Scindapsus Pictus Exotica: The Fail-Proof Care, Propagation, and Watering Guide You Need

The Scindapsus pictus “Exotica” plant, also known as Scindapsus Pictus Satin, Satin Pothos, or Silver Philodendron, Silver Vine Pothos, and Devil’s ivy, is another popular houseplant from the Araceae family. This gorgeous plant has huge, heart-shaped green leaves with spectacular silver variegation. 

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica

Photo Credit (@monko_the_plant)

The plant is more often confused with the Scindapsus pictus “Argyraeus”. However, they can be differentiated using their foliage. The Exotica variety is thicker and larger. 

The lovely exotic pattern on its thick, large leaves brings the tropics into your living area. Surely, this is a good choice for people who enjoy hanging plants and climbing plants. 

If you’re considering growing this lovely vine in your garden, then you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to know more about the Scindapsus Pictus Exotica.

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica Profile

General Information

Photo Credit (@greenroom0720)

Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ is a popular houseplant that is an evergreen climbing vine of the Araceae family. It is native to Southeast Asia, specifically India, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines, where it thrives as a trailing or creeping ground vine under shade or climbs up trees.

Contrary to what they are commonly called, the Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ plants are Philodendrons or Pothos. These plants belong to the genus Scindapsus, while Pothos plants belong to the genus Epipremnum. However, Scindapsus and Epipremnum are related because they are both Araceae plants. 

Etymology

The scientific term Scindapsus is derived from the ancient Greek word for a vine-like plant that resembled ivy. On the other hand, Pictus is the Latin word for “painted”, referring to its green leaves that have a silvery painted appearance on top of them. 

Additionally, the variety term “exotica” describes this plant as being exotic and unique, hence highly fascinating.

Flowering

Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ belongs to the family of flowering, evergreen climbing plants known as Araceae. Particularly when grown inside, this plant rarely produces flowers. But when cultivated outdoors, the plant may develop summertime spadixes, which are little inflorescences that are typically brilliant green in color. These blossoms are followed by tiny berries.

Season of Interest and Purchasing

This wonderful evergreen Scindapsus pictus exotica is a well-liked houseplant that belongs to the Araceae family. This plant is recognized for having a modest growth rate and being relatively low-maintenance and simple to maintain. In addition, its growing season is between spring and summer, making those times ideal for fertilization and plant growth.

Growth

The Scindapsus Pictus Exotica plant is a slow-growing plant that can grow up to 3 feet tall indoors and 10 feet tall outside in an open space. Their size relatively depends on the environment in which it is growing. Its medium-sized leaves have a length of 25 to 40 cm. The warm spring and summer temperatures encourage this plant’s growth.

Scindapsus pictus Exotica Overview

Scientific nameScindapsus pictus ‘Exotica’
Common name/sScindapsus Pictus Satin, Satin Pothos, Silver philodendron, Silver pothos, and Devil’s ivy
FamilyAraceae
Growth HabitHerbaceous, Hemiepiphytic Vine
Height and Spreadup to 10  feet long outdoors, 3 feet tall indoors
Classification based on life cyclePerennial
Origin and DistributionOriginated from Southeast Asia
Climate ZoneGenerally mild climate
USDA Plant Hardiness ZoneUSDA Zone 10-12
Colorgreen leaves that have a silvery painted appearance

Related: 18 Easy Common Houseplants You Must Have In You Home

Care Tips

Care tips

Photo Credit (@potmedaddy)

Light Requirement

Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ grows well in a sunny spot but not in direct sunlight. Although it may tolerate lower light levels, its unique leaf markings may start to fade if left in low light conditions for a long period of time. 

A brighter light exposure is necessary for your indoor plants to help maintain the vibrant and vivid green and silver variegation on its smooth heart-shaped foliage. However, the sun’s intense light rays can burn or bleach the foliage if they’re under direct sun for an extended period of time.

Temperature Requirement

In terms of temperature, a normal room temperature will do because Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ grows best at temperatures ranging from 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (18 to 29 degrees Celsius). 

Avoid letting the temperature go below 60 °F (16 °C), as the plant’s foliage may suffer. However, extreme temperatures are not ideal for its healthy development. Furthermore, avoid placing this plant in the area of any strong winds or drafts.

Water Requirement

Your Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ likes the soil evenly moist. Therefore, depending on the climate, water your Scindapsus pictus at least once each week. In order to have proper watering, you can identify if your plant needs water when the top 2 inches of soil is dry. 

When winter comes, reduce the frequency of watering since plants receive less sunlight, which slows down photosynthesis. The water will stay in the soil for a longer period of time. It may overwater plants due to soggy soil and lead to the plant’s roots to rot.

Humidity Requirement

Being a tropical plant, Scindapsus Pictus Exotica enjoys humidity. However, Scindapsus pictus Exotica thrives in typical room humidity, so there’s no practical need to make your indoor garden’s humidity levels higher. 

