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It is said that Philodendron Joepii is nearly extinct in the wild. It was discovered in eastern French Guiana by Joep Moonen during an ecological tour of the Mararoni River.
Intrigued by the oddly-shaped leaves, he initially assumed that insects had chewed them. He discovered only one additional plant after an exhaustive search.
The plant thrives well in medium, indirect light, but can also tolerate lower indirect light. The Joepii need to be watered every 1-2 weeks. The frequency of watering must be doubled with increased light. Home temperatures of 65-degree Fahrenheit to 75-degree Fahrenheit (18 degrees to 23 degrees Celsius) are the best.
You can say exactly what your Philodendron Joepii wants when you look for the signals. That is why even novice owners find it is fairly simple to grow and care for the plant.
The rare South American plant is known for not only its air-purifying properties but also for being a lovely natural decoration.
I have got this rare plant at a very high price from a gardening enthusiast. I have spent the last few months caring for this expensive plant, and this guide will give you care tips to nail Joepii plant care.
- 1 Philodendron Joepii Plant Care
- 2 Common Problems for Philodendron Joepii
- 3 Tips for Growing Philodendron Joepii
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions about Philodendron Joepii
- 5 Conclusion
Philodendron Joepii Plant Care
It is important to grow a Philodendron Joepii in uniformly damp soil. This encourages the roots of the plant to continuously breathe in fresh oxygen. But you need to make sure the potting soil is damp and not soggy using potting soil that is loose and airy, otherwise, root rotting may begin to occur.
Sometimes people are too lazy to water their Philodendron Joepii, so they opt for rich soil instead. However, that is not a good option because the plant does not get enough water. This way, you are depriving your plant of oxygen.
With the Joepii, a traditional potting ground does not fit well. I prefer to grow my Philodendron in loose soil, which, like the peat, perlite, and orchid mixture, is a fast-draining kind.
Charcoal and gravel are also present in this mixture. This blend helps to conserve the pH of the soil between 4.5-7.5, which is considered optimal for a Joepii plant.
The root structure of the Philodendron species is built to collect water in the rainiest seasons. The plant can get water from its environment even under dry weather conditions by concentrating its energy on absorbing moisture close to its roots.
In my experience, watering it after 1 or 2 weeks is great. You can change this frequency based on your plant’s behavior.
In winter, tropical plants such as the Philodendron Joepii require less water. In the colder months of the winter season, dew and fog are essential supplements.
The Philodendron Joepii is very rarely found in the Southern American region. Most plants in the rainforests are the type that battle for the perfect amount of light, which is why most Joepii are climbers.
These plants need to grow towards the light, so they usually climb against something. That is why I prefer to grow mine near a tall totem. I highly recommend growing yours close to a wet wall. This sort of wall must be covered with moss and sphagnum-filled wiring.
When put indoors, keep it near the east or west-facing quarters. This way, your plant will be in a protected spot during the strong mid-day heat. Keep the plant far from the edge of the window or behind a curtain that’s not too thick if you have a room facing south.
Since most rainforests are dark, with your Philodendron Joepii, it is reasonable to believe that direct light is not the way.
Do not consider placing it permanently under low-light. The trick is to place it in a location where the light is bright but partially shaded. I put mine behind a sheer curtain so that the light mellows.
Philodendron Joepii is a tropical plant, so it does not like cold temperatures. That’s why I strongly recommend not putting your Joepii in a room with air-conditioning running all the time.
Typical temperatures for a Philodendron Joepii should not fall below 54 degrees Fahrenheit (12.75 degrees Celsius).
It is also recommended that you grow your Joepii in temperatures below 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32.77 degree Celsius).
For your Philodendron Joepii, humidity is known to be important. In most jungles, the humidity level is close to saturation.
Keep humidity at 60% or higher if possible. If the humidity is lower your Joepii can take it but the best results are achieved at higher humidity.
If you live in low-humidity areas, an alternative form, such as a humidifier, is highly recommended. I also suggest surrounding your plant with some water-loving varieties.
DIY – Pebble Tray
To preserve the humidity of your Philodendron Tenue, you may also try to create a simple humidity set up using a DIY technique. By having a home-made pebble tray, one can do this.
- Take a tray which is deep in the middle and fill it with water.
- Place the pebbles in the center and spread them in the tray.
- Fill the tray with the water.
- Gently place the plant inside the tray, making sure it doesn’t touch the water.
A pebble-tray is a good and easy home remedy. As the water evaporates, the moisture will retain around the plant.
