Philodendron Micans are the perfect small space plant. Native to the Caribbean and Mexico, these plants have velvety, heart-shaped leaves.
The leaves never grow more than three inches wide and the nodes are deeply packed to make it easy to propagate.
Occasionally, you will see the Philodendron Micans with other names such as Velvet Leaf Philodendron.
The botanical name for the plant is Philodendron hederaceum var. hederaceum. That is quite a mouthful! I call it the Philo Micans for short.
Philodendron Micans are not only inexpensive and an easy plant to grow indoors, they are also one of the best houseplants for removing toxins in the air.
Philodendron Micans have curling leaves that unfurl as they grow into a myriad of colors depending on the amount of natural light they have. They can be deep green, to chartreuse in color.
Philodendron Micans are a trailing plant and look extremely elegant hanging from a basket. Another option is to give them a climbing pole to encourage them to grow upward.
They can just as easily be placed on a shelf or the floor but be prepared for the trailing bits to overgrow the pot.
I personally don’t mind that it gets a bit scraggly and I let one of mine overgrow the shelf it’s on.
- 1 What are the Best Practices for Philodendron Micans Care?
- 2 Propagation – Let’s dive a bit deeper into the process
- 3 Tips & Tricks for Philodendron Micans Care
- 4 Commonly asked questions about Philodendron Micans
- 5 Conclusion
What are the Best Practices for Philodendron Micans Care?
Philodendron Micans grow well in any high quality, fast-draining potting mix. I typically mix my own potting soil with peat moss.
I have also mixed it with peat-vermiculite or peat-perlite and have had excellent results.
These plants do well with bright light but not direct sunlight as it can burn the leaves.
If your window has direct sunlight, place the plant a bit further away from the window so that their light source is bright but indirect.
Philodendron will tolerate lower levels of light, but they will not thrive.
In my experience, the best Philodendron Micans care is bright light but making sure it doesn’t directly hit the leaves.
The best philodendron Micans care is to water from the top. I allow the top inch of soil to dry out between watering.
I check this by inserting my finger in the soil and if it is dry to my first knuckle, then it is time to water.
Pour water from the top until it is running out of the drainage holes in the bottom of the pot.
If the leaves get droopy, it usually means the plant has been overwatered. This will correct itself once the watering schedule is fixed.
I water more in the hot months and in the winter months, I let the soil get dryer in between watering. Overall, they are a pretty forgiving plant if the schedule gets thrown off.
Philodendron Micans do best in temperatures of 65-75 Fahrenheit during the day and around 60 Fahrenheit at night.
Since philodendron Micans are from the Caribbean and Mexico, they thrive in humid conditions.
Part of Philodendron Micans care is to mist their leaves during the dry months. January is the most humid month and March is the least humid in the Caribbean so that tends to be the schedule their growth follows.
For example, annually, the average humidity for the Dominican Republic is 82% and although it doesn’t need to be that humid for your plant, to give your Philodendron Micans care, the leaves need to be misted during dry months to prevent browning and curling.
I have found that one of the most important things in Philodendron Micans care, is fertilizing. Philodendron Micans are fast-growing and need to be fertilized monthly in the spring and summer months and every other month in the fall and winter.
They can be fed with a balanced houseplant feeder. The fertilizer you choose should contain macro-ingredients.
If you notice that your Philodendron Micans has small leaves or is growing slowly, this can be an indicator that it requires more fertilizer.
I find that sometimes my Philodendron Micans gets pale leaves sometimes and this is due to a lack of magnesium and calcium, two ingredients in a well-balanced fertilizer.
The easiest way to propagate a Philodendron Micans is to use a stem cutting.
I find that the best time to do it is in the summer or even the early spring.
Choose a healthy branch with one or two nodes and cut it off with a pair of sharp scissors or a razor blade.
I sometimes have to remove some of the lower leaves to expose a few nodes.
Put the cutting in a glass of water or a glass with some very moist soil in it.
The roots will begin to grow quite easily and before long, the cutting can be planted in a pot.
If you give your Philodendron Micas care, it will grow to an average size of 8 to 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide at its mature stage. They are considered a fast growth rate plant.
Potting and repotting
I always give my Philodendron Micas a fast draining and good quality pot. I like a ceramic pot or a hanging basket.
If the roots get wrapped in a compact ball you must give your Philodendron Micans care and repot it.
It is best to choose a pot that is only a bit larger than the root ball. I use one that is 2-3 inches bigger than the root ball and I always do it in the winter before the fresh leaves grow.
That seems to yield the best results for me.
In order to have a healthy plant, I find it is important to keep it pest-free as naturally as possible.
I use neem oil or horticultural oil.
I have also sprayed the plant with an insecticidal soap and water mix, and it keeps the pests away. Mealybugs can be wiped off with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol.
