What is Philodendron Verrucosum?
This exotic Philodendron Verrucosum plant looks like something right out of a Jurassic film. If you can picture a dinosaur with watermelon skin, it’s the closest thing to what it could look like.
There are countless varieties of Philodendron Verrucosum, but at least two distinct forms can be differentiated by the red or green color on the underside of the leaf blade.
A mature Verrucosum plant can be identified by its large-spade-shaped leaf blade; dark green velvety (Velutinous) surface with bright to light green veins.
The underside of the leaf blade is a stained purple-red or dark green with the stalk (Petioles) round and purplish in color, covered by hair (Pubescence) from top to bottom.
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The Philodendron Verrucosum is understood to be a Hemiepiphyte that spends part of its life as an Epiphyte.
These plants begin their life cycle by having their seeds planted on branches and trunks of a tree, usually from bird droppings. As it matures, it sends down roots to the soil in search of another host tree to climb on (Hemiepiphytic).
It then spends part of its life growing attached to a host tree for physical support without harming or drawing any nutrients (Epiphytic), restarting its life cycle in search of another host tree and/or through seed dispersal.
The Verrucosum Plant is part of the Araceae family also known as the Arum/Aroid family. Their subfamily is Aroideae, the genus is Philodendron and the species is Verrucosum.
Primarily originating from the South American rainforests of Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, and Colombia. Much of it can be found in the pre-mountainous regions of the Andes.
Young immature leaf blades appear light green. And when grown under ideal conditions, large spade-shaped leaves can reach anywhere between 28cm to 75cm long and 19cm to 65cm wide.
Growth seems to appear faster in the winter months when temperatures remain at a constant range between 15.5C to 21C (60F to 70F).
Huge mistake growers tend to make is to pot this plant without providing a surface to climb on. Not only does this significantly inhibit its growth, but it stops this plant from really showing its true beauty and blade size
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If grown under optimal conditions and given a climbing surface/pole, this plant can easily stand over 3 feet (90cm) in height.
Philodendron plant leaves can cause irritation to the eyes and gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the stomach and intestines when ingested due to the calcium oxalate crystals in the leaves.
Best to be kept out of pets and children’s reach!
How to Care for Philodendron Verrucosum Indoors?
This plant would require a little more care than usual indoor plants. Listed below are basic Verrucosum care tips focused mainly on beginners who want to care and provide the essentials.
This is a plant that thrives in a slightly warm and very humid environment, with the most ideal location being in a terrarium.
But don’t let that put you off as it is still possible to grow these plants indoors, just make sure you provide a pot and a surface for it to climb on such as a Spaghnum moss pole.
One of the most common failures beginners tend to make is not to get the right potting mix.
Providing a well-draining potting mix with chunky ingredients ensures your plant roots get proper aeration to avoid water lodging.
There are two ways you can go about this, you can either:
1. Purchase a premix
You can purchase your premixed aroid potting mixture from your local garden store or online. Look for ones that are well-draining and you’re good to go.
2. Make it yourself.
A ratio of 3-3-3-1, ensuring you use the same size container when mixing the ratio.
– 3 parts premium potting mix/peat-based potting mix/soil
– 3 parts orchid bark
– 3 parts perlite
– 1 part activated horticultural charcoal (Guards the soil against bacteria, fungus, and rot).
Keep in mind, this plant likes its soil slightly acidic, maintain a pH level between 5.1 to 6.0. Give it a good shake and start potting away.
In the dense canopy of the rainforest, the trees would act as a filter taking most of the heat and direct sunlight.
You can increase the amount of light exposure and growth rate in the winter months by placing LED lights for the least amount of 10 hours a day.
Your potting mixture should be fast draining and compact enough to allow for quick root absorption.
During the summer, keep your watering schedule on a daily basis, and during winter, almost every other day.
Check the top 2 inches of the soil for any dryness, any further requires watering. For further accurate readings, you can use a moisture meter.
You would think the warmer the climate the better, think again. An important Philodendron Verrucosum care tip is to place close attention to the temperature and humidity.
This plant prefers slightly cooler climates due to its natural habitat in elevated regions ranging from 50 to 2000 meters above sea level.
Maintain an optimum temperature between 18.3C to 29.4C (65F to 85F), whilst trying to keep it more on the cool side.
And if there does come a time when your plant has to face freezing conditions, make sure temperatures don’t reach below 4.5C (40F) as that will lead to its ultimate demise.
Use a hydro thermometer to get precise reading and measurements to ensure optimal plant growth
In order to provide the ultimate Philo Verrucosum care, keep this plant in a terrarium or a greenhouse at 90% humidity level and watch it thrive.
And if that seems a bit too far-fetched, you can still maintain a 60% humidity level and your plant will still be happy but not fantastic.
How Do You Grow Philodendron Verrucosum?
There are 3 main ways you can go about growing your own Philo Verrucosum:
– Stem cuttings
– Air layering
The seeding method will not be discussed as it can get quite complex and would require you to have a higher level of experience and knowledge.
