Philodendron Verrucosum: Care Guide and Common Problems - Absolute Gardener

Philodendron Verrucosum: Care Guide and Common Problems

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Philodendron Verrucosum

Philodendron verrucosum is a philodendron that has wavy, raised bumps or “warts” on the leaves. They are also called elephant’s ear philodendrons because of their large size and wrinkled texture. These plants are native to Brazil where they live in high humidity rainforests. They have been grown as indoor plants for many years due to their low light requirements and ability to thrive indoors with neglectful care. This article will talk about philodendron verrucosum care guide, common problems, tips on keeping philodendron verrucosum happy so it can grow healthy and strong!

What is a Philodendron Verrucosum?

Philodendron verrucosum is a philodendron plant that grows in the jungles of Brazil. It can be identified by its showy dark green coloured foliage and large, waxy leaves with raised bumps or “verucosums”. This type of philodendron also produces clusters of small, fragrant white flowers.

Philodendron verrucosum plants can grow up to 12 feet tall in their natural habitat and have a life span of about 20 years. It is easy to take care of philodendron verrucosums at home because they are resilient, low-maintenance houseplants that don’t require much light or water.

Philodendron verrucosum plants are not poisonous to humans, but philodendrons also contain calcium oxalate crystals that cause a burning sensation and swelling when they come into contact with sensitive tissues like the mouth or tongue.

Philodendron Verrucosum

Origins of Philodendron Verrucosum Plant

Philodendron verrucosum is a philodendron species that was first discovered in 1884 on the Caribbean island of Martinique. It has been found to be native to Barbados, Puerto Rico and Trinidad as well.

The plant can grow up to 15 feet tall with vines reaching lengths of 50 feet, philodendron verrucosum’s vines grow very quickly and are very strong. It has no flowers but produce fertile berries that can be eaten by humans (though there is evidence of toxicity).

Philodendron Verrucosum Plant Care Guide


Philodendron Verrucosum can be grown in a pot or directly in soil. It is best to use a heavy and well-draining potting mix with at least one part sand, gravel, perlite, vermiculite, and peat moss combined together. A philodendron should never have its roots sitting in water, so water frequently and then use a pot with drainage holes.

For philodendrons grown in soil (as opposed to container plants), the best placement is an area of shade or partial sun. If you are planting philodendron verrucosum directly into the ground, plant it deeply enough that all parts will receive plenty of water, but not so deep that the philodendron will get too wet.

Soil should be kept moist at all times and never allowed to dry out completely. When watering philodendrons directly in the soil, it is best to use a slow trickle from the faucet or hose about an hour after sunset because philodendron verrucosum prefer this time of day to absorb water.

Water philodendrons in containers often, but again be careful not to allow the soil to dry out completely. It is also important that philodendrons are never allowed to stand in a saucer filled with water for any length of time because they may rot.

Philodendron likes soil with a neutral or acidic pH of around six, but it can grow in a normal potting mix as well.


Philodendron verrucosum is an indoor plant. This philodendron can be very sensitive to too much light, so it’s important to make sure that the philodendron receives filtered sunlight or indirect natural light. Place a philodendron in front of a window with drapes drawn, facing away from the window, or near a door that is often left open. Philodendron verrucosum prefers bright indirect light. Avoid direct sun, as philodendron will scorch.


They will do well with watering two to three times a week, but philodendrons also favour their leaves to be sprayed regularly with water. It’s important that philodendron verrucosum is not over-watered or under-watered: both extremes can lead to philodendron perishing.

A philodendron verrucosum will let you know it needs water by drooping or leaf curling. If this happens, take a spray bottle and give your philodendrons a good misting with the nozzle close so that the leaves are covered completely in water.

Philodendron verrucosum prefers to be misted with water rather than sprinkled because philodendrons do not tolerate the change in humidity levels, which can cause their leaves to droop or curl.

The philodendrons grow well when they are given good amount of water (about one gallon every week) making sure that their roots do not dry out. The philodendron will grow to about four feet in height and width, depending on the type of philodendra that is being cultivated.


The philodendron verrucosum likes a temperature between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. If the philodendron is placed in too cold of an environment, the leaves will turn brown or black quickly. The philodendron also doesn’t like being exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods of time because it can dry them out and cause them to die.

You can easily grow philodendron verrucosum in average room temperature, but it prefers temperatures that are a bit cooler. It is said to be the most tolerant philodendron of all and will do well with short periods below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Planting philodendrons outside near a tree or under an overhang is a great way to keep philodendron verrucosum happy and healthy.


