How to Grow and Care For Silver Sword Philodendron

The Silver Sword Philodendron is native to the tropical rainforests of Brazil, where it was once a common sight but, unfortunately, is now endangered as a result of deforestation. Outside of its natural habitat, this plant thrives outdoors in hot climates, and it also makes an excellent houseplant.

It is a climbing plant with a chunky vine and distinctive shimmering blue-green foliage. It can be grown as a climber with a trellis for support, or it also works well as a trailing hanging plant.

The name silver sword is a result of the almost silver shine of the foliage and the way the tips of the leaves come to a sword-like point. If you have one of these philodendrons, you can learn all about how to care for it in this guide.

Botanical name Philodendron hastatum
Common names Silver Sword Philodendron
Plant family Araceae
USDA hardiness zone 9-11
Mature height 10 to 20 feet
Mature spread 5 to 10 feet

How to Care for your Silver Sword Philodendron

Caring for a Silver Sword Philodendron is easier than you might think. It isn’t a particularly fussy plant, as long as you pay attention to a few key pieces of advice. For this plant, getting the watering right should be a priority.


In its native environment, the Silver Sword Philodendron grows beneath the dappled shade of taller trees. It can typically be seen climbing up the trunks of trees, where it will receive varying amounts of light depending on the size of the tree leaves above it. As a result, this is a plant that is quite adaptable in terms of lighting and will grow well in both partially shaded and bright light conditions.

For the best results with this plant, situate it in a spot where it will receive a moderate amount of light, avoiding direct light which will scorch the leaves. Muted light behind sheer drapes is ideal, or next to a frosted glass window. The Silver Sword Philodendron will survive in shade, though you may find that its growth slows significantly.


How to Care for your Silver Sword Philodendron Soil

The soil of a Silver Sword Philodendron should be well-draining, with a good proportion of sand or perlite. It will grow well in a soil mix designed for cacti or succulents, as well as a soil mix containing sphagnum moss.


How to Care for your Silver Sword Philodendron Water

This plant is not terribly fussy when it comes to water requirements, so it can be a good choice for beginner growers. The main things you need to avoid are extended periods of dried-out soil or extended periods of wet soil. If you can manage that, the plant will be happy and healthy. To achieve this, always check the condition of the soil before you proceed to water the plant.

If the top few inches of soil are dry, then the plant can be watered. If the top few inches of soil are moist, then hold off on watering and test the soil again in another few days. When you water the Silver Sword Philodendron, water it deeply so that moisture is able to reach all of the roots. The plant pot should have drainage holes at the bottom so that any excess water will drain away from the roots. Remember to empty any excess water after around an hour so that the plant isn’t sitting with wet feet.


If you are growing this plant outside, then you will need to be in USDA hardiness zones 9-11. This is because the plant requires consistently warm temperatures. As a tropical plant, the Silver Sword Philodendron is accustomed to being warm all year round, which is what makes it such a good houseplant because homes generally have consistently warm temperatures.

The ideal daytime temperatures for this plant are between 65° and 80° Fahrenheit, with a minimum low of 55° overnight. Keep the plant away from cool draughts, such as open windows in the winter, as low temperatures will kill the plant.


How to Care for your Silver Sword Philodendron Humidity

The Silver Sword Philodendron will grow well in average household humidity, however, if you want the plant to really thrive to its best ability, then you should take steps to increase humidity.

This plant is accustomed to living in high humidity in the rainforest, and you can replicate this at home by spritzing the leaves of the plant daily with a water spray. Alternatively, you could use an electric humidifier, or you could group the plant with other plants, which has the effect of increasing humidity.


This plant can perform well without fertilizer, but after a year or two, when all of the nutrients have been absorbed from the soil, you may find that growth is stunted or the leaves start to show signs of nutrient deficiency.

The best way to stay on top of this is to always feed the plant with a diluted liquid fertilizer intended for houseplants once a month during the growing season. Do not fertilize the Philodendron during the fall and winter, as it does not require extra nutrition during this time.

Silver Sword Philodendron FAQs

How long does a Silver Sword Philodendron live for?

The lifespan of this plant will be entirely dependent on the growing conditions rather than the plant itself having a preset expiry date. In optimum conditions, the plant will live for around 20 years as a houseplant, or potentially longer when grown outdoors.

Do Silver Sword Philodendrons grow fast?

Compared with most other types of philodendrons, this is a fast-growing species, though this is quite common with climbing varieties of plants. As a houseplant, you can expect the Silver Sword Philodendron to send out at least one new leaf each month, and it could grow to the point where you have to prune it several times each year.

How big is a Silver Sword Philodendron?

This plant will grow to lengths of up to 20 feet in its natural habitat, and if you live in a hot climate and decide to grow this plant outdoors, then you can also expect it to reach similar lengths. However, when grown as a houseplant, the Silver Sword Philodendron will grow to a maximum of around 10 feet.

Can Silver Sword Philodendrons live outside?

This climbing plant can live outside in hot climates. If you live in an all-year-round hot climate, then you can grow the Silver Sword Philodendron in your garden. This plant is not frost hardy, so it will die in climates that experience frost. One option is to keep this as a houseplant during the cooler months and bring it outside in the summer months. If you do this, always remember to check for pests before you bring the plant back inside.

Are Silver Sword Philodendrons easy to grow?

Yes, Silver Sword Philodendrons are fairly easy to grow. They are not indestructible, but they are quite tolerant of a range of growing conditions, which means you don’t need to worry about being the perfect plant parent in order for them to survive. The most common cause of death for this plant is root rot, which is a result of overwatering, so be careful not to water more than is necessary.

Are Silver Sword Philodendrons resistant to pests and diseases?

This plant is not resistant to pests and diseases, but it is generally not a plant that suffers from these types of problems. If it does fall victim to a pest infestation, then the most likely culprits will be spider mites, aphids, thrips, or mealybugs.

You can use a natural anti-pest spray to deter these types of bugs, such as one made from neem oil, or you can routinely check the plant over for signs of pests so that any issues can be nipped in the bud. Silver Sword Philodendrons rarely suffer from diseases, though they can have fungal issues if they do not have adequate airflow around the foliage in humid conditions.

Can you propagate a Silver Sword Philodendron?

If you like to propagate your plants, Silver Sword Philodendron is a species you can add to the list. This is a fun plant to propagate because it can be done easily via stem cuttings, and it typically has a high success rate. The plant is quite fast growing, which means you may find yourself having to prune it, and then pruned stems can double up as propagating stem cuttings.

To create new Silver Sword plants, remove all of the leaves from the lower half of your cutting, then insert the raw end into a glass of water or a small pot of moist soil. Keep the stem cutting on a bright and warm windowsill, and wait for the magic to happen.

You should keep the soil moist by spritzing it daily with water or replacing the glass of water every few days if you are propagating hydroponically. New roots should start to sprout after around two weeks, and after 4 to 6 weeks, you can transplant the cutting to a larger pot and a more permanent home.

How Much Does a Silver Sword Philodendron Cost?

How much a Philodendron costs can vary depending on the size and maturity of the plant, as well as where you purchase it.

For a Silver Sword Philodendron, typically, you can find young plants priced around $15 to $20. Larger, more established plants can cost anywhere between $30 and $50.