Are you tired of watching dull, boring plants in your living room and want to give your place an aesthetic look? Wait no more, and lay your hands on this unique, perennial plant Philodendron Alternans.
Belonging to the thick, tropical forests of Colombia, this plant is an ideal choice for all plant lovers who want to give their spaces an extraordinary look.
Planning to keep this beauty in your home and gardens? Read this guide to learn all the exciting facts about this plant, and know how to take care of it to keep it thriving for years to come. Let’s begin.
Philodendron Alternans Classification
- Kingdom – Plantae
- Subkingdom – Embryophyta
- Family – Araceae
- Genus – Philodendron
- Order – Arales
- Subclass – Arcidae
- Type: Herbaceous evergreen
- Species: Alternans
Did you know that the philodendron alternans is an evergreen plant? This means that it will remain green and vibrant all year long, no matter what the season is.
The leaves of this plant are glossy and have finely serrated edges, which makes it a very unique plant indeed. Another interesting fact about this plant is that it is an epiphyte, meaning that it grows on other plants or trees.
However, it is not a parasitic plant; instead, it uses the host plant for support and gets its nutrients from the air, rainwater, and organic matter that collects around it.
This philodendron species is a native of Colombia and can be found in the tropical regions of South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. It is a very popular plant in these regions and is often used as a decoration in homes and gardens.
Common Name And Synonym
The plant is commonly known as Philo Alternans or Arum Arternum Vell, which is a synonym for this philodendron species.
Features of the Philodendron Alternans Plant
One of the fastest-growing Phils, Alternans has bayonet-shaped leaves that reach 3 feet in height when mature.
The leaves of this plant are glossy and have finely serrated edges. They are also alternate, meaning that they grow in pairs on opposite sides of the stem. The leaves are dark green and have a leathery texture.
The flowers of this plant are small, green, and clustered together. They are borne on an inflorescence that is produced at the leaf axils.
Evergreen and Durable
This plant is evergreen, meaning that it will remain green and vibrant all year long. It is also a very durable plant that can withstand some neglect.
Poisonous if eaten, as are all philodendrons. Calcium oxalate crystals are found in the leaves and stems, which can irritate the mouth, intestines, and skin when consumed.
Ingestion of this plant might result in vomiting, diarrhea, and trouble swallowing. Convulsions and trouble breathing may occur in extreme situations. Poison control should be contacted right once if you suspect someone has consumed this plant.
This plant goes through a resting period, which is known as dormancy. Though it doesn’t shed its leaves or wilt, its growth rate exponentially reduces during winter.
This plant is very easy to care for and does not require much maintenance. It can be grown in a pot or on the ground and does best in humid, tropical environments.
Philodendron Alternans are tolerant of drought and can withstand periods of dryness while staying healthy. However, it should be given some water during prolonged periods of drought to prevent the leaves from wilting.
Alternans are known to purify the air and remove toxins from the environment which makes them an ideal thing to keep inside your living rooms, bedrooms, and lawns.
Philodendron Alternans Care
This plant doesn’t require a massive amount of care. This rare Philo can thrive beautifully in a little amount of light, water, and high humid environment. However, if you want your Philodendron Alternans to grow up to full height when they mature, there are a few things you need to keep in your mind.
Quick Care Guide:
|Water||Frequent, light watering (twice a week)|
|Light||Bright, indirect sunlight|
|Humidity||High Humidity, 60-80% ideally|
|Fertilizer||Every two to four weeks|
|Repotting||Larger pot to plant|
|Soil||Rich, well-draining soil|
|Grooming & Pruning||Only when needed|
|Placing||Warm and moist place|
When Philodendron alternans are actively growing, they should be watered often. However, the plant does not need a lot of water, but it must always be maintained moist at all times.
The frequency with which the plant is watered might be reduced throughout the winter. To avoid root rot and other issues, it is important not to overwater your plants.
Alternans grow best in bright, indirect light. However, it can also tolerate low-light conditions and will still grow well. If you want your Alternans to grow faster, provide them with more light. The best place to keep your plant is near a window where it can get bright, indirect light.
The soil must be well-draining and moist. A potting mix or a mixture of peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite will work well. Remember, This plant requires soil rich in organic matter so make sure only use moist soil filled with organic matter.
Fertilize your Philodendron Alternans every two to four weeks as this aroid doesn’t require frequent fertilization. However, A 20-20-20 fertilizer diluted to half strength will work great.
Pruning is not required regularly for Alternans but if you want to shape your plant or encourage bushier growth, feel free to prune it.
This tropical plant loves humidity and it will do best in an environment with 60-80% humidity. If the air in your home is dry, you can increase the humidity around your plant by placing it on a pebble tray or using a humidifier.
Philodendron Alternans prefer warm temperatures and will do best in an environment that is between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature drops below 50 degrees, the leaves will start to drop.
The plant doesn’t need to be repotted often. You can repot the plant every two to three years or when the roots start to come out of the drainage holes. When repotting, use a pot that is one size larger and make sure the pot has drainage holes.
Philodendron Alternans is a beautiful evergreen plant that can be placed in any room of your home. It is perfect for adding a touch of greenery to your décor. The plant is easy to care for and will thrive in bright, indirect light. So make sure to keep it somewhere humid with indirect sunlight.
Philodendron Alternans Propagation
Philodendron Alternans can be propagated by seed or division.
To propagate by seed, sow the seeds in a well-draining potting mix and keep the soil moist. The seeds will germinate within two to four weeks.
To propagate by division, divide the plant into two or three sections and pot each section in its pot. Make sure the pots have drainage holes.
Keep the soil moist and provide the plants with bright, indirect light. The divisions will take root within two to four weeks.
Diseases and Pests
This plant is susceptible to mealybugs, spider mites, and aphids. If your plant is infested with any of these pests, you can treat it with an insecticide or neem oil.
Philodendron Alternans are also susceptible to root rot, so it is important to make sure the soil is well-draining. If the leaves start to turn yellow, it is a sign that the plant is not getting enough water.
Pro Tips To Keep Philodendron Alternans At Home
Philodendron Alternans is an evergreen aroid that’s perfect for adding a touch of greenery to any room in your home. Here are eight tips to keep this tropical plant happy and healthy.
- The best way to water a philodendron is by submerging the entire pot in water and letting it soak for about 15 minutes
- Philodendrons like bright, indirect light – place them near a window but make sure they’re not in direct sunlight
- If you’re having trouble getting your philodendron to grow, try fertilizing it with a balanced liquid fertilizer every other week
- To encourage new growth, pinch off the tips of the leaves every few weeks
- Philodendrons don’t like cold weather, so keep them inside when the temperature drops below 50 degrees Fahrenheit
- Don’t overwater your philodendron – wait until the top inch of soil is dry before watering again
- When it’s time, repot the plant. Every year or so, the plant should be moved into a larger pot. Potting soil should be rich and well-drained.
To add some flair to your house or garden, Philodendron Alternans is one of the best options available. This plant’s lush green foliage and arching vines will brighten any decor. Just give it a go and experience how phenomenal nature would be and what a pleasure it is to see this magnificent creature develop.