Philodendron Painted Lady Care Guide

The world of houseplants is constantly evolving with new and exciting varieties hitting the market all the time. If you’re an avid plant collector or simply love adding greenery to your home, you’re always on the lookout for the next best thing. And we have to admit, the Philodendron ‘Painted Lady’ is definitely something special. The Philodendron Painted Lady, also known as Philodendron erubescens ‘Painted Lady,’ is a rare and climbing plant that boasts stunning variegated yellow and green leaves. With its striking hues and distinctive attributes, this botanical specimen is guaranteed to create an impact in any environment. However, the question remains – where can one procure such a plant? Continue perusing to unveil the solution.

philodendron-white-knight plantHow to do painted lady philodendron care?

Philodendron erubescens is native to tropical rainforests where it thrives as an understory plant in filtered sunlight and hot, humid conditions. To ensure the proper care of your philodendron painted lady plant, it is essential to replicate these conditions.Quality painted lady care involves creating a warm and highly humid environment for your tropical plant and finding it a bright spot that is not directly exposed to the sun.

Philodendron Painted Lady Care Guide

    What unique about painted lady philodendron

    The Philodendron painted lady plant was bred by Robert McColley in Florida during the 1970s. This lovely plant is a hybrid of Philodendron Burgundy and Philodendron Emerald Queen, both of which are native to Colombia’s rainforests.One notable feature of the Philodendron painted lady plant is its bright citrusy green leaves with yellow flecks that add a distinct look to the plant.

    Additionally, the pink stems and petioles contribute to the plant’s overall beauty. Growing a Philodendron painted lady plant is relatively easy, even for beginners, and can serve as an excellent first plant purchase. Moreover, this plant is ideal for small city apartments as it acts as a natural air purifier, filtering out formaldehyde from indoor air.

    moreover, When cared for correctly and placed in a prime location, the plant can reach a height of 2-5’+ at maturity. Providing a stake when the plant is young will allow the aerial roots to attach themselves.

    Botanical Name
    Philodendron erubescens ‘Painted Lady’
    Light needs:   
    Indirect bright light
    Hardiness Zone
    9 to 12
    Common namesPainted Lady Philodendron
    Watering needs:       
    Water when soil dries up to two inches
    During Spring and Summer
    rich in organic matter, well-drained
    60 to 70%
    65 to 80ºF (18 to 27ºC)
    Where to buy:
    Etsy, Walmart, Amazon local nurseries
    Toxic for humans
    Toxic for pets


    Temperature The Philodendron painted lady plants thrives in warm temperatures, ranging from 65-85℉, which encourages faster leaf production. Extremely high temperatures can cause the soil to dry out quickly, making it necessary to adjust the watering routine. Air circulation is beneficial for the plant, so using a fan to increase airflow is a good idea. It’s important to keep the plant away from cold drafts, frequently used doorways, and windows during winter as cold air can harm it.

    Light requirements

    The Philodendron Painted Lady shows a preference for bright yet indirect sunlight. It is also capable of thriving under lower light circumstances. Inadequate light can cause the plant’s new leaves to emerge smaller, and the vines to become leggy, while the colors and variegation fade. Artificial LED grow lights can be used as a supplement to brighten the space if the home lacks bright indirect sunlight.


    The philodendron painted lady is a popular choice for tropical plant enthusiasts for many reasons. It can be placed in a moderately low-light location without losing its striking appearance. It is perfect for placing in a bathroom to add some much-needed greenery and loves the added humidity. Its bright green foliage complements white walls and works well in vintage 60s or 70s decor. On a shady balcony, it offers a tropical oasis vibe effortlessly.

    Humidity Requirements for Painted Lady Plant

    The Philodendron erubescens is accustomed to a humidity range of 70 to 80% in its native rainforest habitat. Therefore, if you have the philodendron painted lady plant, you should know that it also requires relatively high humidity levels.Ideally, the painted lady plant thrives between 60 and 70% humidity. Although, it might endure a humidity level of 40%. In case you observe brown tips on the leaves of this plant, you need to provide a similar environment to its natural one. Misting may offer quick relief, but placing a pebble tray filled with water under the pot may alleviate the dryness. You could also group your plants together to generate a moist microclimate or use a small humidifier to adjust the humidity levels to match your plant’s needs.

    The Painted Lady plant can tolerate most household humidity levels, but it grows more rapidly in humidity levels above 60%.

    Increasing humidity can be achieved by adding pebble trays filled with water under indoor plants, grouping plants together, or using a cool mist humidifier.

    Click here to buy the plant humidifier

    Fertilizing Philo Painted Lady

    Regular fertilization is essential for the fast-growing Philodendron Painted Lady plant. For optimal growth, it is recommended to use a diluted solution (¼ of the recommended strength) of complete liquid fertilizer every two weeks during the growing season.

