Philodendron Prince of Orange: Ultimate Care Guide, Tips and FAQs

Philodendron Prince of Orange
Philodendron Prince of Orange (Source: Pinterest)

Growing Philodendron Prince of Orange may take a little more effort than growing other houseplants.

However, every effort will seem worthwhile when you get the burst of unique colors in the broad leaves to enhance the decor!

As a general rule, caring for Prince of Orange requires balanced growing conditions; 65–80°F temperature, filtered sunlight, and at least 50% humidity, with balanced fertilizing every six weeks and repotting once in 2-3 years.

Prince of Orange
Prince of Orange (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Give extra attention to its growth habits similar to most tropical houseplants, so you can avoid costly mistakes that may damage the multi-colored leaves.

Read this article to find out how to best care for Philodendron Prince of Orange.

Philodendron Prince of Orange Overview

Prince of Orange is not your usual tropical plant because you would not find them in a natural setting.

A rare Philodendron-hybrid, it belongs to a tropical Araceae species known for its decorative foliage.

The name comes for its uniquely hued leaves that change colors from yellow to copper and orange tones and ultimately settle with a green shade.

Let us understand more about this unique hybrid houseplant.

Other NamesOrange Prince
NativeTropical Zone, Central America
USDAZone 10
NatureA tropical plant that enjoys a warm and humid climate
PruningTrim old or yellowed leaves and flower stalks
PropagationPropagate by tissue culture and plantlets
ToxicityToxic to humans and animals
ProliferationSelf-header Epiphyte that does not grow taller
Pest/DiseasesRoot rot, Rhizoctonia, and Bacterial Leaf Spot/ Aphids, Moths, Mealybugs, Gnats, Scales, Shore flies, and thrips

Now that you about the basics of the plant, let us delve deeper into how to care for them.

Is Philodendron Prince of Orange Difficult to Care For?

Growing Philodendron “Prince of Orange” indoors can be tricky because you need to recreate a tropical environment.

Philodendrons naturally grow under the shade on forest beds with high humidity and dislike soggy soil conditions.

Moreover, they prefer root-bound conditions to encourage the growth of feeder roots.

Keep these pointers in mind to make growing Prince of Orange an easy affair.

RequirementOptimum Condition
TemperatureEnsure to keep the temperature level between 65°F to 85ºF (18°C-27ºC).

Anything below 60°F can severely damage the plant.
Light RequirementThey do not mind the mild sunlight in the morning and late noon, but they do not do well in direct bright sunlight.

Ensure to provide at least 4-6 hours of filtered light or indirect sunlight every day.
Soil ConditionKeep the soil warm at all times by providing an adequate higher temperature, and avoid overly soggy and clay-mixed soil.
HumidityThey require a high level of humidity, at least 50%-60%

Mist the leaves frequently during the growing season to maintain the required humidity level.
WateringLet the top 1-2 inches of soil dry out between watering.

They enjoy evenly moist soil conditions but may not do well when overwatered.
FertilizingFertilize with diluted plant food, with balanced 10-10-10 strength bi-monthly or once a month during the growing season and once in two months in winter.
RepottingThey love root-bound conditions, so repot the plant on a larger container once every 2-3 years.

Repot only during spring and summer months.

Growing a Prince of Orange at home becomes relatively easy when you follow these tips.

If you expect to see a healthy plant with multi-color leaves, ensure to provide them with warm temperature, warm soil conditions, and enough humidity at all times.

However, your plant may face some grave issues of pests and diseases despite enough upkeep, which we will discuss later.

Philodendron Prince of Orange Complete Care Guide

When grown in the right conditions, Prince of Orange can extend up to 18-24 inches.

Providing enough optimum care and the right conditions will ensure that your Prince of Orange becomes the prestige of your home and office decor.

Here is everything you would need to know about your tropical plant.

1. Adequate Watering

The moistening need of Prince of Orange is similar to Calathea plants, where it only requires enough water to moisten the soil mix slightly.

An epiphyte with aerial roots, it takes up oxygen and nutrients from the air. Therefore, they hate sitting in too much water.

