Philodendron McDowell vs Pastazanum: 9 Main Differences

Everyone loves unique and rare Philodendrons. Despite their difficulty getting them, their presence adds undeniable beauty to any room. Philodendron McDowell and Pastazanum are very sought-after rare varieties that are challenging to find.

They are hard to set apart as well. The main reason for the resemblance between these two is that they are very closely related. One of them is a parent to the other.

The Philodendron McDowell is a hybrid plant from Philo Pastazanum and Gloriosum. So, the McDowell plant shares many common characteristics with the Pastazanum parent.

If you want to distinguish these similar plants easily, keep reading this article for further insight.

Philodendron McDowell vs Philodendron Pastazanum
The main differences between Philodendron McDowell and Pastazanum are their leaf size, leaf features, leaf edges, growing points, leaf backside, petiole markings, stalk features, vein colors, and spathe colors. Both plants have large leaves, but the leaves of Dean McDowell are notably bigger.

What is Philodendron McDowell?

The full name of this plant is Philodendron Dean McDowell. So, when you hear this particular name, it sounds pretty unusual for a plant name. It is named after a person.

The botanist who created this hybrid plant named it after his friend. This Philodendron is new to the botanical world, as it was created in the late 1980s.

This Philo is highly praised for its large deep green leaves. The leaves have the well-known heart-shaped style commonly found in the rest of the Philodendrons.

The native area of this plant is South American tropical forests. So, it is easily found in Colombia, Peru, and Brazil. This plant is not entirely an epiphytic, as it grows parallel to the ground.

What is Philodendron Pastazanum?

Philodendron Pastazanum is commonly known as the pasta plant. It got its name from its original exploration place, first found in Ecuador, particularly in the province of Pastaza. 

This plant looks much like its hybrid but has slightly smaller leaves. The pasta plant has fleshy stalks that make it not a climber. It falls into the category of creeping plants.

Just like many other philodendrons, this pasta plant has big cordate leaves. This plant features evergreen foliage.

The midrib of the leaves has a very light shade that contrasts with the dark green foliage. The leaves of Philodendron Pastazanum are shiny and textured.

Caring for this plant is easy. So anyone can be a good parent to this plant, even the busy and forgetful type. It loves humidity and warmness.

It also requires indirect exposure to bright sunlight. However, it can tolerate a poorly lit area. Keep in mind that poor lighting can stall its growth.  

Differences between Philodendron McDowell and Pastazanum

Distinguishing these plants is a challenging job, as both of them are almost identical. They are native to the same places and feature the same growth style. Still, there are some notable differences in the texture and details of the leaves.

1. Leaf size

Both plants have large leaves, but the hybrid plant has bigger leaves. A mature Philodendron Pastazanum can have leaves between 45 and 61 cm long. A fully-grown Dean McDowell philodendron leaf can be more than 66 cm long.

2. Leaf features

Touching the leaves of each plant can reveal differences in their texture. The leaves of pasta plants are waxier. As for the outside appearance, the leaves of Philodendron Pastazanum are glossy as well. Leaves of Philodendron Dean McDowell are more on the matte side.

3. Leaf edges

Another notable difference you could easily spot is looking closely at both plants. The pasta plant is a kind of all-green vine. Its edges do not reflect any shade other than green. The edges of the Philodendron McDowell have a deep red color.

4. Growing points

The growing points of each plant turn into leaves as they grow. However, they have different colors. The growing points of the Philodendron Dean McDowell are colored in red, while those of the Pastazanum are green.

5. Leaf backside

Turning the leaves of each plant on their backs reveals a huge color difference. The backsides of the Dean McDowell philodendron leaves are always pink, while those of the Philodendron Pastazanum are green.

6. Petiole markings

Taking an in-depth look at the petioles of each plant can indicate the difference in their formation. The petioles of the Dean McDowell plant have tiny red markings that give these petioles their texture.

The Philodendron Pastazanum petioles do not have any obvious marking at all. And just like the leaves, the petioles are all green as well.

7. Stalk features

The stalks of both plants have different features. The stalks of Philodendron McDowell contain tall and prominent white lines. The stalks of the Philodendron pasta plant feature shorter lines without apparent dots.

8. Vein colors

Another noticeable difference between both plants is the color of their midribs and veins. The veins, along with the midrib of P. Dean McDowell, are pink. The midrib and primary veins of the pasta plant are creamy white to moderate green.  

9. Spathe color

Looking at the spathes of Philodendron Mcdowell and Pastazanum reflect obvious color differences. You can notice such a difference between their spathes’ colors when you look at the back of the spathes.

The Philodendron McDowell has pink or red spathe, while the Philodendron Pastazanum has white ones.  

Philodendron McDowell vs Philodendron Pastazanum: are they the same?

Philodendron McDowell and Pastazanum are not the same plants. They are family, as the Philodendron Pastazanum is a parent to the hybrid Philodendron McDowell.

But this does not mean they look identical. There are a few apparent differences that you can easily spot when you get up close and personal with each of them.

The issue of Philodendron McDowell and Pastazanum can be quickly settled by comparing their leaf sizes. The McDowell has larger deep green leaves that reflect velvety or reddish shades in various positions.

This includes the leaves, midribs, and primary veins. The leaves of the Pastazanum plant are all-green.

The leaves of Philodendron Dean McDowell are not glossy. They have a dull texture, unlike the leaves of Pastazanum, which are glossier and waxier.

The stalks of Philodendron Dean McDowell have longer white noticeable lines, while those of the Philo Pastazanum are shorter, and their lines are less noticeable.

Last but not least, they have different spathes colors. The back of the spathes of Philo Pastazanum is white, while it reflects pink or red shades in the Philodendron McDowell.

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