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Scindapsus Pictus Exotica: 26 Care and Growth Tips To Ponder

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica: 26 Care and Growth Tips To Ponder

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Tropical. Easy-to-care-for. Gorgeous. These descriptions reasonably describe the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica. Therefore, it is no surprise that this houseplant is a favorite among many collectors!

In this detailed Scindapsus Pictus care guide, we will talk about the most important things you’ll need to raise this beautiful plant successfully. We will also provide various options if you want to get your hands on one. Read on to find out more about this Scindapsus’s attractive attributes!

What Is Scindapsus Pictus Exotica?

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica is part of the Araceae family and is also known as Scindapsus Exotica, Exotica, and Philodendron Silver.

Considered a perennial, it grows well indoors near east or west-facing windows. It’s typically known for its stunning foliage, making it one of the must-have indoor plants.

The Scindapsus Pictus Exotica can also be raised outdoors in certain climates, ideally in hardiness zones 10-12.

Origin And Family

The Scindapsus Exotica is part of the Scindapsus genus in the Araceae family. It is native to Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand’s forests. 

Scindapsus Pictus is a group of plants that is frequently misidentified. Some common names they’re referred to are Silver Pothos, Silver Satin Pothos, Silvery Ann, or Silver Philodendron despite being neither pothos nor philodendron.  

Scindapsus Pictus has become a favorite for many indoor growers because this tropical houseplant is easy to care for.

Scindapsus Exotica plants have been around for a long time; Justus Carl Hasskarl discovered them in 1842. They are known to bloom in their native habitat, but it rarely happens indoors.

Where To Buy

There are several ways to find a Scindapsus Pictus Exotica for sale. You could buy a cutting or seedling at the nursery, but you can also order fully grown plants online. One option is to purchase on Etsy.

You can buy a Scindapsus Pictus Exotica for about $15 for small plants up to $60 for larger or more mature plants for pretty affordable prices.

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica Plant Size

As a houseplant, the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica reaches a height of 1-3 feet and typically grows slowly. Keep it near an east or west-facing window for optimum plant development.

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica Care Needs

Your Scindapsus Pictus Exotica, like any other low-maintenance houseplant, will thrive when properly cared for. With its enchanting foliage, this plant adores humidity and thrives in relatively dry soil all year round.

Most growers want to water their Scindapsus when the top two inches of soil are dry. Allow enough time for the water to flow through the pot’s drainage hole. In terms of lighting, this gorgeous plant needs bright indirect light to thrive.

Read our detailed care guide below for more specific advice!

Care Difficulty

In terms of care difficulty, the Exotica is typically easy-to-care-for. The main growing considerations are the well-draining soil and the amount of light that this plant has.

Growth Rate

The Philodendron Silver plant measures 1-3 feet high when grown indoors. The warm temperature of spring and summer jumpstarts this plant’s growth spurt.

Scindapsus species grow slowly, including the Scindapsus Pictus.

Potting

Scindapsus plants generally prefer a pot with good drainage. A medium-sized plastic, clay, terracotta, or hanging basket pot works fine. Drainage holes are essential to keep excess water from drowning the roots of your Scindapsus Exotica.

Repotting

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica typically needs to be repotted every two years or when you see its roots pushing out of the drainage holes. When this happens, carefully remove the plant from its pot but be careful not to disrupt the main root ball. Then, you can transfer the plant into a bigger pot. The roots will easily adapt when planted in the same substrate that it’s used to.

Soil

For the Exotica, a standard commercial potting soil is a suitable choice. Add components such as peat, coco coir, perlite, and orchid bark to make your soil mix. Keep in mind that this plant prefers a relatively dry growing medium and doesn’t appreciate soggy soil.

Make sure your chosen soil type accommodates good drainage and aeration so the roots can breathe better.

We recommend the following potting mixes:

Photo Title Price Buy
Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting...image Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting Mix 6 qt., Grows beautiful Houseplants, 2-Pack $10.39
Burpee, 9 Quarts...image Burpee, 9 Quarts | Premium Organic Potting Natural Soil Mix Food Ideal for Container Garden-Vegetable, Flower & Herb Use for Indoor Outdoor Plant $12.99
Black Gold 1310102...image Black Gold 1310102 8-Quart All Purpose Potting Soil With Control $14.58
Miracle-Gro Potting Mix Miracle-Gro Potting Mix $14.98
FoxFarm Ocean Forest...image FoxFarm Ocean Forest Potting Soil Mix Indoor Outdoor for Garden and Plants | Plant Fertilizer | 12 Quart + THCity Stake $19.99

pH

For the Philodendron Silver, you’ll need neutral to acidic soil with around 6.1-6.5 pH. In most cases, the pH level of standard commercial potting soil is close to this level, so this shouldn’t be a significant concern.

