Philodendron Bipinnatifidum: Tips on How to Care and How to Propagate Them

Discover this incredible houseplant which is a must-have for tropical gardens or large indoor spaces, its benefits, care, and propagation tips.

By: THURSD. | 06-04-2024 | 9 min read
Indoor Plants
Philodendron Bipinnatifidum

Philodendron Bipinnatifidum is a gorgeous, tropical houseplant that's perfect for adding some greenery and positive energy to any living space. With its lush foliage and air-purifying capabilities, this plant will not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home or tropical garden but also contribute to your overall well-being. Let's explore this fascinating house plant further, giving you some Philodendron Bipinnatifidum care tips.

Philodendron Bipinnatifidum's Vivid Leaves

Are you looking to fill a huge space with an extraordinary tropical plant? Look no further.

The Philodendron Bipinnatifidum houseplant will deliver. It also goes by the name of Thaumatophyllum Bipinnatifidum, Philodendron Selloum, Lacy Tree Philodendron, and Split Leaf Philodendron. Although it is not suited for every home or tropical garden because of its sheer size, it definitely deserves more exposure because of its beautiful vivid, and huge green leaves and vigorous growth. This plant is an evergreen perennial with a unique growth pattern that forms a trunk-like structure as it matures. Its remarkable adaptability and stunning, deeply lobed leaves that can span up to one meter in length are truly awesome.


Philodendron Selloum (Philodendron Bipinnatifidum)


Though a bit harder to find for sale than some other more common philodendron varieties, this Philodendron makes for a perfect statement houseplant or tropical garden filler. It is known for its fabulous, showy, wide, and welcoming leaves that have the feel of a true tropical jungle.

Look for the availability of this plant on the Philodendron Bipinnatifidum product page on Thursd.


Philodendron Bipinnatifidum has been cultivated for centuries, with its introduction to Europe occurring in the early 19th century. Since then, its popularity as an indoor plant or tropical garden plant has grown steadily, thanks to its low-maintenance nature and ability to thrive in a variety of indoor and tropical conditions. Today, it is a beloved addition to countless homes, offices, tropical gardens, and public spaces around the world.


Philodendron Bipinnatifidum houseplant


Confusion About the Name of Split Leaf Philodendron

The world of this Philodendron is wrapped in confusion. Many often confuse them with Monstera deliciosa, leading to the shared nickname, Swiss Cheese Plant. There's also a mix-up in their botanical names, with some even being from different genera. Here's the clarification:
Split Leaf Philodendrons are not Monsteras. While the name Swiss Cheese Plant typically refers to Monstera deliciosa, it's occasionally linked with the Split Leaf Philodendron, even though they're distinct species. Further adding to the confusion, some people even call Monsteras by the name Split Leaf Philodendron. While they belong to the same Araceae family, their genera are entirely different.


Monstera Deliciosa

Relying on common names can be misleading, so using scientific names can often be more accurate. That said, even the botanical names for these plants can be puzzling. As per the Plants of the World Online from Kew resources, the scientific moniker for Split Leaf Philodendrons is Thaumatophyllum Bipinnatifidum. This means they're not in the Philodendron genus but fall under the Thaumatophyllum genus. They're considered plants of the Philodendron tribe.

However, the relationship with Philodendrons persists in naming. You might often find them tagged as Philodendron bipinnatifidum or Philodendron selloum when you visit plant shops.

But here's the takeaway: Split Leaf Philodendrons and Monsteras are distinct, despite their resemblance. Contrary to some beliefs, the former isn't a philodendron variety.

How to Care for Your Philodendron Bipinnatifidum aka Philodendron Selloum?

The Philodendron Selloum, Bipinnatifidum, or Split Leaf Philodendron is a plant that can be grown in the tropics as an outdoor plant, preferably in an area that is well covered for the intense afternoon sun. Indoors, it likes a lot of light, warm temperatures and comfortable airflow. Give it enough water, some love, and a bit of fertilizer, and avoid extremes of any kind. And this plant will reward you with its beautiful appearance.


