Bold and unique, the Philodendron ‘Brasil’ is the perfect tropical plant to grow indoors. Its intricate, variegated foliage and vine-like growth make for the perfect way to add a natural touch to your indoor aesthetic.
It’s low-maintenance and labelled a low-light plant, so it will always adapt to any space in which you decide to grow it. Follow our Philodendron hederaceum ‘Brasil’ guide for everything you need to know to cultivate, care for and grow this incredible plant.
What is Philodendron ‘Brasil’?
If you’re looking for a way to bring the outdoors inside, then there’s no better choice than the Philodendron hederaceum ‘Brasil’. Native to the tropical rainforests of South America, the Philodendron species covers over 450 different cultivars.
The Philodendron hederaceum is a perennial with bold yellow and green variegated leaves. Although flowering is uncommon, in some conditions, flowering is possible. However, its leaves are the biggest appeal it has to offer growers.
Used to growing beneath the canopy of trees in the rainforest, these plants are perfectly suited to lower light conditions and warm environments – making them perfect for bathrooms, bedrooms, living rooms, shelves and balconies. (See more plants best suited for balconies here.)
Although philodendrons have a habit of growing quite large, they’re quite happy to live inside a smaller container. Grow yours as a tabletop plant, on a window sill or in a hanging basket.
It is important to note that these plants are moderately toxic when ingested and, as such, should be kept out of reach of curious pets and children.
How to Grow Philodendron ‘Brasil’
These plants are happy to grow pretty much anywhere but thrive in a warm and humid environment, which means they’ll thrive in the Australian climate. The biggest trick, however, is picking a spot that will give your plants the right level of light.
Philodendron ‘Brasil’ prefers medium to bright light. Although they can grow in lower light, they can sometimes cause leggy growth. Somewhere near a bright north or east-facing window is often ideal.
These plants can tolerate some direct sunlight. However, too much light can lead to issues for your plant. If you’re noticing dry, crinkly leaves, consider moving your plant further away from the window.
Some growers recommend moving your philodendron a few times and monitoring its health to find the premium spot to grow it. The Philodendron ‘Brasil’ enjoys warmth too.
They do well with average household temperatures but do best in ambient temperatures between 16-29°C. You will want to avoid growing your philodendron in areas with drafts or areas where the temperature is lower than 13°C as this can stunt growth.
When it comes to picking potting soil, most all-purpose potting soil mixtures will do the trick. These plants enjoy rich, loamy soil that retains moisture but drains well, mixed with a good amount of organic matter.
For the best results, we recommend making your own soil mixture with 3 parts of all-purpose potting soil and 1 part perlite.
Propagating Philodendron ‘Brasil’
Philodendrons are always readily available from local Aussie nurseries and online plant retailers. One of the best parts of growing this amazing plant is that it is so easily propagated.
Meaning you can have plenty of little philodendron babies around your home or to use as gifts. Vine cuttings can be taken and rooted either in water or in soil. The best time to take cuttings is during the growing season, between spring and summer. This will guarantee the best results.
Here is what you’ll need to do:
- Remove a vine cutting with a sterilised blade that has at least 2 nodes and 1 to 2 leaves.
- If your nodes have already begun to grow some roots, you can grow your cutting in water. Simply place the roots with nodes into a glass of water or mason jar.
Keep in a warm and sunny spot and regularly replenish the water. Once new root growth appears, replant into a larger container with a fresh potting mix (choose the best potting mix here).
- If the nodes haven’t begun to develop roots, then it’s a better idea to grow your cutting directly into the soil. Although not necessary, you can dip your cutting into a rooting hormone and plant directly into a rich potting mix.
Keep your cuttings well watered for the first few weeks.
Once you start to notice some new growth, you can replant your baby plants into bigger pots and place them in your desired spot. As with most young plants, you’ll want to keep them well watered for the first few growing seasons.
If propagating in a pot, pick a rich potting mix that is 3 parts potting mix and 1 part perlite. For optimal results, mix in some slow-release organic fertiliser, which will help to support growth.
Caring for Philodendron ‘Brasil’
Now, the Philodendron hederaceum is known to be an easy grower, but it will need a little bit of care every now and then. Retaining a good level of moisture is the most essential part you’ll have to keep an eye on.
On average, these plants should be watered once every week, keeping the soil evenly moist. Avoid allowing the soil to get overly soggy, as this can cause root rot.
As a rule of thumb, use the finger test regularly, checking the top layer of soil. The topsoil can dry out, but no more than the first few centimetres.
If you’re growing your philodendron in a hanging basket, make sure your soil is draining well enough that it can get trapped. Regularly check and empty out the reservoir.
Although these plants thrive even without fertiliser, you can add some diluted liquid fertiliser during the growing season. Mix a third of a general-purpose fertiliser into a litre of water, and water your plants with the fertiliser solution every 2 to 3 weeks.
Be sure to trim away any dried and damaged leaves when they appear.
Common Philodendron ‘Brasil’ Pests & Diseases
These plants don’t have too many issues, apart from the problem most common houseplants experience. To avoid problems, it’s absolutely essential to avoid overwatering.
Here are the most common issues to look out for:
Mealybugs, Spider Mites & Scale Insects
The most common concern for indoor plants is a pest invasion. Keeping your plants clean and moist is the safest way to avoid an infestation. Should an infestation occur, simply treat with a strong spray of water and an insecticidal soap or neem oil.
Drooping or Curling Leaves
Drooping leaves that look slightly crusty are a sign that your philodendron is not getting sufficient moisture and humidity. Consider increasing your watering schedule or keeping your plants in the bathroom while you shower.
Small, Stunted Leaves
Small, limp leaves are a sign that your plants are not getting sufficient sunlight. Consider moving your plants closer to a source of sunlight or supplementing light with an artificial light source.
Solid Colour Leaves
The leaves of Philodendron hederaceum should be a combination of yellow and green. If you’re noticing that the leaves are almost fully green, it can be a sign that your plant is not getting sufficient light. Treat as above by moving it or supplementing more light.
Philodendron ‘Brasil’ Frequently Asked Questions
Do all philodendrons climb?
Philodendrons are actually great climbers, wrapping upwards along stems. As such, it’s a great idea to plant these in a hanging basket or place them near a shelf or trellis, which encourages upward growth.
How fast does Philodendron ‘Brasil’ grow?
These are known to be particularly fast growers. Most often, it usually only takes a few days for roots to develop and, once established, will thrive and grow incredibly quickly.
How do you make Philodendron ‘Brasil’ leaves bigger?
If you’re looking to give your philodendron more appeal with bigger leaves, you’ll need to keep an eye on the level of light, water, humidity and fertiliser. If your plant is also root bound, consider repotting and refreshing the soil.
Can a Philodendron ‘Brasil’ live in water?
The Philodendron ‘Brasil’ is one of the very few houseplants which can actually be grown in water. Simply fill a jar or container with water leaving only a few centimetres below the rim.
Why is my Philodendron ‘Brasil’ turning pink?
It is absolutely likely that young stems start out with a slight pink tinge before they begin to go green. Keep a careful eye on your plants to ensure they remain pink and not red. Red stems are a sign that your plants are getting too much direct sunlight.
Add Some Tropical Charm in Your Garden with Philodendron ‘Brasil’
Whichever spot you pick in your home, you’re bound to have a happy and thriving plant with gorgeous green and yellow foliage. So, there you have it. Everything you need to know on how to cultivate, care for and grow Philodendron ‘Brasil’ in your home.