It is considered a best practice to conduct a pH test to see if your soil has the right acidity. There are pH meters at reasonable prices available online or at garden centers.

To raise the pH level of your soil, add calcitic or dolomitic lime, wood ash, or baking soda. To lower the level, you can use sulfur or aluminum sulfate.

Water

When watering Scindapsus Exotica, you’ll want to aim to keep your soil relatively dry. To gauge moisture, stick a finger into the pot, or invest in a soil moisture meter device. You’ll know it’s time to water your Scindapsus when the top two inches of the soil are dry.

Overwatering is one of the most common killers of indoor plants. When in doubt, remember that it’s safer to underwater than overwater the Scindapsus Exotica. Also, make sure you have fast-draining soil and a pot with drainage holes.

Light

This low-maintenance plant prefers bright indirect light for approximately 6-8 hours a day. If there’s excessive light, its leaves may get burned. If there’s a lack of light, its stunning silver variegation may fade.

If your Scindapsus Pictus Exotica isn’t getting enough light, transfer it near a window or invest in LED grow lights. Here are recommendations for you to choose from:

Avoid putting your Scindapsus Pictus Exotica in direct sunlight, as this could severely damage or even kill it.

Fertilizer

A balanced houseplant fertilizer is ideal to keep this beauty a healthy plant. NAME SPECIFIC FERTILIZER, for example, will work. During spring and summer, you can feed your plant once a month.

In winter, when growth naturally slows down, you don’t need to fertilize at all. 

Propagating Scindapsus Pictus Exotica

It is possible to propagate a Scindapsus Exotica with the right methods. Here are various techniques for propagating this tropical houseplant.

Stem Cuttings In Soil

Stem cuttings directly planted in the soil are a hassle-free way to propagate your Scindapsus Exotica. It is best to propagate this plant when it’s actively growing during spring to summer.

1. Cut. Look for a healthy portion of your plant with fresh growth. Make a 3-inch-long incision with some apparent nodes. To avoid bacterial infection, use sanitized scissors.

2. Plant. Place the cutting in wet soil burying the nodes. Then, compress the soil around the stem to hold the cutting in place.

3. Maintain. Regularly moisten the soil to promote faster rooting. Place the plant close to a window in bright, indirect sunlight.

4. Wait. In about 2-3 weeks, you should see new buds on the top leaves. This means that your cutting is now rooted!

Stem Cuttings In Water

An Exotica can be propagated in water with six simple steps.

1. Cut. Cut a section from the stem with new growth and at least one node.

2. Submerge. To monitor root growth, you can place the cutting in a transparent container or a glass of water.

3. Maintain. Next is to store the cutting in a bright, shaded area with good airflow.

4. Refill. Replace the water every 3-5 days to avoid bacterial infection.

5. Transplant. After two weeks, check for progress; then plant the cutting into a sterile potting mix if the roots are around one inch or longer.

6. Wait. Your new plant may look wilted at first, but this is normal because the roots need to adjust to the soil. At this point, avoid applying fertilizer or any treatments until your plant has gotten the chance to stabilize.

Humidity And Aeration

Moderate to high humidity (between 50%-70%) is best for your Scindapsus Pictus Exotica.

Crispy leaves and browning edges often characterize the lack of humidity in houseplants. Consider getting a humidifier, or place your plant in well-lit spaces naturally higher in humidity (such as bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms).

Temperature

Like most Scindapsus plants, your Philodendron Silver will do best in a warm location. Keep the temperature range between 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit.

Houseplants can be sensitive to temperature extremes, so make sure you keep your Philodendron Silver away from heat sources such as vents, hand dryers, furnaces, and other appliances. In the same way, don’t expose your plant to cold drafts and frost spells during the winter.

Toxic

Unfortunately, the Exotica is toxic to humans and pets (including cats and dogs). If consumed, you can expect the following symptoms: drooling, oral swelling, difficulty swallowing, and irritation. In most cases, this plant is considered non-life-threatening.

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Pests, Diseases, And Other Problems

The Scindapsus Pictus Exotica is a plant resistant to several bugs, issues, and diseases. In the sections below, I’ll lay out some of the common problems for the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica and some tips and tricks for treating them.

Spider Mites

Spider mites are common pests, particularly among Philodendron Silver plants. At first, spider mite damage occurs as small, brown, or yellow patches on your plant’s leaves. You might also notice that your plant has slowed or ceased to grow.