The philodendron verrucosum needs to be kept in a very humid environment with plenty of water. It should not dry out and it does need a high-humidity spot such as under the window or on top of the refrigerator where condensation is likely to occur. Philodendrons are sensitive plants that do best when they are misted or watered frequently. Use distilled water to keep them in a moist environment and you will notice that the philodendron verrucosum thrives even more.

It needs a humidifier that releases an abundance of water vapor, which can be found in the nursery section at your local hardware store.


Fertiliser is an important way to help philodendron verrucosum thrive. It doesn’t matter what kind of fertiliser you use, just that it has a balance of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK).

In general the best time for fertilising philodendrons is during their growing season. Follow the instructions on your philodendron fertiliser packet to determine how much fertilizer you need.

Always water well before applying and after using a fertiliser, as this will help release nutrients into philodendron plant’s soil more effectively.

Fertiliser: philodendron verrucosum needs a well-balanced fertiliser. There’s no need to feed philodendron every week, or even every month in the summer months. Feed it once per fortnight with an organic fertilizer and water afterwards.


Philodendron Verrucosum is not toxic to humans or other mammals, but it can be dangerous for birds. **Here are some tips to avoid philodendron toxicity in your pet bird:

Do NOT allow a bird on the floor of philodendron house plants’ areas because they might eat bits and pieces of philodendron. Keep philodendrons in areas where the birds are not allowed to fly or land on them, for example: away from windows and high up out of reach. Avoid places with bird feeders because they might eat bits of philodendron but also it may be possible that a hummingbird feeder is in philodendron territory.

Use a bird netting to cover philodendrons and keep the birds away. Keep philodendrons out of reach or off limits for your pet bird even if they do not eat them, because they might play with them and get stuck inside the leaves – the philodendron’s leaves are very sharp.


They can benefit from pruning. Prune philodendron verrucosums in the spring, before new growth emerges and after leaf drop. They should be trimmed back to a height of three inches by trimming leaves on stems that are longer than three inches. It should be trimmed back to the right height by trimming leaves on stems that are longer than three inches

They may bloom in spring with small, bell shaped flowers at the base of their leaf stalk and these can be cut off as they die back. They are usually grown in hanging baskets so they should be trimmed back to the height of the edge of the basket.

Propagation and Growth

Philodendrons can be propagated from a cutting or seed. They grow well in loamy soil with some compost mixed in and prefer moist conditions, although philodendra will thrive on the shady side of trees too. Propagate philodendron by severing a joint-length stem and replanting it in moist soil. In about two to three weeks, philodendra will shoot new vines from the severed cut end.

Propagate philodendron by seed. Place philodendra seeds on top of moist soil, and keep moist until a new philodendrons sprouts in about one to two weeks. Sow philodendra seeds thickly, remove the weakest plants after they start growing. New philodendrons will grow from the cut end of a stem


Since they thrive in humid, tropical environments. They will do best when they are kept near a window or other location that receives sunlight most of the day and also have plenty of room to grow.

Philodendrons can be repotted anytime during their active growing season. It is not recommended that philodendron verrucosums be repotted in the fall or winter months because they will have already fully established themselves and it is more difficult to get them acclimated to their new environment during those times of year.

Repot philodendron verrucosum in hole that is one larger than the root system.

It is important to use a potting soil or mix that does not compact when wet, such as bark chips, peat moss and perlite. Make sure philodendron has enough space so it can grow without being crowded by other plants next to it.

After philodendron verrucosum has successfully taken root, water the soil until is moist throughout and then place in a sunny spot or near a window to help maintain high humidity levels.

Common Issues with Philodendron Verrucosum

Many philodendron verrucosum problems are common to philodendon plants and include pests such as spider mites, aphids, mealybugs, or scale insects. It’s important to inspect your philodendron regularly for any of these occurrences so that you can address it before it happens.

Common issues amongst philodendrons are as such:

Spider mites can occur on philodendrons, especially when the plant is stressed. They are tiny spiders that feed off plants and leave behind webbing. You may notice a fine dusting of yellowish spots or webs in the leaves and between them. If you find any of these signs, it’s time to treat your philodendron.

Aphids and mealybugs can also feed off philodendrons, leaving behind a sticky coating that leaves the plant vulnerable to disease or other pests. Look for small insects on your philodendon’s stems and undersides of leaves. You’ll notice them by their suction cups attached to the stem, sucking out the philodendron’s sap.

Scale insects are often too small to spot, but you can see the large bumps that appear on stems and leaves when they’re there. You may also notice a yellowish coating of dust or even honeydew as these pests suck out philodendrons’ sap like aphids do. Treat your philodendron if you find any of these.