If your location is too warm and dry, you may place your plant in a bathroom. You can also group your plants or use a humidifier to boost the humidity.

Soil Requirement 

The soil is one of the elements influencing the health and growth of the plant. Your plant grows fine with any good indoor potting soil mixture. Choose a well-draining potting soil to prevent the soil from retaining too much water. 

To enhance the amount of organic material in your potting mix, add peat moss, perlite, vermiculite, and finely ground bark. These substances provide all the qualities your plant requires to thrive healthily.

Fertilizer Requirement

Scindapsus pictus exotica does not require lots of fertilizer. Fertilize it only once every four weeks during the growing season to enhance growth. 

When you fertilize, use a decent all-purpose fertilizer that has all the necessary nutrients to feed it. A slow-release fertilizer can also be used to give the plant a steady supply of nutrients. 

Water the soil first before feeding the plant. Make sure you always dilute the fertilizer to half its strength. Since it grows slowly, fertilizing is not really necessary until its growing season.

Additionally, as the plant rests during the winter, there is no need to add fertilizer during that time.

Space Requirement 

Scindapsus pictus exotica can reach a height of 3 feet when grown indoors. It can be grown in pots, on a moss pole, or in a hanging basket with just enough space to bring the tropics into your home. 

However, if you want to see your attractive plant grow to its full potential, put it in an open space in your outside garden where it can eventually grow to be 10 feet tall.

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Growing and Planting Tips

Growing tips

Photo Credit (@plant.hulu)

Propagation

Water propagation

Select and take a good cutting, and then put it in a glass of water. Change the water every week or so to keep it fresh. Then wait for at least 14-21 days for roots to grow. After that, the rooted plant cutting should be transplanted into a new pot filled with potting soil, well watered, and placed in bright, indirect light.

Soil propagation

Stem cuttings can also be planted in the garden soil for direct root development. Keep the garden pot enclosed using a plastic bag. Use well-draining soil. To keep the soil moist, mist it occasionally. By doing this, you promote a humid atmosphere that will hasten root development. After at least 14-21 days, remove the covering and continue growing regularly.

Sphagnum moss propagation

Sphagnum moss should be moistened first. The extra water should be drained out to avoid the plant from getting soaked. Add some chunky perlite to allow for drainage and air flow before putting in the cutting. Maintain a humid environment and keep the moss damp. When robust roots emerge, you can transplant them into the soil.

Pruning

Although it requires very little trimming, you may manage the size of your plant by regularly pruning it. Stem pruning can also aid in giving the plant a fuller appearance because it encourages stem growth. Just get rid of spindly stems, and remove dying leaves whenever you see them.

Potting and Repotting

To regulate the plant’s size, remove it from its pot, trim the roots, and replant it in a larger container or pot with good drainage holes and fresh potting soil. Make sure it has an organic potting mix to have healthy growth. 

Additionally, when a plant is rootbound, it must be repotted immediately. The optimal time to repot is in the spring or early summer.

In choosing a pot, choose one that is 1-2 inches larger in diameter than the root ball of your plant. It would allow you to check the condition of the roots without having to remove the plant from the pot. 

Consider giving it a fresh pot in the early spring every one to two years. Make sure the pot has drainage holes, is two inches larger than the old one, and the potting soil is new and of the best quality before repotting. Your plant will feel revitalized and renewed afterward. 

Scindapsus pictus ‘Exotica’ Care

LightBright indirect light
TemperatureIntermediate to warm, 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit
WaterOnce a week, increased in summer, decreased in winter
SoilAiry, well-draining soil; not too loose
FertilizationRegular household fertilizer, once a month
SpaceMinimal space, use of moss poles or any climbing support
PropagationVia stem cutting propagation, soil propagation, sphagnum moss propagation
BloomingRarely blooms, enough sunlight and maturity needed
PruningRegular pruning not necessary, can be done to promote lushness
PottingRegular potting mix, use of horticultural charcoal, perlite and coco coir, sphagnum peat moss

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Problem and Troubleshooting

Problems and how to fix them

Photo Credit (@pixie.soul)

Overwatering

One of the most likely causes of indoor plant death is overwatering. Root rot will develop when the roots of your precious plant become saturated. Overwatering also often leads to fungal infections that begin obliterating the root system. 

A plant that is overwatered may have leaves that may become yellow, and the stems may turn black and mushy. In order to avoid overwatering this house plant, always check the soil before watering again.

Underwatering

While these tropical vines love a tiny amount of drying between waterings, they shouldn’t completely dry out. If you repeatedly underwater your plants, they may suffer as well. If the leaves of your Scindapsus are curled, your plant is underwatered. Additionally, underwatering might result in browning of the leaf tips and drooping.

Nutrient Deficiency

A lack of nutrients may be the cause of the yellow leaves of your lovely Scindapsus Pictus Exotica. Additionally, the leaves may seem to be drooping or curling. 

