Philodendron ilsemanii care infographicPhilodendron ilsemanii of the Araceae family is known for its green and white foliage that can best be described as a sprinkle of colors. The tropical variegated plant is absolutely a feast for the eyes. It grows well in pots and needs basic, minimal care.

In this article, we’ll be telling you all you need to know about this beautiful philodendron genus plant and how to give it the best life.

Quick Overview

Here is a handy table of this plant’s requirements.

Requirements Philodendron ilsemanii
Light Will burn under direct sun, but can tolerate indirect bright light
Water Water only when the soil is dry to the touch
Soil Loves moist soil mixes
Temperature Temperatures ranging from 55 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit
Humidity Humidity levels between 70 to 90 percent
Fertilizer Likes a treat of fertilizer during the growing season

What Is Philodendron Ilsemanii?

Philodendron ilsemanii, also known as Mottled ilsemanii variegata, is a tropical variegated plant that has stems that grow aerial roots that are visible but do not reach the ground.

Guide to Easy Grow the Indoor Plant

Their foliage is fantastic and well-loved by gardeners.

Philodendron Ilsemanii Care

Growing it in well-draining, moist soil, keeping it in indirect bright light, and giving it loads of moisture will make your plant thrive. Let us look at its basic care needs and how you can give it the right environment to grow in.


Philodendron ilsemanii variegated loves moist soil mixes. It will not like wet soils as overwatering causes root rot.

When choosing the best soil for your Philodendron Ilsemanii, using regular potting mix is not a wise decision at all. Find a potting mix rich in organic matter, and one that does not dry out quickly.

Philodendrons can tolerate Ph levels between 5 to 7, which means soil from acidic to neutral. Potting mix that has coir, peat moss for water retention, and perlite for drainage, is very good for this plant.


Watering philodendron ilsemanii is very simple: water only when the soil is dry to the touch. You can check this by feeling the soil. If the top 1 or 2 inches of soil are dry, then you can water it. Its water usage and evaporation of water also change with the weather. 

In summer, the plant uses more water as it is the growing season for philodendron ilsemanii variegated. During winters, it uses less water, so you only need to water the plant twice a week for it to thrive.


Philodendron ilsemanii leaves will burn under direct sun, but can tolerate indirect bright light. Such lighting conditions can be achieved by offering filtered light. Morning hours or late evening sun can be a good source of light for the plant.

The Majestic Ilsemanii Philodendron

Remember, it grows under trees where the canopy filters the light for it. A curtain can do the same in your house, so keep it where the light is softened and sun rays do not directly land on the leaves of the plant.


Philodendron ilsemanii variegata likes to be in temperatures that range from 55 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit. The plants are frost-hardy and can thrive throughout the year. If the temperature drops below 55 degrees, the plant will begin to wilt. 

It is advised to bring your plants indoors during winter and keep them cozy. Indoor temperatures are perfect for this plant during the colder seasons.


Since this is a tropical plant, it receives plenty of rainfall and is surrounded by plants to keep the humidity high around it in its natural setting. While growing it indoors, the plant will perform best if we are able to replicate similar growing conditions.

Philodendron ilsemanii grows more steadily in humidity between 70 to 90 percent. There are a couple of ways to give it high humidity:

  • Install a mister and mist your plant regularly
  • Use a humidifier 
  • Place plants close together

Pebble trays might not be a good idea for this plant as it likes its roots to remain moist, not wet.


Philodendron ilsemanii likes a treat of fertilizer during the growing season. The amount of plant food will depend on the size of the plant, while the frequency will be every two weeks. Stop fertilizing the plant during winter. 

Some of the fertilizer options are:

  • Natural fertilizers that include compost, manure, worm castings, tea and coffee grounds, or a ready-made balanced mix available at the store
  • Synthetic fertilizers that are slow-released can be applied at the time of plantation 
  • Liquid fertilizers can be diluted heavily and mixed with each irrigation

– Repotting

Philodendron ilsemanii variegata will need repotting when it becomes root bound in the old pot. It is then time to give it a pot that is at least 1.5 inches bigger than the old one. Use the same potting mixture and change the pot during spring.

Make sure you water the plant a couple of hours before and after the transplant. Do not fertilize the plant for the next two or three weeks until it settles in its new pot.


Philodendron ilsemanii variegata is pruned in the growing season. It can be clipped to remove unwanted dull or yellowing leaves or to discard the infected ones. Pruning also helps in keeping the plants in shape.

Remember a few things before you begin pruning your plants:

  1. Clip or prune your plants only in the growing season and never in winters. The plants rest in cold months
  2. Use gloves before pruning to avoid any possible allergic reactions
  3. Prune in the evening when the sunlight is mild. It helps plant recover
  4. Always use sterilized tools to prune your plants


Propagate Philodendron ilsemanii through stem cuttings. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you do that.

