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Grow & Care Philodendron Hastatum with Easy Tips

Silvery glossy leaves of Philodendron hastatum boast a slight metallic fleck. To keep their foliage lively, you must consider their crucial requirements.

Philodendron hastatum needs 4-8 hours of dappling light, 2-3 weekly watering, well-draining soil with 6.1-7.5 pH and monthly balanced fertilizer. Also, it can thrive under a temperature of 65-85°F and humidity above 50%, with pruning and repotting every 2 years.    

Philodendrons are flexible and effortless to maintain but may succumb to issues if left unchecked.

To get things right, let’s learn some simple tips to look after them.

Overview of Philodendron Hastatum

Philodendron hastatum belongs to the Araceae family and is native to rainforests.

Philodendron Hastatum
Philodendron Hastatum

Below is some additional information you may need to know before begin caring this Philodendron. 

Common NameSilver Sword Philodendrons
Scientific NamePhilodendron hastatum
Plant TypeLifespan: Perennial and Evergreen Shrub

Habit: Climbing Vine

Red-List Category: Rare
USDA Hardiness ZonesSuitable to grow outdoors from zones 10a-12a
Native RangeSoutheast Brazil
Growth RateFast
Plant SizeIn Natural Habitat: Around 30 to 100 feet tall

As A Houseplant: Around 10 to15 feet tall
Foliar SeasonSpring and Summer (March to August)
Leaf FeaturesSize: Up to 3 feet long

Color: Pale-Gray to Dark-Green and later attains a Metallic-Silvery Shine

Shape: Slender, Pointed, Heart to Arrow-Head
FloweringFlower Occurrence: Rare

Reaches a flowering maturity after 15 or 16 years when grown from seeds
Flowering SeasonLate-Spring to Mid-Summer (May to July)
InflorescenceType: Spathe and Spadix

Spathe Color and Function: Light-Green to Yellow (Attracts Pollinators)

Spadix Color and Function: Creamy White (Bears Tiny Flowers)
Grown ForHome Décor and Ornamental Vigor
ToxicityPets and Humans

Philodendron Hastatum Care in Detail 

Philodendrons are tropical houseplants. But Philodendron hastatum may vary to some degree in the optimum care. 

1. Sunlight & Temperature

Philodendron hastatum fancies bright but indirect sunshine for 4 to 8 hours with an indoor daytime temperature between 65°F and 85°F.

Extreme light can burn the leaf tips due to high temperatures. But low light can spawn a bushy growth as the stems extend in search of light and etiolating leaves

This Philodendron plant prefers lower temperatures at night, around 60°F  to 80°F, but avoids going lower than the optimal range.  

In such pitfalls, relocate your plant immediately to an area indoors with a south-facing window dappled with curtains.

Or choose an east-facing window that welcomes soft morning light.

Likewise, keep the plant under a partially shaded shack with a perforated ceiling. But mindfully cover it with a frost blanket to shield it from cold drafts in winter.

Winter is also the ideal time to locate your Philodendron under grow lights for 10-12 hours to nether the risk of cold outside. 

2. Watering & Humidity

Philodendrons dislike soggy soil. So keep an adequate watering schedule by sustaining moist soil conditions.

Appraise watering bouts 2 to 3 times a week in spring and summer. And subside it to once a week in winter while checking the topsoil for dryness using a finger dip test.

Additionally, Philodendrons require high humidity levels between 50%  and 80% due to their tropical habit.

Overwatered Philodendrons may suffer from root rot, and this effect may be seen in the leaves through curling and yellowing.

Contrarily, underwatering makes the soil dry, causing leaves to curl and turn yellow and crispy brown

Low humidity may cause the leaves to lose their vigor and become droopy.

To fix the issues, use only filtered or distilled water and install a humidifier or group the plants that need moisture. 

3. Soil & Fertilization

Silver Swords are fussy about soil requirements and need a balanced blend of soil components.

Generally, organic, well-percolating, and moisture-retentive soil can help to maintain the required acidic pH between 6.1 and 7.5.

Wrong soil may harm the roots and interfere with the plant’s mineral uptaking ability.

