Philodendron Strawberry Shake Care & Propagation Instructions

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is a rare Aroid that comes with an expensive price tag.

If you are able to find one, don’t be surprised to see its price of $500 to $1,000. Some growers may even price it higher especially if they let it go on a bidding or auction.

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is the variegated version of the Philodendron Red Emerald. As such, the two look alike. But their colors vary.

Both are also hybrids of the Philodendron erubescens.

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake gets its name because it has dark red stems and its leaves feature a very unique pink or red variegations. Some also have white and cream colors as well on their leaves.

How do you care for the Philodendron Strawberry Shake? Give the plant bright, indirect light. This is the best way to maintain its lovely pink and cream variegations. Avoid low light as the plant can revert colors.

To help it grow, keep it in a warm location with high humidity. Feed with a balanced fertilizer once a month during its growing season. Avoid overwatering the plant.

Philodendron Strawberry Shake Plant Care

Light Requirements

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake grows best in medium to bright, indirect light. This is one plant that favors a well-lit location.

That’s because of its pink variegations.

These variegations have a non-green color because those sections of the leaves don’t contain or have little chlorophyll. As such, they are lighter or another color.

Chlorophyll is the substance that gives leaves their green color. Also, it is what absorbs light for the plant to use in photosynthesis.

As such, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake needs more light because fewer parts of its leaves are green. This way, the good light source compensates for its lower ability to absorb light.

It also means that low light is not something I suggest placing the plant in.

While the plant will do okay in low light and won’t suffer any harm, its looks will suffer. That’s because the plant will sacrifice its looks to helps itself survive.

What happens is the pink areas and non-green areas lose their colors. The light green areas turn more green also. This occurs as the plant produces more chlorophyll to try and absorb as much light from the poor source.

Therefore, it will sacrifice its looks to get enough light to produce energy to support itself. This will be its priority.

Thus, good lighting is more important for variegated plants like the Philodendron Strawberry Shake compared to all-green leaved philodendron plants.

That said, too much light is also bad.

In fact, it can damage the plant’s leaves if there’s too much exposure. This means the leaves can get scorched and burned, leaving you with brown spots or patches on foliage.

Even if it does not get that far, you’ll notice its pink colors fade if there is too much light.

Therefore, avoid direct sunlight especially during the middle of the day. This times the sun is strongest is between 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Therefore, keep its rays away from the Philodendron Strawberry Shake.

 

Temperature

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake prefers temperature between 55 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. This makes it easy to care for indoors including homes and offices.

That’s because most homes have temperatures between 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit since this is the range that humans feel most comfortable.

As such, you don’t need to make any modifications as far as temperature goes.

Because the Philodendron Strawberry Shake is a tropical plant is can likewise tolerate warmer conditions as well and it does not have any issues with temperatures up to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, try to avoid going above 100 degrees Fahrenheit because the plant can easily dry out or get dehydrated there due to the heat. This makes it more prone to heat stress.

On the other hand, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake has poor tolerance to the cold.

Avoid temperatures under 50 degrees Fahrenheit as the plant will struggle there. You’ll initially see its growth slow.

But the longer it stays where the more problems it will encounter. The same is true as it gets colder as well.

In fact, the plant’s growth can completely stunt. Later on, you may see its leaves turn yellow and drop. And finally, it can even die from the cold.

This is why it is important to bring the plant back indoors once the cold climate comes in around mid fall. Don’t leave the plant outside through the winter since it will not make it to spring there.

Instead, keep it indoors in a warm spot.

In contrast, if you live in USDA Hardiness Zones 9 to 11, you can grow the plant outdoors all year along. You can keep it in a container or plant it in the garden.

That’s because these areas don’t experience winter. Instead, they have warm, balmy weather that is sunny all 12 months of the year.

 

Humidity

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake thrives in moderate to high humidity between 60% to 70%. This is where it is happiest and will be the healthiest as well.

And it will reward you with faster growth, more leaves and more vibrant colors.

However, it is important to also know that the plant tolerate lower humidity without any issues or harm. But I do suggest trying to keep humidity at 40% and above if possible.

