How to Care for Philodendron ‘Brasil’

Philodendrons are arguably the most popular genus of houseplants in today’s market. Their allure is completely understandable, there are hundreds of species and even more cultivars, each more beautiful than the last. Many of the Philodendrons are easy care plants which ups their appeal that much more. The Philodendron hederaceum ‘Brasil’ certainly falls into the “easy care” category which makes them basically perfect for any plant parents, new or experienced.

Philodendron ‘Brasil’ may be in a lot of homes, but it is easy to see why.

If you are new to Philodendron hederaceum, this article should give you some guidance. We will discuss; watering, light, best location in the house, temperature, fertilizer, humidity, flowers, insects, diseases, pruning, propagation and toxicity.

Philodendron ‘Brasil’ only has a few synomyns including Philodendron hederaceum ‘Brasil’ and Brasil Philodendron.

Watering – Water deeply but only once the soil has dried out in the pot. Using a finger or moisture meter to check the moisture level is a must. I make sure that the potting mix is dried out down several inches before I even consider watering. Also, a drainage hole in the planter is a must. Make sure to provide it a fast-draining potting mix and let all excess water drain out of the pot after watering. I have found that bottom watering this plant works really well.

Light requirements – Medium light is all that is needed for this plant. Direct sun will burn a Philodendron Brasil’s leaves. You will know the appropriateness of your light levels just based on the coloration of the leaves. If the leaves begin to be mostly green with very little or no chartreuse coloring, your plant needs a brighter location in the house. Direct sunlight is not recommended.

Best Location in the House – Place P. ‘Brasil’ directly in a North facing window and it will love you forever. If you don’t have a North window in your home, place it a few feet away from an East or West facing window (3-4 feet should be appropriate).

Temperature requirements – Like most houseplants, this Philodendron will live happily in the same temperatures that we humans like to live in.

Fertilizer – Dilute fertilizer by half. Apply fertilizer beginning in March as a general guideline. I personally use fertilizer from spring until fall and give the plant a break from fertilizer during winter.

Humidity – Normal household humidity levels are completely appropriate. However, if you own a humidifier, this plant will tend to grow more quickly in higher than average humidity.

Flowers – Philodendrons do not produce blooms until they are very mature. Like almost two decades mature. Once a Philodendron has reached the age of 15-16 years old, they will produce their first blooms. The blooms are quite unique and if you have the chance to see some at a botanical garden or other location, I highly recommend it. They can be pollinated by hand once the blooms have heated up. (Yes, the blooms create heat of up to 114 degrees Fahrenheit to attract scarab beetles that act as Philodendron pollinators in nature.)

Insects – Philodendron ‘Brasil’ is a fairly easygoing plant and I haven’t experienced any pest issues personally. If you do experience pests on your ‘Brasil’, they will probably be either mealy bugs, aphids, scale or spider mites. And most likely, the “plague” will have spread from a nearby infested plant.

Diseases – There aren’t many diseases to list here because Philodendron ‘Brasil’ is a robust and generally healthy plant. Two diseases that may occur are root rot and bacterial leaf spot.

Pruning – Since P. ‘Brasil’ is a vining plant, there are plenty of opportunities for pruning. You can prune to shape your plant or to encourage “thicker” growth from the top of the plant. Pruning cuts are also an easy way to propagate your plant.

Propagation – I prefer to propagate my vining Philodendrons by cuttings. Simply cut off a leaf, leaving the node intact, and plant in soil. They can go straight into soil, but if you like water propagating to see root growth, you can pop your cuttings into a glass or small vase of water. Once they have some roots between 1-2″ long they can be planted in potting mix.

Toxicity – Philodendron plants are toxic to dogs, cats and humans. All parts of Philodendrons have small crystalized minerals that can cause swelling in the throat, tongue and lips, difficulty swallowing and vomiting.

Philodendron ‘Brasil’ in particular could be very tempting to a curious child or playful cat because of its tendency to trail long beautiful tendrils that could hang in reach. My advice is to keep this plant well trimmed and up on high shelves if you have any creatures, human or otherwise, who may find it enticing.

Link to my Etsy shop, Matilda and Clementine which often (but not always) has Philodendron ‘Brasil’ plants available.

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Mercy, peace and love be multiplied to you.

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Products I use and (therefore) recommend:

Planty friends – Feel free to use these links to the products that I use for my houseplants.  I receive a small percentage of any sales through these links, so feel free not to use them if that bothers you.

Horticultural 1/4” pumice – https://amzn.to/2KfcNPT

Horticultural perlite – https://amzn.to/3f9wwvE

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Coco Loco potting mix – https://amzn.to/2UHV3OY

GE Balanced Spectrum grow light bulb – https://amzn.to/3fdeAAu

Monios L LED grow lights – 2 ft. – https://amzn.to/391NmeS

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Full disclosure – the last four product links will be much cheaper if you can find them in your local garden center.  I’ve put them here so that you can see what they are called and what they look like, but I’d advise that you buy from these links only as a last resort.

References for this article:

(2021). Philodendron hederaceum.  Kew Science. Plants of the World Online. http://www.plantsoftheworldonline.org/taxon/urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:87797-1

Wilkinson, S. (2016, June 4). Philodendrons in bloom. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.  https://www.lewisginter.org/philodendrons-bloom/#:~:text=Philodendrons%20are%20only%20open%20for,the%20middle%20of%20the%20night.

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