Common name: Burle marx philodendron, Burle marx
Burle marx Philendendron is an evergreen, ornamental plant with beautiful, glossy, heart-shaped leaves that can be grown indoors or outdoors. These plants grow to a height of 50-60 cms with green or red petioles connecting the leaves to the stem.
Burle marx philodendron leaves are light or dark green, sometimes almost phosphorescent green, shiny and waxy. It’s interesting that these plants were named after the architect Roberto Burle Marx, the first person to use plants in modern landscape design.
These lovely Philodendron plants can be grown in small pots where they can fill the pot like a thick shrub. If provided with a supporting structure, these plants can climb by means of aerial roots. It is good to tie them gently to supporting structures in the initial stages to encourage vertical growth.
In the wild, these plants can climb on trees and surrounding vegetation, growing 1-2 meters high. You can keep the plant bushy by trimming the stray long stems, which can also then be replanted to produce new plants.
They can be grown in terrace gardens or in corners where there is indirect sunlight, as harsh sunlight can burn the tips of these leaves. The soil needs to be kept moist, but well-drained. Burle Marx philodendrons are tolerant of poor soil and pests, making them ideal plants for amateur gardeners.
These fast-growing plants can transform your garden or living room into a tropical jungle with a few well-placed plants. Make sure they received enough filtered light through windows when placed indoors.
Indoor plants should only be watered once in 4-5 days or even lesser in the winter or rainy season. Root rotting is a risk in Philodendron plants and hence, it’s a good idea to mix perlite or cocopeat in the soil to keep it loose and aerated.
Misting and wiping down the leaves can keep your plants healthy and flourishing. Keeping pots immersed in a tray filled with water and pebbles can help the plants stay moist, without having too much water inside the pot.
Fertilization can be done once in 30-40 days with a slow-release liquid fertilizer. Removing the top portion of the soil and replacing it with nutrient-rich compost can also help your plants grow well. Reduce feeding in winter months when growth slows down in Burle Marx Philodendron plants.
A closely related species is Philodendron erubescens or Blushing philodendron with its larger, reddish leaves and stems, growing much taller and larger.
Propagation can be done easily through stem cuttings or root division. Cut stems can root in water if they have nodes, and can be planted in soil once they produce roots.