How to Propagate Philodendron Selloum: Expert Tips and Tricks

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Philodendron selloum, also known as Philodendron bipinnatifidum, is a popular tropical plant prized for its large, showy leaves and easy care. Its lush foliage makes it an attractive addition to any indoor or outdoor space. One of the many advantages of this plant is that it can be easily propagated, allowing you to grow more plants for your collection or share with friends.

The two most common methods for propagating a Philodendron selloum are stem cuttings and root division. Both of these techniques can be done with minimal effort and a high success rate, even for beginner gardeners. In this article, you’ll learn step-by-step how to propagate your Philodendron selloum using these methods, ensuring that you’ll soon have more of these lush beauties to enjoy in your home or garden.

Before you dive into the world of Philodendron selloum propagation, it’s essential to know a few key factors that will contribute to successful growth. These include selecting a healthy, mature stem, using clean and sharp tools, and providing the right environment for the newly propagated plants. With the right knowledge, care, and patience, you can easily multiply your Philodendron selloum collection and spread the joy of these tropical beauties to others.

Understanding Philodendron Selloum

Philodendron selloum, also known as the Lacy Tree Philodendron or the Hope Philodendron, is a popular houseplant known for its large, heart-shaped leaves and ease of care.


The Philodendron selloum is native to the tropical regions of South America and is part of the large Araceae family which includes other well-loved plants like the Monstera and Peace Lily. Some key characteristics of the Philodendron selloum include:

  • Large, glossy, deeply lobed leaves that can grow up to 3 feet long
  • Mature plants can reach heights of 5-8 feet with a similar spread
  • Aerial roots extending from the node
  • Leaves with a deep, dark-green hue


Philodendron selloum is known for its relatively fast growth rate in optimal conditions. To ensure your plant thrives, make sure to provide a suitable environment:

  • Light: Ensure your plant receives bright, indirect light, as direct sunlight can cause the leaves to fade or develop sunburn.
  • Temperature: Maintain a temperature range between 60-80°F (16-27°C) in order for your plant to grow comfortably.
  • Humidity: As a tropical plant, the Philodendron selloum requires higher humidity levels (around 60%). Maintaining adequate humidity can be achieved through misting, pebble trays, or using a humidifier.
  • Soil: Use a well-draining soil mix, containing a combination of potting soil, peat moss, and perlite or orchid bark.
  • Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist, but avoid waterlogging or allowing the plant to sit in standing water. Water when the top inch of soil feels dry.

When it comes to propagating your Philodendron selloum, you can choose from several methods, such as stem cuttings or root division. With proper care and attention, you’ll watch your plant grow into a lush, attractive addition to your indoor garden.

Propagation Methods

Philodendron Selloum propagation can be achieved through various methods. In this section, we will discuss three common techniques: Dividing the Root Ball, Air Layering, and Stem Cuttings. Each method has its advantages and steps to follow for successful propagation.

Dividing the Root Ball

Dividing the root ball is an excellent method for propagating an established Philodendron Selloum. This technique involves carefully separating the plant parts to create new individual plants. To begin:

  1. Carefully remove the plant from its pot.
  2. Gently wash away the soil around the roots.
  3. Identify the natural divisions which usually occur at the base of the plant.
  4. Use a clean, sharp knife or pruning shears to separate the plantlets.
  5. Ensure that each division has an ample amount of roots and leaves.
  6. Plant the divisions into individual pots with well-draining soil.
  7. Keep the newly potted plants in a warm, humid environment with indirect sunlight.

Air Layering

Air layering is another effective method, especially for Philodendron Selloum plants with long, leggy stems. This method encourages the plant to form new roots before cutting it. The steps are as follows:

  1. Select a healthy stem with a leaf node, preferably in the middle of the stem.
  2. Make a 1-inch upward diagonal cut, about halfway through the stem.
  3. Insert a toothpick or a small wedge to keep the cut open.
  4. Apply rooting hormone onto the cut.
  5. Wrap a handful of damp sphagnum moss around the cut, ensuring the moss touches the cut area.
  6. Cover the moss with clear plastic wrap, securely tying both ends to retain moisture.
  7. Monitor the progress; new roots should appear within a few weeks.
  8. Once roots are visible, cut the stem below the new roots and replant it in a pot.

