamiferum was one of my very first houseplants and I still have the same plant today.

This plant is easygoing, resilient, and like most Philodendrons, doesn’t ask for much.

Here are the main things to know to properly care for Philodendron Squamiferum.

  1. Water. Let the soil almost completely dry out before watering your Philodendron. I find that while these are tropical houseplants, they don’t need to be kept constantly moist all the time.
  2. Light. Place your Philodendron Squamiferum in bright indirect sunlight but also know this plant can tolerate lower light. I have mine sitting under T5 Barrina grow lights.
  3. Fertilizer. Feed your plant high quality fertilizer. You can choose to do this every watering, every other watering, or once a month. I feed every watering because it’s easy for me to remember and it doesn’t hurt my plants.
  4. Humidity. Philodendrons are tropical houseplants that enjoy high humidity, but they also thrive in regular household humidity so don’t worry about misting your plant.

Keep your Philodendron Squamiferum thriving with these plant care tips.

Light

Philodendron Squamiferum is a resilient houseplant great for beginner houseplant enthusiasts.

Squamiferum tolerates a wide variety of light conditions, but it’s best to put this plant in a spot getting bright indirect sunlight. Never place your plant in direct sunlight as this will burn the foliage and kill your plant.

The best spot for this plant would be near a south, east, or west facing window. South facing rooms get the hottest, most intense heat of the day so it’s important to place a sheer curtain on this window if your plant is sitting next to it.

You can choose to do what I did, which is put my Philodendron Squamiferum under plant grow lights.

If you’re like most houseplant people, you’re running out of room in your house to place a new plant. Luckily the Philodendron Squamiferum can grow in medium light.

Water

Philodendrons are resilient plants that handle overwatering or underwatering more so than other types of plants.

This is why many people love Philodendrons because they’re so hard to kill. If there’s one thing you take away from this post, it’s that it’s always better to underwater your plants than overwater your plants.

If you are a chronic overwaterer, well-draining, chunky soil becomes even more important to use for your houseplants.

A fool-proof way to check your soils moisture level is by sticking your index finger in the plant soil about 2 inches deep. If the soil is dry, it’s time for a water. If it’s wet, check the soil in a couple of days.

You can also use a moisture meter which I personally love using. You stick the moisture meter into the plant soil and it’ll tell you if it’s wet or dry. I like using a moisture meter because I can check different parts of the soil without getting messy.

Soil

Philodendrons thrive in well-draining mix and don’t like to be kept in compact, dense soil.

Dense, compact soil leads to root rot much quicker if you’re an overwaterer. This is because there’s no room for oxygen to flow around the roots.

An easy well-draining soil for your Philodendrons is 50% coco coir, 25% perlite, and 25% orchid bark. You may even decide to sprinkle in some worm castings for natural fertilizer.

Temperature

Philodendron Squamiferum live in temperatures around 75 degrees F.

Some people even put this plant outside if they live in a year-round warm, tropical climate. However, someone like me would not dare put this plant outside since the humidity is 7% outside and we see 110 degree F days.

Fertilizer

Fertilizer is a must if you have houseplants in your home. This is because these plants would naturally get their nutrients out in the wild, but in your home it’s a completely different environment.

Fertilizer helps keep plants healthy and thriving in your home.

You have several fertilizer options and can decide to go the all natural route or the synthetic route. If going the synthetic fertilizer route, make sure to cut the fertilizer recipe in half.

For example, a synthetic fertilizer will have a very high NPK ratio of about 20-20-20. That’s a recipe you definitely want to dilute in half. Natural fertilizers typically have a NPK ratio of 2-2-2- which is quite low and you don’t have to worry about diluting the recipe.

To keep things simple, I like to use a fertilizer I mix into my plants drinking water.

I mix a few drops of Blue Butterfly fertilizer into a gallon.

Humidity

Philodendron Squamiferum is a tropical houseplant that loves humidity, but doesn’t need it.

This plant acclimates to regular household humidity easily. My house stays in the 20% humidity range and my Philodendron Squamiferum is constantly putting out new leaves.

If you decide you want to raise the humidity in your home to increase plant growth, here are my best tips.

  • Put a humidifier near your P. Squamiferum to increase humidity around the plant
  • Place your P. Squamiferum on a pebble tray filled with water
  • Place plants together in a group which creates a microclimate and boosts humidity
  • Put your P. Squamiferum in a bathroom getting daily showers or baths

Propagation

The easiest way to propagate Philodendron Squamiferum is by cutting a stem with at least one node.

Place the node submerged under water and place this cutting in a spot getting some sunlight. In about three weeks you will notice roots growing. Once the roots are at least three inches long, you can transfer the cutting into your preferred substrate.

There are many substrates to choose from and I actually use quite a few. You can choose from well-draining aroid mix, leca, lechuza pon, or simple keep the plant in water. I use all four of these substrates.