    It’s advisable to stop fertilization during the winter months. If the plant grows throughout the year, it would be best to fertilize it during visible foliage growth using a ¼-strength diluted liquid fertilizer or enrich the soil by topping it with worm castings or rich compost.

    For optimal nutrient balance, consider using a fertilizer with a 20-20-20 ratio. If your goal is to encourage leaf growth in particular, a higher nitrogen ratio may be best. You can apply slow-release granules at the beginning of spring, in early summer, and again at the start of fall.

    An alternative option is to use liquid fertilizers once a month during spring and summer, diluted to half the recommended strength and applied around the pot’s perimeter or six inches away from the crown.

    Click here to buy slow-release fertilizer

    Water requirement for Philodendron Painted Lady

    Watering Water the soil thoroughly after it has become almost completely dry. Wilting leaves are an indicator that it’s time to water the plant. Make sure to water slowly and evenly, allowing the soil to absorb the water thoroughly.

    Checking the soil for dryness regularly by lifting the plant is a good practice, and watering accordingly. For optimal development, it is recommended to augment the frequency of watering the plant throughout the growth period, ranging from spring to early fall. Conversely, during winter, it is advisable to decrease the frequency of watering.

    Click here to buy the watering can

    Best Soil for Philodendron Painted Lady

    To achieve optimal growth for your philodendron painted lady, it is recommended that you recreate the soil conditions of a rainforest floor. This includes using a loose, spongy soil that contains ample amounts of decomposing organic matter, maintaining a consistently damp environment without overwatering.The ideal pH level for painted lady ranges from mildly acidic to neutral, typically 6.1 to 7.3.

    One easy option for creating this type of soil is to use 100% peat moss, readily available at most garden stores. This substrate retains moisture while staying aerated and loose.

    Alternatively, you may also opt to use a commercial soil mix designed for aroids or African Violets, both of which will provide the necessary components for successful growth of your philodendron painted lady.

    Click here to buy the potting soil

    Pruning philodendron painted lady mature plant

    For pruning your Philodendron painted lady, it’s best to do it in the spring at the start of the growth season. If you want bushier growth, trimming a stem above a node can encourage lateral stem development. It’s not entirely necessary to do a lot of cutting for the painted lady, besides routine maintenance for removing damaged or dead leaves and stems throughout the year. This not only keeps your plant looking great, but it also helps fend off diseases and pests that can be harmful. Ensure to use sterile scissors and wear protective gloves to shield your skin from the toxic sap.

    Click here to buy pruning shears

    Re-potting philodendron painted lady

    If you have a philodendron painted lady, don’t worry about repotting too often since this plant doesn’t grow quickly. Repotting should only be done once every 2 or 3 years, depending on when the roots start to grow out of the drainage holes or fill up the pot.Although philodendron painted lady can tolerate being root-bound, it’s important to repot it eventually before there’s no soil left at all. When repotting, move up only one pot size at a time to ensure the right soil to root ratio for proper drainage and drying.

    To avoid disease buildup, it’s crucial to use fresh potting soil for the repotting process.

    How to propagate painted lady philodendron?

    Click here to buy new Propagation Station Wall Hanging

    Propagation of Philodendron painted lady can be done effortlessly through stem cuttings or layering. To start propagation with stem cuttings, pick a stem and cut a 5-inch length that contains at least one node and a few leaves. Cut just under the node and remove all the leaves except for the ones on top.

    The cuttings can be placed in a jar of water or inserted into a damp growing medium. Ensure they are kept in a warm, moist location away from direct sunlight, and within a month, the cuttings should be rooted.

    Compared to stem-cutting propagation, air layering can be more challenging. Start by selecting a node and surrounding it entirely with damp sphagnum moss, then wrap it entirely with plastic wrap.

    In a matter of weeks, the moss should sprout roots, and you can trim below the node to propagate the Philodendron prince of orange. To obtain more detailed directions on how to tend to your plant, we recommend perusing our thorough care handbook.

    Are philodendron painted lady plants toxic to pets?

    The Philodendron Painted Lady plant has a degree of toxicity to both humans and pets due to the presence of calcium oxalate crystals in all parts of the plant, including the sap. These crystals or raphides can cause immediate and intense pain, rashes, or swelling. Handling of the plant can result in painful rashes to adults, while children are likely to ingest the plant due to their curious nature. Ingestion of the foliage causes immediate pain in mild cases and swollen tongue or airways in severe cases. Thus, it is important to rinse the mouth and give a cool treat for mild cases and to seek medical care for severe symptoms.