Philodendron Bipinnatifidum in botanical garden


Philodendron Bipinnatifidums Light Requirements

Like most other plants in the Philodendron genus, Philodendron Bipinnatifidum enjoys a tropical climate out of too much direct sunlight. The ideal indoor environment provides moderate or diffused natural light. Artificial indoor light sources that can be left on for a significant period of time might work for this plant, but bright natural light is best. For best results, place your plant in an area with bright natural light, but keep it out of too much direct sunlight, especially close to a glass window with direct sunlight, as the leaves will burn. 

In the tropics, Philodendron Bipinnatifidum plants can be grown outside very easily. If you're wondering about the Philodendron Selloum outdoor care, you should know that these plants prefer bright but filtered light. They can tolerate some direct sunlight in the morning or late afternoons, but you should not keep them constantly under the full sun since it can scorch their leaves.


Split Leaf Philodendron aka Bipinnatifidum Philodendron


Although they are said to adapt to full shade, expect the leaves to turn a darker green color if you don’t give them enough light. With lower light conditions, the plant will not grow as well and as fast, and you won’t be seeing any flowering or particularly showy leaves. It is recommended for houseplants to regularly turn all of your plants to give them light from all sides, this is especially important with Philodendrons Bipinnatifidums because of their trunks. They will turn and bend towards the light source, so make it a habit to turn the pot every time you water to avoid oddly shaped trunks.

Philodendron Bipinnatifidum Watering

This Philodendron loves moisture. The Philodendron Bipinnatifidum has unique requirements for water. While you might be used to letting the soil dry out between watering with your other Philodendrons, keep in mind this one likes more water. Ideally, you should try to keep the soil barely moist at all times. The keyword here is moist, not soggy. This can be achieved by watering the plant so that the water runs through the drainage holes at the bottom of the plant.

How to Fertilize Your Bipinnatifidum Plant

The plant should be fertilized around once every few weeks during the growing season (spring and summer) with light fertilizer. As you are getting to know the plant, this will become easier. It is always a good idea to start with less fertilizer initially and increase the amount if you notice the leaves getting paler.


Philodendron Bipinnatifidum


2 Reasons Why People Love Philodendron Bipinnatifidum

There's a lot to love about Philodendron Bipinnatifidum. Here are some of the top reasons why this plant has won the hearts of plant enthusiasts worldwide.

Aesthetically Pleasing

With its large, deeply lobed leaves and striking silhouette, Philodendron Bipinnatifidum is a true showstopper. The glossy green foliage adds an element of sophistication to any space, making it the perfect statement piece for both minimalist and eclectic interiors. As the plant matures, its trunk-like structure lends an exotic, tropical vibe that's sure to garner admiration from visitors.

Air Purifying

Philodendron Bipinnatifidum is not just a pretty face — it also boasts air-purifying capabilities. This plant is known to help remove pollutants like formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene from the air, contributing to a healthier indoor environment. With more people spending time indoors, adding a Philodendron Bipinnatifidum to your space can help improve air quality and create a more refreshing ambiance.



Lacy Tree Philodendron aka Bipinnatifidum Philodendron


How to Propagate Your Philodendron Bipinnatifidum

Spread the Plant Love! If you're eager to share your love for this fantastic plant with others, propagation is the perfect solution. Propagating is a rewarding process and doing so with your Philodendron Bipinnatifidum ios a great way to share the joy of this beautiful tropical plant with friends and family.

There are two popular methods of propagating this plant: stem cuttings and air layering.

Method 1: Propagating via Stem Cuttings

One of the most straightforward ways to propagate a Philodendron Bipinnatifidum is through stem cuttings. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you get started:


bipinnatifidum selloum

Philodendron Selloum. Photo by @kejt_plantlover


Method 2: Propagating via Air Layering

Air layering is another popular method for propagating Philodendron Bipinnatifidum, particularly for larger specimens. This technique encourages the development of roots on the parent plant before removing the new plantlet. Here's how to do it:


By following these simple steps, you can propagate your Philodendron Bipinnatifidum and share the joy of this beautiful, tropical plant with friends and family. Not only will you brighten their living spaces, but you'll also contribute to a greener, more vibrant world. Happy propagating!



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