Philodendron Squamiferum Common Questions

Is Philodendron Squamiferum rare?

You probably won’t find Philodendron Squamiferum in big box stores (although you may get lucky and find one).

Typically, you’ll find this plant in a specialty plant store or online. I bought my Philodendron Squamiferum from a local plant group.

How much is a Philodendron Squamiferum?

Philodendron Squamiferum are affordable. You can find a cutting of this plant with a nice leaf for under $10 or a 4 inch pot of this plant for about $20 depending on how many leaves there are.

Is Philodendron Squamiferum hard to care for?

Not at all. This is a great beginner houseplant and is resilient to pretty much anything. This plant doesn’t require high humidity and won’t die if you forget to water.

How do you care for Philodendron Squamiferum?

Philodendron Squamiferum is one of the easiest houseplants to care for. You could place this plant pretty much anywhere in your house, miss a watering, and give it 20% humidity and it’ll most likely stay alive.

If you want your Philodendron Squamiferum to thrive, place this plant in bright indirect sunlight. This would be a south, east, or west facing room. Know that south facing rooms get the strongest, hottest sunlight of the day.

Water your plant when the soil dries out almost completely. For me, I water once a week and no more than that.

Photo by feey on Unsplash

Is Philodendron Squamiferum a fast grower?

Philodendron Squamiferum is a medium grower in terms of speed. I’ve found it isn’t as fast as my other Philodendrons but it’s also not the slowest.

Philodendron Squamiferum can grow outside if you live in a tropical climate.

You’ll be successful growing this plant outside if you like a year-round warm, high humidity area. If you live somewhere like me which is the desert, you will find this plant will quickly die in the heat and intense sunlight.

How big do Philodendron Squamiferum get?

Philodendron Squamiferum get tall but it’s rare that you’ll find one taller than 3 feet in the home.

How do I make my Philodendron Squamiferum bigger?

To encourage your Philodendron Squamiferum to get larger, make sure the plant is sitting in bright indirect sunlight which would be something like a south, east, or west facing direction room. If placing right next to a window, make sure to place a sheer curtain so the plant never receives direct sunlight.

Regularly fertilizer your plant with a high quality fertilizer. I use Dyna-Gro and Liqui-Dirt and my plants love it. I fertilizer almost every watering.

Does Philodendron Squamiferum climb?

Philodendron Squamiferum love to climb which is why it’s recommended to place a support pole or trellis on the plant to encourage growth.

Photo by feey on Unsplash

How do you propagate Philodendron Squamiferum?

Propagating Philodendron Squamiferum is simple.

Take a stem cutting with a node on the stem and submerge the node under water and wait for roots. Once the roots reach a few inches long, you can transfer this cutting to your preferred substrate.

Is the Philodendron Squamiferum toxic to pets?

Yes, this plant is toxic to pets.  You can get more information on toxic and pet-friendly plants at ASPCA here.

Common pests

Philodendrons are some of the hardiest plants out there and are quite resistant to pest pressures.

I’ve never found bad bugs on any of my Philodendrons and plan to keep it that way. I am consistent with pest preventive which is why I never have pest pressures.

To prevent pests, you have several options. Bonide Systemic Granules are quite popular and you simply sprinkle it into the soil or on top of the soil. This is a quick fungus gnat killer and one of the best ways to get rid of those annoying pests.

I use Azamax for pest preventative. It’s a natural pest killer. I simply mix 1 tablespoon into 1 gallon of water and use this as my plants drinking water. It keeps things simple for me and ensures I’m always on top of pests becoming a problem.

Azamax is a natural pest killer. Mix 1 to 2 oz. per gallon of water depending on pest levels. Spray at an interval of 7-10 days.

Common issues

Brown tips: If your Philodendron Squamiferum has brown tips, this may mean you are over fertilizing your plant. Make sure to dilute any fertilizer recipes in half if using a synthetic fertilizer. How do you know if your fertilizer is synthetic? You may see an NPK ratio of 20-20-20 which is very high. For example, natural fertilizers are often in the 2-2-2 range.

Curly leaves: If your Philodendron Squamiferum has curly leaves, this may mean your plant is thirsty and needs a more consistent, thorough watering. Use a moisture meter or your pointy finger to check your plants soil regularly.

Yellowing leaves: If your Philodendron Squamiferum has yellowing leaves, this may mean your plant is getting overwatered. Make sure to only water the plant when the soil is almost dried out completely.

Key Points To Remember

Philodendron Squamiferum is one of the easiest Philodendrons to care for.

These plants grow quickly and thrive in a variety of growing conditions. Place your plant in bright indirect sunlight, fertilize regularly with a high quality fertilizer, and water thoroughly when the soil is dry.

This plant is perfect for anyone who thinks they don’t have a green thumb.

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