The Enchanting Philodendron Silver Sword

From its captivating name to its striking foliage, the Philodendron Silver Sword is a plant that is sure to leave a lasting impression. Its lance-shaped leaves, resembling interlocking blades, evoke a sense of enchantment straight out of a fantasy novel. This elegant plant serves as a stunning statement piece, whether displayed in your home or in a terrarium.

But don’t be fooled by its otherworldly appearance – the Philodendron Silver Sword is a real plant, native to the rainforests of Brazil. In fact, it is listed as an endangered species due to habitat destruction, making it a valuable addition to any home and an act of conservation in itself.

As a member of the popular Aroid family, this vine offers all the advantages of easy care, simple propagation, and various growth options. Whether you prefer a graceful trailing plant or a climber with large, kitchen blade-like leaves, the Philodendron Silver Sword has it all.

Now, let’s delve into the details of how to care for this versatile plant and learn how to cultivate those magnificent swords.

At a Glance

  • Plant Type
  • Lighting
  • Temperature
  • Watering
  • Humidity
  • Growth

Philodendron Silver Sword Light Requirements

In its native Brazilian jungles, the Philodendron Silver Sword thrives in moderate to bright indirect light as it weaves its way through the rainforest canopy. Replicating this environment indoors can be achieved by placing the plant near a North or East-facing window. Be cautious of direct sunlight, as it can fade or even scorch the plant’s beautiful foliage. However, this Philodendron is quite adaptable and can tolerate lower light conditions with ease. So, feel free to position it farther away from a light source within your room.

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Philodendron Silver Sword Light Requirements

Watering

Being an epiphytic tropical vine, the Philodendron Silver Sword thrives in moist conditions. Regular watering is welcome, as long as the roots have proper aeration and are not sitting in water. To ensure good drainage, choose a pot with a drainage hole. Interestingly, this particular Philodendron can tolerate occasional overwatering, making it an ideal choice for terrariums. Achieving the right water balance in a terrarium can be challenging, but the forgiving nature of this plant means it will still flourish, even if you make a slight mistake.

Watering Philodendron Silver Sword

Substrate

Similar to other Aroids, the Philodendron Silver Sword prefers a loose and well-draining substrate that retains moisture while allowing for proper aeration. While it enjoys moisture, it is susceptible to root rot if the substrate retains too much water. Striking a balance between water retention and drainage is crucial. Consider using a mixture of coco coir as the base, along with additives like earthworm castings for nutrients, and orchid bark, perlite, or pumice for improved drainage and aeration. Adding sphagnum moss to the substrate can enhance its moisture-holding capacity.

Chunky tropical substrate up close

Temperature & Humidity

Despite being a tropical plant, the Philodendron Silver Sword is not demanding when it comes to temperature and humidity. Average room temperatures and humidity levels are usually adequate for its well-being. It can tolerate temperatures above 60°F (15°C) and prefers humidity levels around 50%. However, providing higher humidity will certainly be appreciated by this plant.

Philodendron Silver Sword Humidity and Temperature meter

Growth

The Philodendron Silver Sword exhibits a fascinating growth pattern. It starts as a terrestrial plant with a root system in the soil, but as it climbs nearby trees in the rainforest, it transforms into an epiphyte. Using its aerial roots, it searches for moisture and nutrients higher up in the canopy. If it severs its connection to the underground root system, it becomes fully epiphytic. While it can grow beautifully as a trailing plant, if you desire mature plants with large leaves, you will need to provide it with something to climb.

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Mature Philodendron Silver Sword Leaf
Mature Philodendron Silver Sword Leaf

Propagation

Like many Philodendron species and other epiphytes, the Philodendron Silver Sword prefers propagation through stem cuttings. Prior to developing full-sized aerial roots, the plant’s stems produce nodes. These nodes are crucial during propagation, as they can transform into regular roots. When taking cuttings, make sure to include one or two nodes towards the bottom for successful propagation. You can take multiple cuttings from different sections of the vine. Propagation can be done in a hydroponic setup or a semi-hydroponic arrangement with the addition of sphagnum or perlite. The Philodendron Silver Sword is an easy plant to propagate, with roots usually forming within a couple of weeks.

Philodendron Silver Sword Propagation (Stem Cutting)
Philodendron Silver Sword Propagation Cuttings
Philodendron Silver Sword Water Propagation Rooted

Varieties & Similar Plants

The bluish-silver color of the Philodendron Silver Sword is not as rare as it may seem. This plant is often mistaken for the Epipremnum pinnatum, also known as the Cebu Blue Pothos. If you’re interested in other suitable Philodendron species for your terrarium, consider Philodendron micans (or its classic version, Philodendron hederaceum), Philodendron verrucosum, Philodendron Brasil, and Philodendron Birkin.

Frequently Asked Questions