Once philodendron verrucosum’s problems are addressed, it will grow strong and healthy again! It may take a while for the philodendron to recover from its issues but don’t worry – philodendrons can go months without needing care before they need help.

Philodendrons can be a bit tricky to grow because they prefer high humidity and low light conditions. They also require repotting every few years, so make sure that the pot is big enough for it to grow in or else you might have problems.

The plants are tripped when the leaves turn brown. This is a sign that they need more humidity and light, but if this does not work then it might be time to repot them in a bigger pot or get rid of them. They grow new roots every year so make sure you repot them every year or two.

It’s philodendron roots can rot in a mix of peat and sand, so try not to use that mixture for its potting soil. They need more light than regular indoor plants because they’re getting all the nutrients from indirect sunlight – if you don’t have enough natural light near philodendrons, then they might need to be moved closer to a window or put on another light source

The leaves can also get brown spots which are usually the result of too much water. Philodendron plants do not like being in pots that are overfilled and moist. If you’re using a pot that is too big, then you will need to make sure it has drainage holes or else philodendrons can get root rot.

Their leaves and stems are toxic – not for humans but for birds (as mentioned before). So if your philodendron doesn’t have enough light, this may be a good option to keep birds away because they might nibble on philodendron leaves and then get sick. Another common problem is that they do not like cold drafts, so make sure the area where philodendrons are is warm enough for them.

They can also come in different colors: greenish yellow or even pink – these philodendrons are called “variegated philodendron”

You can use philodendrons as a natural mosquito repellent because they release chemicals that mosquitos do not like. However, this is only effective for outside plants and should not be used indoors.

Philodendron VerrucosumTips for Keeping a Philodendron Verrucosum Happy

Apart from all of the above to keep them happy, they also need plenty of light and prefer a soil mix that is high in organic material and low in salts, particularly ammonium sulfate or nitrates. They tend to grow best with regular watering.

When fertilizing the plant apply diluted liquid fertilizer every two weeks instead of once a week. THey should be watered thoroughly, but allow it to dry out slightly between watering. The soil should never become completely saturated with water.

Philodendron Verrucosum x Melanochrysum

Philodendron Melanochrysum is a philodendron with smooth, dark-green leaves that has an elegant and dramatic appearance. It thrives in humid environments such as bathrooms or kitchens where it can be placed near the windowsill to receive direct sunlight. Philodendron melanochrysum requires more care than philodendron verrucosum.

The Philodendron Melanochrysum will bloom with small, fragrant white flowers in the fall if you keep a few of them indoors for about six weeks during their blooming season.

Philodendron Verrucosum Frequently Asked Questions

Is philodendron Verrucosum rare?

Philodendron Verrucosum is actually a fairly common philodendron and has been in cultivation for over 200 years. It was originally discovered on the island of Saint Vincent in 1807 by botanist William John Burchell, who named it after its leaf texture, which reminded him of the verruca plant family.

How do you take care of a philodendron Verrucosum?

They require bright light, must be kept away from drafts and dry air and need a lot of water to stay healthy. They should never go completely without water for long periods of time. Anytime the soil feels dryish, just add more water until it’s soaked through.

This plant like to have a humid environment, misting the leaves with water is enough. Philodendrons should not be allowed to sit in standing water or get sprayed on their roots for long periods of time because they need air around the roots too. Also, keep them away from sources of heat.

Don’t forget to fertilise them every two weeks in the spring and summer with a liquid fertilizer. They are sensitive to fluoride, chlorine, ammonia, alcohols and cigarettes. They’re poisonous too if eaten so keep them away from animals or children.

Does Verrucosum grow fast?

Philodendron verrucosum grows quickly and will eventually grow to a height between 60-120 cm. However, philodendron verrucosum is not the fastest growing philodendron on earth; that award would go to philodendrons of the species Philadephia. These philodendra can grow up to 120 cm in the first year.

Do Philodendrons need a lot of light?

Philodendrons are not picky about how much light they receive. They will grow in both direct sunlight and low-light areas of your home with the philodendron verrucosum being able to take full sun exposure for at least 15 hours a day.

If you live in an area that doesn’t get more than five hours of sun a day, philodendrons are one of the few plants that can grow in low light with little to no problems.


As philodendron verrucosum grows in many different light areas, it is a great plant for anyone who does not know which direction to put philodendrons. It can grow both indoors and outdoors with little trouble as long as the philodendra receives enough water on a regular basis. If you are looking for an easy philodendron to grow philodendra verrucosum is a good option.

Read our other indoor faves: Pink Princess Philodendron and Neon Pothos

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