So, you can prepare a homemade mix for Philodendrons by amending normal garden soil, peat moss, and fine perlite or sand in a ratio of 1:1:1.

However, you can also buy trusty commercial aroid mixes from online stores.

Potting MixesSpecifications
Philodendron Potting Soil MixFast draining and water retentive

Natural and devoid of any synthetic fertilizer

Includes earthworm casting as compost
Premium Aroid Potting MixContains charcoal, worm casting, and coconut coir for elevating the water retention

Large and chunky orchid barks allow the roots to move freely

Amended with perlite for extra drainage
Ivymay Redwoods Organic Potting MixNo need to add additional nutrients while implementing

Contains bark mixture from different trees, keeping a coarse consistency

Imbued with peppermint oil for fragrance and root health
rePotme Philodendron Imperial Houseplant Potting SoilMoisture holding elements to prolong the water content in the soil

To feed Philodendron hastatum, you must supply the soil with a liquid NPK 10-10-10 fertilizer monthly in spring and summer.

This way, minerals remain in the soil for the following year but fertilize once every 1.5-2 months in winter when the plant goes dormant.

Excessive fertilizer cause fertilizer burn in which the leaf tips and margins turn brown and brittle. But less fertilizer makes the plant nutrient deficient.

You can prepare a good fertilizer by amending compost (cow dung), fish emulsions, or coffee grounds with average garden soil.

But if you want to go premium, get one from these links.

Fertilizer BrandsSpecifications
Covington Liquid 10-10-10 FertilizerCareful balanced blend of the nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium

Supports the vegetative growth of the plant
Triple 10 All Purpose Liquid FertilizerContains sea weed extract and amino acids

Easy to use and comes with a measurable guide
Bonide Liquid Plant FoodEncourages lush growth of foliage
EZ-gro Fertilizer - Liquid Plant FoodWater friendly and contains a blend of macro nutrients

Also, do not forget to dilute the commercial fertilizers in water to prevent excess salt buildup in the soil. 

4. Potting & Repotting

Philodendron hastatum needs repotting once every two years in a new pot at least 2 inches wider and deeper than the previous one.

Philodendrons hate wet feet, so choose a sturdy pot with drainage holes, such as well terracotta or plastic planters

Protrusion of roots from the drainage holes and falling or premature blanching of leaves indicate the time for repotting.

But, wait till spring to properly repot the plant as it will sustain less harm during its peak growing season and can develop new roots.

While repotting, soak the soil 1-2 days early, gently pull the plant out of the container by loosening the soil, and untangle its roots.

Trim off damaged roots with sterilized pruners, fill the new pot with fresh soil, and place the plant in the new pot.

5. Occasional Pruning

Indoor Philodendrons are comparatively safe, but pest strikes are not uncommon.

Thrips, spider mites, scales, mealy bugs, etc., are the usual intruders.

Similarly, diseases like leaf spots are obvious due to improper care. 

Thus, maintaining good shape and removing dead or diseased plant parts need pruning occasionally throughout the year.

Consider pruning in spring or fall once every 2 years.
To prune your plant, start from the old leaves and cut an inch above the nodes to remove them. Snip the leaves evenly around the plant to give it bushier growth for the following season.

Leaf spots may also appear as small yellow patches on the leaf’s surface, growing over time and becoming brown or black. Similarly, Blights take over the tender stems, making them wiggly to appear and later dry out. These disease symptoms can progress to other parts.

Thus, keep these diseases at bay by offering your plant a weekly clean-up with water.

If the symptoms are visible earlier, spray with copper-based fungicides

Also, you must locate the diseased plants separately to avoid the disease extent.

Likewise, dip q-tips in the neem oil and rub at the infection site to remove the pests, or chuck them away using your hands.

Philodendron Hastatum: A Summarized Guide

If you don’t know, Philodendron hastatum is a natural air purifier and tolerant plant for slight negligence. 