  • Propagate in spring or summer, which is the growing season for this plant
  • Water the plant a few hours before taking a cutting
  • Use sterilized tools

You can begin by taking a cutting that has more than one node. Plant it in a ready-made soil mix and cover it with plastic. During the time of its initial growth, make sure it gets adequate water, sunlight and plant food if needed. Here are some points to remember:

  • It is essential to have a good quality potting mix for the cuttings to thrive
  • Never expose the plant cuttings to direct light
  • Keep plant in indirect bright light
  • Do not overwater it

Remember, it is a slow grower and may take a while to begin rooting. Do not be disappointed if you do not see results in one or two weeks. You can only give it the best growing conditions to assist in its growth.



Philodendron ilsemanii can get affected by pests or show signs of illnesses, but do not worry, we have solutions for you in the following troubleshooting guide.

– Spider Mites

Philodendron ilsemanii can sometimes be attacked by spider mites. They make holes on the edges of the leaves, resulting in unattractive foliage.

Common Problem for Indoor Plants

It is easy to get rid of them, just clean the leaves with a soft cloth dipped in a mixture of warm water and soap.

– Thrips

Thrips can invade the Philodendron ilsemanii plant. They cause wilting and discoloration, and if left untreated can kill your plant too. Wash your plants twice a month to lessen the chances of this pest attack.

– Curling Leaves

Philodendron ilsemanii leaves curl on the edges when there is an excess of nutrients in the soil. They might also wilt and look unhealthy. An overdose of fertilizer can be the cause of this symptom. 

To resolve the problem, stop fertilizing for a while and start misting your plants more frequently. Misting will allow the build-up of chemicals on the leaves to be washed away and allow the plant to recover.

– Clogged Soil

Overwatering causes clogged soil and blocks air pockets that supply oxygen to the roots. Aeration is essential for the roots. If the Philodendron ilsemanii soil is constantly wet and doesn’t drain well, it can quickly lead to plant death.

Amend soil and water only when needed. Follow the guide above to know the proper water requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions  

Is Philodendron Ilsemanii an Indoor Plant?

Yes. Philodendron ilsemanii works perfectly well as an indoor house plant. It’s a low-maintenance plant that only needs indirect light and a little water.

Rare Beauty of House Plant

Indoor temperatures are ideal for its growth.

Does Philodendron Ilsemanii Clean Indoor Air?

Yes. Philodendron ilsemanii are the best air purification plants for any home garden. It not only cleans the air but also traps dust particles. 

Are Philodendron Ilsemanii Toxic?

Yes. Philodendron ilsemanii are toxic plants and should be kept away from children and pets who can accidentally eat the leaves. It can cause swelling of the mouth, lips and tongue, as well as an upset stomach. 

Why Are the Leaves of My Philodendron Ilsemanii Becoming Yellow?

There are various reasons for the decoloration of the foliage. Among them are:

  • Low light
  • Not enough water
  • Excessive fertilizer 

If the plant is in low light, bring it closer to a brighter location that receives filtered light. Water it more frequently and avoid longer drier periods in between each watering. Stop fertilizing if that is causing the discoloration of its leaves.

How Big Can the Plant Get?

Philodendron ilsemanii can grow as big as 20 feet tall.

The Exotic Ilsemanii Philodendron

They grow at a faster pace during the growing season, so that is when you can expect them to show active growth and increase their height.

Can I Put Coffee Grounds in the Pot of Philodendron Ilsemanii?

Coffee is a good fertilizer. You can use it when the plant is experiencing stunted growth. Do not overuse any fertilizer, be it natural or synthetic.

How Frequently Should I Water Philodendron Ilsemanii?

Philodendron ilsemanii needs water when 25 percent of the soil is still moist. With the right type of soil, this would mean twice a week. It depends on how fast the water drains and how much of it is retained by the soil. Temperatures will have an impact on water requirements too. 

It is best to check your soil first before watering.

Is It Alright to Prune Philodendron Ilsemanii?

Yes. You can prune the leaves that are showing signs of illness, discoloration or those that are wilting.


Philodendron ilsemanii is a lovely plant to have indoors because it looks attractive and purifies the air. The tropical plant is super easy to take care of and grows well in an indoor environment.

  • Philodendron ilsemanii is a variegated plant with splashes of green and white 
  • It can be stalked for healthier growth and bigger foliage
  • Philodendron ilsemanii loves growing in well-draining, rich soil
  • Higher humidity encourages the leaves to grow bigger
  • Overwatering and over-fertilizing is bad for the plant
  • Water only when most of the soil is dry 
  • Philodendron ilsemanii needs bright indirect light and burns in direct exposure to sunlight
  • The plant can grow up to 20 feet tall 
  • It likes to stay in temperatures ranging from 55 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Fertilize it during the growing season and not during winter
  • Propagate it in spring or summer with stem cuttings
  • The plant is toxic and must be kept away from children and pets
  • Some pests affect the growth of Philodendron ilsemanii plants
  • Spider mites and thrips can be kept away by washing the plant’s leaves
  • Low light or drought-like conditions make the leaves turn yellow
  • You can prune the plant when needed

In short, the Philodendron ilsemanii plant’s splash of colors brings liveliness to homes. Plant them in pots with stakes, give them proper care, and they will be among the most beautiful plants in your collection.

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