To promote foliage and healthy growth, use a nutrient-rich potting soil. Furthermore, a diluted, balanced houseplant fertilizer, every month during the growing season, is beneficial to the large-leaf vining plant.

Flowering Problem

The tropical plant doesn’t have a regular flowering season in its natural habitat. Therefore, it is impossible to rely on these plants’ flowering times, especially when grown inside.

If you want to see its possibility of successfully flowering, take good care of it and make sure that the optimum care and requirements are given. Place it in a spot with good indirect light.

Diseases

Any plant can be susceptible to diseases if not properly taken care of. Particularly, plants of this family are affected by Septoria Leaf Spot and Alternaria Leaf Spot, which result in fungal growth. Usually, these are also due to over-watering the plants. Therefore, take action immediately when you see yellowing (Septoria) or brown spots (Alternaria). 

You can treat your plants with a copper-based fungicide, and make sure to be attentive to the watering conditions for it not to happen again.

Pests

Houseplants are also susceptible to pest problems; unfortunately, your Scindapsus is not an exception.

If you observe the presence of pest infestation, the best thing to accomplish is to remove that plant and separate it from the other plants in your collection to avoid further infestation. These pests love to spread from plant to plant, so it is best to be proactive and isolate the infected plant. 

The next thing to do, and frankly the easiest and simplest method, is to spray your plant with neem oil. Mix two teaspoons of neem oil and a teaspoon of soap in a spray bottle to make this spray. Add water to fill the bottle and shake properly. Spray the plant lightly, including its undersides, and repeat the treatment every 5-7 days.

Neem oil is a natural pesticide that makes it difficult for these bugs to respirate. 

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica Pests and Diseases

Common Pests/DiseasesSymptomsTreatment and Prevention

Common diseases include crown rot, stem rot, root rot, leaf spot, fungal diseases, and Xanthomonas infection
Yellowish rimming around black or dark brown spots on leaves
Avoid overwatering. Keep soil dry. Avoid too high humidity.

Proper ventilation is needed around the plant. Remove infected parts of fungal infections to avoid spreading
Common pests include mealybugs, spider mites, aphids, and scalesVisible insects on the surfaceSpray plant with warm, soapy water. If infestation is present, use insecticide or neem oil. Use diatomaceous earth. 

Problems with People and Animals

Toxicity

Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ is toxic to dogs, cats, and to humans. It releases calcium oxalate crystals, which are poisonous when consumed. As a result, keep the plant out of the reach of cats, dogs, and younger kids, as it is harmful to them.

Scindapsus Plant Meaning and Symbolism

Scindapsus plants are thought to bring luck and prosperity. They are great housewarming presents.

General MeaningLuck and prosperity
SymbolismGood fortune, wealth, luck

Landscaping and Gardening Ideas

Scindapsus Pictus Exotica landscaping

Photo Credit (@greenplantsforu)

Companion Plants

It would be a great idea to grow the Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ alongside other plants. Some of the great companion plants of your Silver Vine are Alocasia amazonica, Ficus elastica, and Spider Plant. Other tropical plants are good companions to your Scindapsus.

Landscaping Ideas

This lovely trailing vine makes a wonderful addition to a windowsill plant or hanging basket. It will look beautiful wrapped around door frames, stair banisters, and the tops of bookshelves. Also, the plant can be placed on a high shelf or hung from the ceiling in a basket or macrame plant hanger so that the vines cascade down toward the ground.

What to plant withAlocasia, Ficus, Spider Plants, other tropical plants
What NOT to plant withBasically nothing

Conclusion

Scindapsus pictus’ Exotica’ is a lovely trailing plant good for both indoor and outdoor gardens. Its lovely dark gray-green, ovate leaves that are sprinkled with silver will surely stun your visitors and create a buzz.

If you are looking for a great indoor plant, then this is a great choice for you. The Scindapsus is an easy care, easy love plant that will make your home bright and livelier.

FAQS

  1. Is Scindapsus pictus Exotica a pothos?

Even though the Scindapsus pictus Exotica is commonly known as Silver Pothos, Satin Pothos, or Silver Philodendron, this plant is not a pothos plant nor a Philodendron. Instead, it is a plant that belongs in the genus Scindapsus, which is different from Epipremnum (Pothos) and Philodendron.

  1. Does Scindapsus pictus grow fast?

The Scindapsus pictus plant is a slow or moderately growing vining plant. It does not grow as fast as your Pothos or your Philodendrons.

  1. Does Scindapsus pictus need light?

 Definitely, yes. All plants need light to make energy through the process called photosynthesis. As to your Scindapsus pictus, a bright indirect light is needed.

  1. Why do Exotica leaves curl?

The curling of Exotica leaves may be a symptom of underwatering or too much direct light. Water your plant regularly, especially when the soil is already dry. Place it also in a location where they do not get direct light for too long.

  1. Is Scindapsus a climber?

Yes, your Scindapsus plants are climbing or trailing vines. With this growing habit, you might need a moss pole or any climbing support to your plant.

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