Philodendron Moonlight Care: Growing Lime Philodendrons

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New Philodendron (fil-oh-DEN-dron) hybrids come out every year. But with Philodendron ‘Moonlight,’ there is something special.

This evergreen, clumping cultivar goes by the common name lime Philodendron. Why? Its leaves and new growth sport a bright yellow-green chartreuse color. This color barely fades over time.

Lime green leaves of the Philodendron MoonlightPin
Patented Philodendron Moonlight – Odua Images|Adobe

Philodendron Moonlight Quick Care Tips

  • Botanical Name: Philodendron Moonlight
  • Common Name(s): Moonlight Philodendron
  • Synonyms: N/A
  • Family & Origin: Araceae family, native to South America
  • Growability: Easy to grow
  • Grow Zone: USDA zones 10-11
  • Size: Grows up to 2-3 feet tall and wide
  • Flowering: Rarely flowers indoors
  • Light: Bright, indirect light
  • Humidity: Prefers high humidity
  • Temperature: Thrives in temperatures between 65-78°F
  • Soil: Well-draining soil
  • Water: Water when the top inch of soil is dry
  • Fertilizer: Fertilize monthly during growing season with a balanced fertilizer
  • Pests & Diseases: Susceptible to spider mites and mealybugs. Can develop root rot if overwatered.
  • Propagation: Propagated through stem cuttings and bulbs
  • Plant Uses: Great for adding a pop of color to any room, air-purifying properties.

Unlike most hybrid Philodendron varieties, moonlight philodendron looks great with “yellow-green” leaves.

Philodendron Moonlight Care

Size and Growth

Most Philodendrons are labeled as climbers or creepers. But, Philodendron ‘Moonlight’ tends to have a shrublike, dense growth or low-clumping habit.

When mature, the Moonlight Philodendron achieves a maximum height of 20” to 24″ inches and a spread of 20” to 26″ inches.

The spear-shaped, light-green foliage starts out as lime green. As the leaves age, the lime color becomes less intense.

Flowering

Philodendron Moonlight has a fairly long bloom time for a Philodendron, lasting a month or more.

Philodendron flower stem tends to be almost the same thickness as the main stem.

They consist of a 5″ inch white spadix almost completely surrounded by a pink to red spathe.

Light and Temperature

Partial shade or bright indirect light will ensure a happy moonlight Philodendron.

As house plants, the moonlight plant tolerates low-light conditions. But, it may become leggy and not achieve its full height or vibrant color.

Philodendron moonlight needs bright light for good leaf coloration. Never leave the plant in direct sunlight. This type of philodendron will easily sunburn.

Moonlight Philodendron will grow well outdoors in USDA hardiness zones 10 to 11.

Keep Philodendron Moonlight at daytime temperatures of 65° to 78° degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid temperature drops below 60° degrees Fahrenheit at night.

Being a tropical plant, it prefers a humidity of 50% percent or higher. But moonlight will tolerate normal household humidity levels.

Watering and Feeding Philodendron Moonlight

As with all philodendrons, moonlight requires a moderate amount of water. Once the soil has become dry to about 1” inch deep, it’s time to water.

Allowing the plant to sit in water and overwatering leads to leaf drop and the risk of rot. Ensure there are enough drainage holes so the water won’t sit at the bottom.

However, underwatering may result in leaf spots. So ensure you’re providing adequate watering needs.

Misting with tepid water or using a humidifier will also benefit this plant.

Any good all-purpose balanced liquid fertilizer will work well with moonlight.

Liquid fertilizer with macro-nutrients applied monthly during spring and summer works best. Another option is to add a granular slow-release fertilizer once in the spring and again in late summer.

Feed indoor plants with a ¼ strength liquid fertilizer while the plant continues to produce new growth.

Related: Details on the best fertilizer for Philodendrons are here.

Soil and Transplanting

Philodendron Moonlight thrives in moist, well-draining soil. However, you can also choose a loose, well-drained potting mix rich in organic matter.

Another option is to go soil-less using peat moss, pumice, or a peat-perlite mix.

The beautiful Philodendron Moonlight prefers regular repotting, as it needs room for root growth.

The best time to repot is in spring, allowing for easy division every two to three years.

Just ensure to select a pot wider than the current container.

Grooming And Maintenance

While Philodendron Moonlight doesn’t need pruning, it can benefit from extra care.

Pruning away yellowed leaves or excess growth in the spring or autumn keeps Moonlight looking young and helps to show off new leaves.

Always sterilize your tools first. Cut unwanted stems at their base. Remove single leaves just above the next healthy leaf.

When pruning, always keeps at least three leaves for proper photosynthesis.

When growing indoors, clean the leaves of Moonlight Philodendron to get rid of any dust or pests.

You may also choose to stake moonlight, even though it’s not a climber.

How To Propagate Lime Philodendron?

While you may propagate moonlight in many ways, such as stem cuttings and bulbs, the easiest method for philodendron moonlight propagation is to divide the plant when repotting.

Moonlight Philodendron Pests Or Diseases

Philodendron Moonlight plants are resistant to most pests. But aphids and mealybugs are known to take up residence.

Other common insects include mealybugs, thrips, mites, and scales.

To control infestation, you can use neem oil or insecticidal soap.

It’s also prone to diseases, including leaf spots and root rot. 

Suggested Philodendron Moonlight Uses

When placed well out of reach of infants and toddlers, this is an excellent houseplant.

Philodendron is known to filter benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and other harmful chemicals from the air.

Indoors or out, the bright yellow leaves bring color to the shady areas of your home and garden.

While it serves well as a container plant, its tropical heritage makes it perfect for a vivarium when younger or if kept pruned for size.

However, remember all Philodendrons are toxic to humans and pets if consumed. This plant, especially its sap, contains calcium oxalate crystals that may cause skin irritation.

If ingested, symptoms of toxicity may include vomiting, mouth irritation, nausea, and difficulty breathing. So ensure you’re handling this plant carefully. Wearing gloves is a must to avoid poisoning.

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