Watering the plant
Watering the plant (Source: Unsplash.com)

In fact, overwatering could be more damaging to the plant than underwatering.

Symptoms of Watering Problems

  • Both waterlogging and underwatering can cause the broad leaves to start turning yellow and brownish.
  • A combination of yellow and brown on the leaf is often due to overwatering.
  • If the leaves are entirely yellowish with some brown spots could be a result of underwatering.
  • The leaves start drooping when the plant receives too much or too little water.
  • The growth stops, and white, crusty layer stars appear on the soil surface when enough salt builds up in the soil.
  • Continuously using cold water may cause plant stress.

Solutions

  • The plant enjoys evenly moist conditions; hence water them only once a week during the growing season and once in two weeks in winter.
  • Depending on the pot size, you need to use 0.5 – 1 liter of water for deep-watering.
  • Introducing a self-watering device is a great idea to slowly release water into the soil by constantly checking the soil’s moisture level.
  • As per the rule of thumb, the 1-2 inch of topsoil should dry out between watering.
  • Check the soil dryness by inserting your index finger into the soil. Alternatively, you can use a soil moisture sensor to measure moisture and humidity.
  • Avoid severely drying out the soil that may choke the aerial roots.

Pro Tip: Use tepid or slightly warm water instead of cold water when moistening the plant.

2. Ideal Temperature

Prince of Orange is a warm-loving species, and it naturally thrives in temperatures that mimic the tropical environment of Central America.

TemperatureCondition
Below 55°F (13°C)Frigid temperature is not ideal for the plant. Ensure to provide at least 4-6 hours of filtered light or indirect sunlight.
55-65°F (13°C to 18°C)The plant can withstand some low temperatures. Overtly soggy soil will create waterlogging problems.
65-85°F (18°C to 27°C)An ideal temperature that will induce feeder root and foliage growth. They may survive drier air but may not look well.
Above 90°F (32°F)The extreme temperature may suck the sap dry and curl the leaves. Water when the top 1-2 inches of soil dries out.

The ideal temperature of 65 – 80°F keeps the soil warm for healthy feeder root growth.

However, it can tolerate extreme and cold temperatures, but too much of either can slow down the plant’s growth.

One of the earliest signs of a plant suffering from the cold draft is curling and browning leaves.

Leaving the plant in constant low temperature will gradually wither the plant causing its early death.

Here are a few ways to maintain adequate temperature.

  • Place them in a brightly lit place with indirect sunlight every day, but bring them indoors when the temperature drops below 60°F.
  • Keep your plant in the east-facing window where it can receive early sunlight.
  • Relocate it at least 4-feet from the window to avoid exposure to direct sunlight of noon.
  • It can effectively tackle hot temperatures but ensure to mist the leaves regularly to maintain the humidity.
  • Place them in a warm section of your home during winter and cover them with a black plastic when the temperature drops below 55°F (13°C)
  • For smaller plants, you can also use heating pads that keep the soil warm at all times.
  • Keep them away from cold blasts from windows and doorways and away from heat/AC vents.

3. Potting Soil Mix

Growing Prince of Orange requires a well-aerated soil mix that allows fast draining.

The airy pockets in the soil allow the feeder root to quickly obtain oxygen from the air and keep the epiphytic roots healthy.

Hence, you should naturally use airy potting soil with enough organic nutrients with mildly acidic levels (6.1 to 6.5)

Using the organic mix allows the plant to gradually suck nutrients from the soil without fertilizing for the first six months of potting.

Porous potting soil

When preparing a potting mix, add 50% of inorganic soil bases such as sand and 50% organic substrates on the top, such as peat moss, coco peat, leaf mulch, and compost.

Make a Potting Mix at Home

  • 1 part potting soil containing sand.
  • ½ part of coco peat
  • ½ part sphagnum peat moss
  • ½ part perlite or pumice
  • 1 part organic compost or worm castings for organic microbes

Alternatively, you can also choose a commercial potting mix Monstera Quick Drain Potting Soil, or Tropical plant potting soil.