While it can tolerate slightly below that, the closer you get to 30% and below that, the higher the risk of seeing brown, crispy tips and edges on the plant’s leaves.

These are a sign that it needs more moisture in the air.

Therefore, you either need to move it to another location with better humidity or you need to help it out by increasing humidity around the plant.

The simplest way to do this is to take the plant to the bathroom (which is the most humid place in the home) or mist the plant.

My favorite method is to use a humidity tray. You can use a pebble tray as well.

Another option is to invest in a humidifier.

 

Related

 

How Often to Water Philodendron Strawberry Shake

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake enjoys moist soil but it does not like wet or soggy soil. Therefore, be careful in giving it too much water.

Overwatering is the worst thing you can do to the plant since it is the number one cause for houseplant death.

This occurs if you keep watering the plant while the soil is still wet or moist.

What happens is the roots end up swimming in liquid. And because of this, they are unable to breathe. Finally, they suffocate and you end up with root rot.

Once the roots have rotted, the plant cannot absorb water or nutrients from the soil. It won’t matter how much you water the plant or apply fertilizer. The root have stopped functioning because they are dead.

Thus, the plant will deteriorate from there and gradually die.

This is why overwatering is very dangerous.

And the best way to avoid this is to wait until the top 2 inches of soil has dried before you add more water. This prevents overwatering since some of the soil has already dried.

If you want to be more conservative, you can wait until half of the soil has dried before you add water.

This eliminates the risk of overwatering. And it keeps the roots happy since the bottom half of soil is still moist.

 

Philodendron Strawberry Shake Potting Soil

The best soil for the Philodendron Strawberry Shake is light, well-draining and has high organic content.

This kind of soil holds enough moisture so the roots get the water they need. But it also quickly drains excess liquid. The high organic matter content helps the plant grow faster as well.

The simplest way to achieve this kind of soil is to use an aroid mix.

You can find it in some nurseries or online stores.

Of course, you can make your own aroid mix like I like to do. This not only comes out cheaper but also lets you adjust the ingredients or percentages in case you need to.

Here’s the aroid mix recipe I’ve used that works really well.

  • 30% potting soil
  • 40% bark
  • 20% peat
  • 10% perlite

I also like to add a few handfuls of activated charcoal for good measure.

The potting soil retains some moisture along with the peat. Meanwhile, the bark, perlite and charcoal increase drainage. The chunkiness of the bark and charcoal also allow for good aeration.

 

Does the Philodendron Strawberry Shake Like to Climb?

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is a climber. It will appreciate it a lot if you give it a moss pole or something similar to go up on.

The reason is that this mimics how its grows in the forest as it climbs and clings onto larger trees. As such, when allowed to climb, the plant grows faster and will get taller as well. It will also produce larger leaves too.

 

Fertilizer

To help the Philodendron Strawberry Shake grow faster and avoid nutrient deficiencies, applying fertilizer is an important part of this plant’s care.

Of course, you can go without giving it plant food if you’re on a budget. However, note that it will grow slower and usually won’t produce as much leaves either.

You can use a balanced, liquid fertilizer once a month during its growing season. Dilute the application by half the suggested strength on the label.

Don’t feed the plant during fall or winter. The plant does not grow much during this time due to the cold weather.

 

Pruning

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake grows at a moderate rate. It can reach about 3 feet tall and about 2 to 3 feet wide depending on how big you let the leaves grow.

If you allow it to climb, it will grow faster and bigger as well.

Like other philodendrons, growing it indoors and outdoors make a big difference in terms of how big the plant eventually grows into.

It will be significantly bigger outdoors especially if grown in the ground.

However, pruning is generally a low maintenance task for this plant. You’ll only need to do so when the plant gets too big or the leaves and stems too long.

Otherwise, there really is no reason to prune it unless there are yellow, brown or damaged foliage. Similarly, remove any old leaves or those that are diseased.

 

How to Propagate Philodendron Strawberry Shake

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake can be propagated from stem cuttings. This is the most effective way to propagate the plant.

Here’s how to propagate the Philodendron Strawberry Shake from stem cuttings.

