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Philodendron burle marx

Philodendron burle marx

Philodendron burle marx

Philodendron Burle Marx, or Philodendron hederaceum 'Burle Marx', is a beautiful and popular tropical plant that is known for its large, heart-shaped leaves and easy care. This plant is native to Brazil and was named after Roberto Burle Marx, a famous Brazilian landscape architect and artist who loved to incorporate tropical plants into his designs. The plant is a member of the Araceae family, which includes other popular houseplants like Monsteras and Peace Lilies.

In its natural habitat, Philodendron Burle Marx can be found growing as an epiphyte in the rainforests of Brazil. It typically grows on trees or other plants, using them for support, and can reach up to 6 feet tall. The plant has a unique growth habit, with long, vining stems that can climb or trail. It also produces aerial roots that help it to cling onto surfaces and absorb nutrients.

Habit: A slow to medium growing shrub up to about 60 cm tall and 60 to 100 cm wide; however, if staked and trained, plants can grow slightly taller. From the rather stout stems, plants produce masses of shiny, narrowly heart-shaped leaves. A great generally easy and fuss free plant.

Temperature: Plants grow best between 20 to 25ᐤ C and temperatures below 4ᐤ C may result in the death of the plant. Avoid placing plants in windy or drafty locations which can lead to less attractive plants as the leaflets can get tattered.

Light Exposure: Plants do best in bright, indirect light to thrive and grow well. They can withstand lower light situations but will not grow very strongly, will appear stretched (etiolated) and will tend to be more susceptible to pests and diseases. Plants exposed to direct sunlight will develop scorched and burnt leaves reducing the beauty of the plant.

Watering: The plants like a moist growing medium but not soggy; water only when the top 3 to 5 cm of soil feels dry to the touch. Always check the soil moisture first but as a rule of thumb watering once a week in the rainy season, once every two or three weeks in the cold dry season and usually twice a week in the hot dry season. In addition, regularly misting the leaves in the hot dry season will help keep the foliage looking great.

Humidity: This plant thrives in high humidity environments. If you live in a dry climate, consider placing a humidifier near the plant or setting it on a tray of pebbles filled with water. You can also mist the plant regularly to increase humidity. Avoid placing the plant near air vents or heaters, as this can cause the air to dry out.

Fertilising: Philodendron plants are generally heavy feeders and give them a well balanced fertiliser twice a month during the hot dry season and rainy season but not during the cold dry season when plants are resting (semi-dormant).

Pruning/Repotting: When potting up a Philodendron Burle Marx, it is important to use a well-draining soil mix that is rich in organic matter. The plant prefers to be slightly root-bound, so choose a pot that is just slightly larger than the current one. When repotting, gently remove the plant from its current pot and loosen the roots before placing it into the new pot. Be sure to water the plant thoroughly after potting up.

Remove yellowing, brown or heavily damaged leaves as necessary. Repotting of the plants will depend on its growth rate but plants usually indicate that they should be repotted once the roots really start growing out the bottom of the pot. Ideally repot in the spring into a pot one or maybe two sizes larger than what it is currently growing in.

Pests/Diseases: Burle Marx is relatively resistant to pests and diseases if well looked after and happy; however, they can be attacked by thrips, mealy bug and spider mites. Diseases that affect the plants are usually caused by overwatering which can invite fungal and bacterial pathogens that cause root rots and leaf spot problems.

You can remove pests by wiping the leaves with a damp cloth or using insecticidal soap. Be sure to isolate the plant if you notice any pests to prevent them from spreading to other plants.

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