If you are interested in adding some ornamental plants to your garden. Then go for this Philodendron Ernestii.
Ernestii is a South American plant and it can easily adapt to the indoor growing environment. Philodendron Ernestii plants growing in plant pots stays short in height.
Because for full growth it needs proper humidity which is above 70%. This level of air moisture is not possible to maintain throughout the year.
To know everything about it read the below parts and grow it without facing problems.
About Philodendron Ernestii
This tropical plant grows large size leaves about 10 inches long and 5 to 6 inches wide. Its glossy leaves are thick and bright green.
The mature Philodendron Ernestii turns its leaves to dark green color. This means your plant will have dark green old leaves and bright green new leaves.
The good news is this plant does not need much water like other philodendrons. It can survive in less moisture for a long period of time.
But then it will lose the shine of its leaves. It is also possible that the lack of sufficient moisture directly impacts its leaf size.
To avoid all water-related problems follow the soil check method for watering.
The height of this plant depends on its growing environment. If it is growing in an outdoor garden directly in the soil. Then it will achieve tall height.
Otherwise, in plant pots, Philodendron Ernestii stays short. Because its roots do not have enough space to spread.
They grow in circular patterns and this affects the height of a plant.
Philodendron Ernestii Care Guide
Philodendron Ernestii needs shaded light for its entire life. Keep it in a place where it can absorb filtered sunlight.
My plant is near a sunny window. There it enjoys morning sunlight for 2 hours and then indirect bright light till 4 Pm.
Morning sunlight is beneficial for houseplants so don’t worry about it. The problem is highly intense sharp sunlight.
Protect your plant from sharp light. To do so install a sheer curtain on sunny windows.
If you are planning to grow it in your outdoor garden. The best place will be beside a tree or near a wall.
So, that it can climb and grow tall.
Tropical soil is best for philodendrons and you can make it by mixing a few ingredients.
The aim is to make a soil formula that holds a good amount of moisture without being wet. Because this plant is prone to root rot.
And we all know soil that does not drain well increases the chances of fungal root infection.
I use 50% potting soil + 20% perlite + 20 Vermiculite and 10 % orchid barks.
You can use this same soil formula for other plants like Philodendron Bicolor, Philodendron Asplundii, and Philodendron Little Phil.
Perlite is an important ingredient, it stores a high amount of moisture without making the soil wet. This prevents root rot and full fill the moisture demands of philodendron.
Watering Philodendron Ernestii
Water it once a week in the summer season and once in 15 to 20 days in the winter season. Check the soil to know the thirst of your plant.
Simply use your finger and check the soil moisture.
Water your plant when the top layers of potting soil are dry.
The important thing is the quality of water and your plant health. You will be surprised to know that water quality can make your plant thrive or dead.
Tap water in our homes contains chlorine in it. It is mixed by the water authorities to kill harmful bacteria.
This makes the water drinkable for us.
But chlorine is not a nutrient for plants. It gets collected at the base of the plant and sticks to the plant roots.
This reduces the absorption and transportation power of roots. As a result, your plant becomes unable to absorb water and nutrients.
This makes it a weak and easy target for pests and diseases.
Fertilizing Philodendron Ernestii
Fertilizers play important role in growing Philodendron Ernestii. It is a philodendron with large size leaves.
To grow its stems and leaves Ernestii needs a good amount of nitrogen, potassium, phosphorous, and other trace elements.
To full fill it’s nutritional needs you should use a normal houseplant fertilizer. Go for any brand because all general plant fertilizers are almost the same and are less expensive.
You need nitrogen in high amounts. It is used to grow green parts of the plant. Trace elements help to improve plant immunity.
Fertilizers have tons of benefits but overuse can kill your plant. So, use them in limited and after diluting them in fresh water.
To prevent overfertilization, stop feeding your plant in the winter season. Use them in spring and summer once on 30 days.
Our normal home temperature is comfortable for this plant. You don’t have to do anything about it.
