Melanochrysum are very easy to grow tropical plants that require little care indoors or out. Like other aroids, many species of Philodendron can be grown as houseplants, or outdoors in mild climates. They thrive in moist soils with high organic matter and grow best when provided with a mossy post or burlap wrapped pole to climb. Philodendron plants can be grown in pots, hanging baskets or outdoors as a ground cover or beautiful tree wrap. Indoors plants thrive at temperatures between 20°- 28°C and in lower light conditions than other house plants. In the ground or up an arbor, philodendrons get big and are often unrecognizable from their potted juvenile state. They add a wonderfully tropical accent to any well-lit space or cascading from your favorite hanging planter. In very cold zones a containerized Philodendron can be brought inside for the winter months. Be sure to avoid frost and freezing temperatures.
When you receive your new Philodendron, there is no need to worry about planting right away. Your new plant can be stored for a while by simply placing it in a bucket with about a half inch of water in the bottom and moving it to a shady location. You can then add some mulch to keep your plant standing upright. The mulch will also supply nutrients while in storage. This will give you plenty of time to select the ideal location for your new Philodendron.
Philodendron grow very well in patio and indoor containers. Allow enough room for growth generally a 10″ to a 20″ diameter, 10″ deep container will suffice to get started. Remember the looser the roots, the taller and healthier your plant will be. When the plant becomes root bound its growth will slow, at that point it is time for a larger pot.
Melanochrysum Philodendrons enjoy well drained but moist, rich organic mix. Remember try to stay away from wet, mucky or dry, sandy soils.
To help establish your new Melanochrysum Philodendron, fertilize sparingly at least 6 inches away from the base, tri-annually with a slow time released product. Unfertilized they will tend to grow very slowly. Note: The heavy salts in cheaper fertilizers will damage the roots and possibly kill the plant.
This Philodendron requires 70-85% sunlight. Depending on your location filtered sun is best. In the northern end of their grow zone Melanochrysum plants should be brought indoors or protected during the winter months.
Frequently Asked Questions regarding Philodendron Melanochrysum
Help! The edges of my Melanochrysum are turning brown.
This could either be a result of too little light or salt build up in the water. So it’s best to let your tap water sit out uncovered for 24 hours before you water the plant. Many of the minerals and chemicals will evaporate and stop brown tips from occurring.
Help! My Melanochrysum is turning yellow!
If your leaves are turning yellow, there are many things that could be causing it. First, try to ensure that your plant is receiving the proper water and light. Yellowing can often be the first sign of overwatering. If you eliminate these as possibilities, then there is a chance that your plant might be rootbound and needs to be potted in a larger pot. You can tell if it is rootbound once the non-aerial roots become exposed above the topsoil and seem to be swirling around the pot, searching for a new home. Most Melanochrysum need to be repotted up a size roughly every 1 year.
How fast will my plant grow?
The growth of your plant depends on its access to light and water. In ideal conditions, with bright indirect light and consistent moisture, Melanochrysum can grow 3-4 feet per year. Keep in mind that the Melanochrysum's natural growth pattern is to spread wide rather than reach tall. Try staking your plant to encourage vertical growth.
My Melanochrysum has gotten way too big. What can I do?
Prune it back! These guys are very hardy and can handle a good trim. You can also train your Melanochrysum to grow whichever way your heart desires by using moss poles, stakes and ties.
Can I put my Melanochrysum next to the AC / heater?
Melanochrysum are tropical plants that appreciate a humid environment. If conditions are too dry they will drop their leaves. While Melanochrysum will thrive in an air conditioned apartment, always avoid putting them in the direct line of fire for either AC or heating units. If their leaves are wagging from the air, it’s best to find another spot.
How often should I fertilize my plant?
In general, house plants will thrive when they are fertilized spring through fall. Fertilize once a month with an organic houseplant fertilizer, following the package instructions for dilution and administration. The Plant Concept uses HB101, both the granules and liquid version, HB101 granules is a slow release fertilizer to be sprinkle on/in the soil, HB101 liquid version can be used weekly or bi monthly by adding 1 drop to 1 litre of water.
How often does my plant need to be repotted?
For larger floor plants, we suggest repotting every 18-24 months. Typically you want to choose a pot size of 2”- 4” larger in diameter to allow for growth. Don’t choose a pot much larger than the previous as this could drown the plants roots. If you prefer to maintain the current size of your plant, repot into the same pot, providing new soil and trimming away some roots and foliage. Spring or summer is the ideal time to repot as the plant is at its strongest.
Happy planting and I hope you enjoy your newest addition! Any other questions in regard to care please add in the comments or message me and I will endeavor to answer asap.