The Dazzling Moonlight Philodendron: Origins, Care and Tips - Absolute Gardener

The Dazzling Moonlight Philodendron: Origins, Care and Tips

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moonlight philodendron

Moonlight philodendron is an exotic looking plant that is becoming more and more popular. It’s a great option for anyone looking to spice up their home with something new, or even add some interest in the office environment. But moonlight philodendron isn’t just about its looks: this plant has many benefits and purposes! Read on to learn more about moonlight philodendron care, moonlight philodendrons origins, and moonlight philodendron tips.

What is a Moonlight Philodendron?

The moonlight philodendron for short philo moonlight, is a fast-growing climbing plant. It can grow up to 20 feet high if given the right conditions. It is a hybrid plant that was bred to have the desirable characteristics of both parents. The moonlight part comes from its glossy, waxy leaves with yellow and green coloring on top. The philodendron side gives it immaculate branching patterns and larger flowers than you might expect for such an arborescent plant.

Origins of Moonlight Philodendron Plant

The moonlight philodendron has an unusual origin story: it was first discovered by a Brazilian cattle rancher, Francisco Alves de Lima and are native to the lowlands of South America, where they grow in rainforests near rivers and streams. They can live for a long time if cared for properly, but moonlight philodendron plants might not make it through colder months indoors (though there have been reports of moonlight philodendrons living for years in greenhouses). The moonlight philodendron has been popularized in the United States and other countries because of its vibrant colors and low maintenance needs.

moonlight philodendron

Moonlight Philodendron Plant Care Guide

As philodendron moonlight care is not complicated, moonlight philodendrons are a great houseplant for those who don’t have much green thumb. Here are some moonlight philodendron care guides.


The moonlight philodendron needs a soil that is not too rich in nutrients. The moonlight philodendron prefers acidic soils, so this might be why the moonlight philodends enjoys being grown outdoors. Moonlight Philoedndrons grow well in richer and looser potting mix which provides plenty of air to the roots. Potting mix with peat moss are better for moonlight philodendron than soil mixes that contain too much clay.


Most philo moonlight plant prefer bright, indirect light. Direct sunlight can scorch the leaves and cause them to dry out too quickly. Most moonlight philodendron plants do not tolerate full sun well at all; moonlight philodendrons should be placed in a sunny spot only if it is filtered by curtains or blinds.

Outdoor moonlight philo plants should be kept in a shady spot where they can receive some direct morning sunlight and four hours of moonlight per day to grow properly, but if you live on the west coast it will not get any significant moon light at all. In order to provide moonlight for plants on the west coast, use a fluorescent light that mimics moonlight and turn it on at dusk.

If you live in a cloudy area where moonlight is hard to come by or do not want to purchase an artificial moonlight then consider planting your moonlight philodendron near windows during summer months when moonlight is strongest.


The moonlight philodendron should be watered less than other plants. While the moonlight philodendron needs water for survival, too much can lead to root rot and the eventual death of the plant.

The best way to tell if your moonlight is thirsty is by checking its soil or leaves – when dry, it will feel powdery and if the moonlight philodendron needs water, it will droop.

If your moonlight has been neglected or left in a dry environment for too long, you may have to soak them but be sure not to overwater afterwards. A good rule of thumb is to wait until the moonlight’s soil feels dry before watering again.

In order to water moonlight philodendrons, you will need a good watering can or hose with a spray nozzle attachment. Fill up the container at least halfway and use it for your moonlight until its soil feels wet but not soggy then stop filling it up so that there is less chance of overwatering. When moonlight is watered, the water should be poured over the surface of its roots so that it doesn’t come in direct contact with them and cause root rot.

moonlight philodendronTemperature

One of the most important moonlight philodendron care tips is to provide a stable temperature. If moonlight philodendrons are kept in excessively warm or cold temperatures, they will not flower and may experience leaf drop. A good rule of thumb for finding out what the best moonlight philodendron temperature should be is by finding out what the temperature is in your home. A moonlight philodendron should be kept within five degrees of that temperature to make sure it stays happy and healthy! They generally prefer temperatures between 60 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit (15-32 Celsius).

If moonlight philodendrons are too hot, their leaves will turn brown or black from the tips down to the base of the plant. If moonlight philodends are too cold, they may have a hard time absorbing enough water through their roots which can cause wilting and drooping on parts of its leaves.