Stem Cuttings

The most common method for propagating Philodendron Selloum is through stem cuttings. This process involves taking a stem cutting and allowing it to develop roots in either water or soil. Follow these steps:

For Water Propagation:

  1. Choose a healthy stem with at least two leaves and an aerial root.
  2. Cut the stem about 1-2 inches below the node using a clean, sharp knife.
  3. Remove any lower leaves, leaving only the top two leaves.
  4. Fill a container with clean water and place the stem’s cut end in the water.
  5. Position the container in a warm, brightly lit location, but avoid direct sunlight.
  6. Change the water every few days to prevent bacterial growth.
  7. After 2 to 4 weeks, when roots are approximately 2 inches long, transplant the cutting into potting soil.

For Soil Propagation:

  1. Follow steps 1-3 from the water propagation method.
  2. Dip the cut end of the stem in rooting hormone to encourage root growth.
  3. Plant the stem cutting into a pot filled with well-draining soil mix.
  4. Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy.
  5. Maintain the cutting in a warm, humid environment with bright, indirect light.
  6. After 2 to 4 weeks, check for roots by gently tugging on the stem. If there is resistance, the cutting has rooted.

By using one of these methods, you can successfully propagate your Philodendron Selloum and create new plants to enjoy or share with others.

Ideal Conditions for Propagation

Soil and Moisture

When propagating Philodendron selloum, it’s essential to choose the right soil mix. A well-draining and airy potting mix, like a combination of peat, perlite, and vermiculite or a premade houseplant mix, works well for this plant. Ensure the soil remains consistently moist but not waterlogged, as excessive moisture can lead to root rot.

Light Requirements

Philodendron selloum cuttings require adequate light to promote healthy growth. Indirect sunlight or bright, filtered light is ideal for this plant during the propagation process. Direct sun can potentially harm the plant cuttings, causing leaf burn or sunstress. To achieve proper lighting, place the cuttings near a window with sheer curtains or use a grow light.

Temperature and Humidity

The ideal temperature range for propagating Philodendron selloum is between 60-85 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature falls below this range, the plant’s leaves may turn yellow and brown, while temperatures above can cause wilting. Providing stable temperatures will ensure success in your propagation efforts.

High humidity is also essential for the successful propagation of Philodendron selloum. Maintaining a humidity level of around 60-80% will encourage root development and growth in the plant cuttings. To increase humidity, consider misting the cuttings daily, placing a tray with pebbles and water underneath the pot, or using a humidifier.

By providing the correct soil and moisture, light requirements, and temperature and humidity levels, your Philodendron selloum cuttings will have a higher chance of successful propagation and grow into healthy, strong plants.

Post-Propagation Care

After successfully propagating your Philodendron Selloum, it’s essential to provide proper care to ensure the growth and overall health of your new plants. This section will discuss post-propagation care, including watering and fertilization, and pruning and maintenance of your Philodendron Selloum.

Watering and Fertilization

One of the most important aspects of post-propagation care is proper watering. Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. Overwatering can lead to root rot, while underwatering will cause the leaves to droop and wilt. To achieve a balance, water the plant thoroughly, allowing the excess water to drain out the bottom of the pot. Wait until the top inch of the soil has dried out before watering again.

Fertilization is also crucial for promoting healthy growth in your new Philodendron Selloum. Use a balanced liquid houseplant fertilizer during the growing season (spring to early autumn). Dilute the fertilizer to half its recommended strength and apply it monthly. Reduce the frequency of fertilization to every two months during winter when the plant’s growth slows down.

