Did you get a Philodendron Birkin with beautiful variegation, only to notice that it is now reverting to a solid green plant? This is common, and a quick online search will show you that you are not the only person to experience these problems.
But what causes a Birkin to revert, and how do you fix it? A Philodendron Birkin’s variegation is not stable, meaning it has the potential to revert at any time and without warning. However, there are a few steps you can try to see if you can bring back the pretty white colors.
Birkins usually revert due to a lack of light, but irregular watering and not enough nutrients in their soil can also be the cause. If fixing those problems doesn’t work, you can propagate a cutting or cut back your plant to where the variegation was last strong.
That isn’t all that these plants do. Some people have said that their Birkin has turned the opposite way, almost entirely white instead of green.
Why Is My Philodendron Birkin Green?
Philodendron Birkin is a difficult plant to keep fully variegated. You may have some variegated leaves and some that are not. However, if all of your new leaves are starting to turn green without variegation, that may be a sign that your plant isn’t happy.
This process of losing the coloring in your leaves is known as reverting. Lack of sunlight is the most common problem when your Philodendron Birkin is no longer variegated and is starting to turn solid green.
Philodendron Birkin does not like full sun. But they do enjoy a lot of bright and indirect light. It is a fine balance to keep a Birkin happy. Too much sun and your Philodendron Birkin will burn, but too little and they will often start to lose their variegation.
Usually, about twelve hours of indirect light per day is their favorite, but they can handle direct morning light for three to four hours a day.
Unfortunately, even if your plant has enough light, it can still revert. Since the variegation is relatively unstable, these plants can revert without warning.
However, before you get too worried, ensure the plant is reverting or doesn’t have variegation. Most of the time, new leaves won’t show signs of variegation. So if you have a young plant, wait until they grow mature before you assume there is no variegation.
What Is Philodendron Birkin Variegation?
Generally, Philodendron Birkin has dark green leaves. They are usually waxy as well. When the Philodendron Birkin is variegated, they often get creamy or white stripes along the leaves that look like veins.
Sometimes, the entire leaf can turn white or creamy. Other times, the leaves will be half white. However, since the variegation isn’t super stable, you may have leaves that are just solid green and never get that variegation. This is especially true with a Philodendron Birkin, which isn’t getting enough sunlight.
Why Do Philodendrons Revert?
The parts of a Philodendron that are white don’t have any chlorophyll. This means that these spots cannot take energy from the sun and convert it into food the plant can use.
When your plant has lots of sunlight throughout the day, this doesn’t matter. However, if your plant isn’t getting enough sun, the leaves will stop turning variegated so that your plant can maximize energy production with the little sunlight they have.
If your Philodendron Birkin has too little sun, they will want to get as much energy as possible. This means they will start to decrease their variegation or eliminate it.
That isn’t the only reason Philodendron Birkin’s variegation is very unstable. Even when nothing is wrong with your plant or your plant’s habitat, it can start to revert without warning.
Also, improper watering and fertilization, while not as common, can cause your plant to lose variegation.
How Do You Stop a Birkin From Reverting?
The first step to stopping your Birkin from reverting to normal is ensuring they have an ideal habitat. They prefer to have a lot of bright light, around 12 hours of indirect but bright light daily.
You also want to ensure they have the right amount of water. The guideline for Birkin is to water them about once a week. However, the best way to tell is to check the soil before beginning. If the first inch (2.5 cm) of the soil is dry, it is a good time to water again.
Keep an eye on your soil moisture to avoid overwatering or underwatering. If you tend to forget to check, there are also moisture meters that can simply show you how much water the soil has when you walk by.
Additionally, you should fertilize your Philodendron Birkin about once a month. You can cut it back to about every six to eight weeks in the fall and winter. Usually, a 1-1-1 ratio of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPK) is best.
Unfortunately, sometimes the loss of variegation just happens. One trick when your plant stops producing variegated leaves is to cut to the node where the variegation stopped. This can help your plant to reproduce the variegation on new growths. It isn’t one hundred percent effective, but many people have said it works.
Additionally, if you don’t think there is hope for the plant, you can look at propagating the Philodendron Birkin with one of the variegated parts of the leaves. This can give you a variegated new plant, and you can have both versions of this pretty plant.
Is Philodendron Birkin Variegation Stable?
Unfortunately, the Philodendron Birkin variegation is not stable. Many variations are planned for and studied to get the perfect and stable variegation. However, the Philodendron Birkin’s variegation came from a mutation with the Philodendron Rojo Congo.
This means that the growth of these plants is very unstable. It has different variegations and color changes, so even if you have a Philodendron Birkin with one variegation, it may show completely different variegation with new leaves.
Some people say that the plant slowly gets whiter over time. It will start green with a few white stripes, but it may slowly get whiter and whiter with every leaf to the point that the plant cannot support itself and they die, but that doesn’t happen with everyone.
Can Philodendron Birkin Outdoors Stay Variegated?
The Philodendron Birkin can be used as an outdoor plant. Due to the instability of these plants, we cannot definitively say if the outdoors Philodendron Birkin will maintain its variegations. However, the chances are pretty high as long as you plant your Birkin in a place where they get a lot of light, especially in the early morning.
However, primary instability, fertilizer, and irregular watering can also cause this plant to lose its variegation, so you will have to keep a close eye on it.
You can look at some of these if you want a plant with more stable variegations:
- Golden Pothos
- Philodendron Brazil
- Snow Queen Pothos
- Calathea White Fusion
- Spathiphyllum Domino
- Spathiphyllum Picasso
- Philodendron Pink Princess
- Tradescantia Tricolor
- Aglaonema Tricolor
- Syngonium Fantasy
How Do I Make My Philodendron Birkin More White?
The best advice for making your Philodendron Birkin more white is to ensure it gets as much light as it can tolerate. Giving it as much bright and indirect light as you can, has been said to help these Philodendrons produce white leaves and more bold variegations.
Additionally, cutting back to leaves that you like is also helpful. For example, if your Birkin is slowly losing variegation, cut your plant back to the last node with the variegation you liked. This promotes the plant to produce more leaves like that. Neither method is fool-proof, but they seem to be the best options.
A variegated Philodendron Birkin is a beautiful plant. They have bold white stripes against dark green leaves that catch your attention and bring a lot of focus to the plant. Unfortunately, this variegation isn’t stable. That means that even if your plant is in ideal conditions, the variegation could change or revert without any warning.
Philodendron Birkins usually revert due to a lack of light, but irregular watering and not enough nutrients in their soil can also be the cause. If fixing those problems doesn’t work, you can propagate a cutting or cut back your plant to where the variegation was last strong.
You can try some things, like cutting back the plant, making sure it gets enough light, regulating your watering, and ensuring your plant has fertilizer, but none of these methods are known to be 100% effective.