In their natural habitat, Philodendron Joepii survives by devouring dead vegetation, which decays around the roots. We sometimes end up making the mistake of sweeping the decaying matter out.
However, that’s not a good thing for a Joepii just even if you think you are doing the right thing. You are depriving it of organic fertilizers by removing the rotting matter.
I generally prefer organic fertilizers over synthetic ones. To create my own fertilizer, I use tea compost, seal kelp, and extracts from plants. They provide the plant with all the necessary nutrients.
Organic materials and fertilizers strengthen the texture of the soil, allow it to retain water longer, and increase the growth of healthy bacteria and fungi in the soil.
So, not only are they helping your plants, they are helping the soil. On the other end, synthetic fertilizers wear down the soil of their resources, which renders them counterproductive.
Depending on the season, fertilizers need to be given carefully. During winters, I would not suggest giving the Joepii any fertilizers as the plant is in the resting phase.
Similarly, too much fertilizer should be avoided in summers since they can cause mineral salts to accumulate.
If you want a healthier plant, you should perform periodic replanting. The repotting process enables you to provide the plant with extra space and potting mix with sufficient nutrients in a more appropriate growing environment. Understanding the advantages and follow the steps below:
- The first step is to choose a larger pot. Do not go bigger than 1-2 sizes max as otherwise, it will become difficult to water correctly. The new pot should have drainage holes as well.
- To prevent loss of soil and easy filtration of water, use a coffee filter paper to cover the bottom.
- Next, add some soil to the base layer. Make sure it’s just enough to not cause the plant to drop over.
- Before actually repotting, water the Joepii thoroughly so that the root ball sticks together.
- Next, instead of pulling the plant out, turn the pot upside down with your hands on the top.
- Lastly, place your Philodendron Joepii in a centered and upright position in the soil.
Pruning of your Philodendron Joepii may be performed at any time of the year to remove damaged, dead or diseased sections.
Pruning in order to propagate your plant should be done in spring and summer, the main growing season.
- It is easy to propagate climbing Philodendrons like Joepii from stem cuttings by putting them in a glass of water or spaghnum moss.
- I use a rooting hormone to improve the chances of growth, but typically it is not necessary. Once a good network of roots in water has been created, I pot up the fresh specimen in a soil medium.
- You should maintain the light and temperature requirements mentioned in this guide for the success of propagation.
- Root development often takes several weeks, so don’t be discouraged if your plant has no sign of growth.
Philodendron Joepii’s produces an inflorescence that consists of a spathe and spadix. These vary in shades of purple, green, and white.
These blooms open during the blooming seasons, such as April and May. The best time for pollination in the entire blooming phase is the nighttime—these inflorescences are 12 inches long from the stem to the tip.
The plant has the most bizarre leaves that are tri-lobed. When you first look at the leaves, they look damaged or chewed, but that’s how these grow naturally.
The Philodendron Joepii is an exotic climber whose leaves grow 27 inches (70cm) long under optimum plant care. These leaves are lush green and have a slender part at the leaf joint with a pointed, broadleaf at the end.
The length of the petioles supporting the leaf blades can grow from 10 to 40 inches (0.2m to 1m).
Normally, this variety grows slowly indoors. You can try cultivation in a greenhouse for a faster growth rate.
Common Problems for Philodendron Joepii
Whether it’s pests or diseases, a stable and healthy Philodendron Joepii has almost no issues surviving through these problems.
Excessive watering is the cause of many Joepii problems without which they would normally survive for many years. Secondly,
I always say dim light does not mean indirect light. In order to make your Joepii bug resistant, give the plant indirect but bright light.
Found in warmer growing climates, the mealybugs are soft-bodied, wingless insects that often appear as white cottony masses on the leaves, stems, and fruit of the plants. They feed by embedding long sucking portions of the mouth, called stylus, into the plants and drawing the sap out of the tissue.
Damage is not often substantial at low levels of pest. However, larger numbers may cause leaf discoloration and curling as the plant loses its strength.
Feeding is usually followed by honeydew formation, which makes the plant sticky and promotes the growth of sooty molds.
Mealybugs are a common greenhouse pest that affects ornamentals plants like Philodendron Joepii. To protect my plants from getting further infected by these bugs:
- I quarantine the infested one away from the rest of the other plants.
- Next, I use a Q-tip to rub alcohol on the infected area.
I do not recommend using any synthetic plant medication to cure off mealybug infection as these pests get used to the chemical nature easily.
