Florida Ghost Plant is an outdoor plant that is native to northern and southern Americas and is commonly referred to as Philodendron Florida Plant. It is a beautiful plant with lime green, cream, white, and dark green plants that are shaped uniquely.
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants are epiphytes. In fact, Philodendron is Greek for the word “hugger.” This makes it the perfect name for the Florida ghost since it is a vine climber.
Before you decide to buy a Florida Ghost plant, you should know the basics of its care.
Philodendron Florida Ghost Care Guide
Table of Contents
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants have an average water demand. It is essential that the soil dries out sufficiently between waterings. To ensure that you do not mess up, you can figure out a plan for your plant, but your Florida Ghost will continue to thrive even if you do not follow it too closely. Of course, this also depends on the season and climate you are growing your plant in.
During the summers, you can water your Ghost plant three times a week. During the fall and winter months, your plant will survive if watered once a week. You can decide on any watering routine for your plant as long as you do not overwater it.
If water continues to remain at the base of the plant, root rot is a likely occurrence. Moreover, droopy leaves and brown leaves point to insufficient irrigation. Hence, pay attention to your plant; if you notice that it is not growing well, make changes to the watering routine you are following.
The best environment for your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant is a damp environment that is not humid. Before you water your plant, allow the top two inches of the potting mix to dry. We also recommend feeling the potting mix with your finger so that you can see if the plant needs to be watered.
The best fertilizers for Florida Ghost plants are nitrogen-rich fertilizers. These fertilizers help the leaves of the plant grow big and give them a beautiful green flow.
You can fertilize your Ghost plants frequently. Unlike other houseplants, these plants require more nutrition because they grow slowly. However, before fertilizing them, you must ensure that you keep the soil moist.
If you find that the roots of the plant are dry, do not fertilize the plant, as this can be harmful to the plant. During the spring and summer months, make sure to provide extra nourishment to Philodendron Florida Ghost plants every month. However, do not fertilize these plants during the winter months.
Philodendron Florida Ghost thrives in a number of light conditions, which is what makes them popular house plants. It doesn’t matter if you place them in extremely bright or dimly lit environments- these plants will thrive in a room with filtered or unfiltered light. This makes them the best houseplants to grow.
We recommend putting the plant close to a window that does not receive direct sunlight if you are growing it indoors. Direct sunshine will destroy the plant and burn its leaves. If you cannot find the perfect place to grow your plant, use a shade cloth to filter the light from the sun.
If you do not have access to sunlight, you can also use a grow light as long as it is not too close to the plant. Philodendron Florida Ghost plants require equal amounts of day and night to thrive. This means that if you are using 12 hours of artificial lighting, you need to provide the plant with 12 hours of darkness.
Moreover, the plant must receive equal amounts of light from all sides so that it grows symmetrically. Keep turning the plant so that sunlight is exposed at all angles.
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants need well-draining soil to grow, which means that you need to use soil that does not retain excessive water. You should aim for soil that is high in organic matter. If you do not want to buy the soil for the plant, you can use sphagnum peat moss as a soilless potting mix. Nothing else needs to be added to the soil in this case.
Since moss aerates well and has a coarse texture, it works well with the Florida ghost plant. Water stays in place because of the soil’s coarseness, and the aeration ensures that extra water can run through rather than getting stuck in the soil.
Before you opt for sphagnum peat moss, we recommend experimenting with what your Florida Ghost likes since the moss has a neutral pH. Most organic plant mix contains charcoal, bark, and peat, making the pH slightly alkaline and acidic.
Temperature and Humidity
The best temperature for your Florida Ghost plant is between 18 and 35-degree Celsius. These plants are susceptible to the cold, so you must turn the heat on to a comfortable level so that they do not freeze in the colder months.
In the cold weather, keep the plants away from air conditioners and open windows. Keep in mind that Florida Ghost plants thrive in humidity and grow well with moisture in the air. This means that if you live in a humid area, these plants are the best to grow in your garden or indoors.
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants require 70 percent humidity but can also grow in humidity levels lower than that. If you reside in a dry area, you can use a pebble tray to provide humidity to the plant. To make a pebble tray, all you need is a tray with pebbles on the bottom and water on top.
Place the plant on top of the pebbles, and over time, you will see that the water in the tray evaporates to provide humidity to the plant.