Pruning and Maintenance

Maintaining your Philodendron Selloum’s appearance and overall health requires regular pruning. Remove dead or damaged leaves and stems by cutting them off at the base with a clean, sharp pair of garden shears. This not only improves the plant’s appearance but also promotes healthy growth and prevents the spread of disease.

To encourage bushier growth, you can pinch off the tip of the main stem as it grows. This will stimulate the production of side branches and create a fuller, more compact plant. Additionally, keep an eye out for any signs of pests or diseases, such as yellowing leaves, mottled foliage, or unhealthy-looking growth. Address these issues promptly to ensure your Philodendron Selloum thrives in its new environment.

By following these steps, your newly propagated Philodendron Selloum will grow into a healthy and attractive houseplant. Remember to provide proper care with consistent watering, fertilization, and maintenance to ensure its success.

Common Pests and Diseases

Philodendron selloum is a beautiful and low-maintenance plant. However, it can be susceptible to various pests and diseases that can negatively affect its growth and appearance. Understanding these common issues can help you provide the best care for your plant and keep it healthy.


Several pests can attack your Philodendron selloum, including:

  • Aphids
  • Mealybugs
  • Scales
  • Spider mites

These pests are not unique to Philodendron selloum and can often be found infesting other houseplants as well. They can cause damage to the plant’s leaves and stem, hindering its growth source. Regularly inspecting your plant and treating it with appropriate measures, such as insecticidal soap or neem oil, can help control and prevent these pests.


Besides pests, Philodendron selloum can also face some diseases that may hinder its growth. Some common diseases include:

  • Root rot
  • Leaf spot
  • Stem rot

Root rot in Philodendron selloum is usually caused by a fungus that attacks the plant’s roots source. Overwatering can lead to this issue, causing the roots to turn black and mushy, eventually leading to the plant’s death. Proper watering and well-draining soil can help prevent this problem.

Leaf spot and stem rot are other diseases caused by improper keeping conditions. Ensuring that your Philodendron selloum gets adequate airflow and monitoring the humidity levels can help prevent these diseases. Additionally, make sure to keep the leaves dry when watering the plant to keep these issues at bay.

In summary, providing the right care and conditions for your Philodendron selloum can go a long way in preventing pests and diseases. Regular inspections, proper watering practices, and maintaining good airflow around your plant will help keep it healthy and thriving.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I propagate Philodendron selloum using stem cuttings?

Yes, you can propagate Philodendron selloum using stem cuttings. It is the easiest and most common method of propagation for this tropical plant. To do so, simply cut a healthy stem with a few leaf nodes and root it in a proper medium. Here’s a guide on how to achieve perfectly cut stems for propagation.

What conditions are best for Philodendron selloum propagation?

For successful Philodendron selloum propagation, provide the following conditions:

  • Bright, indirect sunlight
  • Water once weekly, keeping the soil slightly moist
  • Temperatures between 60-75 degrees Fahrenheit (16-24 degrees Celsius)
  • Humidity levels of 70-90%, ideally at least 70%

Can I propagate Philodendron selloum in water?

Yes, you can propagate Philodendron selloum in water. After taking your stem cuttings, you can:

  1. Clean the roots
  2. Add rooting hormone, if desired
  3. Suspend the cutting in clean water
  4. Monitor the water and replace as needed
  5. Transplant into soil once roots develop

Refer to this step by step guide for more details about propagating Philodendron selloum in water.

How long does it take for Philodendron selloum cuttings to root?

The time it takes for Philodendron selloum cuttings to root can vary, but generally, you can expect to see new roots forming in a few weeks. It’s important to keep an eye on the water and propagation conditions during this period to ensure successful rooting.

Can I propagate Philodendron selloum by separating plantlets?

Yes, you can propagate Philodendron selloum by separating plantlets. To do this, you will need to unpot your plant, gently separate the plantlets, clean the roots, and pot each plantlet in its own container. You can find a more detailed procedure in this guide.

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