Spider mites often live on reside underneath the leaves of the Philodendron Joepii. They live in colonies and feed by penetrating leaf tissue and sucking up plant nutrients. Feeding traces on the leaves show up as light dots. The leaves eventually turn yellow and can dry up and drop off.
If you find that spider mites have infested your Philodendron Joepii:
- Isolate it from the rest of the healthy plants.
- Next, if the damage isn’t too serious yet, you can prune off the infected leaves.
- To avoid spreading in your yard, these leaves should be discarded outside the residence vicinity.
- Lastly, use natural spider mite control strategies such as neem oil or alcohol swabs to handle the rest of the plant.
The whitefly (Trialeurodes vaporariorum) is a sap-sucking insect common in indoor plants like tomatoes and Philodendrons. They are majorly found in dense crowds on the undersides of leaves. Great clouds of winged adults fly into the air when infected plants are disturbed.
By draining the juices from new growth, both nymphs and adult flies injure plants, causing growth retardation, leaf yellowing, and reduced yields. This makes the Joepii plants more fragile and disease susceptible.
Whiteflies secrete honeydew, just like aphids. Therefore, the leaves can become sticky or coated with a black mold of soot. They are also responsible for many viruses transmitted among the Philodendron plants.
- I highly suggest using hosepipes to remove the whiteflies from the leaves.
- Next, use insecticidal soaps or natural oils like neem to kill predatory insects.
- Lastly, keep a close eye on stressors like overwatering underwatering, over-fertilizing, and under fertilizing.
Approximately 4,000 aphid species are present all over the planet. Generally, low to moderate numbers are not detrimental to plants and seldom need monitoring. Extreme infestations, however, can cause leaves to curl, wilt, or yellow and hindered the growth of plants.
It should also be noted that generally, there is a decline in overall Joepii vigor. Several species, particularly viruses, are spread by these insects.
- To clear my Philodendron of aphid attacks, I prune off the leaves, which are heavily infested by them.
- Next, I use a bug blaster to reduce the pest numbers.
- You can also apply 100% organic chemicals like Diatomaceous Earth, also known as DE, to permanently remove aphids.
- Sometimes I mix neem with potassium soaps to form a spray that kills most insects on the first contact.
Thrips destroy plants by extracting their juices and scratching at fruits, flowers, and leaves. This is a common pest found on greenhouse plants like Philodendron Joepii. The leaves of plants will turn pale, splotchy, and silvery, then die. Upon heavy infestation, Joepii has been damaged such that it bents, discolors, and scars.
Thrips management is a garden maintenance concern:
- You must reduce the locations where thrips can breed.
- You should also remove plant debris while it is still on the ground and green.
- Take note that thrips lay their eggs in the slits of live plant stems which they attack.
- Lastly, vigilance is required to spot issues early and respond to them. At leaf and stem joints, check your plants for damage or gathered clusters.
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Tips for Growing Philodendron Joepii
Following are some tips to grow your Philodendron Joepii healthy:
- In the winter season watering should be reduced as that is the time when most Philodendrons rest.
- Terracotta pots or any pots with drainage holes are suggested when repotting, which provides the plant with more aeration and better drainage.
- Potting mix with more organic matter is a wise choice as it prevents the moisture from getting lost.
- Instead of synthetic fertilizers, one should always use organic ones as overuse of the former can cause acid build-up, which is poisonous to the plant.
- If you are growing your Joepii in a dry region, then using plastic covering helps to prevent loss of moisture.
Frequently Asked Questions about Philodendron Joepii
How do I know if my plant is a Pothos or a Philodendron?
The houseplants of Philodendron are frequently confused with pothos. Although the form of the leaves of these two plants is identical, the stems of the pothos are grooved, while those of the philodendrons are not. Fresh leaves of the philodendron emerge surrounded by a leaf sheath that gradually dries and falls away.
Philodendron Joepii grows without many issues indoors throughout the year; however, if the weather permits, they can enjoy an occasional stay outdoors, provided it’s under a shady location.
These plants are extremely rare to find but the unique foliage is worth the hunt for this unicorn plant. In addition, it is great to know that Philodendron Joepii is not too difficult when following general care tips outlined in this article.
Marcel runs the place around here. He has a deep passion for houseplants & gardening and is constantly on the lookout for yet another special plant to add to his arsenal of houseplants, succulents & cacti.
Marcel is also the founder of Iseli International Commerce, a sole proprietorship company that publishes a variety of websites and online magazines.