One of the most common houseplants in the world is the Philodendron Birkin – a leafy green plant that can grow rapidly even if you keep them indoors.
You may not know it by name, but you will be able to certainly recognize it by its white, fishbone pattern against dark-green leaves that give an elegant touch to your home.
A lot of people also choose to keep it because the Philodendron Birkin is a low-maintenance plant. It does not require a lot of things to thrive – just indirect sunlight (never keep it directly under it), moist soil, and enough time to dry in between its watering schedules.
If it’s your first time keeping this plant, this complete guide on how to care for a Philodendron Birkin might be useful to you. Read on to know more!
Quick Table For Taking Care Of Philodendron Birkin
|Watering Pattern||Once Every Week|
|Fertilizers||Once a month in warmer seasons|
|Temperature And Humidity||Light humid temperature – around at least 60% (55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit)|
Do Philodendron Birkin Need Sunlight?
Light is essential for the growth of all plants, but in the case of Philodendron Birkin, which is a tropical plant, sunlight is not exactly necessary.
The tropical plant grows near the ground of trees – usually where the seeds are and moss forms, so even if they grow towards sunlight, they do not require a lot of it to thrive.
Moisture is more necessary to Philodendron Birkins than sunlight because the heat during the afternoon can cause the plant to dry up, which will eventually kill it.
Your plant will thrive even if you put it in artificial, LED or growth lights, which is why they make great indoor plants.
When kept in the sun, the plant can shoot up in size and become a problem when in an enclosed space, so keeping it on a window facing the east or west is the ideal setting for Philodendron Birkin.
However, even if it can grow well in the darkness, never put your plant away from sunlight for too long. When it gets dark, plants tend to wind down and stick closer to the leaves and stems, so keeping it in the dark can cause stunted or slow growth.
In winter, the outside temperature can be too harsh for your plant which requires a lot of humidity and moisture, so getting a growth light for the colder months is also a good idea.
How Often Do You Water A Philodendron Birkin?
Philodendron Birkin requires a lot of moisture for proper growth but giving them soggy roots can also cause withering in the plant. Ideally, it will dry up in one week after a watering session, so you only need to water it once in seven days.
Each time you water the plant, you have to make sure that all excess water is drained out from the pot. Basically, pour in the water, let it sink to the bottom, and wait till the top layer of soil dries out. Continue the process until there is only excessive water that you can throw out.
How Do You Take Care Of A Philodendron Birkin Plant?
Although the Philodendron Birkin can easily grow without much care, it is not particularly hard and can wither when one of its living requirements is tampered with.
Since you neither want to give too much care nor neglect it completely, there are certain conditions that must be maintained.
Philodendron Birkin prefers a moist environment and is recommended to be kept away from direct sunlight for fear of drying out.
You need to pick out soil that can get rid of excess water, but also keep the ground moist for at least a week. The best kind of soil for this would be something like sphagnum moss or perlite.
However, they also do well with soil mixes – those made for aroid plants or mixtures you can try on your own. For a starter mix, you can take one part of orchid bark, one part of potting soil, and one part perlite so that there is just enough acidity and moisture retention.
Mixing these three types of soil will make sure that excess water is drained and enough aeration is provided to the roots.
In natural conditions, Philodendron Birkin can even grow on nothing but peat moss which has a rough and aerated texture that can be imitated with the perlite, potting soil, and orchid bark mix.
A common thing that beginners struggle with, is how much to water their new Philodendron Birkin. They may require a moist environment, but overwatering can call the stems and roots to start rotting.
As a rule of hand, the time to water your plant is as soon as you see the top layer (round 2 inches) start to dry up.
You can check this using your finger into the soil – if the soil around your knuckles is dry, then it is okay to water your plant again.
This will most likely happen once every week, but you need not worry if you are a day or two late. As long as the plant does not completely dry out, it will stay thriving for the time being.
However, during cold weather times like winter, only water your plant once the soil has almost dried, and always get rid of any extra water at any time you top up the moisture.
Philodendron Birkin is a tropical plant, so they require a lot of moisture in its surroundings to stay thriving. They enjoy a light humid temperature – around at least 60% (55 – 85 degrees Fahrenheit) at all times, so a lot of plant enthusiasts get a humidifier for their greenhouses or indoor gardens.
If you do not want to get a special machine, you can also keep them on a tray of pebbles with water or get a spray to mist them from time to time.
Ideally, your Philodendron Birkin should always be within 70-85 Degrees Fahrenheit and never lower than 60 Degrees Fahrenheit as freezing cold temperatures can easily kill them.
Being tropical plants, Philodendron Birkin can easily dry out when kept directly under the bright sun. They require light to grow – around 12 hours if you want their white, bone-like print stripes to remain on the leaves.
It is not so much the light that is the problem, but the heat that comes from being under direct sunlight.
Intense light during the afternoon can cause your plant to dry out, sag, and eventually burn. However, the Philodendron Birkin can survive in the morning or evening sun for around 3-4 hours.
When keeping it indoors, make sure you keep it on a window that faces the west or east for balanced light at all times.
Remember that these tropical plants grow towards where the light of the sun is, so though not necessary, you can rotate your plant to alter the way it grows.
Some owners like to get a grow light or an artificial light for plant growth, but with these kinds of accessories, you will have to manage the amount.
Too much artificial or growing light can make the plant shoot up in growth, especially since it can grow even in low-light conditions.
The Philodendron Birkin is a hardy plant and extra pamperings like fertilizers and pruning is not exactly necessary – to a point that too much fertilizer can even cause the roots and leaves to burn and yellow.
However, if you are interested in encouraging faster growth, fertilizing your plant once a month with either compost tea or natural fertilizer during one of the warmer seasons is enough for healthy growth.