4. Indirect Sunlight

Although Prince of Orange is a shade-loving plant, they equally need a sunny location with adequate indirect sunlight.

It is unlike any other houseplant. The hybrid tropical plant has an exact requirement for lighting that helps to get its signature unique leaf colors.

  • Provide at least 70-85% of filtered sunlight each day to help photosynthesis, providing unique colors to the plant.
  • They may not tolerate long hours of direct or bright sunlight as it may deplete the required humidity level. Hence, placing them on a shaded porch or balcony would be a great idea.
  • For best results, place your plant either on the east or west-facing window so that it can get mild sunlight either in the morning or evening.
  • During other times of the day, place it at least 4-feet away from sunlight to avoid leaf burns.
  • When there is naturally less sunlight in winter, consider putting them indoors under the LED grow lights for at least 8 hours a day.
  • Low lighting does not necessarily harm the plant but may interfere with the growth of broad leaves and the development of unique leaf colors.
  • Too many yellowing leaves may suggest that the plant is getting too much light, while long and leggy stems indicate a lack of sunlight.
Indirect Sunlight
Indirect Sunlight (Source: Unsplash.com

Pro Tip: Rotate your plant every few weeks to help it grow proportionately.

5. High Humidity

The plant warningly welcomes humid conditions as they help keep its sap and foliage hydrated.

They require at least 50% of humidity for best results in terms of growth and upkeep.

Placing them in a warm shaded location naturally mimics the tropical conditions.

Here are a few ways to help maintain the humidity level.

  • To help keep the humidity level high, consider misting the plant leaves during the growing season.
  • For best results, mist the leaves early morning to create a fine mist over the leaves.
  • During winter, mist the leaves three or four times a week only if indoor humidity seems low.

Alternatively,

  • Use a room humidifier to keep an optimum humidity level at all times.
  • Add a few houseplants to create a humid environment naturally.
  • Consider placing the pot on a pebble water tray to retain moisture when the water evaporates.
  • Placing the plant close to the bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room may also help retain humidity.
  • Using Terrarium, which automatically controls the humidity level, is one of the options, but it may only be suitable for young and small plants.

6. Balanced Fertilization

These hybrid plants enjoy regular feeding through spring, summer, and fall with a balanced liquid or granule fertilizer.

Ensure to fertilize your plant once in two weeks or once a month with mild houseplant food with micronutrients like calcium and magnesium.

Keep fertilization to growing seasons (spring and summer), but cut back on feeding in fall and winter when the plant becomes dormant.

The plants lacking in essential nutrients may start showing visible signs.

  • Slow growth and small leaf size indicated that the plant is not getting enough fertilizer.
  • Pale new leaves indicate that they are not getting enough calcium and magnesium.

Note: When fertilizing your plant, ensure to use a water-soluble or liquid-based balanced organic fertilizer like a 10-10-10.

However, do not forget to dilute the solution in water before applying to avoid root burns and excess salt levels in the soil.

Excess fertilizing may lead to saline toxicities to the soil and root causing stalled growth or even root damage.

Add one part of fertilizer to three or four-part of water to provide an optimum boost to the plant.

ProductSpecificationImage
Southern Ag All Purpose Granular FertilizerBest for indoor and outdoor houseplants.

Before applying, mix 1.4 or 1/2 teaspoons in a gallon of water.
Andersons PGF Balanced 10-10-10 Fertilizer
Contains quick-release nitrogen and 2% iron for extra-deep greening.
Botanicare HGC732110 Cal-Mag PlusA Calcium and Magnesium supplement for houseplants.

Simply add to water with fertilizer or use as spray right after fertilizing

7. Ideal Location

Prince of Orange ideally prefers a sunny location to grow, either a window, patio, or balcony.

When kept in an open area, place them a couple of feet away from direct sunlight. It perfectly grows in the east or west-facing corner in the house.

For a small plant, consider placing them in a bright tabletop or cabinet. As the plant grows more prominent, find a more appropriate location in the house.