If you’re having trouble figuring out the moonlight philodendron temperature, consider buying an electronic thermometer or using a soil thermometer to measure the temperature of your moonlight’s roots and air conditioner units as well!


Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. In a moonlight philodendron’s natural habitat, humidity levels are between 65% and 75%. You can increase it by placing your moonlight philodendron on top of a humidifier or next to running water.


Fertiliser, or plant food as it is sometimes called, can vary in quality. The best type of fertiliser for moonlight philodendrons will be a mix of urea and nitrogen containing compounds such as ammonium nitrate (21-0-0) or potassium nitrate (13-32-0). Nitrogen fertilisers are essential for moonlight philodendrons as they help to promote a healthy green colour and lush growth.

When handling plant food, always wear gloves in order to avoid transferring any dirt or bacteria onto the moonlight philodendron leaves.


The moonlight philodendron is not toxic to animals, but it the sap can cause skin irritation in some individuals. If you have sensitive skin or are prone to allergies, be sure to wear gloves when working with moonlight philodendron plants and wash your hands after touching them.


Moonlight philodendron plants do not usually need to be pruned, but you may choose to trim them back periodically. You’ll want to cut off any dead leaves or branches that are poking up from the soil level and cutting back excessive growth on large moonlight trees can help prevent some of the branches from breaking off.

Propagation and Growth

Moonlight philodendron is propagated by layering. This means to take a cutting from the plant, put it on top of moist soil and cover with plastic wrap or clear lid for up to six weeks while roots form. Remove the plastic wrap or lid, then water well so that there are about two inches of moisture in the potting soil. When new roots appear, moonlight philodendron can be transplanted to a pot with moist potting soil.


It is important to repot moonlight philodendrons every year or so. The soil will start compressing and the roots of moonlight philodends may have started growing through the drainage holes at the bottom of pot which can lead to root rot, dying leaves, yellowing foliage and other problems.

It is suggested that moonlight philodendron be potted in a clay pot to avoid the risk of root rot. Clay pots are more porous and better at wicking away water than plastic containers which can lead to over watering issues. The best time for repotting moonlight plants is during spring before new growth starts, or when the moonlight philodendron seems to be wilting. Repot in a pot one size larger than it has been previously potted in and use fresh potting mix that is well draining.

Plant Disease

Moonlight philodendron are susceptible to a variety of plant diseases, the most common ones being leaf spot and root rot. Leaf spot is characterized by brown spots or blotches on leaves that eventually turn black. The best way to protect against it is regular garden cleanups, especially in humid environments where molds thrive.

Moonlight philodendron are also susceptible to various insects, the most common ones being thrips and spider mites. Thrips have small bodies with wings that create a buzzing sound when they fly. Spider mites tend to enter moonlight philodendron’s foliage in rainy environments due to their ability to swim.

Philodendron Moonlight vs Lemon Lime

Philodendron moonlight and lemon lime are two of the most popular varieties of philodendrons. Philodendron moonlights have a beautiful white leaf with darker green veins, while their lemony counterparts tend to be more yellow in coloration (though there is some variation between plants). This article will look at what makes these two plants different, how to care for them and which one is best suited to your home.

The moonlight variety prefers more shade than lemony lime, but both are sensitive to strong sunlight which will dry them out quickly. If you live in an area where the summers get really hot or have windows that face south with direct sun exposure, moonlight philodendron is not the best choice for you. Philodendrons prefer humid environments and require consistent watering to stay healthy. The moonlight variety prefers a lot more water than lemony lime which can be useful in less hospitable climates

Philodendron Moonlight vs Golden Goddess

Moonlight Philodendron is a hybrid of two different types, Eucalyptus and Golden Goddess. It has a moon shaped leaf which should be green with red veins running through it when mature; they are also thickened in their center area as opposed to thinning out at the edges like other types of philodendrons.

Golden Goddess is more rare because it was discovered in the rainforest and only a few specimens were able to be brought back for cultivation. It has thick, deep green leaves with very intense gold veins running through them; they are also moon shaped with red veining as well but not quite as bright or noticeable.

