Philodendron jungle boogie, aka the tiger tooth philodendron, is a bold plant that boasts narrow leaves with serrated edges. Learn how to care for your next favorite philodendron with this post!
How do you care for a philodendron jungle boogie?
What’s the philodendron with the most fun name? I’d argue that it’s the philodendron jungle boogie, which also has a few other names. You might find a jungle boogie labeled as “philodendron Henderson’s pride” or “tiger tooth philodendron.”
Regardless of what it’s labeled, it’s a relatively hardy plant that has adapted well to life as a houseplant. The plant’s long, narrow leaves have serrated edges that look almost like a saw blade…or tiger teeth, apparently.
Is philodendron jungle boogie the same as tiger tooth?
Yes, philodendron jungle boogie is the same as a tiger tooth philodendron. I have always seen the plant referred to as a jungle boogie. However, when big growers begin growing certain plants, they will come up with their own names for them.
Thanks to Justin from Costa Farms for sharing this story about why they refer to this plant as tiger tooth:
“When our Plant Hunter first came upon the plant back in the day, it was being called Tigertooth by his source. It went into the system as such.By the time it passed the trials and the marketing team was given a heads up, it was in the system as Tigertooth. They decided not to rename it with the other common name Jungle Boogie as they didn’t want to cause confusion internally. It’s true botanical name, as validated by the International Aroid Society, is Philodendron Henderson’s Pride.”
I’ve read a couple of different things about where the name “jungle boogie” came from…and I am not totally sure what’s right. It’s a hybrid, but a hybrid of what? If you can source its origin, please let me know!
Philodendron jungle boogie light needs
Jungle boogie enjoys bright indirect light. Philodendrons are from the rainforests of Central and South America (and the Carribbean), so they are accustomed to growing under dense canopies of trees that provide natural shade.
Therefore, jungle boogie isn’t a big fan of too much light. The best choice is near a bright window. Low light doesn’t work well for this plant, but it can withstand light levels that tend toward somewhere between high and low.
If the plant is getting too much light, the leaves will burn. If it is getting too little light, the size of the leaves will decrease and the stems may become “leggy,” which is basically a nice way of saying long, scraggly, and kind of sad looking.
Water & soil
Philodendron jungle boogie enjoys soil that is somewhat moist. Generally that means that the top several inches of soil should dry out before you water the plant again.
If you water the plant too much, it will suffocate the roots and lead them to rot. This will then slowly kill off the plant leaf by leaf. So don’t overwater.
If you underwater the plant, you’ll begin to notice the soil caking, sometimes even shrinking away from the sides of the pot as it dries. You may also even notice the leaves drooping. A good drink will likely help perk the plant up.
One of the best ways to ensure you give your plant the proper amount of water is to plant it in the right soil. Philodendron jungle boogie should be planted in a well-draining indoor or houseplant potting soil.
These come pre-mixed with all of the things necessary to ensure proper drainage and lightweight moisture retention. Well-draining soil will also allow for all of the excess water to drain out of the pot’s drainage holes, leaving the soil with all of the moisture it needs.
Temperature & humidity
Average household temperatures and humidity levels are fine for philodendron jungle boogie. Temperatures in the 60s, 70s, and 80s Fahrenheit are perfect.
It’s not a cold- or frost-hardy plant, so make sure to bring it inside if you have it summering outdoors. And try to avoid placing the plant near heating or air conditioning vents, which can dry out the plant and yank temperatures around.
Humidity isn’t necessarily a must, but your tiger tooth will thank you for extra humidity. Try grouping the plant with other plants, which will help to increase ambient humidity levels just a bit.
Adding a humidifier is also a great option. I’m pretty lazy with humidifiers, but I do plan on running a small one in my sunroom this winter. We’ll see how well I make good on that promise though. They are such a pain to clean!
If you notice crispy tips or edges on the tiger tooth’s leaves, it’s likely a result of low humidity levels. Try to boost humidity levels a bit to see if that helps with new growth.
How big does a philodendron jungle boogie get?
Philodendron jungle boogie grows to be upwards of 3 feet tall. If you add a moss pole, it will grow up. But if you don’t, it might grow out—about a foot wide.
This plant is generally a fast-growing plant, too. Give it ideal care conditions, and it will reward you with lots of new growth!
Is philodendron jungle boogie a climber?
Yes, it is. When I got mine, it was already showing signs of wanting something to climb. The tallest stem was beginning to grow to the side, showing signs of aerial roots begging for something to cling on to.
I’ll be giving mine a stackable moss pole soon and using vinyl plant tape to tie it up. I love these moss poles because you can split them up and use them on different plants, or you can stack them and add more as the plant grows.
When should I repot my philodendron jungle boogie?
The best time to repot your philodendron jungle boogie is in the spring. It should be repotted roughly yearly if it has been growing well. Looking for signs of a need for repotting like roots growing out of the drainage holes and a top-heavy plant that needs a sturdier base.
When you do repot your plant, make sure to use fresh well-draining soil to supplement the existing soil around the root ball. Also make sure to size your pot up only about an inch or two.
Philodendron jungle boogie propagation
Philodendron jungle boogie propagation is much like other philodendrons. If you want to grow a new plant, it’s as simple as taking the right cutting and rooting it.
Start by taking a stem cutting from the plant. It should have 1-2 growth points on it (look for nodes on the stems or take a cutting and remove the bottom-most set of leaves). It should also have at least one set of leaves.
You can put the cutting in water, refreshing the water once a week or so. Ensure that the cutting’s growth points remain submerged in water. After several weeks, the cutting will sprout roots.
When the roots are several inches long, you can plant it in soil. It may droop a bit as it acclimates to soil, but it should rebound. Keep the soil moist while the cutting gets used to its new home.
You can also just skip water rooting and plant the cutting directly in soil and keep it evenly moist for several weeks. Put it in a bright spot and monitor the cutting for new growth. That is the best sign that your cutting has rooted and is now its own plant.
I personally like to root most philodendron cuttings in either water or sphagnum moss and perlite before moving them to soil. That way I can monitor initial root development. Cuttings planted directly in soil are kind of like wearing a blindfold the whole time!
If you’re wondering whether philodendron jungle boogie is safe to have around pets, the answer is that it depends on your pet. It is toxic, containing calcium oxalate crystals that can lead to gastrointestinal issues and swelling if ingested.
So it’s best to keep the plant away from nibbling pets and kids. It is a purely ornamental plant and isn’t meant to be eaten. It’s perfectly safe to be around the plant…just don’t ingest it.
Combatting pest issues
Philodendrons in general are about as vulnerable to pests as most other houseplants. Monitor your plant for signs of pest infestations, which can include tiny crawling bugs, yellowing foliage, deformed new foliage, fine webbing on the leaves, and brown, sticky sap.
If you have any of these symptoms, it could be spider mites, mealybugs, aphids, scale, or even thrips. Most houseplant pests can be battled away with an over-the-counter insecticide. I swear by Captain Jack’s Dead Bug Brew.
For particularly bad pest infestations, I will also resort to systemic granules. But they generally aren’t necessary with most pest infestations.