Everyone loves philodendrons as they come in various shapes and sizes. Philodendron Atabapoense is one of these popular philodendron varieties. It has attractive big leaves with eye-catching contrasting colors on its sides.
However, this beautiful plant gets often mistaken for Philodendron Billietiae. Solving the issue of Philodendron Atabapoense and Billietiae is quite tricky.
The first impression you get when you look at both plants is that they look very similar. If you get confused when you spot either or both plants, this article can help you.
We will shed some light on the features of each plant and their major differences. So read on for insight!
Table of Contents
What is Philodendron Atabapoense?
Philodendron Atabapoense is a unique and uncommon houseplant that has been getting much attention recently. Atabapoense is well-known for its large elongated leaves that look like arrows or lengthy aces.
Its leaves reflect a deep green shade on their upper sides. The backside of each leaf has a deep red or maroon color.
Philodendron Atabapoense is a low-maintenance plant. This tropical plant is native to the rainforests of South America, particularly Brazil and Venezuela. Atabapoense uses its aerial roots to latch and climb on the surrounding trees.
This philodendron variety grows only in the upward direction. This growing direction can give you an indication of whether your plant is thriving.
This plant loves a warm and humid atmosphere. This plant thrives when the humidity level is at least 65%. The best temperatures for Philodendron Atabapoense is between 13 and 27 degrees Celsius.
Keep in mind that this plant can’t tolerate cold weather. So, do not grow it outside unless you live in a hardiness zone between 10 and 11.
What is Philodendron Billietiae?
Philodendron Billietiae aka Billie is a rare philodendron that has become trendy lately. The plant has huge oval leaves and long reddish-orange stalks.
This plant is commonly found in various parts of the world, including the tropical rainforests of Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, and Costa Rica.
The leaves of this plant look like the ones of the philodendron Atabapoense. They have the shape of elephant ears. They are glossy, green, leathery, and lengthy as well.
There are varieties of these plants featuring yellowish variegations on the leaf edges. Such a thing makes the plant even more beautiful.
As a natural climber, this plant needs support to grow like in the wild. This is a flowering plant that produces tiny creamy flowers when left outdoors. It can bloom indoors, but it is pretty rare.
Caring for this plant will be relatively easy, as it requires minimum maintenance for almost all philodendrons.
Differences between Philodendron Atabapoense and Billietiae
Philodendron Atabapoense and Billietiae show a lot of similarities, especially in terms of leaf shape. Both plants have large, arrow-like green and glossy leaves.
1. Growth style
You can notice this difference as both plants grow. The Philodendron Atabapoense is a strict climber. So, it grows indoors vertically using trellis support. It doesn’t crawl or trail.
The Philodendron Atabapoense, on the other hand, can climb and trail. This is due to its Hemi-epiphytic nature.
2. Leaf color
At first glance, the leaves can seem to have the same shade of green. However, the leaves of Billietiae reflect a bit of a darker bluish shade when grown with adequate light levels.
This is not the whole story about the color difference. The backside of both leaves can be a pretty distinctive identification mark.
The backside of the Philodendron Atabapoense has a burgundy color, while the backside of the Philodendron Billietiae is light green.
3. Leaf tips
Getting up close and personal with both plants can help you notice these differences. Both plants have pointed tips, but the Philodendron Atabapoense has a longer and more pointed leaf tip.
4. Stem color
A closer look at the stems of both plants reveals a notable difference in colors. The Philodendron Atabapoense has reddish stems. The Philodendron Billietiae has moderate to dark green stems.
5. Stalk color
Another distinctive feature that sets both plants apart is the color of the petioles. The leaf stalks of the Philodendron Billietiae are orange. The stalks of the philodendron Atabapoense have the standard green color.
6. Humidity needs
Philodendrons Atabapoense and Billietiae love humidity due to their tropical nature. However, the Atabapoense loves it a bit more. The Atabapoense plant thrives when it is at least 65% humid. The Philodendron Billietiae does well when it is at least 50% humid.
7. Growth speed
The vast majority of philodendrons are fast growers. So, you should not be surprised by the rapid growth of the Philodendron Atabapoense. This is different with the Billietiae, though. It is more on the moderate or average growth side.
8. Mature size
Philodendron Atabapoense and Philodendron Billietiae grow big, especially in the wild. Also, indoors, they become big but on a smaller scale.
Under the right growing conditions, a mature Philodendron Atabapoense gets way taller than a mature Billietia. The former reaches 2.5 meters, while the latter reaches 1.5 meters.
Philodendron Atabapoense vs Billietiae: are they the same?
Philodendron Atabapoense and Billietiae are not the same plant. Their origins are in the same Araceae family and Philodendron genus. They are also toxic and perform an air-filtering role.
Their leaves also have pretty similar shapes, but this does not make them identical plants. They are only closely related.
Philodendron Atabapoense and Billietiae have large, green, arrow-like leaves, but their backsides are different colors. The backside of Atabapoense is reddish, while Billietiae has a light green backside.
The same applies to their stalks and stems; the former has orange/ reddish petioles and stems, while the latter reflects different shades of green.
Both plants appreciate a decent touch of humidity and warmth, but the Philodendron Atabapoense is a bit needier. In terms of growth speed, Philodendron Atabapoense grows way faster than Billietiae.
Such a difference in the growth speed contributes to the availability of both plants. Philodendron Billietiae is rarer and more expensive than the Atabapoense plant.