Both moonlight and Golden Goddess have some truly unique features that make them a coveted plant for any home or office. These include: brightly colored leaves, thick stems with greenish white undersides, moonshaped leafs (with moon shaped flowers as well) which makes it very aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

Moonlight Philodendron Variegated

Moonlight philodendron variegated is the most popular moonlight philodendron variety. They are a type of houseplant that thrives in low light conditions and can be grown indoors or outdoors. They have thick, shiny leaves made up from spoon shaped leaflets on long stems (petioles)

Their leaves are glossy and dark green with patches of yellow, white or pink on the upper surface and can grow to be between 18 inches and 36 inches tall depending on growing conditions (potted vs hanging basket). A mature variegated moonlight philodendron will produce long trailing vines that can climb up to 30 feet.

Common Issues with Moonlight Philodendron

Moonlight philodendron plants are beautiful additions to any home, but they require quite a bit of care. Since moonlights can be sensitive creatures, it is important you know how to deal with common moonlight-philodendron issues. The most common problem moonlight philodends have tend to arise from low light levels and neglect.

Be sure moonlight plants get plenty of light, whether it’s natural or artificial from a grow-lamp. Lack of sufficient lighting will cause the plant to become lanky and leggy. Too much light can also be an issue for moonlights because they are prone to sunburn just like other houseplants, so provide moonlight philodendrons with a few hours of filtered light during the day and some moonlight in their night time hours.

Make sure moonlights are watered regularly, but do not over water them. You should only need to water moonlights every two weeks or so as long as they have been given plenty of natural humidity from things like a humidifier.

Lastly, moonlights require a well-drained potting soil mixture and should be fertilized every four weeks with an indoor plant fertilizer. Too much or too little of either one can cause moonlight philodendron problems.

Tips for Keeping Moonlight Philodendron Happy

Moonlight philodendrons are relatively easy to propagate, but they usually grow taller than most other types of house plants, so moonlight philodendron plant care can be quite a challenge. The following tips will help keep the moonlight philodendron happy:

– Place moonlight philodendron in a well-lit spot, but avoid direct sunlight.

– Do not water moonlight philodendron too often or allow the soil to dry out completely; keep it moist and check for drainage problems if you notice root rot.

– Feed moonlight philodendrons with diluted liquid fertilizer every two weeks.

– Trim moonlight philodendron leaves regularly to keep it looking tidy.

– If moonlight philodendrons get too big, trim them back by half and allow the cut parts to dry out before placing in a pot with moist soil or reattaching them to their original plant for new growth.

Moonlight Philodendron Frequently Asked Questions

Is Philodendron moonlight toxic?

Moonlight philodendron is not toxic. They contain calcium oxalate crystals that can irritate the mouth and throat, but these are found in all parts of a moonlight philodendron plant including its leaves. Only ingestion of large quantities or raw moonlight stem or moonlight roots can be toxic, and moonlight philodendrons should not be eaten in any case.

How do you prune a moonlight Philodendron?

Moonlight Philodendrons should be pruned by removing the weaker, less vigorous stems first. They will not grow back if you sever them completely off at their base.

Moonlight Philodendra are often cut down to within a few inches of the soil line in order to rejuvenate them. They should be trimmed at a 45 degree angle just above the node where leaves are growing to promote more branching and maintain plant shape

How often should I water my moonlight plant?

The moonlight philodendron should be watered when the top layer of soil is dry. If you are unsure, stick your finger into the pot and feel if it’s wet or not. If there is a little bit left in the middle, then wait to water until that dries out too before watering again! Once every two weeks is usually enough.

Why is my moonlight Philodendron yellow?

If moonlight philodendron’s leaves develop yellow spots, it is likely due to moisture problems or an infestation of aphids. Yellowing leaf tips on moonlight philodendron typically occur when plants are not watered enough and the soil becomes dry as a result.

Is Philodendron moonlight a climber?

No, moonlight philodendron is not a climber. The moonlight philodendron plant has roots and typically grows as an epiphyte.

How do you take care of a moonlight Philodendron?

  • moonlight philodendron plants need bright, indirect light
  • moonlight philodendrons need moist soil and plenty of water
  • moonlight Philodendron plants should be fertilized about once every three months with a standard liquid houseplant fertilizer
  • moonlight philodendrons require temperatures between 65°F and 75°F


The moonlight philodendron is a beautiful plant that can brighten up any room. It’s origins are in the rainforest and it provides many benefits to homeowners, such as improving air quality with its photosynthesis process. The moonlight philodendron needs very little care because of its low water requirements. These plants only need to be watered once a week, and the moonlight philodendron also rarely needs fertilizer. The moonlight philodendron is perfect for people with busy schedules who don’t have time to care for plants or those looking for low maintenance plants!

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