How to Grow and Care for Monstera Deliciosa
The monstera deliciosa plant is found in the tropical rain forests of Central America. It is also called the “split-leaf philodendron.” Designers often use this easy-to-grow evergreen that climbs because of its “wow” factor.
Indoors, the plant’s height may increase by as much as 2 feet per year. It has huge, glossy, heart-shaped leaves that are divided in a way that makes them stand out. Intricate aerial roots will also be visible, emerging from the ground. The plant’s stems, which can extend to a length of three feet, require the assistance of these roots to remain sturdy and upright.
Plant it outside in the right zone at any time of the year. It will grow tannish-cream flowers that bees pollinate and juicy fruit that tastes like a mix of pineapple and banana. But it’s not common for houseplants to make fruit. This lovely plant can be dangerous for pets.
Monstera Deliciosa Care
Monstera deliciosa thrives year-round in warm, humid conditions and can be grown in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 10–12. When you plant it outside, choose a spot with part shade and soil that drains well. If the soil in your area is already salty, move it to a patio or inside. Giving the plant a balanced fertilizer three or four times a year could grow as tall as 10 feet or more. If you want to keep it inside, choose a deep pot with lots of drainage holes.
This evergreen plant likes bright, indirect sunlight and temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit all year. During the warmer months, too much direct light can burn the leaves. Still, take houseplants outside at least once a year so they can get direct sunlight. This will help them grow big and healthy.
The Swiss cheese plant can grow outside in deep woods with shade or light woods with some shade.
Planting in a pot requires a potting medium made of peat. Outside, it grows well in acidic or neutral pH soils that are light and sandy, medium and loamy, and heavy and clay. The soil should be well-drained and kept slightly moist for optimal growth.
A plant needs water every two weeks during the growing season. Add water until the surplus escapes through the cracks. The plant has sufficient water in its pot, so there’s no need to add more. Between waterings, the soil will need to dry out a little, only sometimes in the fall and winter. To raise the humidity inside, mist the plants with rainwater or water that hasn’t been treated.
Choose a liquid that has the right amount of. During the growing season, feed the plant every few weeks with 20-20-20 fertilizer. Mix 1 gallon of water with 1/2 teaspoon of the fertilizer. Instead of watering your plants every day, use diluted fertilizer instead. Pour the mixture into the soil until it comes out of the drainage holes. Throw away the extra watered-down fertilizer because the plant has taken what it needs and can’t use what drains away.
If the plant’s aerial roots get too big for the space, you can cut them off, but it’s better to tuck them back into the pot. Their roots don’t damage surfaces as some other houseplants’ do. Trimming works well on stems and leaves and can be used to make more plants.
Propagating Monstera Deliciosa
Monstera deliciosa can easily grow more by taking stem cuttings when it needs to be pruned. On the other hand, air layering is the most common way to spread Monstera deliciosa. Here are the steps for each way to do it:
To Make New Plants From Stem Cuttings:
1. With clean, sharp pruning shears, cut off a stem with at least two leaves, a node (a little bump where the roots will grow), and an aerial root.
2. Sprinkle some ground cinnamon (a common spice you can buy at the store) on the cut on the mother plant. This will stop any disease from getting into the wound and help it heal.
3. Put the piece of meat in a glass of water. Every three to five days, change the water, and if you can, use filtered water or rainwater instead of tap water.
4. After a few months, you’ll see a group of roots growing. You can then put your new plant in a pot with fresh soil and keep it moist while it gets used to its new home.
With Air Layering, To Spread:
Air layering is a low-risk method because the mother plant isn’t cut until the baby plant is ready to be put in a pot with its new roots. It may take a while for the mother plant to look nice again, but getting a healthy new plant is worth it. For this method, you’ll need floral or sphagnum moss, a plastic bag or wrap, and twist ties.
1. Look for a stem with a few nodes (where the roots will grow). Or, find a leaf growing from a stem with a short aerial root below it.
2. Just below the root, cut a small notch about 1/3 of the width of the stem.
3. Wrap an inch of sphagnum moss around the part of the stem where the leaf meets it.
4. Spray water on the moss to make it wetter, then wrap it in plastic. Use twist ties to hold it together (it may look a little messy, which is okay).
5. Make sure the moss stays damp until the roots grow.
6. After a few months, you can cut the stem below the roots with a clean, sharp tool. Then, you can put the roots and the young plant in a new pot of soil.
7. Don’t forget to put some ground cinnamon on the wound you made on the mother plant. This will keep any disease from getting into the wound and help it heal.
Putting Monstera Deliciosa In A Pot And Repotting It
The Swiss cheese plant will probably outgrow its pot every two years. Move the plant into a pot a few inches wider and deeper to make room for growth. This plant does best in porous pots that drain well, like terracotta or clay, because it likes to get air and water. However, any pot with drainage holes will work. Follow these easy steps to pot the plant:
- Put peaty potting soil in the bottom third of a pot.
- Put a soft stake in the ground for the stem to climb.
- Place the roots in the pot. Fill the space around the roots with soil.
- Cover the stake with soil and tie the stem to the stake with plant ties.
Problems Often Seen with Monstera Deliciosa
Even though the Swiss cheese plant is a pretty easy-going houseplant, it can give you a few headaches. But your plant can improve once you figure out why it looks sick.
1. How to Brown
If the tips of the leaves are turning brown, it’s likely that the soil is dry or that you need to water the plant regularly to keep it moist. Take off the sick leaves.
Your plant has a fungus if the brown spots or tips have a yellow halo around them. Most likely, the fungus got there because the plant was overwatered or kept in too wet soil for too long. Take off the sick leaves and wait a little while before you water the plant.
2. Leaves in yellow
When leaves turn yellow, it means the soil is dry. The yellowing will start with the oldest leaves on the plant. Take off the sick leaves. If the soil is completely dry, give it a good soaking.
3. Fallen Leaves
If the leaves are wilting, it’s also because the plant isn’t getting enough water. The plant is either getting too much or too little water. If the plant gets too much water, it could have root rot. Take the plant out of its pot and look at the roots. Clean the roots, cut off any soft parts, and put the plant in a new pot with new soil.
Is Monstera deliciosa easy to care for?
This plant is easy to grow and care for in a house. For it to grow outside, however, you need to live in a warm and damp place.
Why do some Monstera deliciosa plants have leaves that split more than others?
It takes a lot of energy to split leaves with holes in them. The plant will split more as it gets more sunlight. Less light makes it smaller and less showy.
How are Monstera deliciosa and Monstera adansonii different?
These plants are called Swiss cheese plants, but their leaves are different sizes. Monstera deliciosa has much bigger leaves than Monstera adansonii, which has small leaves.