LightType: Bright and Indirect Sunshine

Duration: 4 to 8 hours daily
WateringSpring and Summer: 2 to 3 times a week

Winter: Once in a week

Amount: Just enough to moist the entire soil in the pot
TemperatureDaytime: 65°F to 85°F

Nighttime: 60°F to 80°F
HumidityAmount: 50% to 80%
Soil and pHType: Well-draining, water-permeable, and organically rich soil

pH: Between 6.1 and 7.5 (Acidic to Slightly Basic)
FertilizerSpring and Summer: Once a month

Winter: Once in 1.5 to 2 months

Type: Liquid Balanced NPK 10-10-10 or 5-5-5
PruningSchedule: Every 2 years in Spring or Fall
RepottingSchedule: Every 2 years in Spring

Philodendron Hastatum: All About the Growth Rate

Generally, Philodendron hastatum is reputed for its arrowhead-shaped, 3 feet long juvenile leaves.

The plant is also a swift grower attaining a height of 10 to 15 feet and a width of around 6.5 feet.

It can comfortably maintain a tower of 30 to 100 feet in its natural habitat under the right conditions.

Philodendron gains a new flush of leaves every month, and due to its climbing habit, the plant often requires the support of a moss pole to grow.

Besides, the peak foliar season for the plant falls in spring and summer, while the blooming time starts from late spring to mid-summer.  

Philodendron hastatum inflorescence
The spadix is an elongated, fleshy, and creamy white structure with male, sterile, and female florets.

This Philodendron plant requires at least 15 to 16 years to enter a flowering phase, so it may only bloom at maturity.

Likewise, the plant rarely flowers in cultivation. But when it does, its inflorescence becomes well-noticeable with ‘spadix‘ and ‘spathe.’  

Similarly, the spathe is a developed bract or leafy light yellow to green structure helping to attract pollinators.

Philodendron Hastatum: Toxicity

Like all aroids, Philodendron hastatum is toxic for humans and pets.

The ASPCA confirms Philodendron hastatum has toxic calcium oxalate crystals like other Philodendrons. So, it is harmful to humans, dogs, cats, and horses.

Nibbling the leaves or other parts can proliferate alarming symptoms in pets. 

Your pets also show oral irritation, difficulty breathing, constant drooling, pawing the mouth, hoarse voice, etc.

If these symptoms are obvious, the possible culprit may be the oxalate crystals. 

The toxins can also pass to humans while pruning or repotting the plant.

In case of ingestion, have some milk as the calcium helps to bind the oxalate crystals and alleviate the issue.

But if the symptoms are unruly, consider taking immediate medical attention by calling any of the numbers below.

Propagation Method for Philodendron Hastatum

Stem cuttings are a common way to propagate Silver Swords, and spring is the best time to do this.

Also, you can plant the cuttings in fresh soil or encourage the roots to grow in water first. And later, you can retransplant them in the soil.

For this job, you will need gloves, sterilized pruners, a jar and fresh substrate.

Propagation via Stem Cuttings

Start taking a healthy 4 to 6 inches long stem cutting from the mother plant by snipping a stem section with 3 to 4 healthy leaves and 2 to 3 leaf nodes.

  • Place the cuttings in a jar filled with distilled or rainwater with rooting hormone. At least one node must stay underwater.
  • Locate the setup in an area that receives dappling sunlight for 4 to 8 hours and cover the cuttings with a plastic bag.
  • Observe the roots grow within 3 to 4 weeks.
  • Remove the plastic bag after the cuttings develop roots.
  • When the roots are about 1-2 inches long, place them in a moist potting mix about 2 to 3 inches deep.
  • Fertilize and water the plants normally after they develop new leaves.  

1. Can you propagate Philodendron hastatum from seeds?

Yes, you can propagate Philodendron hastatum from seeds. But since the plant rarely flowers in the home environment, they are hard to get by.

2. Is Philodendron hastatum the same as a silver sword?

Silver Sword Philodendron is the common name for Philodendron hastatum. It is widely cultivated for its glorious leaves, but the plant is endangered in the wild.

Wrapping Up

Philodendron hastatum boasts shades of grey, green, and silver in leaves with spadix flowers to give a metallic look. 

It is a fast grower with trailing habits, so add a pole and pruning to the regular care requirements. 

If you own other Philodendron plants, visit Philodendron Ring of Fire, Philodendron Splendid, Philodendron Plowmanii and Philodendron Rio

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