The colder months are not the best for inducing growth using fertilizers, as moisture is returned better during this time. This can cause your plant to grow slowly and weakly, so you should not use it at all.
When picking a fertilizer, make sure to get ones that are abundant in calcium and magnesium.
As for extra care and grooming like pruning, Philodendron Birkin does not require it at all – except cutting of withered leaves so that energy is directed towards the areas that matter.
What Kind Of Light Does A Birkin Philodendron Need?
Ideally, the Birkin Philodendron needs indirect sunlight – somewhere in the shade but getting soft light during the day. You can look for the perfect spot by checking at which angle the shadow seems lighter.
Exposure to a certain amount of light directly decides how the Birkin Philodendron grows. For example, if you were to leave your plant in direct sunlight during spring every day, then your plant will shoot up in growth.
During summer, this will have the opposite effect and your plant will most likely die from drying up.
As for artificial lights, LED will have stunted or slow growth as it is not rich enough as natural sunlight. On the other hand, grow lights that are designed to imitate natural lighting will also cause the plant to shoot up in growth.
How Often Should I Fertilize My Philodendron Birkin?
Philodendron Birkin is hardy and does not require a lot of extra care like pruning or fertilizing. However, if you want your plant to grow well up to its full size, you can always add fertilizer during the seasons of growth (spring to summer) once every 1 – 2 months as it is the best time to grow.
A good way to tell when your plant needs fertilizing is if the leaves are starting to yellow, or if the newer leaves are growing smaller than the previous ones.
Never use artificial brands as they can cause the roots to burn and the leaves to yellow even more. Compost tea or organic fertilizer for houseplants are the ideal fertilizers to go for.
Stop fertilizing your Philodendron Birkin altogether during colder months as plants are not very active during the seasons. Growth will be slow and the additional fertilizer can become excessive easily.
When Should I Repot My Philodendron Birkin?
Repotting your plant may sound like an easy task, but it can actually directly affect how your Philodendron Birkin ends up growing.
As your plant grows, so will its roots, and once they have grown as far as they can go towards the bottom, and you start seeing the roots poke out, it is time to repot your plant into a more spacious one.
You will notice this change after a year or two most likely, depending on the tarter size of your plant. For most plants, the bigger the pot is, the better, but in the case of Philodendron Birkin, try to size up slowly. Too much space for their roots to spread can cause stress to your plant.
Ideally, the best time to repot your Philodendron Birkin is during the warmer months of early summer or late spring. Following are a few tips you can remember when you next decide to repot your Philodendron Birkin.
Only One Size Up With The New Pot
Make sure that the next pot you choose is at least 1-2 inches larger than the last one you had.
Going over 2 inches larger would mean that the container is too big for the plant and when you water it, there will be more moisture and water retained. This will cause the roots to get mushy and the stem to droop.
Fertilize Plant For Coming Months
Adjusting to a new pot can be difficult, so make sure to add fertilizer to your plant before and after you repot it. Next, if you have not been using fertilizer, you can start feeding it to your plant once a month until you feel that it has situated itself.
You can also add liquid fertilizer to your water if it makes the job easier.
Repot Your Plant When Necessary
Though it requires a lot of work, repotting can really help your Philodendron Birkin live longer. Repotting should ideally be done at least once in 2 years, or if your plant starts to show signs of withering and stunted growth.
If you take too long, then the plant can become root bound (growing around the shape of the pot), which will later make repotting even harder.
Yellowing leaves are also a sign of your plant being too hydrated or dehydrated, so when you finally repot your Philodendron Birkin, make sure you add enough perlite and fertilizer.
Once you have repotted your plant, keep it around other plants so that they create a biosphere of moisture and humidity. After repotting, your plant will be extra sensitive, so it needs to be kept in slightly moist conditions.
Split The Plant If You Want Two
Propagating a Philodendron Birkin is very easy as it can grow from its stems. Hence, if you feel like it will be easier to take care of a big plant that looks like it can be split, simply divide it into two by the root and pot them separately.
Since it grows so easily and consistently, splitting the plant can offer you more space and maintain the growth of your initial plant.
How Much Humidity Does A Philodendron Birkin Need?
The Philodendron Birkin is a tropical plant, so when you think of its ideal humidity conditions, it would be something similar to a rainforest.
Hence, if you keep them indoors, try to keep the humidity in a range of around 60 – 70% for proper growth and maintenance of the plant.
Never let the temperature go below 60 Degrees Fahrenheit as your plant can slowly wither and then eventually die. If your living conditions are mostly dry, you can help the temperature by getting a humidifier, or grouping other plants with the Philodendron Birkin so that it forms a canopy-like structure.
You can also keep your plant on a pebble tray full of water to maintain the moisture in the air, or keep a spray bottle close to the plant.
Is The Philodendron Birkin Toxic For Pets?
Philodendron Birkin is toxic on ingestion, and exposure to dogs or cats can cause irritation or swelling.
How Do You Make A Philodendron Birkin Bushier?
To make your Philodendron Birkin grow more leaves and become bushier, you simply need to let it receive at least 6 – 8 hours of mild light every day. You can even use a grow light and fertilizer if you want to encourage the growth further.
Is Philodendron Birkin Hard To Care For?
Philodendron Birkin makes for great beginner plants as they are very easy to take care of and require less attention and care.
Can Philodendron Grow Without Sunlight?
Philodendron Birkin can grow easily even in the dark, as it requires minimum care and a very low amount of light. Hence, it can grow without sunlight but would require some kind of indirect or artificial light from time to time.
In conclusion, you do not need to adjust the surroundings of your Philodendron Birkin in order for them to grow. They do not require any extra care – to the point that doing more than necessary might actually cause problems.
So if you are thinking of getting an easy plant for your collection, this undemanding plant is just perfect!