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Philodendron Werneri Care Including Mini and Rotonda

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Philodendron werneri is a rare, evergreen, climbing houseplant native to Ecuador. It has an adorable oval, heart-shaped to sagittate green leaves that will transform your home or office.

Moreover, this plant is easy to care for and air purifying. If you are already a climbing Philodendron, care needs are more or less similar.

Today, we will discuss Philodendron werneri care, prices, and appearance, including the Mini and Rotonda varieties. Also, there is a section on Philodendron nangaritense x werneri, a hybrid, and where to buy these plants.

Philodendron werneri with large mature leaves - Courtesy of Ecuagenera
P. werneri with large mature leaves – Courtesy of Ecuagenera
Juvenile Philodendron werneri plant
Juvenile Philodendron werneri plant or Mini: Check the latest prices.

About Philodendron werneri

Philodendron werneri Croat is a recently described species, first published in 2013. Dr. Thomas Croat named it after Florian Werner, a German Botanist.  

  • Scientific name: Philodendron werneri
  • Lower classification: Subgenus Philodendron sect. Philodendron, subsection Philodendron, ser. Philodendron
  • Family: Araceae
  • Native habitat: Ecuador
  • Care level: Easy or low maintenance
  • Toxicity: It is mild to moderately toxic to humans, cats, and dogs since it has calcium oxalates.
  • Propagation: Stem cutting in water or soil (substrate)

1. Growing habits, growth rate, and size

Philodendron werneri is an evergreen, climbing hemiepiphyte. It occurs in the tropical wet biome, specifically the premontane moist forest in Zamora-Chinchipe Province at 2000 m (6561 feet) above mean sea level.

Werneri has a moderate growth rate, with the overall growth rate influenced by prevailing conditions. It can grow up to 4-8 feet at home. But to grow this tall, it needs a moss pole or somewhere to climb.

2. How to identify Philodendron werneri

To identify this plant, consider the stems, leaves, and flowers, which are as follows:

a). Stems

Stems have short internodes and possibly deciduous unribbed cataphylls (165-33.5) that dry intact with light-brown colored epidermis.

b). Leaves

Mature Philodendron werneri has large (14.6–17″ long, 10–13″ wide), sub-leathery, oval-heart-shaped-sagittate green leaves with a lobed base and an abruptly acuminate apex. These leaf blades are 1.4-4.56 longer than broad wide, widest where they attach to the petiole and are shorter than the petiole.

More details are as follows:

  • Anterior lobe: Straight margin with distal margins broadly rounded
  • Midrib: Short pale lineate on the upper surface, smooth with no marks below
  • Posterior lobes: Downward and inward-directed 
  • Primary lateral veins: 11 pairs, arising from 55–60°
  • Basal veins: 9, 1st, and 2nd free to base, rest fused at different levels
  • Posterior rib: Partly naked and gradually cured
  • Sinus: hippocrepiform

Lastly, this plant has green subterete petioles that measure about 21.1–20.6″ long.

c). Flowers

Mature P. werneri will have up to three inflorescences per axil with a peduncle, spathe with a moderate constriction above the tube, and spadix. The spathe is reddish, drying leathery, medium reddish brown.

Philodendron werneri Mini

Philodendron werneri Mini is a small-leaf vining form with almost round or broadly heart-shaped leaves and short petioles (making it appear as if it shingles). New leaves with blackish gold. Sometimes, the leaves may appear speckled due to their extrafloral nectaries.

We cannot confirm if these plants are a juvenile form or a variant, but if you are interested in this werneri mini, you will spend between $25-$50.

Philodendron werneri ‘Rotonda’

Philodendron werneri ‘Rotonda’ is yet another variant – not certain if it is a cultivar or hybrid plant – characterized by smaller oval green leaves with a silvery bluish sheen with a pale peach underside when they emerge. 

Philodendron werneri 'rotonda'
P. werneri ‘Rotonda’: See the latest prices.

Philodendron nangaritense x werneri

Philodendron nangaritense x werneri is an unnamed hybrid by an unknown creator that borrows its features from both parents. It has gorgeous heart-shaped green leaves with reddish petioles like nangaritense but only a few tiny bumps or warts and climbs like werneri.

