Plant ID and Why do Plants get Yellow Leaves

Hi – When neighbor moved out she gave me this plant. I re-potted immediately since the roots were busting out all around. Now its growth seems slow, and leaves often yellow. First I do not even know what type of plant it is, I checked your site and it could be elephant ear type plant but lacked certain traits. Anyhow can your help, thanks.

Hi John,

Large green lobed leaves on Philodendron selloum "Hope"

Philodendron Selloum “Hope”

Your plant is a hybrid of the Philodendron Selloum called the Philodendron “Hope.” This is an easy-care plant that also cleans the air of harmful toxins. ‘Hope’ is a ‘self-heading” variety of philodendron, it grows upward and does not vine. A Philodendron Hope grows well in bright indirect light. In lower light, the leaves turn a darker green; direct sun or too much light burns or fades the leaves. Unlike other Philodendrons, this Philodendron likes moist but not soggy soil. During the winter, water less often, keeping the soil barely moist.

The usual reason for yellow leaves on a philodendron is that you are over-watering the plant. Since you moved the plant to the larger pot, it takes longer for the soil to dry out. You should be watering less often than before. These plants grow faster when they are root bound in small pots. So when you moved the plant to a larger pot, it stopped producing leaves and started producing more roots.

Cut back on your water and keep the plant in bright indirect lightVery few houseplants should be placed in direct sun. High light refers only to bright indirect light since direct sun often burns the leaves of indoor houseplants. An area that is too hot and dry encourages Spider Mites and causes blooms to quickly fade. A northern exposure really doesn't provide enough light for high light plants. These plants need to be placed directly in front of an east-facing window, within 1-3 feet of a west-facing window, and within 5 ft. of a south facing window. A high light area has over 300 ft. candles of light. and things should improve quickly.

These plants are considered poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children. Read more about common houseplants that are poisonous in Don’t Feed Me To Your Cat! A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants