Everything You Need to Know About Watering Heartleaf Philodendron Plants

Also known as the Sweetheart Plant, Heartleaf philodendrons are easy to grow, making them an excellent option for every experience level. It remains beautiful year-round with its new foliage starting bronze and turning dark green as they grow. In this guide, we will take you through everything you need to know about when and how to water Heartleaf Philodendron plants at home.

How to Water Heartleaf Philodendron Plants – the Essentials

Ensure your Heartleaf philodendrons do not dry out entirely as they prefer moist soil. Soils that are too soggy may lead to root rot and attract unwanted pests and diseases. Water every 7 to 10 days throughout the year, ensuring that the 2 top inches of soil has dried out before watering. Lukewarm or room temperature water is best, as cold water can shock the roots. 

About Heartleaf Philodendron

About Heartleaf Philodendron

Heartleaf philodendrons (Philodendron hederaceum) are evergreen perennial vines that belong to the Araceae family. This plant is native to the South American and West Indies tropical rainforests. 

This plant is an excellent choice for indoor growth, producing heart-shaped green leaves, bushy foliage, and long stems. Growing up to 20 feet, this plant prefers bright indirect sunlight but will tolerate low light conditions.

Naturally, Heartleaf philodendrons would grow in soils rich in organic matter from the plant debris on the forest floor with moist soils.

For more, see our in-depth guide to the best soil for Heartleaf Philodendrons.

The Role of Water in Plant Health and Development

Water makes up 95% of plants tissue. It is vital during seed germination and plant growth and is responsible for several crucial functions within a plant’s tissue, carrying nutrients through the plant.

During photosynthesis, plants use water, carbon dioxide, and light to produce glucose, a plant food source. The water is absorbed through the plants’ roots and evaporates off the leaves in a process called transpiration. Transpiration helps prevent overheating, especially in dry, warm, and windy environments.

Water dissolves the nutrients and sugars produced during photosynthesis, carrying them from areas of high concentrations, such as the roots, to areas of low concentration, such as the stems, blooms, and leaves for reproduction and growth.

When to Water Heartleaf Philodendron

When to Water Heartleaf Philodendron

Knowing when to water your Heartleaf philodendron is essential for keeping your plant happy. It would be best to consider some important factors when planning your watering regime.

How Do You Know When a Heartleaf Philodendron Needs Watering?

If the top two inches of topsoil is dry, then you know that your Heartleaf philodendron needs water. Other indicators include your plant’s leaves turning brown, wilting, and falling off. 

How to Check When to Water a Heartleaf Philodendron

You can check to see if your Heartleaf philodendron needs water by a simple finger test, feeling how dry or moist the top two inches of soil are to the touch. 

If you’d rather not get your hands dirty, a chopstick can also be helpful to assess relative moisture content. 

For more technical solutions, moisture meters or probes are also available, which will monitor moisture content and alert you when the soil base is starting to dry out. 

How Often Do Heartleaf Philodendrons Typically Need Watering?

Typically, if you keep your Heartleaf philodendrons indoors in an average climate, it would be optimal to water them every 7 to 10 days during spring and summer and typically every 10 to 14 days during late fall and through the winter months.  

Environmental Considerations That May Impact Watering Cycles

If your Heartleaf philodendron is in an area that receives good indirect sunlight, such as a south-facing window, it will need watering more often than in an area of low light or near a north-facing window. The same situation will apply to a plant that grows in a warmer climate than one in a cooler climate. 

Other factors such as in-room heaters or air conditioning units also have a habit of sucking moisture from the air and causing faster rates of perspiration in plant life. 

Seasonal Considerations That May Affect Watering Cycles

Your Heartleaf philodendron will require that you water it more often during the warmer spring and summer months than during the cooler winter and fall months. You’ll also want to consider repotting your Heartleaf Philodendron every two to three years in the early springtime.

How to Water Heartleaf Philodendron Plants

How to Water Heartleaf Philodendron Plants

Knowing when to water your Heartleaf philodendron is just one aspect of the overall watering regime of your plant. The second part is knowing the best method for watering your plant to care for it correctly.

The Fundamental Importance of Good Drainage

Good drainage is essential, especially in Heartleaf philodendron plants. It decreases the risk of soggy soils that ultimately result in root rot and other diseases. The outcome of soils that are not well-drained, such as root rot, can result in the death of your plant if not addressed soon enough.

What Type of Water Is Best for Heartleaf Philodendron?

Heartleaf philodendron plants do best if watered with lukewarm water. If the water is too cold, the roots can have an adverse reaction. 

Tap water in most areas is fine, though it’s often prudent to allow it to stand for 12 hours or more to let fluoride and chlorine settle. 

The Best Watering Techniques

Heartleaf philodendrons are easiest to water with a top-down approach. Bottom-up or standing the plant in a water container for too long can have adverse side effects for your plant, such as drainage and water retention issues.

