The Philodendron melanochrysum plant, also known as the Black Gold Philodendron, is a popular houseplant that can flourish in low light and moist environments. It has dark green leaves with white veins and an attractive red-brown stem. This article will provide you with everything you need to know about how to care for your philodendron plant!
|Botanical Name||Philodendron melanochrysum|
|Common Name||Philodendron melanochrysum, Black Gold Philodendron|
|Size||3-5 feet in height|
|Pet Friendly||No. Toxic to pets|
Philodendron Melanochrysum Origin
The Philodendron melanochrysum is from southern Brazil and is a member of the Philodendron genus, which has over 100 different species.
This plant has been cultivated outside of South America since 1886. In its original habitat, this climbing vine can grow to over 20 feet!
The plant is also known as the Brazilian philodendron or butterfly plant because of its beautiful leaves and stem. The leaves are green with white veins, and the stems are red-brown.
Philodendrons are some of the most common plants grown in homes around the world. These long-living, easy-care houseplants are a great way to enjoy nature indoors.
How to Care for Philodendron Melanochrysum
Below we discuss how to care for Philodendron melanochrysum.
Light and Temperature
Philodendrons need to be kept in bright light but avoid direct sunlight, which will scorch their leaves and cause them to yellow.
They also prefer a temperature of 68 – 80 degrees Fahrenheit (20-27°C). Avoid placing them in drafty areas or near heat vents.
The Philodendron melanochrysum prefers humidity levels between 40% – 60%. If you want big, lush leaves, strive for humidity levels above 60%.
If you don’t live in a humid climate area, there are three ways you can create a more humid environment.
First, you can mist the leaves. As the water evaporates, mist them again.
Second, you can create a pebble tray. Add some water to the pebble tray being careful not to have the water go above the pebbles. Then place your potted plant on top of the pebble tray. As the water evaporates, it will create humidity for your plant.
We recommend that you plant this houseplant in a pot with a drainage hole. Philodendrons require well-drained soil because they are susceptible to root decay (a type of fungal disease).
Next, make sure the soil is moist but not wet. You can expect to water your philodendron melanochrysum every seven days.
Do not let the water pool in a saucer under your philodendron because this will promote fungus growth and can lead to root rot, especially during winter months when temperatures are cooler.
If you have trouble remembering whether or not it is time for watering, place your finger in the soil. If the soil is dry, it’s time to water your philodendron.
The Philodendron melanochrysum requires fertilization every three months.
If you’re using a liquid fertilizer, make sure the philodendron is in an area with sufficient drainage because it can be harmful to plants if they are over-fertilized.
Another option for fertilizing your plant is through granular or slow-release pellets, which should be placed around the plant’s root.
This will provide your plant with the nutrients it needs to grow and maintain its lush green color.
Fertilize usually in spring, summer, or early fall because philodendron plants are growing at their fastest rate.
If you want to fertilize during the winter months, it’s best to wait until March because this will benefit the plant with more time to work its nutrients into the soil.
Mature plants may bear flowers that are small and white with a reddish center.
Flowers are produced in clusters on erect stems that emerge from the axils of young leaves, usually between late winter or early spring to midsummer.
The Philodendron melanochrysum plant is a trailing vine plant that does not need a lot of pruning.
You can cut leggy trails just after a node. This will encourage new growth and fullness.
You will want to make sure you cut away any dead or dying leaves.
You will need to repot your Philodendron melanochrysum every two years or so.
To do this, you will need to remove the plant from its pot and gently shake out any excess soil before replacing it in a new container with a fresh potting mix.
Water until moist but not wet, and then place outdoors for at least one day to make sure the plant is well-hydrated.
Then put your Philodendron melanochrysum back in a bright location with indirect light and keep it watered for at least two weeks until you see new growth.
If you notice any drooping or wilting leaves after repotting your plant, this means that it may be time to cut back the philodendron melanochrysum.
Philodendron melanochrysum leaves are often preyed on by insects such as aphids and whiteflies.
