How to Care for a White Princess Philodendron: 8 Ultimate Tips

Whether you are a Philodendron lover or just have a soft spot for variegated plants, the White Princess Philodendron is a must-have for your indoor plant collection. With its energetic aerial roots, it loves to attach to surfaces. This way it can showcase its green, white and pink leaves.

Caring for plants has been a profession of mine for many years. When working in the nursery, I gained so much experience with different Philodendron plants. The Philodendron White Princess was one of the easiest to care for. It became one of the most popular Philodendrons we stocked- it is no wonder with that stunning foliage!

Now it’s time to spill all the knowledge I learned along the way so you can enjoy what the Philodendron White Princess has to offer.

white princess philodendron

Table of Contents

What Type of Light is Preferred?

white princess philodendron leaves close up

The Philodendron White princess thrives in bright indirect sunlight. 6-8 hours a day is the sufficient amount to keep it happy. When you think of the light in the rainforest, it is diffused by the tree’s canopy.

In case your room is open to too much direct sun; you can use a sheer net or curtain to filter the light for your plants. If the Philodendron White Princess is kept in bright light for too long, it will cause the leaves to scorch and burn at the edges. 

The ideal place for the Philodendron White Princess is 2 or 3 feet (60-90cm) away from a west or east-facing window. This way it can enjoy the morning and afternoon sun. A clear indication that the Philodendron White Princess isn’t receiving enough light is that it will start to lose its white variegation. It will alsp grow leggy and stretched.

If you see this happening, simply adjust the position of your plant to receive the correct lighting. 

Some plant growers choose to add artificial lighting to their plant collection. The best option for the Philodendron White princess is a strip grow light with 300-400 CF that runs for 6-8 hours per day.

Should I Water When the Soil is Dry?

hand holding white princess philodendron

Luckily there are no fussy water requirements for the Philodendron erubescens white princess. They don’t mind drying out between watering. Depending on your home’s temperature and humidity, you can expect to water once or twice a week in the warmer months. Too much water has a big impact on the Philodendron White princess as it causes root rot and other fungal diseases.

Keep the soil moist but not soaked. To check the moisture content of the soil, you can use a moisture meter (available from most garden stores) or stick your finger into the top 2 inches (5cm) of the top layer of soil to see if it’s dry. If the top 2 inches (5cm) are dry, then it’s time to give the White Princess a little drink. 

When watering, be sure that the excess water has flowed out of the drainage holes. Also check that the plant pot is not sitting in a pool of stagnant water.

What Soil Mix is Needed?

Potting the White Princess into a chunky well-draining potting mix will ensure that the root system has enough oxygen to prevent root rot. 

You can create a potting mix by using 3 cups of peat moss, 1 cup of perlite, 3 cups of orchid bark, and 5 cups of regular store-bought potting mix. This mix will retain the water while the organic matter provides the White Princess with the nutrients it needs to thrive. 

Avoid using compacting soil substrates such as loamy, sandy, or clay soils. This soil will eventually clump up and suffocate the roots. The potting mix for the Philodendron should be airy, light, and chunky. 

Ensure all drainage holes in the pot are free from any solid chunks so the water can pass through easily.

What Temperature is Best?

tricolor white princess philodendron in pot

Controlling the temperature for the Philodendron White Princess is not a huge challenge. They enjoy the same indoor temperatures as the average household. A temperature range of 65-85 F (18C to 28C) is ideal. If you are lucky enough to live in a warm climate, you can plant the Philodendron White Princess outdoors in a shady spot. 

The White Princess Philodendron, like other houseplants, prefers a consistent temperature. Therefore avoid positioning it in a place that experiences any cold drafts. This could include next to entryways or windows that are frequently open. In contrast, avoid super-hot places too, for example, next to a fan heater or fireplace. This will, in turn, dry out the leaves too quickly and the leaves of your poor White Princess will crisp up.

As a remote worker during the winter, I tend to keep a collection of my Philodendron plants in my office space. The temperatures are kept steady, and the plants are great for filtering the air where I work.

Does the White Princess Need High Humidity?

close up of white princess philodendron leaves

The White Princess Philodendron thrives in high humidity. It’s understandable when you think it comes from the sweaty rainforests of South America. A humid environment with ranges between 60-80% are suitable for the White Princess Philodendron plants. 

You can create this humid environment by grouping your plants together (if you have more than one plant- if not it’s a great excuse to get more!). 

Another option to control the humidity is to run a relatively inexpensive humidifier which provides great health benefits too! 

Alternatively, you can use a pebble tray with water under your plant pots which will vaporize around your plants. 

Some gardeners mist their tropical plants with a spray bottle of water and while this creates humidity, it is not long-lasting. 

Insufficient humidity will cause the foliage to dry out, crisp up. Eventually it kill the plant. 

Some of my low-light tropical plants love being in my bathroom, where the air is naturally moist from showering- it also makes it feel super refreshing when I am in there!

How Often Should I Fertilize?

white princess philodendron in brown pot white background

Most houseplants benefit from a little feed during the spring and summer months, and the Pink Princess is no different. Although it is not a heavy-feeding tropical plant, fertilizing the Philodendron Pink Princess once a month during the peak growing season will encourage new healthy growth. 

The best fertilizer to apply to the Philodendron White Princess is a balanced all-purpose fertilizer. You can use a liquid fertilizer and dilute half-strength with water. Most garden shops will stock an all-rounder to use on Philodendron plants, and you can add the required amount to your watering can. 

When it comes to fertilizing, less is more. Especially with young plants. Over-fertilizing can cause the foliage to burn along the edges, which is irreversible. Another problem with giving too much fertilizer is that any excess minerals that the plant does not take tend to clog up the soil. Eventually forming a salty-looking layer on the top layer of the soil. Later on, this will cause a secondary problem of root rot. Stick with the guidelines on the bottle, or make half the required dose, and you will be just fine!