To get rid of spider mites, the best solution is to wash off your Philodendron Silver with a pressure sprayer, a sink nozzle, or a garden hose. In addition, you can spray the leaves with neem oil or insecticidal soap, but ensure that all surfaces are covered, including the underside of the leaves!

Certainly, you can also introduce natural predators of spider mites such as lacewings, ladybugs, and Stethorus picipes beetles (also called the “Spider Mite Destroyer”). The great thing about these bugs is that they will feed on spider mites, but they won’t harm your plant!

Scale Insects

Scale insects might seem like lumps on the stems or leaves of your Scindapsus Pictus Exotica. These tiny bugs, which may be green, gray, brown, or black in color, usually remain sedentary when they’ve occupied a plant.

If the infestation is not very bad, you can use a teaspoon of neem oil diluted in four cups of water to discourage scale insects from attacking your plant. Take a spray bottle and vigorously spritz the plant.

Neem oil and horticultural oils may not kill the pests but will undoubtedly cause some damage to them. There are numerous insecticide sprays against scales that are regarded as safe to use indoors.

Aphids

Aphids are usually found as a cluster of bugs on your Exotica, and they could be colored green, black, red, brown, yellow, orange, or white. They multiply extremely fast and can weaken your plant within days!

Aphids are particularly attracted to new shoots, flower buds, and areas of new growth. They will leave behind unsightly black and white splotches as they feed on the sap.

If you spot these icky crawlers, immediately isolate your infected plant from the others. Give your plant a strong spray of water to dislodge the aphids, but remember to cover the soil with plastic to catch any falling bugs and their eggs. Dispose of the plastic somewhere far away from your garden.

A spray of insecticidal soap, neem oil, or horticultural oil can solve the problem. Still, you may need to repeat this several times until you’re sure that the aphid population has been completely eradicated.

Mealybugs

Mealybugs may infest your Philodendron Silver. Act immediately as soon as you spot these little parasites with their white fluff. Take a cotton swab and dip it in rubbing alcohol to wipe out mealies on contact. This will turn them orange or brown in color. Additionally, a spray of diluted Neem oil works great as a preventive measure.

Brown Leaf Tips

Brown leaf tips on your Scindapsus Exotica can be an effect of underwatering, low humidity, root damage, and soil compactness. 

At times, you may need to flush out excess minerals, salts, fertilizers, and chemicals in the soil by letting the water flow through for a few minutes. You shouldn’t worry about accidentally drowning your plant’s roots as long as you have a fast-draining substrate and a pot with drainage holes.

Drooping Leaves

Mealybugs and other pests that infest the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica can cause leaves to slump. Likewise, drooping can be caused by underwatering, lack of humidity, and nutrients.

Yellow Leaves

If you see yellowing leaves on your Exotica, you might need to assess several factors to identify the culprit. Is your plant getting enough light? Are you watering your plant excessively or insufficiently? Are there sudden changes in the weather? Did you fertilize your plant recently?

Naturally, bottom leaves that turn yellow can also indicate that your plant is growing and the leaf’s energy has been depleted. In this case, pull out the yellowing leaves so the plant can focus on growing new green leaves. 

Root Rot

Root rot is a major threat to Philodendron Silver. Indoor gardeners tend to overwater their plants or forget to provide proper drainage. Rotting roots will appear black and mushy and will lead to the decline and eventual death of a plant. As the saying goes, prevention is always better than cure.

The easiest way to prevent root rot is to regulate water intake. Prolong the gap between watering schedules, especially when your plant doesn’t receive enough sunlight and wind to dry the soil. Also, don’t forget to drill holes in the bottom of your pot to allow the water to drain!

Soil aeration is just as crucial in preventing root rot. If your soil tends to become compact and water-logged, add chunky and airy materials such as perlite, pumice, orchid bark, horticultural coal, coco chunks, river sand, and many others.

Similar Plants

Love Scindapsus Exotica? Here are some other varieties of Scindapsus Pictus you should try:

Scindapsus Pictus: – The term “pictus” means painted, and it’s a fitting name for this plant. Its variegated leaves, with their beautiful splashes, appear to be hand-decorated and are sure to enliven your indoor garden.

Scindapsus Pictus Argyraeus – This easy-to-grow vining plant has dark green foliage with spotted silver markings. If you’re a fan of hanging plants, this textured beauty will be a great addition to your cascading plant collection.  

Conclusion

If you’re considering a houseplant with some wow factor, the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica is a great choice. Simply follow the tips we’ve shared above, and you’re on your way to reaching your plant’s full growing potential!

Can’t get enough of Scindapsus plant guides? Check out these other options from Two Peas In A Condo!

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