When it comes to houseplants, few are more eye-catching than the Pink Princess Philodendron. Its variegated leaves span from rich dark green to lovely blush pink, adding a vibrant dose of color to your indoor garden. The jungle plant's unique appearance and rarity make it an enviable addition to any plant lover's collection.
But despite its exotic appearance, the houseplant is surprisingly easy to care for. Whether you are a new plant owner or looking to buy, in this guide to Pink Princess Philodendrons, we're breaking down everything you need to know about buying and care tips for this popular pink plant. Plus, you'll find all the answers to common questions about the beautiful houseplant.
What are Pink Princess Philodendrons?
The Philodendron Pink Princess (Philodendron erubescens) is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful varieties of philodendron plants out there. It's easily identifiable for its large waxy leaves, which range in color from rich dark green to cream to light pink. This unique variegation is due to a lack of chlorophyll-a vital chemical for plant health and growth. And because of its lack of chlorophyll, mostly pink leaves will eventually die, and too many pink leaves are not good for the plant's health as the plant relies on the green parts to absorb the chlorophyll the plant needs to survive. Part of what makes the Pink Philodendron so alluring is that no two plants will ever look exactly alike.
Though native to Colombia and Ecuador's jungles and tropical forests, the Pink Princess Philodendron thrives as an indoor plant. The vining plant grows well in medium-sized pots and hanging baskets filled with nutrient-rich soil and placed in bright, indirect light. The plant can also be planted outside or temporarily placed outdoors during the summer months in suitable temperate climates.
Is the Philodendron Pink Princess a rare houseplant?
Most plant lovers consider the Philodendron Pink Princess to be one of the most exquisite houseplants available, but not necessarily one of the rarest. But thanks to its unique pastel pink coloring, the variegated plant has become a bit of a collector's item for avid indoor gardeners. Due to increased demand, the plant has risen in price and rarity significantly over the past few years.
Where can you buy a Pink Princess Philodendron plant?
Part of what makes the Pink Princess Philodendron so alluring (and so pricey) is that it can be tricky to find. Though your average garden center probably won't have this unique pink Philodendron variety, many indoor plant shops will. Alternatively, you can purchase the plant online through numerous Etsy shops and online plant stores. Remember to double-check that the plant you're purchasing is a true Pink Princess and not the Pink Congo.
Why are Pink Princess Philodendrons so expensive?
While the Philodendron Pink Princess isn't necessarily one of the rarest houseplants out there, it's one of the priciest. The plant's pink variegation only occurs in optimal growing conditions and isn't necessarily guaranteed, even if the mother plant boasted beautiful pink variegated leaves. Prices can vary widely based on the size of the plant and the vibe of the plant store you're shopping at.
Is Philodendron Pink Princess toxic?
Pet owners beware. Variegated philodendrons, including the Pink Princess variety, are toxic to pets and animals. Ingestion or contact with the sap can lead to digestive issues and skin irritation. Be sure to keep your plant off the ground and out of reach from your dog or cat. Keep an eye out for these common signs and call your vet if you suspect ingestion:
- Decreased appetite
- Pawing at the mouth
- Oral pain
- Difficulty breathing
Are Pink Princess Philodendron and Pink Congo Philodendron the same thing?
Though the Philodendron Pink Princess and Philodendron Pink Congo look strikingly similar, they are two entirely different plants. Instead of mottled leaves, the Pink Congo Philodendron has solid green leaves and solid pink leaves. This distinct coloring does not occur naturally and is created in greenhouses using chemical gases that cause the plant to produce a color-changing hormone. Unfortunately, these solid pink leaves won't last forever. Over time, they'll eventually revert back to their original dark green color.
Philodendron Pink Princess Care Guide
Don't let the gorgeous pink leaves and hefty price tag fool you; the Philodendron erubescens is surprisingly easy to care for. But if you're going to shell out the money for one of these stunning houseplants, you'll want to give it the special care and attention it deserves. Remember, proper sunlight, water, and care are essential to creating the gorgeous pink and green variegation the plant is known for.
