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Philodendron McColley’s Finale vs Prince Of Orange (Differences and Similarities)

Hello there! Let’s explore and compare two interesting plants today: Philodendron McColley’s Finale and Philodendron Prince of Orange.

The main difference between Philodendron McColley’s Finale and Philodendron Prince of Orange lies in their leaf color changes. Philodendron McColley’s Finale leaves change from a bright red to a deep green as they mature, while Philodendron Prince of Orange’s leaves transition from a bright orange to a softer peach and finally to green. Both are ever-changing in appearance, but the specific color transformations set them apart.

philodendron mccolleys finale vs prince of orange

Philodendron Mccolley’s Finale and Philodendron Prince Of Orange

Philodendron Mccolley’s Finale Philodendron Prince Of Orange
USDA Hardiness zone 10-11 10-11
Mature height 1-3′ (0.3-0.9 m) 1-3′ (0.3-0.9 m)
Mature width 1-3′ (0.3-0.9 m) 1-3′ (0.3-0.9 m)
Growth rate fast fast
Light exposure indirect indirect
Soil well-drained well-drained
Soil pH 6.4-7.3 6.4-7.3
Watering 1-2 times per week 1-2 times per week
Diseases fungus fungus
Pests insects insects



McColley’s Finale’s young leaves start off as a vivid red, creating a striking contrast with the mature green foliage. As they age, the red deepens before eventually transitioning to dark green. This progression from red to green is evident in all stages of the leaf’s maturity, as shown in the photo.

In contrast, the Prince of Orange boasts bright orange young leaves. With time, this orange hue gradually fades to a lighter green with a yellowish tinge, differing from the deep green of McColley’s Finale. This unique color transformation remains until the leaf’s end of life, which is also clearly visible in the photo.


McColley’s Finale features oval-shaped leaves, typically measuring around 15 inches in length and 8 inches in width. This means the leaves are about twice as long as they are wide. The oval shape becomes particularly pronounced in the mature, fully unfurled leaves.

On the other hand, the Prince of Orange has leaves that are roughly the same length but narrower, with a length-to-width ratio of about three to one. This results in a more elongated leaf shape. Additionally, the narrower leaves of the Prince of Orange make the sharp tips more prominent.

Growth habit

Most philodendrons are climbers, using large tropical trees as supports to grow upwards. However, both Prince of Orange and McColley’s Finale deviate from this norm, exhibiting a bush-like growth habit.

Both varieties typically reach a height and width of 1-3 feet, although their size can vary depending on growing conditions.

Prince of Orange maintains a more upright structure. Its leaf petioles stand more erect, owing to the leaves being lighter due to their smaller surface area. Consequently, the foliage and petioles don’t droop, and the leaf tips tend to point upwards.

McColley’s Finale, in contrast, has larger leaves compared to its counterpart, resulting in heavier foliage. This causes the petioles and leaves to droop, giving the plant a more spread-out appearance.

Disease resistance

McColley’s Finale boasts greater disease resistance compared to Prince of Orange. Under similar growing conditions, it’s less frequently affected by diseases and recovers more swiftly.

One such disease is Erwinia caratovora, which is more likely to occur in highly humid environments and when plants are overwatered. The pathogens infiltrate through leaf pores, multiplying rapidly. Signs of infection include dark green spots on leaves and petioles, accompanied by an unpleasant odor emanating from the plant.

Another common issue is Fungal Leaf Spot. Similar to the first, the fungal spores enter through stomata or cuts on the leaves. This leads to the appearance of dark brown, dry spots on the leaves. McColley’s Finale’s resilience makes it less prone to these issues and enables a quicker recovery when affected.


Philodendron McColley’s Finale, developed over 60 years ago, is a hybrid of unknown philodendrons, created by Robert McColley. It’s also known as Philodendron Cherry Red.

Philodendron Prince of Orange emerged in the 1980s, the creation of Cora McColley, Robert’s wife. Given their shared lineage and creators, these philodendrons can be affectionately referred to as ‘family plants’.

Similarities Between Philodendron McColley’s Finale and Philodendron Prince of Orange

Despite their differences, these two philodendrons share several characteristics, important to know for their proper care.

Toxicity Warning

Both plants contain calcium oxalate, making them toxic. This can cause discomfort, intense salivation, and mouth irritation in pets, potentially leading to vomiting. Keep these philodendrons out of pets’ reach and monitor them closely, especially puppies.

Air Purification

A great benefit of both varieties is their air-purifying ability. They convert carbon dioxide into oxygen, enhancing air quality in your home. Thanks to their large leaves, they are particularly efficient at this, with McColley’s Finale having a slight edge due to its larger leaf surface.

Sunlight Requirements

Philodendrons thrive in indirect sunlight, shielded from direct rays to prevent sunburn. Place them in east or west-facing rooms, avoiding direct southern exposure unless they are at a window’s side. In northern rooms, direct window placement is fine. However, avoid total shade, as they need a moderate amount of light.

Watering Practices

These plants tolerate brief dry periods, but prefer humid conditions, mimicking their rainforest habitat. Water them twice weekly during growth seasons, reducing to once every 10 days in winter. Ensure the soil dries out somewhat between waterings. Overwatering can cause leaf yellowing or plant death.

Temperature Preferences

Ideal growth temperatures range from 65 to 70°F. They slow down in cooler temperatures and can be damaged by cold or extreme heat. While challenging to grow outdoors in most of the U.S., they thrive indoors, and can be placed outside in summer in shaded areas.

Soil and Drainage

Well-drained, loose soil is essential. Create your own mix with equal parts potting soil and compost, or use a ready-made philodendron mix or peat moss. Soil pH should be between 6.4-7.3.

Humidity Needs

Ideal humidity is 70-80%, but they can manage with 50% humidity, common in homes. Avoid placing near heaters and mist leaves or use a humidifier in dry conditions. Too much humidity can encourage fungal diseases.


Frequent fertilization is necessary due to their large foliage. Fertilize monthly during active growth, every two months in fall, and avoid winter fertilization. Both liquid and granular fertilizers, especially those high in nitrogen, are suitable.

Pest Management

Aphids and mites are common pests. Neem oil effectively controls aphids, while maintaining leaf moisture or using acaricides can manage mites.

Pruning and Maintenance

Prune older, base leaves to promote growth. Remove any yellowed leaves immediately, using sharp, sterile tools, cutting close to the stem without damaging it.