Are Stem Cuttings a Good Method of Propogation?

Even the most novice gardeners can propagate the White Princess Philodendron, and it’s a great way to share your green beauties with friends or family.

The most successful method of propagation with the White Princess Philodendron is stem cutting, and I will take you through a few simple steps to follow:

  1. Find a point on the stem where you want to take the cutting. This part of the stem should include a node (the lumpy part where the roots will grow). If you can find a stem that has two nodes and aerial roots and a leaf then even better!
  2. Use a clean sharp pair of scissors or secateurs and make a clean cut through the stem making sure you don’t cut any of the nodes or roots. At this point if you see more than one ideal stem, you can go ahead and take more than one cutting; it won’t harm the plant.
  3. Seal the stems by using an antifungal powder or cinnamon (naturally antifungal). Dip the stems in the powder- this will prevent any rotting to the cut.

Now you have your stem cuttings you can either put them in water to keep them hydrated and encourage the roots to grow or you and use a small pot of sphagnum moss.

sphagnum moss close up
Sphagnum Moss

Personally, I prefer to use sphagnum moss. It has been more successful in the past and doesn’t require me to change the water every few days. But not to worry if you don’t have sphagnum moss-you can use a jar of distilled water. 

When placing your cutting into the substrate (whether it’s water or sphagnum moss), be sure to submerge the aerial roots and nodes. 

After 3- 4 weeks, the roots will start to grow. When they have reached 2 inches (5cm) long, you can pot your cuttings into the same soil mix as the mother plant. 

After propagating my plants, I keep the young plants in the same position as the mother plant. This ensures they are in the same conditions they originated from. After the cuttings have been developed (12 weeks later), you can rearrange them into a new location.

Can I Use Neem Oil Spray?

white princess philodendron with pink leaves

Some of the pests and diseases the White Princess Philodendron is at risk of attracting are spider mites, mealy bugs, and fungus gnats. While these can all be a nuisance to gardeners, they can be treated with neem oil foliar spray. 

Create your own by mixing one teaspoon of neem oil, four drops of dishwashing soap, and 1 liter of water.  

Spider mites are pretty difficult to spot, but one sign to look out for is yellow and brown spots on the leaves and fine webbing. 

You can usually detect mealy bugs and fungus gnats by eye. Mealybugs are these white fluffy-looking insects that creep around your plant in clusters sucking the sap from the leaves. 

A fungus gnat infestation is when the soil is kept warm and moist, making it a lovely place for them to lay their eggs. The eggs of the fungus gnats form into larvae, which if left undeterred, will eat away at the plant’s root system.

The best way to combat these pesky creatures is spraying once a week with neem oil solution. The neem oil will reduce the population and eventually, they will bugger off and find somewhere else to live!

I have started to spray my young plants with a neem oil spray when I get them home from the nursery. For extra preventative measures, I spray once a month, even if there is no visible sign of infestations.

About the White Princess Philodendron

Hailing from the muggy tropical rainforests in South America the Philodendron White Princess is a climbing aroid plant that belongs to the araceae family. The White Princess is scientifically known as the Philodendron erubescens white princess. It is also sometimes referred to as the Snow Princess or Pink Princess.  

Taking up to 10 years to reach full maturity, the Philodendron White Princess is a slow grower. It will reach 3 feet (90cm) in length. Although the Philodendron White Princess has underground and aerial roots, it is a self-heading plant. Self-heading means that the plant doesn’t require any structure or support. 

The leaves of the Philodendron White Princess are the same as other varieties. However what makes the White princess so appealing is the combination of white and green leaves with occasional pink edges. The white variegation on the leaves of this tropical plant will revert to green again if it doesn’t receive enough light.

FAQ About the White Princess Philodendron

Is philodendron white princess rare?

The Philodendron White Princess is one of the rarest species in the Philodendron genus. Although it may be difficult to get your hands on one it is not difficult to care for.

Do all white princess philodendrons have pink?

Yes the Philodendron White Princess will display pink hues on the younger plants. White and pink variegations can be seen in the leaves and stems.

What is the difference between philodendron white knight and white princess?

Philodendron White Princess has lighter foliage than the Philodendron White knight. In addition, the Philodendron White princess has narrower leaves than the Philodendron White knight.

Is white princess variegation stable?

The variation on the White princess Philodendron is unstable and isn’t included in 100% of the plants’ genes. Propagation, tissue culture, and the mother plant can all revert back to green leaves.

How do you take care of a white princess philodendron?

Proper care for your Philodendron White Princess should include 6-8 hours of bright direct sunlight. A humid environment of 60-80% and temperatures of 65-80 F (18-26C) should be maintained to keep the plant healthy. Water when the 2 inches (5cm) of the top layer of soil is dry and fertilized once a month during the growing season to see the best results.

Princess By Name but Not by Nature

The pretty Pink Princess is by no means a difficult plant to look after. Like most Philodendrons, it can withstand drying out between waterings which is great if you are a bit forgetful like me. 

When potting up your Philodendron, you can use your creative skills with a moss pole, trellis, or hanging basket to spruce up the plant. I have my Philodendron White Princess hanging in a macrame hanging planter in the corner of the bathroom. The vines look stunning, trailing down the wall. The possibilities are endless so go get your hands on a Pink princess today!

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Alex Tinsman
An avid plant and flower lover! Ever since he was little, plants, flowers, and shrubbery of all kinds filled his life. Alex credits this fascination with nature's beauty to his mother and grandmother who were - and still are - dedicated gardeners. It's now Alex's mission to pass that same love for plants onto others and show them it's as easy as pie to bring nature inside.

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