    Pets such as cats, dogs, and rabbits are also susceptible to the toxic effects of the Philodendron Painted Lady plant. Symptoms of ingestion include excessive drooling, wheezing, vomiting, and persistent diarrhea. It is advised to seek immediate veterinary attention if these symptoms are present in pets.

    To prevent such situations, it is suggested to plant the Philodendron Painted Lady plant in a hanging basket or on a high shelf out of the reach of small children and pets.

    Pests, Diseases & Leaves Problems With Philodendron Painted Lady

    Philodendron painted lady commonly faces challenges due to unfavorable growing conditions. The symptoms usually start showing up on the leaves, making it easy to diagnose the issue.Whether the problem is caused by insects, diseases, or an inappropriate location, restoring the plant’s health is achievable.


    To tackle pests, a monthly wipe down of the leaves with an insecticidal soap or neem oil solution can work wonders. Spider mites, known for their webs and yellow bumps on the leaves, can be rinsed off using a handheld shower nozzle.

    Fungus gnats thrive on damp soil and can be controlled by using yellow sticky traps and a hydrogen peroxide solution to kill their larvae. Scale, appearing as small brown bumps on the stems and below the leaves, can be gently scraped off. Mealybugs tend to appear in fluffy groups on the underside of the leaves and can be wiped off using a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol.


    While philodendron painted lady was developed to resist certain diseases, it remains vulnerable to fungal and bacterial infections caused by overwatering. Root rot, which manifests itself through limp, yellow leaves and soft stems, is the most common disease.

    Cutting out the affected parts and replanting them in fresh soil after disinfecting the pot can help kill any remaining fungus.

    Leaf Problems

    Leaf spot, another issue caused by various pathogens, can result in foliage discoloration and death of the leaves. Cut off any infected leaves and keep the rest dry.

    Understandably, some growing problems emerge from poor growing conditions, but they can be solved quite easily.

    Brown leaf tips indicate low humidity levels, whereas brown spots and bleaching of leaves suggest too much direct sunlight. If the leaves’ tips are curled, that could mean excess fertilizer application. Solid green leaves are a sign of inadequate light.

    Click here to buy the Neem oil

    Appearance of philodendron painted lady

    The appearance of the philodendron painted lady is vibrant and lively, making it a popular choice to showcase on Instagram. Its foliage has a minimalist yet stylish appearance that is perfect for modern as well as vintage interiors. This plant’s slow growth and climbing habit offer various options for decor in your home.


    With its subtle yet perky variegation, the philodendron painted lady foliage stands out. The new leaf unfurls in a bright neon green color. When it matures, it forms a darker green with yellow splotches throughout. You can see leaves in different stages of maturity simultaneously, adding to its visual appeal. The deep pink petioles and stems create a stunning contrast with the green-yellow leaves. The leaves have a glossy surface and a leathery texture. To maintain their beauty and ensure good photosynthesis, these evergreen leaves require regular cleaning.


    The flowering of the philodendron painted lady is not considered pleasant because of its unpleasant scent. Blooming usually takes place in late spring, but only in mature plants five years or older. The small white and cream flowers are insignificant and can reduce the plant’s energy. It would be better spent on growing leaves. Propagation is better done through stem cuttings or layering for this reason. It is advisable to cut off the flower spikes as soon as they emerge.


    The philodendron painted lady typically grows to about 5 feet and takes about 5 years to reach maturity. It spreads 12 to 18 inches wide. The plant benefits from being grown with support from a sphagnum moss pole, as it is a semi-vining cultivar. It can grow into a big, bushy shrub form as well because of its self-heading qualities. It is recommended for planting in a hanging basket, although it will not develop long trailing stems.


    Apart from its unpleasant smelling flowers, the philodendron painted lady does not have a distinct fragrance. This odorless feature makes it an ideal plant for small spaces, such as a city studio apartment, where a strong scent could be overwhelming. Additionally, it is an excellent addition to your indoor environment because it filters formaldehyde from the air. Some people, however, may have a sensitivity to strong scents, and unscented plants like the philodendron painted lady may be preferred.

    philodendron-white-knightFrequently Asked Questions:

    Does the Philodendron Painted Lady grow quickly?

    No, the Philodendron Painted Lady has a slow growth rate. However, its climbing habit gives you many options for using it in your home.

    Does the Philodendron Painted Lady require any special soil?

    The Philodendron Painted Lady prefers well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter. A peat-based potting mix with added perlite is a good option.

    What makes the Philodendron Painted Lady unique?

    The Philodendron Painted Lady’s slow growth rate and climbing habit make it a versatile choice for your home. It can be grown in a variety of pots and containers, and it fits well in many different styles of homes.