Keeping them close to the bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room may help with required humidity levels.

However, avoid placing them in a damp location with no sunlight as too much moisture can wilt the plant leaves and invite root problems.

8. Say No to Flower

Although flowering is not unusual with Prince of Orange, they are rarely grown for blossoms.

You may witness small white flowers blossoming in the spring that are rarely harmful to the broad leaves, but you may dismay the flowers altogether.

It is entirely your choice to keep the flower or prune them. If you decide to keep the flower, let them bloom during the spring.

However, do not forget to prune them away when the flowers start fading to give your plant a tidy look.

You can carry this out while doing the yearly pruning in the growing season.

9. Growth Habits

These plants are not vine-like other philodendrons; hence, they grow only up to a height of 2 feet at most.

They are self-headers; therefore, many leaves may sprout from a single short stem.

The petioles are stacked close together, often making the stem hidden under the foliage, making them a magnificent tabletop plant.

To encourage even growth of the leaves, ensure adequate fertilizing and bright light during the growing season.

10. Common Pests

Philodendron Prince of Orange is prone to occasional pests like scales, mealybugs, and aphids.

Their lush, colorful leaves and rich sap will naturally attract common houseplant insects.

pothos plants attract bugs
Aphid on a leaf (Source: Unsplash)

Here is the list of common pests, problems, and their solutions.

PestsProblemsSolution
MealybugThey mostly infect root and foliage.

They suck the sap from the leaves, leaving them wilted and discolored.

1. Rinse the plant leaves with a soapy water solution.

2. Spray the plant with insecticidal soap.

3. Apply Neem Oil on the plant.
AphidsAphids are cricket-like creatures with back legs that suck up saps from the plant leaves and stems.

When the infestation grows, your plant wilt and starts dying.
1. Handpick and throw away each bug.

2. Planting Catnip will organically repel aphids from the plant.

3. Dip cotton in 70% isopropyl alcohol or ethanol and rub the infected parts.
Soil GnatsFungus gnats or soil gnats are small flies that infest waterlogged or contaminated soils.

They primarily feed on organic matter found in the soil
1. Apply insecticidal oil or soap on the infected part to immediately kill the crawling pests.

2. Mix four-part water and one part hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle, and spray directly onto the soil.
ThripsThrips are small, brown insects that mainly feed on leaves.

They mainly infect overwatered plants or those placed in damp locations.
1. Consider using a homemade spray of water mixed with mild garlic and chili pepper.

2. Use an insecticidal soap mixed with water and foliar spray on the plant twice a week.
ScalesScaly insects are tiny, waxy pests that infest on leaves.

Yellow or rust-colored spots will start developing on the leaves, and the sap will begin drying up.
Apply insecticidal oil or soap on the infected part to immediately kill the crawling pests.

Apply systemic insecticides as a foliar spray to control adult scale insects.

11. Common Diseases

Some common houseplant plagues may affect Prince of Orange when the soil condition and temperature are wrong.

Mainly after overwatering the plant or placing them in moist conditions will invite different diseases.

Here is the list of common horticultural diseases found in Prince of Orange.

PestsProblemsSolutions
Root rotDrooping and rapidly yellowing leaves, stunted growth and a rotten brown base is the primary sign of possible root rot.

Brown and mushy texture on the root is another sign.
Hold back on watering until the plant revives.

Prune the infected root with sterilized scissors, and repot it after bleach washing the pot.

Choose an appropriately sized container to prevent waterlogging.
RhizoctoniaRhizoctonia is an anamorphic fungus caused by Rhizoctonia solani fungus.

You will notice rusty-brown, dry lesions on stems close to the base.
Apply fungicides like fludioxinil (Medallion 50W), strobilurins, and benzimidazoles.

Prevent Rhizoctonia infestation by using a healthy potting mix and sterilized pots while repotting.

Avoid keeping them on the ground.
Bacterial Leaf spotLeaf spot is caused by bacteria called Pseudomonas cichorii.

It causes the appearance of yellow spots around the leaf.
Use a mild solution of bicarbonate mixed with water to wipe the plant leaves.