Newly emerging leaves are orange/pinkish but will turn greenish as they age and harden.

If you want a Philodendron nangaritense x werneri hybrid, it will cost you $50 – $125, and it is very rare or hard to find.

P. werneri vs. strictum

Philodendron strictum G. S. Bunting, native to Costa Rica to Venezuela, resembles werneri. However, werneri has prominent laticifers on the lamina’s underside, and when petioles dry, they are matter, greenish gray and not glossy, yellowish brown as it is with strictum.

Caring for Philodendron werneri

I grow my werneri plant in a warm, humid place with bright, indirect light. Its potting mix is airy, well-drained, and rich in humans, and I water it when a few top inches of potting mix feel dry.

Here is how I care for my werneri plant:

1. Ideal growing conditions

This plant grows optimally in a warm (55-80°F), humid place (at least 40%, ideally 60% or more relative humidity) with bright, indirect light. Avoid cold drafts or spots near heat-emitting appliances or heat sources/vents.

This plant can tolerate medium, indirect light but too little will make it leggy and have smaller, paler new growth. Also, avoid direct sunlight as it will burn leaves.

People who live in places with very low humidity, i.e., less than 40%, need a humidifier or a pebble tray. Also, you can mist your plant or move them to humid areas, among other ways to raise humidity.

Lastly, if you are in USDA zones 10-11, you can grow this plant outdoors in a shaded place. Please move it indoors when the temperature goes below 50°F.

2. What is the perfect soil for P. werneri

The soil should be well-drained, aerated, and rich in organic matter. I grow my plant in an aroid mix I bought from Etsy.com. But you can make yours home by adding perlite, coco coir (peat moss), bark chips, and worm castings (compost).

Your objective is to ensure the potting mix is airy and drains but holds moisture. The exact mixing ratios don’t matter.

3. How do I water this plant?

I only water this plant when it feels dry past the first knuckle of my finger or if my XLUX moisture meter reads dry (3 or less).

Don’t follow any of the watering schedules you find online water requirement depends on conditions and other factors. Instead, feel or test the soil. Also, discard any water that collects in the saucer after 15 minutes.

4. How to properly feed it?

These aroids need moderate feeding. I feed it at least once per month with a balanced liquid fertilizer. You can apply it with every watering if you have a lowly concentrated brand like Miracle-Gro.

Any other fertilizer for a potted or indoor houseplant is perfect, including slow-release or unbalanced formulas. Just follow the given instructions, starting with half recommended strength.

5. More care needs

  • Pruning: Check for dead, damaged, and diseased leaves or parts and remove them with sterilized gardening scissors. To control size, shape, or growth, I cut a bit of the stem during growing months, i.e., less than 25% at any given time.  
  • Repotting: I usually repot this aroid after 1-2 years or if rootbound. Use a pot 2-3 inches wider than the current one.
  • Moss pole: If you want it to grow faster and have larger leaves, I recommend you buy a moss pole, trellis, or totem and train your plant on it.

Problems or issues

There are no specific problems with werneri plants except those that affect Philodendron and most other houseplants.

We haven’t had any issues with pests (aphids, scale insects, mealybugs, or spider mites) or diseases (leaf spots, southern blight, etc.). But we did have a root rot episode that almost killed our plant because we followed an online watering schedule and ended up overwatering this plant.

Other issues like leaf curling, discoloration (turning yellow, brown, or black, including spots), or your plant drooping occur if you have the wrong growing conditions (temperature, humidity, or lighting) or care. But it may be due to diseases or pets.

Where to Buy Philodendron werneri

Etsy.com is our number one recommended place to buy P. werneri plant. Facebook, Instagram, and eBay are good alternatives. Other vendors include Steve’s leaves, Ecuagenera, and Gabriella plants, a few but to mention.

Frequently asked questions

1. Is Philodendron werneri rare?

Yes. P. werneri is a rare or hard-to-find houseplant. Very few people have a plant on popular marketplaces like Etsy.com or eBay. No large-scale growers have it; you will certainly not get it at your local tropical plant store.

2. What is the price of P. werneri

Philodendron werneri’s price ranges from $25 to $150, with most vendors selling it at $40 to $60. How much it will cost you depends on the size of the plant and where you buy it