The Philodendron McColley’s Finale is a colorful plant that’s perfect if you want to add color to your home or garden.
It is known for its beautiful foliage hues that range from orange to red and green. Although, as the plant ages, the leaves become less bright and more burgundy and dark green in color.
Unlike many philodendron plants, this one is smaller in comparison.
It grows to between 1.5 to 2 feet tall on average. Although some will get to as big as 3 feet tall. The plant does extend sideways quite a big because of its leaves. Thus, reaching about a 2-foot spread.
Its leaves are no doubt its most attractive feature. They are big and wide reaching 5 to 8 inches long and about 5 to 6 inches wide.
It is worth noting that this hybrid was created in Orlando, Florida. As such, it is fond of tropical conditions.
Last but not least, it also helps clean indoor air. This makes it keep air pollutants from your family.
Philodendron McColley’s Finale Plant Care
Philodendron McColley’s Finale Light Requirements
The Philodendron McColley’s Finale makes for a great houseplant because it does well in medium to low light conditions. It likewise won’t have a problem with fluorescent lighting which makes it perfect for offices as well.
That said, because the amount of light you get indoors is muted compared to the outdoors (because of walls and ceilings), the plant often thrives in bright, indirect or dappled light.
This allows it to grow at its best and produce its most vibrant leaves.
However, do be careful with direct sunlight, periods of harsh sun and overly bright light for long hours at a time. All of these can cause its delicate leaves to experience sunburn.
On the other hand, you also want to avoid dark spaces and lack of light. This will slow growth and cause it to become leggy and spindly.
If you decide to keep it outdoors, it will prefer partial shade. Avoid full sun as it won’t be able to tolerate this day in and day out.
Philodendron McColley’s Finale are tropical in nature. As such, they enjoy moderate to warm conditions.
This makes them perfect for homes and other indoor spaces.
Ideally, you want to keep temperature consistent within 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. You do have a bit of leeway both up and down. But, after certain thresholds, the plant will start to experience stress.
In general, your Philodendron McColley’s Finale will tolerate heat better than cold. But, once levels hit 85 degrees you’ll see growth slow down. More importantly, you want to keep the things under 95 degrees where the plant will struggle.
On the other hand, frost and freezing temperatures are its nemesis. Allowing it stay in temperatures under 50 degrees will eventually damage the plant.
Outdoors, it is hardy to USDA zones 9 to 11. If you live in these areas, you’ll be able to enjoy growing the plant in your garden. Otherwise, it is a good idea to keep it in a container.
This way you can take it outdoors during the warm months. And, bring it indoors once things get close to 50 degrees. The plant won’t be able to survive snowy winters.
Similarly, your Philodendron McColley’s Finale is comfortable with average household humidity. Most homes have humidity running between 40% and 50% most of the year.
As long as indoor humidity stays above 40%, the plant will be happy and grow well.
However, during very hot dry summers and cold winters, humidity can drop to between 30% and 40%. You want to watch out for this.
So, if you experience this or live in a relative dry region, misting is a good way to increase humidity. You do want to be careful not to over spray the plant as excess moisture in the leaves can lead to mildew, mold and other fungal problems.
You can likewise group it with other plants, set it on a pebble tray or keep it in the bathroom. All of which increase humidity around it.
That said, if you want to get optimum growth out of the plant, keeping humidity at 60% or higher will produce its best look including its most vibrant colored leaves.
How Often to Water Philodendron McColley’s Finale
Philodendron McColley’s Finale does best when soil is kept moist during the warmer months (spring and summer). However, you always want to be careful not to overwater it.
Too much water or watering too frequently will cause the soil to get soggy. More importantly, it will leave the plant sitting in water for long periods of time.
The excess water will prevent oxygen from getting to the roots. And, if this happens too often, it will result in rotting roots.
To prevent this from happening, allow the top layer of soil to dry out between waterings.
The best way to check for this is to stick your finger into the soil down to about 1 to 2 inches. You want the soil at that depth to be dry before you water. Don’t worry if you’re late a day or two. The plant is drought tolerant.
But, you certainly don’t want to be early.
When watering your Philodendron McColley’s Finale, less is more. So, staying in the conservative side will help keep it healthy.
Similarly, the best way to water the plant is to soak it then allow it to completely drain.
What I mean by this is to saturate the soil until liquid starts dripping from the drainage holes. Then, allow any excess moisture to completely drain out completely before returning the pot to its place.
Come wintertime, you want to employ another strategy. At this time, it is less about keeping the soil moist than keeping it from completely drying.
The goal here is to cut back water to the point that you only add moisture when the soil is almost dry.
The combination of cold weather and the plant’s inactivity during this time increases the risk of overwatering. So, you want to limit watering without dehydrating the plant.
Soil for Philodendron McColley’s Finale
Philodendron McColley’s Finale thrives in loose, airy, well-draining soil. It likewise appreciates soil with pH between 6.1 to 7.5.
Do note that you can grow in containers or in the garden. The latter will only work if you live in USDA Hardiness zones 9 to 11. Otherwise, this perennial turns into an annual.