Propagation – Let’s dive a bit deeper into the process
Wait until growing (spring or summer) season to propagate.
Inspect your plant. A good time to propagate your plant is when you are pruning it back anyway. To cut a stem for propagation, you can either do one leaf to one node or two leaves to two nodes.
With sharp scissors, make clean cuts on the stems that you plan to use for propagation. Remember you can do a 1:1 or 2:2 leaf to node ratio. They need the leaf to do photosynthesis and the stem is just a way of transporting nutrients to the plant, so a shorter stem (2 inches approximately) is best.
The node is where the leaf or aerial root grows out of the stem. Make sure your cuttings have a stem and leaves are healthy and vibrant in color.
Place the cut ends in either a small jar or water or a watery mix of soil and water. Another option is to propagate with wet moss. Soak the moss and put some in the jar, creating a watery moss mix. Gently place the cuttings in the moss, being careful not to damage them as you do.
Once the cuttings have strong roots, transplant them into small pots with soil. I find that two months after I place the cuttings in water is usually a good time.
Tips & Tricks for Philodendron Micans Care
When you are giving your Philodendron Micans care, it will help you to understand what it needs by the leaves. In fact, everything you need to know about your Philodendron Micans will show in the leaves.
If the leaves are yellow, it means it is either getting too much or not enough light. As I mentioned above, it requires a sunny location however direct sun is bad for the leaves.
A sunny location with a sheer curtain to prevent the leaves from burning will work or simply place the plant away from the direct light.
Generally, I have found that if the lower leaves turn brown, it is because it is not getting enough light.
I have also had the tips of the leaves turn brown on my plants. This is usually from not enough water or from sun damage on the leaves.
In my Philodendron Micas care, I always check the soil moisture regularly. They don’t need to be watered too often but it is better to check than to let them get too dry.
The other possible reason for brown tips is too much fertilizer. With this problem, the leaves curl downward before turning brown. This is known as tip curl.
To resolve this issue, I water the plant thoroughly to wash out the excess fertilizer. I never fertilize my plant more than ½ a teaspoon of granular fertilizer mixed in a quart of water.
I do this once every month in the summer and once ever 8-10 weeks during the rest of the year maximum.
The other problem that will occasionally create brown tips is spider mites. A spray of insecticidal soap and water should get rid of the problem.
Droopy leaves sometimes occur and when they do, it is usually a sign that your Philodendron Micans care needs some tweaking.
It is usually as simple as checking the soil and watering either less or more.
The soil should never be bone dry nor should it be soggy. Either of these conditions is bad for the plant, however, they are both an easy fix as well.
Commonly asked questions about Philodendron Micans
Where can I buy a Philodendron Micans plant?
You don’t have to make any special trips for this plant. They are available regularly at garden and home gardening stores. I have also seen them at grocery stores and even on Amazon.
Does my Philodendron Micans care need to include regular pruning?
The short answer is yes. Removing unhealthy leaves from any plant is a good idea. With a Philodendron Micans, the vines can get long and scraggly. I find that when I prune them back, the plant gets fuller and bushier which for me, works better in my small space. It makes the plant less leggy and lusher and fuller. When you are pruning, always use, clean, sterilized scissors and make a clean cut below the node.
Is Philodendron Micans toxic to animals?
Philodendron Micans are toxic and animals (or small children) should not chew on the foliage. They contain calcium oxalate crystals and are considered a Level One on the toxicity level. Being an animal owner myself, I keep mine out of reach of my animals just in case.
Do I need a humidifier for my Philodendron Micans care?
If you live in a naturally moist or humid environment, you shouldn’t need one. If you live in a dryer climate, I suggest you put one in the room your plant is in. I live in an environment where the winter is dry and the summer humid, so I run a humidifier during the winter months only. Remember, most plants thrive in an environment that is like their native one.
Philodendron Micans care is relatively simple, and they are an excellent, easy to grow houseplant.
They are beautiful and elegant plant from the Caribbean and although they do require a humid environment, they are adaptable with a simple leaf mist.
They are a trailing plant with the versatility of growing up a pole or hanging from a basket and they are one of the best plants for removing toxins from your indoor air.
The Philodendron Micans care that I give my plants is pretty minimal and I have a gorgeous full leaf plant.
I fertilize once a month in the summer and once every 2 months during other periods. They prefer moist soil but not ever overly wet and are very forgiving if you do over- or underwater as long as you correct the problem.
They have very few pest concerns and are easily adaptable to any area that has indirect sun. And lastly, they are easy to propagate.
I have given all my friend’s new plants from my big one.
The only downside to the Philodendron Micans is that it does have a level one toxicity to animals and small children.
With all of these benefits and the beauty of the chartreuse leaves, it seems to me that the Philodendron Micans is one of the best houseplants to have. Wouldn’t you agree?