window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; function gtag(){dataLayer.push(arguments);} gtag('js', new Date()); gtag('config', 'G-F1SZCWN2JX');

How To Prune Philodendron: A Complete Guide 2024

Many homes and workplaces are decorated with lush, tropical philodendrons, which make the place look good, calm, and green. The question “How To Prune Philodendron?” is one many plant owners often ask. This article will answer this question and guide you on how to trim your philodendron, showing the tools you’ll need, stuff to think about when trimming, and care instructions after trimming.

Why Should You Prune a Philodendron Plant?

Trimming is a valuable part of looking after your plants, and while it’s not really necessary for your Philodendron, there are good reasons why it should be part of your routine plant care.

The main reason for trimming a Philodendron is to make it healthier and protect the plant’s general health. When done right, trimming helps to control the plant’s size and shape, which is super important for indoor plants that can grow like there’s no limit. Plus, trimming encourages the plant to grow more branches, leading to a fuller and more lively look.

Regular trimming also helps take away dead or damaged parts, helping it grow healthy by letting the plant focus its energy on new growth instead of keeping unhealthy or unnecessary parts.

Trimming can massively improve the overall airflow and light getting in, crucial factors for a thriving Philodendron.

If your Philodendron shows signs of disease, color change, or bug problems, trimming these problematic areas can stop these problems from spreading more.

However, taking off too much leaves can hinder the plant’s photosynthetic process, possibly leading to plant die-offs.

Moreover, trimming can make the plant look good, helping control a plant that’s growing too fast. But it’s important to remember that trimming alone won’t solve widespread issues. If your plant shows symptoms like wilting, yellowing, or discolored leaves, it could be fighting problems like root rot or too much sun, which trimming alone can’t fix.

Prune a Philodendron

Ideal Pruning Time for Philodendrons

Although Philodendron plants are tough and can handle trimming all year, certain times are better for their health and growth. The best times to trim these plants usually align with the growing season, which is often spring and early summer.

Trimming during these transitional periods goes along with the plant’s natural growth cycles, potentially promoting healthier and strong growth. However, if you’re only aiming to remove yellow or damaged leaves and stems, light trimming can be carried out anytime without really affecting the plant’s well-being.

Related: How to Repot a Philodendron: A Complete Guide 2024

Materials Needed for Pruning Philodendron

When it comes to trimming your Philodendron, using the right stuff is key. The things you’ll need to trim a Philodendron are simple and easy to get:

  • Pruning Shears: A sharp pair of trimming scissors is important. The tool should be sharp enough to make a clean, smooth cut without hurting the plant.
  • Disinfectant: It’s super important to clean up your trimming tools before and after use. This step stops diseases from spreading between plants.
  • Gloves: Even though Philodendron isn’t typically a dangerous plant, wearing gloves can protect your hands from sap, which can cause skin irritation in some people.

Materials Needed for Pruning Philodendron

How To Prune Philodendron?

Cutting back your Philodendron might seem like a fancy job, but with a good grip on the process and reasons, it can become an essential part of your regular plant care. Here’s a simple guide on how to cut back your Philodendron effectively:

  1. Inspect the Philodendron: Don’t start cutting without first looking over your plant well. Step back and take a good look at the Philodendron. Are there busted leaves? Is the plant getting too big? This understanding will help you decide what needs to be tossed and where you should make your cut.
  2. Plan Your Cuts: Once you have a clear idea of why you’re cutting back, decide where to make your cuts. This choice should be straightforward if you’ve well-checked your plant. Keep in mind or even physically mark the areas you plan to cut and those you want to keep.
  3. Remove Unwanted Vines: Armed with clean, sharp cutters, trim off any unwanted vines. Find where the vine connects to the main stem and cut it off as cleanly as possible. A clean cut helps it heal better and reduces the chances of disease invasion.
  4. Prune Damaged, Discolored, or Dead Leaves: After dealing with the unwanted vines, focus on the leaves. Look for any that are damaged, discolored, or dead, and snip them off, ensuring to cut just above a leaf node. Leaf nodes are the spots from where new growth will pop out, so it’s important to keep these intact.
  5. Dispose of the Pruned Foliage Safely: Always toss the removed leaves and vines in the trash, even if you’re confident the plant isn’t sick. These bits could potentially infect other plants in your garden if you compost them.
  6. Clean and Sanitize Your Pruning Shears: After pruning is finished, clean and sterilize your pruning shears before putting them away. You can use warm, soapy water. By doing this, you can avoid the possibility of cross-contamination while cutting other plants with the shears.

