Philodendron xanadu

Croat, Mayo & J. Boos 2003

It's been for a long time cultivated and known as Philodendron 'Xanadu' or Ph. 'Witnterbourn'.
before it's been described as a species.

View of the plant. There's an almost adult leaf on the right.
Another specimen.
A juvenile leaf.
An adult leaf.
These 2 photos show the Australian clone of Ph. xanadu or rather Ph. 'Xanadu'.
We have to remember that it was in cultivation long before it was described as a species
and the 'Xanadu' as a cultivar was brought into horticulture in New Zealand.
The European and American clones don't have so deeply cut leaves.
photo (1-2) © Michael Pascall.
What the others said about this:

Julius Boos (2009-08-22, fragments):
P. xanadu is a good species of Philodendron within the group Meconostigma or self-headers.
It differs from all other species of Meconostigma in details of the sexual parts of its spadix, the shape of the leaf scars on the rhizomes,
shape of leaf blade, intravaginal squamules, etc...
The color of its spathe is different to P. bipinnatifidium (we must remember that it was brought into cultivation from Australia
with a note that it was a "sport" of P. bipinnatifidum), and blooms more sparingly,
It was most probably received in Australia as as seed ex: the nursery of Alvim Seidel in Brazil.
In tissue culture it becomes very "plastic" in its vegetative features,
mainly by the leaf blades retaining juvenile features (reduced rear lobes of the leaf blade)
for many years, up to 20 years or more, even when planted in the ground...
In older literature (by Dr. Eduardo Goncalves?) I recall reading that there is a group of plants
in the highlands which were being discussed as possible P. "selloum" which bore a purple/scarlet spathe,
while other P. "selloum"/P. bipinnatifidum bore blooms with green spathes...
I am convinced that there is a complex of Meconostigma in the wilds of Brazil into which P. xanadu falls (or which are P. xanadu)
which bear blooms with purple-scarlet spathes. Maybe we will get lucky, and one of the many Philodendron experts
who work in Brazil will come up with a review of this group in the near future?

Brian Lee (2009-08-25, a fragment):
It is entirely possible that hybrids of Philodendron xanadu and Philodendron bipinnatifidum exist.
I would think that it would be more plausible that the original hybrids occurred in Brazil at Seidel's nursery.
I say this as the tissue cultured examples do not shed much pollen until years down the line
as the effects of the tissue culture chemicals wear off.
That is not to say that someone hasn't done it. I also do not know the influence of the tissue culture
on the receptivity of the female flowers which could be a factor restricting pollination.
I have heard of people trying to pollinate Philodendron xanadu, but, I would love to hear if anyone produced viable seeds.
To date, I have not heard of this.
There is also a tissue cultured Philodendron 'Showboat', that is Philodendron xanadu,
but a larger selection or one with less of the chemicals influencing dwarfed growth.

Julius Boos (2009-08-29, fragments):
I would tend to doubt that any "clones" of P. xanadu are hybrids with P. bipinnatifidum,
as they are such very different species, one to the other.
P. xanadu has scarlet/purple spathes, and fewer and much smaller blooms which are differently shaped
to the huge "plantain-shaped" blooms of P. bipinnatifidum...
If there was a hybrid, one could expect to see a certain amount of "mixing" of these features, I have seen none so far.

Brian Lee (2009-09-02):
At this larger size, it is interesting that your plants still retain the small leaf blade typical of younger plants.
As the tissue cultured plants outgrow the chemical cocktails, the blades widen and the lateral lobes and the back lobes develop more fully.
The general size of the blades also increase by two or three times.
As far as blooming, it has been noticed that most male flowers shed very little pollen.
I do not know if the receptivity of the female flowers are affected by the tissue culture process, but, this is also a possibility
I have not heard of any Philodendron xanadu hybrids from the tissue cultured plants.

Tropicos: Philodendron xanadu
CATE Araceae: Philodendron xanadu
Philippe Faucon's Desert-Tropicals Ph. 'Xanadu'
Eric Schmidt - Ph. xanadu at Leu Gardens: photo 1, photo 2
page created on 2002-07-08
last updated on 2009-08-17