Arrowhead Plant (Syngonium podophyllum) Care Guide - Tips for Optimal Growth

arrowhead plant syngonium podophyllumArrowhead Plant/Syngonium podophyllum: Source

With its luscious green leaves and “carefree” nature, the Arrowhead plant makes a beautiful addition to your plant collection. It’s great for indoor growing and develops into a vine, so you can let it expand by planting it in a hanging pot, or keep it contained.

Arrowhead plant care is easier than that of some other exotic plants, but it takes some finesse to keep it well watered. Other than that, you’ll be delighted by its changing leaves and beautiful green hues.

Read on for the complete Syngonium podophyllum care guide to keep your Arrowhead vine happy.

Arrowhead Plant: The Basics

The Look

This beautiful vine comes from Central and South America, enjoying warm but not hot temperatures and a little humidity. It can grow in hanging baskets (where you’ll enjoy the full extent of the vine), in smaller pots, or even as a climbing vine with poles to latch onto.

Indoors, the Syngonium podophyllum will climb up (or down) to reach up to 6 ft. Outdoors, it can be higher, but we wouldn’t recommend trying to grow it outside because of its watering and humidity needs.

Your Arrowhead’s leaves start off looking as the name suggests – arrow-shaped – and will transform as they grow up to a foot long, with three to five lobes.

Note:  Different varieties of Syngonium podophyllum display amazing variegation along the leaf veins – but be aware that variegated plants will lose their variegation as they age.

The Name

You’ll be wondering if you have the right plant as it goes by so many names! The Syngonium podophyllum is most often referred to as the Arrowhead plant or vine. You’ll also find it under Goosefoot, African Evergreen, or Nephthytis.

Poison Alert!

While a beautiful plant, the Arrowhead can be slightly problematic to have around if you also have children or pets. The leaves are mildly poisonous and can create issues for cats or dogs if they eat them.

If you have sensitive skin, it’s best to wear gloves when you’re pruning or taking cuttings, to avoid contact with the sap.

Syngonium Podophyllum Care Guide


Your plant will most likely come in a small pot and the soil will be a peat-based mix. That’s enough for this one, but make sure to re-pot at least once every two years to keep track of its growth.

Tip💡:   This plant can actually grow in water! You can use this as a handy way to propagate it by placing cuttings in water until they grow a bit, then pot them in well-draining soil.


You don’t need to place the Arrowhead vine in direct sunlight – bright light is great, but too much will dry out the leaves.

Variegated types handle brighter light (filtered if possible), but the deeper green varieties need to be kept more in the shade.


Like other jungle plants such as the Philodendron, the Arrowhead likes humidity. In case your house air is dry, we recommend you spray the leaves frequently. However, don’t overwater! Let the soil dry in between watering your Syngonium podophyllum.


With the Arrowhead vine, you can boost its growth with some liquid fertilizer when you’ve first got it or once you’ve tried to propagate it. It is best to fertilize only in the spring and summer months, as afterwards the plant stops producing new growth in fall and winter.


If you want another little Arrowhead plant, you can take a 4-inch stem tip cutting with one or two leaves and plant it in fertilized, moist soil. Alternatively, place the cutting in water until it starts rooting, then pot it.


One of the best parts of owning an Arrowhead vine is seeing how its leaves change as they grow. Moreover, this species has many cultivars where the leaves can vary from deep green to almost white. The most popular variety you can find is the “White Butterfly” – by far one of the prettiest set of leaves.

Pests and Problems

The usual pests can attack the Arrowhead plant, such as spider mites and aphids. Luckily, it’s not a very fussy plant from this point of view.

The only other thing to be aware of with Syngonium podophyllum is the danger of soft rot or bacterial leaf spot. To avoid rot, make sure you’re not overwatering your vine.

To keep bacterial leaf spots away, stay on top of the cleanliness of your plant!

Wilting Leaves?

You may have placed your Arrowhead vine too close to the sun! Make sure to move it away from the window sill and give it only partial sunlight to maintain the right levels of humidity, especially if you have a variegated plant. Also, don’t forget to spray the leaves.

One Final Care Tip

The Arrowhead plant has an extensive root structure, which keeps spreading. We therefore advise re-potting every two years, and looking for friends who’ll take your cuttings off you to grow their own!

Written by
Alecsa Stewart
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