  • Begin by taking a stem cutting. Choose a healthy stem with at least one node and 2-3 leaves. The node is essential or the plant won’t propagate successfully.
  • You can root the cutting in water or plant it directly into soil.
  • To propagate in water, place the cutting in a container with water. Make sure the node is submerged. And cut off any leaves that end up in water. Change the water every 1-2 weeks.
  • To propagate in soil, plant the cutting in a small pot with well-draining potting mix. Bury the node under the soil. Then water the soil to keep it moist.
  • It will take about 3-6 weeks for the cuttings to root.
  • If you propagated in water, you can move the cuttings to soil once the roots are 2 inches or longer. You don’t need to transfer the cutting if you planted them directly into soil.

In time, the cuttings will produce shoots. It usually takes 1-2 months before you start seeing that. Then shortly, you’ll start seeing it develop leaves as well.

 

How to Repot or Transplant Philodendron Strawberry Shake

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is not a fast grower although it does grow at a moderate pace. Also, the plant does not like being moved.

Therefore, avoid moving it unless necessary.

Usually, this means repotting only when the plant has become root bound. Besides that, the only exception is emergencies or when there is an issue. This can be overwatering, root rot, pest infestation affecting the root system or some kind of disease.

It is also worth noting that a younger plant will need repotting more often as it gets bigger faster. But once it matures it usually takes 2-3 years before you need to repot it.

 

Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is toxic to humans, dogs and cats. But it is only toxic when ingested. The plant is safe to touch or hold otherwise.

That’s because when ingested, chewed, swallowed or consumed, the insoluble calcium oxalates are released. These are the toxic compounds that cause pain, swelling and irritation.

 

Philodendron Strawberry Shake Problems & Troubleshooting

Pests

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake has a few common pests that tend to bother the plant. These include spider mites, scales, aphids and mealybugs.

While the pests can occur at any time, they will happen more when the plant is susceptible. Thus, avoid getting it sick, weak or stressed as this is when it becomes prone to problems.

If you spot any pests, immediately treat with neem oil or insecticidal soap to get rid of them.

These bugs become harder to get rid of the more they grow. And they will quickly grow in population as well.

 

Diseases

Root rot and leaf infections are the biggest threats here.

And you want to avoid root rot at all costs. If it does happen, try to catch it early. This gives the plant a better chance to survive and recover.

Prune the rotted roots then repot in fresh dry soil.

With leaf infections, allow the plant to dry since moisture is what allows these pathogens to spread and grow. Then prune the affected leaves to prevent the spread of infection.

 

Philodendron Strawberry Shake Frequently Asked Questions

Can the Philodendron ‘Strawberry Shake’ Revert?

Unfortunately, yes. The Philodendron Strawberry Shake is known to revert back to all green leaves without any variegations. Quite a few growers have observed this happen to their plant usually due to low light. Therefore, avoid low light and keep the plant in a well-lit location with indirect lighting.

 

Is the Philodendron Strawberry Shake the Same as the Philodendron Red Emerald?

No. The two plants are different but they are very closely related. In fact, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake is the variegated version of the Philodendron Red Emerald. Therefore, they look the same except for the colors and the patterns of the colors on their leaves.

 

Is Philodendron Strawberry Shake a Hybrid?

Yes, like the Philodendron Red Emerald, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake are both hybrids of the Philodendron erubescens. Thus, they are very closely related.

 

Why Is My Philodendron Strawberry Shake Changing Color?

This is natural. While pink is the most popular color known for the plant, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake actually changes colors and can have multiple colored leaves at the same time.

New leaves usually emerge with a lighter color. This will darken as they get older. In addition to its pink variegations, you will also see white, create, yellow, orange and red colored foliage at different times in its life.

 

Philodendron Strawberry Shake vs. Pink Princess, is there a difference?

Yes, the Philodendron Strawberry Shake and the Philodendron Pink Princess are two different plants. And you can tell by closely observing their stems and leaves.

The Philodendron Strawberry Shake has bright red stems whereas the Philodendron Pink Princess features red-brown stems.

Their leaves are also different in that the Philodendron Strawberry Shake has many colors including pink, yellow, orange, cream, red and green. On the other hand the Philodendron Pink Princess only has green and light pink colors.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.