In the garden, loamy or humusy soil is best. This will give it moist soil with high organic matter content.
On the other hand, you don’t want to use garden soil in pots. Instead, get some potting mix.
Again, loose, well-aerated and fast draining are essential. This gives you a few options:
If you want a commercial choice that you can buy from the garden center and use out of the box, choose a cactus or succulent mix.
If you prefer making your own mix, you can go with 100% sphagnum peat moss or a combination of peat and perlite. Alternatively, you can use vermiculite or sand in place of perlite. But, be aware that sand does compact after a while, which defeats the airy part of the soil.
So, if you do use sand, be sure to aerate the potting mix or refresh it every so often.
Philodendron McColley’s Finale Fertilizer
Philodendron McColley’s Finale will grow quickly during the spring and summer. As such, you need to support this growth with enough water and food.
The good news is, it is fairly easy to do so.
All you need to do is apply water soluble houseplant fertilizer diluted to 50% its recommended strength once a month during this time.
Make sure to water the plant when you feed it. This will help distribute the fertilizer evenly. And, it will help prevent too much concentration.
Don’t get tempted to feed the plant more than what’s in the packaging. In doing so, you can harm it.
Too much plant food can cause fertilizer burn damaging the roots and leaves.
On the other hand, scale back feeding during the colder months. Once every 2 months will work as the plant will be resting during this time.
Since your Philodendron McColley’s Finale is a fast growing plant, you may need to trim it in order to keep its shape and size.
However, because of its climbing habit, you may not need to do so especially if you have it going up some king of pole or vertical space.
That said, pruning is generally low maintenance with this plant.
Besides cutting back for appearance, you’ll likewise want to do to so to remove any unhealthy, dead, diseased or discolored leaves.
If you come across leggy stems, trimming them will likewise help fix the problem. T
Philodendron McColley’s Finale Propagation
There are many ways to propagate Philodendron McColley’s Finale. These include:
- Stem cuttings
- Air layering
While they all work, their success rates vary. Similarly, their difficulty levels, amount of effort put in and how long it takes for them to grow vary as well.
For this reason, stem cutting is one of the common methods used. It is easy to do and produces good success rates. Plus, you don’t have to take the root ball out of the container which simplifies things.
Here’s how to propagate Philodendron McColley’s Finale from stem cuttings:
- Select one or more healthy stems that have at least 2 or leaves on it.
- Use a sterile knife, scissors or pruning shears to take some stem cuttings. You want to make clean, precise cuts not blunt ones that forcibly tear off the stem. This will cause trauma and reduce the chances of success.
- Place the cuttings in a small container filled with moist soil.
- Cover with a plastic bag to increase humidity.
- Leave the plant in a bright area without direct sunlight.
- In about 3 to 4 weeks, the plant should have developed some roots. You can tug the plant gently to test and see if it resists. The newly grown roots will keep it from getting pulled. But, be careful since they are not strong nor established yet.
You can likewise root in water instead of placing it in soil. In doing so, you can monitor the growth of the roots through the glass jar. Then, move the cutting to soil once the roots have grown to between half inch or an inch.
How to Repot Philodendron McColley’s Finale
Wait until your Philodendron McColley’s Finale outgrows its container before repotting. The plant does not like being bothered or moved. So, don’t do so unnecessarily.
This also reduces the extra work you need to do.
Ideally, you want to wait until the plant’s root ball crowds the pot. The easiest way to tell is you’ll see roots peeking out from under the drainage holes at the bottom of the container.
When this happens, it is a sign that it is time to repot.
The best time too repot is early in spring right before the plant starts producing leaves.
When you do, choose a container that is at most 2 inches wider in diameter compared to the current container. You don’t want an overly large pot because it will hold too much soil.
If this happens, when you water, there will be an overabundance of moisture that will take a long time to dry. This will leave your plant’s roots sitting in water for long periods of time which can lead to root rot.
Like other plants in its genus, your Philodendron McColley’s Finale contains calcium oxalate crystals which are toxic to humans and animals. As such, it is a good idea to keep both young kids and pets away from it.
Ingesting is leaves or sap will cause irritation as well as digestive and gastrointestinal issues.
Your Philodendron McColley’s Finale is generally resistant to pests. As such, you may never have to deal with any of them during its lifespan.
However, it is not immune to them.
This means that in times where it is traumatized, in shock or stress, its defenses can weaken enough to allow these attackers to invade.
The most common pests to bother your plant include spider mites, mealybugs and aphids.
Cleaning your Philodendron McColley’s Finale’s leaves regularly will help you spot them early. Alternatively, you can do regular inspections as well.
If you do find any, treat immediately with insecticidal soap spray or water and dishwashing soap. You can also use neem oil.
Diseases likewise be a problem. For the most part, excess moisture is your enemy.
That’s because it allows mildew, mold and fungal problems to happen. The most common disease to bother Philodendron McColley’s Finale include leaf spot and blight.
Similarly, root rot is likewise a problem for all houseplants.