This is the most common method for growing new plants from cut stems. The aim is for you to have cuttings with nodes on them, as that is where roots will begin to develop.
There are 3 mediums you can place your cuttings in for root development:
– Moss perlite
I will be discussing the water medium as I find it to be the easiest and quickest.
The best season to propagate with a higher chance of success rate is to do it in the spring and summer seasons.
1. Select a section of your plant that looks the healthiest with the most beautiful leaves.
2. Making sure there is at least one node, with a sharp knife or some gardening shears, cut off a stem with its leaf 3 – 4 inches from below its node.
3. Place your cutting in a glass of water and place it in a warm and humid environment to encourage root development
4. Wait 3 – 4 weeks and your cutting will start to develop roots. (Make sure you change the water once a week to reintroduce oxygen to your cuttings)
5. Once roots are fully formed and 2 – 3 inches long, transplant your cutting into the soil.
Place your cuttings in propagating test tubes while your plant develops roots as well as being aesthetically pleasing
Air layering alongside stem cutting is an effective propagation method when done correctly.
Encouraging your plant to develop roots on its nodes and then cutting, significantly increases your chance to propagate your plant successfully.
1. Select a stem that looks straight and vigorous, ensuring you have at least 30cm on the stem of your plant.
2. Using plastic cling film and some string or zip ties, wrap the stem with the cling film 1 inch below a node and seal the lower end.
3. Fill the wrapping sleeve with MOIST soil or sphagnum moss to a thickness of 0.5 to 1 inch.
4. Seal off the upper end and wait for 3 to 4 weeks until you see root form emerging to the surface of your wrapping sleeve.
5. Remove the wrapping sleeve and cut just below the rooted section. Making sure you don’t remove the soil or moss from the roots, place it into a new potting container.
Scorched and Curling Leaves
There could be various reasons for this with the most common mistake first-timers tend to make is to place their Verrucosum Philodendron plant in direct sunlight causing sun damage to the leaves.
Acclimatize and build up your plants’ tolerance when moving to an area of direct sunlight. Limit the amount of light exposure to an hour a day for 3 to 4 days and slowly build up until fully acclimatized.
Alternatively, use window blinds or mesh nettings to filter out direct sunlight exposure.
Yellowing Of The Leaf
A warning signal indicating “I’m overwatered!”
Check your soil and under your pot to see if it has proper water drainage. If your soil still remains moist after 1 week of watering, you will need to consider changing the soil mix or the pot. See Soil
Alternatively, you might be watering way too often as needed. But normally that shouldn’t be a problem if you have proper water drainage.
Footnote, improper drainage, and long-term soggy soil can lead to root rot. Remedy the problem as soon as possible and prevention is better than cure.
Drooping and Wilting Of The Leaf
The 3 main factors that can contribute to this:
As obvious as it may be, you may not be watering your plant as frequently as needed. Get watering if you haven’t already!
Keeping in temperatures above 30C can leave your plant with a heat stroke. Remember, the cooler the better. See Temperature
Your plant may have outgrown its current container and will need repotting into something bigger.
Generally, this plant is fairly resistant to most pests, however, keep on the lookout for spider mites, mealybugs, scales, thrips, and whitefly.
Consider using natural home remedy pesticides such as Neem Oil, Chili/Garlic spray solution, Apple Cider mixture, or Tobacco infusion.
There are literally hundreds of different Philodendron Verrucosum types and varieties out there.
This is mainly due to the fact that plant enthusiasts and collectors tend to create hybrids by cross-breeding with other varieties to achieve specific looks and characteristics and not to mention natural varieties that can already be found in the dense jungle of the rainforest.
Listed below are a handful of popular varieties out there:
1. Philodendron Verrucosum 5 (P. V. Choco Red, a much rarer variety)
2. Philodendron Verrucosum 2 (P. V. Ecuagenera 2)
Where Can You Buy Philodendron Verrucosum?
Check out your local florist or garden store for Philodendron Verrucosum for Sale before deciding to purchase online.
Not only is it best to support local businesses, but actually talking to someone in person especially from a professional can help you learn from their experience and mistakes.
Alternatively, sites that offer international shipping:
6. Toh Garden
After giving that a try, check out independent vendors online selling Verrucosum for Sale on sites such as Etsy, Amazon, eBay, and Facebook.
Keep in mind though, buying from independent vendors can go one way or another. Always check their authenticity, reviews, and reputation.
And for more search results with competitive prices, key in your search engine “Verrucosum Harga” meaning Verrucosum Price in Indonesian. This will provide you with a wider list of vendors from Indonesia and neighbouring countries within the region.
Give It a Try!
It’s a plant that requires much attention, and if you’re willing to put in the effort, what you have amidst you is a beautiful climber that will continue to grow in size flaunting its exotic leaves for any eyes to marvel upon.
The ever-increasing amount of hybrids and varieties collectors continually breed for the Philodendron Verrucosum market will always leave you spoiled for an array of choices to select from.
Most importantly, this article should serve as a straightforward basic care guide, equipping any plant lover wanting to provide essential care to their Philodendron Verrucosum plant.