Or, use all-purpose fungicide and avoid overhead watering your plant that may help bacteria to spread.

12. Yearly Repotting

Prince of Orange is an epiphytic plant that loves root-bound conditions. Thus, avoid repotting them every year to encourage healthy feeder root growth.

The repotting of the Philodendron plant may depend on its size.

SizeWhen to Repot
Desktop plantRepot every 12-18 months.

Choose potting vessel 1-2” larger in diameter.
Floor plantRepot every 18-24 months.

Choose potting vessel 2-4” larger in diameter.

Here are a few things you need to remember when repotting your Prince of Orange.

  • They ideally would require repotting when the top gets heavy, and the roots will take up the entire pot.
  • A slowed growth is one of the early signs of severely root-bound plants.
  • You can switch to a slightly larger pot and change the potting mix with fresh soil when repotting.
  • Ensure to repot only during the spring and summer months when the plant is actively growing.
  • Trying to change the soil in winter may affect the plant’s roots, causing plant stress.

Here is How to Repot the Plant

  • Choose a container that is 2″ larger than the current pot to allow quick root-bound conditions.
  • Slide-out the plant using your hand and loosen the root ball.
  • Clear the root with some water and check for signs of decay, browning, and mushy problems.
  • Only half-fill the new container with the appropriate potting mix and carefully place the plant (root-down) inside.
  • Fill the pot with remaining potting soil and pat around the base.
  • Next, let it rest in a brightly lit location.

13. Plant Propagation

If you wish to propagate your plant, consider doing it in early spring when the plant is actively growing.

Follow the proper propagation method and provide adequate growing conditions to have another mature plant by the end of the year.

You can propagate the plant using the methods: stem cuttings and leaves cuttings. While leaves cutting works in some cases, it may not yield as good results as stem cuttings.

Overall, propagating Prince of Orange with healthy stem cuttings in the potting soil or water works best.

1. Propagation in Soil

Here is a guided approach to propagating the stem cutting in soil.

Step 1: Choose the proper stem cutting
  • Choose a mature plant with a settled root base.
  • Before repotting the plant to new soil, look for tiny plantlets with the exposed thick stem at the base.
  • Cut about 3-6 inch long piece from a healthy portion of the plant using a pruning shear.
  • Cut the stem at a 45-degree angle that will encourage roots to develop.
Step 2: Apply Rooting Hormone
  • Trim away any tiny leaf from the node. Next, apply the rooting hormone that speeds up the rooting process.
  • Apply rooting hormone to the trimmed end of the cutting and let it rest.
Step 3: Plant the Cutting
  • Prepare a potting mix in a small pot (3-4”) and poke a hole in the medium.
  • Place the stem in the growing medium and gently tap the soil around the plant to hold it upright.
Step 4: Provide Care
  • Place them in a brightly lit location with adequate humidity and indirect sunlight.
  • Spray water the soil twice a week to keep it moist
  • Cover the stem at night with a black plastic bag to retain enough warmth.
  • If everything is done correctly, you can expect the roots to develop within a month. Soon after, the shoot development will begin.
  • Once the leaves start sprouting, continue the usual watering, temperature, humidity, and fertilizing need to see the first set of broad leaves in about a year.

2. Propagation in Water

Follow the guided approach as before, but instead of planting the stem in soil, just dip it in a jar of water.

Leave the jar in enough indirect sunlight and a warm temperature, but do not forget to replace the water every alternative day.

Once the roots start sprouting after 2-3 weeks, you can transfer the sapling to the potting mix and continue the usual care required for Prince of Orange.

Leaves cuttings method requires cutting leaves just above the stem and sinking them into the water, where the roots shall start forming within 10 days to three weeks.

14. Porous Container

Calathea requires a well-draining potting medium that lets out excess water and moisture.

Therefore, use porous containers like terracotta, clay, or ceramic with drainage holes for your Prince of Orange.

These potting containers excrete excess water and moisture while encouraging airflow around the pot.

