Elephant Ear Philodendron

Also known as spade-leaf philodendron and sometime sold as Philodendron hastatum, this philodendron derives its common name from its long, arrow-shaped leaves that resemble the ears of elephants. It is easy to grow and fairly resistant to insects. As with any plant originating in the tropics, it prefers warmth, humidity and indirect light. At maturity, the leaves are about 7 inches long and 4 inches wide. It can produce yellowish-white flowers, but this is rare in cultivation. This species is somewhat slower growing than other philodendrons.This philodendron is not a climber, but a vining type. It must be supported by some means. Water-absorbent supports are best, for they help give the plant moisture. Slabs of redwood bark or wire and sphagnum moss poles work well. This attractive display plant is a popular choice in the home as well as in commercial settings.

Family: Araceae (arum)

Origin: Brazil

Care: Keep soil evenly moist, but not soggy during growing season. Water less often in winter. Apply a liquid fertilizer at half-strength throughout the year. Mist often. Clean leaves occasionally by wiping with a damp cloth.

Lighting: Shade

Ideal Temperature: 55-75°F (13-24°C)

Challenges: Aphids, scale insects and mealybugs. Root rot from wet, cold soil.

Propagation: Cuttings