This guide to Pink Princess Philodendron care will teach you everything you need to know to help your pink plant to thrive:
With proper care, a Pink Princess Philodendron can grow to a maximum height of 24 inches. Each of the plant's leaves can grow to be up to 9 inches long and 5 inches wide. Size varies widely based on growing conditions and overall plant health. If your plant is growing slowly, try placing it in a spot with a bit more sunlight.
Like most tropical indoor plants, the Pink Princess Philodendron prefers nutrient-rich, well-draining soil that's moist but not soggy, so you will need to perfect your watering technique. You should be watering around once or twice per week during the spring and summer, and it should be thorough watering. Meaning you should be able to drain out excess water. Reduce watering frequency during the colder months to only once every seven to ten days.
Overwatering or underwatering your Pink Princess plant won't just slow down plant growth and reduce overall plant health; it'll prevent the dark green leaves from turning that gorgeous pink color. Too much water can result in root rot, yellowing leaves, and a droopy, wilted appearance. Alternatively, too little water leads to slow plant growth and leaves with crisp brown edges.
Your Philodendron Pink Princess needs just the right amount of bright, indirect sunlight to produce its infamous pink leaves. Too little sun won't produce the vibrant blush pink color it's known for or producing enough pink. Too much sunlight can burn leaves' edges and cause unsightly brown spots.
Naturally, even a well-variegated leaf will eventually turn yellow as it ages. It's totally normal for your plant to have a yellow leaf or two as long as the other leaves look happy and healthy.
Pink Princess Philodendron plants tend to do best in North and East facing windows, where they're only in direct sunlight for 3-4 hours and enjoy bright, indirect light for the rest of the day. You may need to try a few different spots around the house to find one with just the right amount of light.
Like most tropical plants, the Pink Princess Philodendron does best in warm, humid conditions that mimic the jungles where it naturally grows. Keep your plant in a stable growing environment where the temperature stays between 60 and 95 degrees F. During colder months, you may want to move it away from cold, drafty windows that can slow down or stop the growth of new variegated leaves.
Additionally, the Philodendron Pink Princess thrives in jungle-like humidity levels above 50%. If you live somewhere with particularly dry conditions, you may want to consider using a humidifier to help your plant grow faster and produce better variegation on its leaves.
Pot & Soil
Like all plants, the Pink Princess Philodendron needs soil that's high in organic matter and nutrients. Give your plant a leg-up with a high-quality potting mix and an occasional dose of fertilizer. Remember to ensure the soil stays moist but not soggy.
The vining plant can be displayed in a hanging basket or trained to grow up a trellis or pole in pots with drainage holes. Similar to other aroids, the Pink Princess variety can grow aerial roots that draw in moisture and key nutrients from the air.
To help your Pink Princess Philodendron look its best, you'll want to ensure it gets all the nutrients it needs. Supplement your potting soil with a monthly dose of fertilizer during the growing season and every other month during the winter. Most general houseplant fertilizers will do just the trick.
Pests and Disease
Like other Philodendron plants, your Pink Princess plant can fall victim to a handful of pests and diseases. Check during watering sessions for signs of aphids, spider mites, and other unwanted pests. Trim any affected leaves or use a gentle pesticide to kill off insect intruders.
Good news! Propagating your Pink Princess Philodendron is incredibly easy. Because the plant can be expensive and hard to find, these stem cuttings can save you a lot of money on new plants. Plus, they make great gifts for the plant-lovers in your life.
Here is how to propagate your Pink Princess Philodendron:
- Find a stem with at least three to four healthy, variegated leaves and cut just below one of the nodes.
- Put the cutting in a Mason jar full of water. Place in bright indirect light for a few weeks. Be sure to keep the jar full of freshwater.
- Once the plant's roots have grown to around 2 to 3 inches, it's ready to plant. Nutrient-rich potting soil, consistent watering, and bright indirect light ensure your plant gets off to the right start.
This beautiful plant can benefit from regular pruning and the best time to prune is Spring or Fall, just before or after the growing season. Prune off any yellow or dying leaves, and proper pruning can encourage vigorous growth and prevent leggy stems from spoiling the plant's appearance. Always make a clean cut just above the node—the place where leaves attach to the stem and new growth will appear from the node.