|Classified:||K.Koch & Augustin, 1855|
|Propagation:||From From seeds, cutting, layering|
|Adult size:||over 30 m (90 ft); ~ 2 m indoors|
|Watering:||Let the soil dry slightly before watering|
|Fertilization:||Monthly during active growth|
|Humidity:||High humidity preferred, low humidity tolerated|
|See more Philodendron|
Silver sword philodendron
Philodendron hastatum is a epiphytic plant of the Araceae family. Native to South-east Brazil, it makes an excellent houseplant and will tolerate a wide range of growing conditions.
Philodendron comes from the Greek words philo- or "love" and dendron or "tree". This refers to the epiphytic nature of many Philodendron and their adaptations to growing on or up trees.
Hastatum is from 'hasta', a type of spear and refers to the sword-like shape of the mature foliage.
P. hastatum has attractive silver leaves. A quality of philodendrons is that they do not have a single type of leaf on the same plant. Instead, they have juvenile leaves and adult leaves, which can be drastically different from one another. As the P. hastatum matures the leaves become larger, more elongated, and lobes begin to form.
The P. hastatum inflorescence consists of an erect spadix enclosed in a white, boat-shaped spathe. The corn-like spadix is covered in small flowers.
P. hastatum wants bright, indirect light. It can tolerate some direct light but avoid hot midday sun or the leaves will scorch.
Use a well draining soil mix (see aroid soil) and water thoroughly, allowing excess to drain. A waterlogged soil will lead to yellow leaves.
Yellowing leaves are a sign of too much water. Ensure the pot has good drainage and allow the surface of the soil to dry between watering. Older leaves will naturally yellow and die eventually.
If the soil is staying moist for more than two weeks between watering, or the soil feels soggy or very wet after a week then consider repotting the plant into a smaller container: the roots staying wet for too long will lead to root rot and a quick decline in the plant's health. When repotting use a well drained mix (see aroid soil)
P. hastatum cannot take direct sun, except in the early mornings or late evenings. Make sure it is situated away from parts of the home that get direct, hot midday sun.
P. hastatum is relatively resistant to pests, however it can be affected by spider mites, mealybugs, scale, thrips and whitefly.