Silver Stripe Philodendron (Philodendron hederaceum ‘Silver Stripe’), also known as the Sweetheart Vine, is the absolute choice for people just getting into gardening or people with a busy life. Using the wrong soil, forgetting to water it, or placing it in a bad light will not upset the plant instantly.
Originating from South America and its namesake Brazil, the Silver Stripe is a trailing plant or a creeper. Such climber plants are ideal for indoor gardens and rooms. A home can be filled with lightness and elegance thanks to the Sweetheart Vine. The lush look will give life to any setting. Filter-like qualities of the plant help clean the air in every room.
Famous for its heart-shaped leaves with a creamy yellow center and a silver stripe running down the middle, the Silver Stripe Philodendron is a sought-after plant. The unique looks are what make the Sweetheart vine a rare houseplant to have. With proper care, the plant can live for up to forty years. The rarity, slow growth, and lack of seed production make the Silver Stripe an expensive plant to purchase.
The Silver Stripe Philodendron is toxic to people and pets. Consuming this plant may cause swelling of the lips and mouth, an upset stomach, and nausea and vomiting. Keep it at a safe distance from children and pets.
Types of Philodendron
Philodendron hederaceum plants are quite rare. Below you can find different cultivars of hederaceum, so you can choose the one you like. Or if ‘Silver Stripe’ is unavailable, you might be satisfied to own one of its close relatives.
- Philodendron hederaceum ‘Neon’ or ‘Lemon’– Yellow lime/lemon color leaves without stripes
- Philodendron hederaceum ‘Brazil’ – Similar to Silver Stripe, the stripes are yellow.
- Philodendron hederaceum ‘Rio’ – Similar to Brazil and Silver Stripe, the stripe is silver, cream, and dark green. The leaves can be more elongated than other cultivars.
- Philodendron hederaceum ‘Gabby’ – Foliage is light green and creamy, and whole leaves can become cream-colored.
- Philodendron hederaceum ‘Cream Splash’ – Very similar to Silver Stripe, with a more creamy stripe.
Grow & Care
Silver Stripe Philodendron is easy to take care of and is a forgiving plant. It is not rocket science to water this philodendron. Care routine for this plant will blend into daily life easily. In the article below, you can find out how to create a perfect environment for Philodendron Silver Stripe.
Sweetheart Vine will flourish in bright but indirect sunlight. Place the plant 6 feet (1.8 m) from a south-facing window. When exposed to too much direct sunlight, the leaves will turn yellow. With the correct lighting, it’ll grow bigger and healthier leaves.
Drought tolerance makes the plants’ water needs medium. Before watering, feel the soil, specifically the first two inches (5 cm) to verify its dryness. Wilted leaves indicate a need for water. Water once a week deeply. When watering, ensures water comes through the drainage holes. During the winter season, let the soil dry out completely between watering.
Soil & Fertilizer
The soil mixture of the Silver Stripe Philodendron should have a mildly acid-to-neutral pH level, of about 6.1 to 7.3. Well-draining soil works best. An ideal potting mix would include peat moss, perlite, and coir. During the growing season, spring and summer, the plant will need good quality plant food. Apply fertilizer twice or thrice during the growing season, do not apply fertilizer in winter.
This plant can grow outdoors in the USDA Hardiness zone 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, and 11b. Temperatures for growing the Sweetheart Vine are 70-80 °F (21-27 °C). During summer use a humidifier or mist your plant. The preferred humidity would be between 60 – 70 percent. Chilly nights with temperatures under 50 °F (10 °C) will be tough for the plant to survive. Frost will harm the plant.
The best time for propagating via stem cuttings would be late-summer:
- Use sterilized sharp sheers or scissors.
- Cut off a few healthy branches with two nods, about three or six inches long.
- Put them into a jar or container filled with clean water or soil.
- Keep in warm and humid conditions.
- Roots should form in ten days to three weeks.
For pruning use sterilized sharp scissors or sheers. Remove any discolored or diseased leaves. Cut away the oldest, longest, or leafless stems. Cut where the stem meets the main part of the plant. Pruning will help keep the plant healthy and grow lusher.
Repotting should be done once the plant has doubled in size or once a year. Silver Stripe Philodendron loves small pots so don’t size up too much with the new pot. After placing the plant in its new pot make sure to thoroughly water the plant. Always use fresh, new soil for repotting.
Root rot is common with Silver Stripe Philodendrons, which is caused by overwatering. Leaves will weaken and turn color. Fix this by replacing the old soil with fresh soil. If the condition gets worse, you can always start again by propagating.
Common houseplant pests like aphids, mealybugs, scales, and spider mites may infest your vine. Use rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball, and rub the plant with it, to rid the plant of the pests.
You can also shower the plant with water and apply insecticidal soap. Keep an eye on the plant to spot the intruders earlier for easier removal. When showering the plant with water, keep in mind that the soil does not get waterlogged.
A desired Silver Stripe Philodendron will clear the air and lighten up the scenery in any household or garden. You can place it in a hanging pot, on counters, or on the porch. This tropical plant has an easy care routine, making it perfect for beginners and people with busy lives. With its elegant yet natural look, your eyes can rest on the Sweetheart Vine.