However, avoid using pots made from plastic and catch-pots that may retain excess water and moisture.

ContainerPot MaterialSpecification
Clay Pots,Brajttt 6.28 inchEarthen ware, CeramicIt allows good drainage and air permeability.
8” Clay Pot for Plant with SaucerTerracotta, ClayThe 8" in height and outer diameter provide ample space for root growth.
Large 10” Terracotta Plant PotTerracotta, CeramicThe 40-B-L-1 earthenware pot is best for growing houseplants for proper drainage.

Use a saucer along with the pot to collect water residue, and ensure to empty it immediately.

15. Plant Toxicity

As stated by Poison.org about poisonous houseplants,

The philodendron Prince of Orange plant is toxic to humans and pets, especially cats. Strictly keep them away from your children and pet.

The plant’s sap emits calcium oxalate crystals that can cause fatal injury or even death when consumed.

Prince of Orange is toxic to cats
Prince of Orange is toxic to cats (Source: Pixabay.com)

Chewing the plant will release the toxins causing tissue penetration and skin irritation.

Check for toxicities through tell-tale signs of vomiting, loss of appetite, oral pain, and excessive drooling in pets.

Call the Pet Poison Hotline at (855) 764-7661 in case of emergencies.

Planting Tips for Philodendron Prince of Orange

Consider checking out these growing and caring tips if you have missed few important sections above.

  • Adequate watering is essential to keep the potting mix evenly moist but avoid making it soggy, which may invite overwatering problems to the plant.
  • Wash the plant leaves with water regularly during the growing season to avoid pests and dust, but ensure good air circulation afterward.
  • Encourage the root-bound condition by choosing a pot of similar size to the root system. When repotting, choose a pot 2 or 4” larger so the feeder and main root can grow effectively.
  • When fertilizing, ensure not to increase Nitrogen intake that may encourage fungal growth.
  • Instead, choose plant food rich in macronutrients to encourage healthy leaf growth.
  • Allow them to enjoy the mild sunlight from the morning or afternoon and keep them in a brightly lit place. Check this guide for measuring light in your space.
  • Rotate your plant periodically to encourage even growth on all sides.

Philodendron Prince of Orange Q&A

Here are answers to some of the frequently asked questions about Prince of Orange grown indoors.

Should I Mist My Plant Leaves Regularly?

Certainly, mist the plant leaves frequently throughout the day during the growing season to keep the humidity levels up.

Continue misting during the winter but limit the frequency to only 3 or 4 times a week.

How to make my plant look bushy?

You cannot apply the conventional method of pruning to grow them bushier. Instead, provide organic fertilizer rich in iron and magnesium that helps for thicker foliage.

However, limit the Nitrogen content when fertilizing to avoid Rhizoctonia fungus infestation.

Learn more about Making your Philodendron Bushier

Why My Plant Leaves Are Yellowing?

There is not a single reason for yellowing foliage. Instead, look for other signs as well when diagnosing a possible problem.

  • Yellowing of leaves with wilting may suggest an overwatering problem or fungal infestation.
  • Yellow and brown leaves may suggest underwatering problems with the plant.
  • Pale leaves indicate a lack of sufficient sunlight.

Do I keep or prune the blossoms?

Blossoms are typical during spring, where you will notice small white flowers. However, they are entirely harmless to the plant leaves, so you can choose to keep or prune them away.

How do I know my plant is suffering from a cold?

Philodendrons do not like being exposed to shallow temperatures.

You would know they are suffering from cold when you notice slowed growth, drooping leaves, and sudden dark patches on the leaf.

The best thing to do is bring them inside and adjust the room temperature and humidity level accordingly.

Prince of Orange
Prince of Orange (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Conclusion

Prince of Orange is unlike any other Philodendron. Therefore, keep in mind that it has its unique requirements.

When you notice the new growth is stunted or stuck, you should know that the plant is not getting enough of something.

Start with ruling out all the possibilities such as watering, temperature, humidity, fertilizing, location, and plant stress before treating the plant for any problem.

Related Article: How to Care for Bromeliad Pineapple

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