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants have a slow growth process, so do not become impatient when nurturing or propagating them at home if you don’t see results quickly. Just because the plants are growing slowly does not mean that they need more water or food. In fact, too many nutrients will cause the plant to die quickly.
You can expect the Florida Ghost plant to be two to five feet tall. The leaves of the plant grow two to four inches long depending on the conditions they are provided with. If you want to determine how long the plant will live, simply look at its shape- if the plant is drooping or has an odd color, it is a sign that you need to pay attention to its care.
Once purple flowers start blooming on the plant, it will grow 12 inches. Remember that Florida ghost plants are vine climbers which means that you will have to keep it stable. If you do not position the plant properly, its height will be affected.
Philodendron Florida Ghost Propagation
Image title: Philodendron Florida Ghost Propagation
Alt. Text: Plant propagation
Image desc: Green plants growing against a wall
The best time to propagate Philodendron Florida Ghost plants is during the spring season when they come out of hibernation.
You can use two approaches to propagate the plant: tip cuttings or stem cuttings. Once you are done, you can put the cutting in the plant and let it dry.
It is important to place this in the correct environment so that the Philodendron Florida Ghost can receive the care it needs.
We also recommend sterilizing and sanitizing every instrument and equipment you plan to use. Moreover, wear protective clothing to protect yourself.
Here is how to propagate your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant:
- Cut a stem that is 2 to 3 inches long using a blade. Make sure this stem is healthy and has leaves grown on its tip if you are using the tip-cutting method.
- Use the soil combination you prefer and fill the pot with it. Put the stem cuttings inside.
- Cover the top of the pot with a plastic bag to increase moisture. Remember to air out the bags frequently so to keep microbial growth at bay. Moreover, this will also prevent root damage.
- Water the plant that is growing and keep it hydrated and moist. Make sure to provide it with natural sunlight and warm temperatures.
- Tug on the plant and feel its resistance. This will help you figure out whether the roots have started to grow. Once the plant develops strong roots, move it to a bigger pot.
- Before replanting it, dip the new end of the cutting in some growth hormone. Then, dip the cut end in cinnamon. These DIY cures will increase the growth and development of the plant. Cinnamon also helps prevent fungicides from developing on the plant.
Using the right container is extremely important for the health of the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant. Since Ghost plants are vine climbers, their roots do not grow horizontally. Instead, they grow downwards. Due to this reason, you need to use a pot that is bigger on the inside.
Moreover, the pot should drain well and be of the right weight and size to support your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant.
If you feel like the weight of the plant is not balanced, you can use a growing pole. This might be a necessity since the plant has a heavy top. Without a pole, it might trip over.
However, big pots can retain water, causing the soil to become soggy. Hence, you need to ensure that the current potting medium is used while keeping the root structure in mind.
It is not necessary to prune the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant but if you want to alter its size, boost new growth, or control legginess, feel free to prune it.
If you are trying to encourage new growth, use sharp scissors to cut above a node. You must ensure that the node remains on your plant and that you do not remove a section by mistake.
You can also get rid of any dying or dead leaves by carefully tearing them off or using sharp, clean scissors to cut them off the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant.
Signs and Solutions for an Unhappy Florida Ghost Plant
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants develop problems, just like other houseplants. However, some plant owners have a difficult time diagnosing those problems.
Here are some signs that your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant is not doing well, along with some solutions on how you can make your plant happy and healthy again.
If you find that your Philodendron Florida Ghost plants have yellow leaves, it is a sign that you are over-watering them. There are many other symptoms besides yellow leaves that overwatering can cause in a plant.
We recommend also checking your plant roots for root rot if you are suspicious that your plant has been overwatered.
The only solution to over-watering is to create a schedule for your plant and water it accordingly. Moreover, only water the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant when the first few of inches of the soil have dried up.
If your Florida Ghost Plant has brown leaves, it shows that the plant needs more humidity.
As stated previously in this article, the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant can survive in moderate humidity, but it thrives in high-humidity areas. This environment is the best to ensure the healthy growth of your plant.
However, if you live in a dry region, you will have to create moisture in the surrounding air yourself. To do this, you could use a humidifier or use the plastic bag tip mentioned earlier in this article.
Does your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant have pale leaves? This could be a sign of a lack of nutrition. Like other houseplants, the Florida Ghost plant also needs proper food. This does not only refer to adequate sunlight and water.
