Philodendron Atabapoense

Philodendron Atabapoense Care

Welcome to our guide to philodendron atabapoense care and propagation. The key to caring for it is to keep it humid and don’t over water it

Philodendron Atabapoense Care Summary

Light needs:Medium to bright indirect sunlight.
Watering needs:Check weekly, water if top 50% of soil is dry.
Fertilizer:A balanced feed or high in nitrogen, once a month in spring and summer.
Soil:Loose and well draining.
Temperature:15-32°C (59-90°F).
Where to buy:Try our list of Rare Plant Shops or Etsy.
Common issues:Brown or yellowing leaves and root rot: all from overwatering.


The elegant philodendron atabapoense is known for it’s slender elongated, pointed green leaves with a dark purple underside. They are stunning plants with their long pointed blade-like leaves and are a great alternative to the spiritus sancti or billetie philodendrons.

See also: Philodendron Soil, Philodendron Ilsemanii, Philodendron Fibrosum, Philodendron Lynamii, Philodendron Elegans, Philodendron Gigas Care, Philodendron Pastazanum Care, Philodendron Plowmanii Care, Philodendron Mayoi, Philodendron Ring Of Fire Care, Philodendron Red Emerald, Philodendron White Wizard.

Tip: we recommend Etsy for buying plants. Look for the best rated seller you can, and try to buy as close to your home as possible so the plant does not travel too far.

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Philodendron Atabapoense Light Needs

Medium to bright indirect sunlight is good for a philodendron atabapoense. They’ll be fine a bit further back from the window

How Often to Water

Water it when the top 50% of soil is dry. Check it once a week and only water it if dry enough. The biggest cause of problems or death in philodendrons is over watering, so be careful. If you water the plant while it is inside an external pot or saucer, then make sure you wait a few minutes and then tip out any excess water to avoid root rot.


Use a balanced feed or one high in nitrogen. Use it once a month in the spring and summer months to encourage growth of those big beautiful leaves. Any problems will show on the laves so under dose rather than overdoes them on fertilizer as it can burn the leaves.

Philodendron Atabapoense Care Soil

A loose, well draining soil is essential as the plant does not like to sit in heavy wet soil. A mix of orchid bark, perlite and potting compost in equal parts is great and will give the the nutrients they need as well as a chunky and airy rooting medium. For more on Philodendron soil see our guide on what to buy or how to make your own: Philodendron Soil.

When To Repot

Check it at easter time and pot it up a size if it is root bound or close to outgrowing it’s current pot. You can take some cuttings at this point too.

Tip: Give them to a moss pole to climb up. You can tie it to it encourage upward growth, tidy the aerial roots and encourage larger leaf growth.


60 to 70% humidity is ideal. This will mean adding to normal household humidity with a humidifier or misting the plants daily. Natural humidity is better than misting, you can use a pebble tray to raise humidity.


15-32°C (59-90°F) is an ideal range for this philodendron during the day. Try to keep it away from cold drafts and above 10°C (50°F)

How to Propagate Philodendron Atabapoense

Take stem cuttings with one leaf and one node. Let them callous over for the wounds to heal, then put the cuttings in cups of moist sphagnum moss to root. Keep them moist, humid and well lit until they root well, then pot them up to soil. It can take 1 to 3 months from cutting to soil.

You can also root them in water, they seem to take well, I prefer moss as I get a better success rate with it.

Is It Toxic To Cats?

Yes, they are toxic to cats. The parts of the plant contain calcium oxalate crystals, which can cause irritation if ingested, seek vets advice if your cat eats any.

Philodendron Atabapoense USDA Zone

Zones 9b-11.

Other Names

Philodendron Ataba, Ataba Philodendron.

Where To Buy

Try one of these Rare Plant Shops. Or Etsy.

Philodendron Atabapoense Care FAQs and Common Problems

Common issues like brown or yellowing leaves and root rot come from overwatering. Make sure you do not overwater the plant and tip out any excess water from the pot ten minutes after watering.

Philodendron Atabapoense Mature

A mature plant can reach over 1 and half meters height 5 feet. The leaves become more sword-like and elongated as they mature.

Philodendron Atabapoense Vs Billietiae

The main difference is the atabapoense has dark pink or burgundy on the underside of it’s leaves, but the billietiae has green. There both have similar shaped long pointed leaves. For more on the billietiae, see our guide: Philodendron Billietiae.

Philodendron Billietiae X Atabapoense

There is a hybrid of the two plants Billietiae X Atabapoense commercially available that takes on the characteristics of both plants. At time of writing it is quite and in demand hybrid.

Philodendron Atabapoense Vs Mexicanum

These two look similar, you can tell the difference easily by looking at the leaf nodes. We covered this in our guide to the Mexicanum here.

Philodendron Atabapoense Vs Spiritus Sancti

The spiritus sancti is a much bigger plant with longer leaves. The leaves of the sancti can grow to be almost as big a person, for more see our guide here: Philodendron Spiritus Sancti.

Additional Resources


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Philodendron Atabapoense Care
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