Fungus gnats are another common pest. They look like tiny black flies and mainly attack the roots. They lay eggs in the soil, and the small larvae that hatch out feed on the Philodendron melanochrysum‘s roots.
Mealybugs are another insect that could infect your plant. If your plant is infested with mealybugs, you will see cotton fluff under the leaves where they like to hide. Some mealybugs feed off the roots of your plant, but this is harder to spot.
There are various ways to deal with pests, including using chemical or organic pesticides, introducing natural predators such as ladybugs into your plant, pruning away infested leaves, spraying water directly onto any aphids you see, etc.
If using a spray like insecticidal soap or neem oil, make sure to cover the underside of the leaves where they like to hide.
If you notice your plant is infested, you will want to move the plant away from other plants in your home to ensure the pests do not spread.
Common diseases that Philodendron melanochrysum plants are susceptible to include leaf spot, canker, and Phytophthora blight.
Signs of leaf spot include yellow, brown, or black spots on the plant leaves.
Canker is characterized by sunken patches of dead tissue. Your plant will be stunted and stop growing.
Notable signs of phytophthora blight are yellow and brown spots on the leaves, which then progress to a wilting of older foliage.
To avoid these disease plants, make sure to inspect your Philodendron melanochrysum‘s roots for any pest infestation or decay before watering it, as this can contribute to the risk of infection.
Plants with weak root systems are also more susceptible than those with dense root systems that have been well fed in recent weeks.
Ensure they get plenty of water but not too much as wet soil leads to increased instances of rot and fungal infections such as root rot (which causes moldy patches at the base).
How to Propagate Philodendron Melanochrysum
There are two methods for propagating Philodendron melanochrysum plants, stem cuttings or air layering.
- Identify the node. On the Philodendron melanochrysum, the node is where the leaf meets the vine, and you will see some aerial roots poking out.
- Take pruning scissors and cut about one inch to two inches below the node (depending on the spacing of your plant).
- Using a medium, like perlite, place a good amount into a ziploc sandwich bag.
- Slowly add water to the sandwich bag while stopping to knead the perlite material around. You want to make sure you get the medium pretty wet. If the medium dries out, propagation will not work.
- Fill up a plastic cup 3/4 of the way with the damp perlite. Insert the stem cutting. Add more perlite to ensure the node gets buried.
- These plants love humidity. To help provide a humid environment, place the plastic cup in a 1-gallon ziploc bag.
- After a couple of weeks, check on your cutting to see if there is new root growth. As new growth occurs, the plant will naturally kill off the leaves. Remove these rotting leaves.
- After about one month, you will see substantial root growth and new leaves forming. Now it’s time to plant!
- Make sure you use a well-draining, airy type of soil. Plant the node about one inch under the soil to make sure the roots stay down.
- Add a moss pull for your plant to climb and thrive.
- Give the plant a little water to make sure the soil is moist.
Air layering is a way to start the propagation method before cutting the main plant.
- Gather some sphagnum moss and make sure it is wet.
- Locate the node on your plant.
- Wrap the moss around the node on your plant.
- Wrap plastic wrap around the moss and secure it in place with a tie or tape.
- Leave the bottom and top of the wrap slightly open. Leaving the bottom open will allow for new root growth.
- Use a spray bottle to mist the moss ball from the top daily.
- Once you see extensive root growth, remove the plastic wrap.
- Cut the stem below the root growth.
- Plant your new plant in a pot with well-draining soil and give it some water.
Frequently Asked Questions about Philodendron Melanochrysum
Final Thoughts on Philodendron Melanochrysum
The Philodendron melanochrysum plant is grown for its dark green leaves and unique, contrasting patterns. This plant is an excellent addition to any indoor garden because it can grow over time up to three feet tall with just one stem! This easy-to-care-for houseplant will give you years of joy.
We hope that you found our plant care tips helpful and informative.
Be sure to check out all of our Plant Care Guides!