Just for your knowledge, keep in mind that Philodendron Ernestii feels comfortable between 55 to 85 degrees F.
Next, it cannot survive in forests and cold winds. If the grow room temperature is low, place a mat under the plant.
If possible, cover the sides of the pot with a warm cloth.
But the best solution is to move it to a warm place. Don’t place it near the heat vents because hot air is also damaging to it.
For Philodendron Ernestii care keep the humidity above 40%. Ideally, it needs high humidity above 70%. But it can survive in moderate air moisture.
This is good for us and it is the reason philodendrons are easy to grow indoors.
You should buy a hygrometer to measure the humidity of your home. Then choose a warm and humid place for your philodendron.
I use this same method to find suitable for Alocasias and Monsteras.
In case your hygrometer shows low humidity then use a pebble tray. Put it under your plant pot and fill it with tap water.
The next best solution is a plant humidifier. This device is easily available on Amazon.
Repot P. Ernestii once in 2 years if you are using organically rich soil otherwise once a year. Check for repotting signs like roots visible over the soil.
Lift the pot and repot it if the roots are growing out of the drainage hole.
- Unpot your plant and take and new pot and fresh soil.
- Remove soil from its roots and wash them with water.
- Cut the infected and dry parts of the roots.
- Take a new pot place your plant in it and fill it with fresh soil.
- Add some water and put it back in its place.
Occasional pruning is required to keep this plant healthy. In this process remove the dead parts and yellow leaves.
Use sharp shears and wear garden gloves while working on your plant.
Do not use these plant parts in compost. Throw them in the garbage.
Also, wipe plant leaves with a damp cloth to keep their leaves disease-free. Keep the plant container neat and clean.
It is mildly toxic to pets and humans. The sap of this plant is toxic and chewing and eating its parts results in toxicity.
Excessive drooling, vomiting, skin irritation, etc are signs of its toxicity.
Call the poison control center or doctor for help.
Philodendron Ernestii Propagation
Most of the philodendrons can be propagated with the stem-cutting method. There are a few philodendrons whose propagation is possible with root division.
Philodendron Ernestii is one of them.
- Water your plant a day before propagation.
- Unpot your plant and remove soil from its roots.
- Now divide its roots into sections. Use a knife to cut the root divisions.
- Each divided section is a different plant.
- Plant each division in a different container and you are done with propagation.
- Add some water and place the new container in bright light.
- The second method of propagation is stem cutting.
Troubleshooting Philodendron Ernestii
Pests are common in houseplants. They attack those plants that are unhygienic and weak. Use fresh water and liquid organic nutrients to make your plant strong.
Also, keep it clean and use neem oil to prevent fungal and bacterial diseases.
But in case your plant got infected then use pest-killing soap to rinse your plant. For the first few days, you can see some weaknesses in your plant,
But it will heal itself in a week.
Yellow Turning Leaves
Bottom leaves are old leaves and turning yellow and falling off the plant is normal. But if the leaves at the top of the plant are turning yellow.
This means there is something wrong with the plant roots.
Unpot your plant and check the roots. Cut the decaying parts and repot them in the same pot after washing it with soap.
But use fresh soil, throw the old soil it is not useful anymore.
Your plant is growing slow means there is a problem with light conditions. It is not getting enough light to full fill its hunger.
Because plants need light to make their food through photosynthesis. Lack of sufficient stores of glucose results in smaller leaves and slow growth.
Move your plant to a bright place and it will heal itself in a few days.
Small and large brown decaying spots on leaves indicate bacterial infection. Contaminated soil also triggers this problem.
Because the pathogens in the soil climb on the plant and destroy its leaves.
Copper fungicides are the only solution to this problem. Read the instructions before using them. If there is only one leaf that is infected.
Cut it from the plant and sterilize the soil also spray neem oil to prevent further infection.
Philodendron Ernestii needs moderate bright light. Normal home humidity is enough to grow this plant.
Just take care of potting soil and add some organic material to the soil formula.
Neem oil spray helps to prevent diseases and pests.