Step-by-Step Guide for Top Watering

Once you have established that the top two inches of soil are completely dry, it is safe to water your plant. The amount of water you supply to your plant will depend on its size.

For a plant growing in a pot 10 to 12 inches tall, around ¾ to a gallon of water could be required. This water intake will increase depending on the size of your container. You will need less water for a smaller pot and more for a larger container.

Heartleaf philodendrons require a good soaking. The best method for watering your Heartleaf philodendron is to water it with a watering can around the plant’s base: 

  • Continue to pour water into your plants’ container until it begins to drain out the bottom 
  • Once this has occurred, you know that you have provided enough water to reach the lowest roots 
  • Leave your plant for a short while and then empty the saucer if feasible (a little leftover water is fine). 

Signs You Might Be Overwatering Your Heartleaf Philodendron

Signs You Might Be Overwatering Your Heartleaf Philodendron

Overwatering your Heartleaf philodendron can result in your plants’ leaves turning yellow. They can also start to droop and fall off. Other indicators of overwatering are slimy stems and foul-smelling soil.  

If you find that you have been overwatering your heartleaf philodendron, the best thing to do is to place your plant in an area that receives bright indirect sunlight and wait for it to dry out sufficiently for you to water again. Ensure that the first inch of topsoil is dry before watering again in the future.

Signs You Might Be Underwatering Your Heartleaf Philodendron

The typical signs of an underwatered plant are brown leaves that can begin to wilt and even fall off if the lack of water continues. Lack of water can cause your plant to become unhappy, and unhappy plants are susceptible to pests and other diseases.

Main Things to Keep an Eye On In Between Watering Cycles

Between your plants’ watering cycles, it is always a good idea to keep your eye on its leaves. Are they wilting or turning brown? Ensuring you keep your eye on the topsoil that it isn’t becoming too dry and the overall health of your plant, making sure it retains its usual vibrancy.

Watering Heartleaf Philodendron FAQs:

Should You Consider Misting Heartleaf Philodendron In-Between Watering Cycles?

Heartleaf philodendrons come from a natural habitat of high humidity. If you keep them in a relatively dry area, they will benefit from a misting now and again to increase their humidity levels. Just be careful not to oversaturate the leaves.

Will Heartleaf Philodendron Plants Benefit From Sitting on a Humidity Tray?

Another way to improve your plant’s humidity levels is by using a humidity tray. The humidity tray will come in handy if you live in a relatively dry area as heartleaf philodendrons’ natural habitat is in a tropical rainforest. Thus they prefer higher humidity levels.

What Are the Most Common Signs Heartleaf Philodendron Need Watering?

The most common sign that your Heartleaf philodendron needs water is its leaves turning brown or getting crispy, wilting, and falling off the plant.

What Is the Best Way to Water Heartleaf Philodendron?

The best way to water your Heartleaf philodendron is from the top with a watering can. Keep giving it water until water starts to come out of the drainage holes at the bottom. Ensure that your plants’ container does not sit in stagnant water for too long.

How Much Water Do Heartleaf Philodendrons Need?

Water your Heartleaf philodendrons once every one to two weeks, once the first inch of topsoil is dry to the touch. They require a good soaking when you water them, allowing the water to begin to drain out of the bottom of the pot before you stop giving water.

Is It OK to Get Water on Heartleaf Philodendron Leaves?

Yes, it is OK to get water on their leaves. Heartleaf philodendrons grow naturally in tropical forests where the humidity levels are high. The high humidity levels would result in their leaves getting moist on a regular occasion.

What Do I Do if I Over Water My Heartleaf Philodendron?

If you have overwatered your Heartleaf philodendron, the best thing to do is place it in an area that receives excellent indirect light and allow it to practically dry out. After this, you can resume watering, ensuring that the first inch of topsoil is dry to the touch the next time you water.

Can I Water My Heartleaf Philodendron With Tap Water?

Yes, you can utilize tap water when watering your Heartleaf philodendron as long as you ensure the water is lukewarm before you water your plant, as these plants do not appreciate cold water.

Wrapping Up

Heartleaf philodendrons are easy to care for plants making them excellent choices for indoor growing. You only need to water them once every one to two weeks. They prefer slightly moist soil and only require you to water them once their first two inches of topsoil is dry. Water these plants with lukewarm water as they do not appreciate cold water.


I’ve long been fascinated with the world of flowers, plants, and floral design. I come from a family of horticulturists and growers and spent much of my childhood in amongst the fields of flowering blooms and greenhouses filled with tropical plants, cacti, and succulents from all over the world. Today, my passion has led me to further explore the world of horticulture, botany, and floristry and I'm always excited to meet and collaborate with fellow enthusiasts and professionals from across the globe. I hold a BSc degree in Plant Sciences and have trained professionally at leading floristry schools in London and Paris.

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