Watch this video to learn how to prune Philodendron:

Things to Keep in Mind When Pruning Philodendron

When cutting your Philodendron, there are certain things to keep in mind:

  • Don’t cut too much; cutting too many leaves at once can stress the plant and slow its growth.
  • Don’t cut new growth as this can damage the plant and slow its progress.
  • When cutting, make sure you’re leaving at least one leaf node on the stem. This node will be where new stuff grows.
  • Always cut back your Philodendron in the right season. The best time to cut is usually in the spring or early summer when the plant is in its growing season.
  • Always remember to clean your tools to prevent the spread of sickness. Cutting too close to the main stem can cause hurt to your plant, so be mindful of where you cut.

Caring for Philodendron After Pruning

After cutting back your Philodendron, it’s important to take good care of it to help it bounce back and grow:

  • Watering: Keep watering it regularly, but don’t overwater; Philodendrons like their soil to dry out a bit between waterings. Watering too much can lead to roots rotting and other problems, so keep an eye on how wet the soil is.
  • Fertilizing: Fertilizing your Philodendron after cutting helps replenish the nutrients needed for new growth. Use a balanced liquid plant food, diluted to half the recommended strength. Avoid over-fertilizing, which could lead to salt gathering in the soil, damaging the roots and potentially causing leaf scorch.
  • Light Requirements: Philodendrons prefer bright, indirect light. After cutting, make sure your plant is situated in a spot where it can get plenty of light without getting burnt by direct sun. Too little light could lead to leggy growth, while too much direct light can cause leaf scorch.
  • Monitor Growth: After cutting, it’s important to keep a close eye on your Philodendron’s growth. Look out for new shoots popping out from the leaf nodes and keep an eye on the overall health and color of the plant. If you spot any signs of sickness or stress, step in quick to prevent further damage.

Remember, the goal is to maintain a healthy, bright Philodendron, and careful after-cutting care is a big part of that process.

Philodendron After Pruning

How To Prune Philodendron FAQs

Q: What should I do with the leaves and stems I’ve pruned off?

A: Even if you’re confident your Philodendron isn’t sick, it’s best to toss cut stuff in the trash. Composting these parts could potentially spread diseases to other plants in your garden.

Q: Why are my Philodendron’s leaves turning yellow after pruning?

A: Yellow leaves after cutting can suggest overwatering or a lack of nutrients. Make sure you’re giving enough water and consider using a balanced fertilizer to promote healthy growth.

Q: Can I propagate the pruned parts of my Philodendron?

A: Yes, Philodendrons propagate readily from stem cuttings. Pick a cut section with at least two nodes (bumps on the stem where leaves, roots, and new stems form). Place the cutting in water or moist soil, and it should start to develop roots within a few weeks.

Q: How often should I prune my Philodendron?

A: Yes, Philodendrons propagate readily from stem cuttings. Pick a cut section with at least two nodes (bumps on the stem where leaves, roots, and new stems form). Place the cutting in water or moist soil, and it should start to develop roots within a few weeks.


Knowing how to cut back Philodendron properly is super important for keeping your plant’s health and look. The process needs the right tools, execution, and careful after-cutting care. Remember to avoid usual cutting problems and keep your Philodendron’s special needs in mind. At FamiPlants, we aim to help you grow a healthy, bright indoor jungle, starting with guiding you on how to cut back your Philodendron to perfection. Happy pruning!

Hi, I'm Cathleen Clemens. I graduated from Cornell University with a degree in plant science. I gained detailed knowledge about various kinds of plants and how to properly care for them. My experience has enabled me to easily detect any issues such as pest infestations, nutrient deficiencies, or signs of diseases in the plants.

Leave a Comment