Instead, if pale leaves show up on your plant, it is because it needs fertilizer.
One way to ensure that your plant remains healthy is by setting a fertilizer schedule that you can follow realistically.
Moreover, since you are only supposed to give the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant half the amount of fertilizer that you would give any other plant, you can fertilize it more often.
Once the plant absorbs all the nutrients it needs, it will start looking healthy and green again. You will also notice its leaves perking up.
Philodendron Florida Ghost Problems
The Philodendron Ghost plant can develop diseases and pests if not taken care of. A common pest that the mother plant attracts is mealybugs which suck the sap out of the plant.
These small, wax-covered insects drain the plant of moisture and nutrients and affect plant strength and growth.
To keep mealybugs away from your plant, you must soak a cotton ball with some alcohol and wipe it down the leaves of the plant.
You can also use neem oil on the leaves to prevent mealybugs from attacking the plant. Make sure to wipe the oil down the underside of the leaves, as these bugs can hide themselves well enough to go unnoticed by the naked eye.
Another disease to keep your eye out for is Fireball disease, a bacterium that attacks the branches first, making them change color.
When infected by this disease, your plant will become dark brown or black. If this happens, you will have to prune the infected branch.
Here are some other pests and problems that your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant may attract:
Xanthomonas Bacterial Leaf Spot
Another common issue that Philodendron Florida Ghost plants and other big leaf house plants face is Xanthomonas bacterial leaf spot.
These spots look like dark lesions and can also have yellow hallows around them. You can expect these spots to appear anywhere on the leaf.
It is difficult to treat these spots, but you can use bacterial sprays and copper fungicides to deal with the spots.
These methods do not always work, so you can always cut off the infected leaves where the lesions show up. This will stop the bacteria from spreading to other parts of the plant and plants around your house.
Make sure that you get rid of the infected leaves in a manner so that they are stored away from other plants. Moreover, clean your tools before using them again.
Fire Blight or Erwinia Blight are the most common problems that the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant deals with. This is a bacterial infection that shows up as wet lesions on the plant. These produce a terrible substance and smell.
This infection is quick-spreading and if you are not careful, it can kill your Philodendron Florida Ghost plant within a day or two.
While it might be difficult to control the infection, you can cut off infected parts or prune them away from other houseplants.
Keep in mind that Erwinia Blight spreads easily so you must isolate the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant from the house, as well as other parts.
Moreover, you also need to sterilize any tool you use before and after cutting off the infected parts of your plant.
Root rot occurs when Philodendron Florida Ghost plants are kept in extremely damp areas.
Hence, it is important that you allow the plant to dry out in between waterings so that the soil drains well.
If you find that your Florida Ghost plant does not seem to be looking well and you cannot find any infections or pests on it, take the root ball and soil out of the pot and check the wetness of the bottom soil.
If the soil is extremely wet, look at the roots and see if they are rotting or have already died.
If this is the case, cut off the dead or rotting roots and get a new pot in which you can replant the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant.
Water the plant once and let it dry completely before watering it again.
Philodendron Florida Ghost FAQs
Is the Florida Ghost plant rare?
Yes, Philodendron Florida Ghost is a rare plant that has loads of benefits and looks beautiful.
Is the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant a climber?
Yes, the Philodendron Florida Ghost plant is a climber, so it needs the correct support to grow.
Is taking care of a Florida Ghost plant hard?
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants do not require extensive care. It is a low-maintenance plant that grows on its own.
Moreover, it is a slow grower.
It only needs a watering schedule, and you need to rotate the plant every now and then to ensure that indirect sunlight reaches all its angles and it does not develop root rot.
How to ensure the best Philodendron Florida Ghost pruning?
Pruning the Philodendron Florida ghost is not necessary, but you can do so if you want to control its size.
Philodendron Florida Ghost plants are striking and make the best houseplants. They do not require too much effort or care, so if you are a busy person with too many responsibilities to tend to, this plant is perfect for you.
Not only do Philodendron Florida Ghost plants have beautiful big green leaves, but they also add a pop of color to any place because of their purple flowers.
Before you choose to get this plant for yourself, make sure to read this guide and thoroughly understand how to take care of it.
Remember, do not overwater the plant; provide it with some support as vines grow tall, and continue to check for pests and diseases every day.
As long as you follow the tips and tricks we have mentioned, you will end up with a happy and healthy Philodendron Florida Ghost plant.