BERRY COLORThough a relatively small percentage of the total (only 53 out of 96 species) have reported berry color, some general comments can be made. Berry color in Philodendron is not so important taxonomically as it appears to be in Anthurium (Croat, 1983, 1986, 1991). Grayum (1996) reported that for P. subg. Pteromischum the fruits sometimes provided taxonomically significant characters with species related to P. inequilaterum having orange fruits while P. alliodorum and other related species have whitish, garlic-scented fruits.
Most Philodendron species have mature berries which are generally described as "white" but are usually more nearly ochraceous or somewhat greenish white. A total of 33 species have either white, creamy white or greenish white fruits at least some of the time. In some species, such as P. advena and P. smithii, the whitish berries turn somewhat yellowish when fully mature and the mature fruits of P. brevispathum are pale yellow. The berries of P. sagittifolium are usually pale yellowish but have been rarely reported as orange. While the majority of Philodendron berries are whitish, up to 17 species of Central American P. subg. Philodendron have berries which are at least sometimes pale orange to orange. An additional three species have berries which are yellow or yellowish. Philodendron fragrantissimum has berries which are bright red to purple-red.
Most of the species with orange fruits are members of P. subsect. Belocardium. These include: P. auriculatum, P. bakeri, P. cotonense, P. pseudoauriculatum, P. wendlandii and P. wilburii. Except for P. wilburii (a member of P. ser. Ovata), all are members of P. ser. Belocardium. Other species with orange fruits are P. anisotomum, P. brenesii, P. crassispathum, P. ferrugineum and P. lentii as well as, at least some times, P. jacquinii and P. sagittifolium. Three of the above, P. brenesii, P. crassispathum, and P. lentii are members of P. ser. Ecordata. Thus, it may be significant that most of the species with decidedly orange fruits are members of P. sect. Calostigma. Even P. ferrugineum with orange berries and P. sagittifolium with sometimes orange berrries, are members of P. sect. Calostigma. Only P. anisotomum in P. sect. Tritomophyllum and P. jacquinii in P. sect. Macrogynium are not members of P. sect. Calostigma.