Did you know that … the Monstera deliciosa can grow fruit in nature? This fruit is so delicious that the plant owes its second name to it. On this page you’ll find all information on Monstera care, from the ideal spot until repotting instructions. Follow these Monstera care guidelines and help yours live a long and healthy life.
The Monstera, also known as the Swiss Cheese Plant, is a very strong houseplant with large leaves. Monsteras form fenestrated leaves as they age and grow. The leaves of a young Monstera are very similar to those of other aroids. But when Monsteras reach a height of about 3 feet, they start to grow fenestrated leaves. These leaves are purely ornamental to an indoor Monstera. However, in nature, they are actually a useful trait. The fenestrated leaves prevent the Swiss Cheese plant from being blown over in a storm, as the rain and wind will mostly pass through the holes.
The Swiss Cheese Plant is part of the aroid family and originates from the tropical rainforests of Central and South America. There are different varieties, of which the Monstera deliciosa is the best known. This variety is known for the characteristic leaf shape, with cut leaves and holes alongside the vein. The rare variegated Monstera has the same leaf shape in combination with variegated leaves. Another well-known species is the Monstera Adansonii, also known as Monkey Mask. This plant’s leaves don’t form cuts, but only holes in the leaves.
The Swiss Cheese Plant is quite easy to care for. What’s most important is to make sure the potting soil is always a bit moist and that the leaves are misted regularly. Read on for all Monstera care tips.
Monstera light requirements
Place the Monstera in partial shade or in a light spot, in filtered sunlight. If the leaves don’t seem to be growing or if their colour turns a bit pale, it might be in too dark a spot. We then recommend placing it closer to the window.
Monstera care: water
Make sure the potting soil is always a bit moist, by regularly giving the Monstera small amounts of water. Never give a large amount of water in one go, and make sure there’s never a layer of excess water at the bottom of the pot. The plant needs more water during spring and summer, as compared to autumn and winter.
Regularly mist the plant using a plant sprayer, especially during winter. This has to do with the fact that the heating significantly lowers the humidity. To maintain a high humidity level, it’s best to spray the plant regularly.
We recommend repotting the Monstera once every two years. Do this during spring, when the plant recovers fastest from repotting. Be careful not to damage the roots too much when repotting. Use a pot that is at least 20% larger than the current pot, allowing the roots plenty of room to grow.
We recommend placing a layer of hydro granules at the bottom of the pot when repotting. That way, it won’t matter if you overwater the plant, as the hydro granules provide drainage.
Monstera care: Fertilizer requirements
Once you receive the Swiss Cheese Plant, it will not need any fertilizer during the first 2 months. There’s enough fertilizer in the fresh potting soil to last the plant 2 months. After this you’ll only need apply fertilizer during spring and summer. For the specific amount of plant food, have a look at the instructions on the packaging and never use more than recommended. This can cause damage to the roots. The plant doesn’t need any fertilizer during fall and winter.
Is the Monstera poisonous?
All outdoor and indoor plants on Plantler have a decorative purpose; they’re not fit for consumption – unless it is explicitly stated that they are (i.e. a fruit tree). The Monstera is poisonous when ingested. Keep the plant out of reach from small children and / or pets.
Monstera care: Particularities
The Monstera has aerial roots. These are long, brown strands that grow from the plant over time. In nature, the plant uses these aerial roots to get a hold of other plants, trees and rocks. The plant is able to absorm more oxygen and water from its environment through these aerial roots. Because the Swiss Cheese Plant won’t be able to absorb rainwater in your living room, it’s best to guide the aerial roots down to the potting soil. Press the aerial roots into the soil. This will not only help your Monstera to receive more nutrients, but it will also provide it with additional support.
Is your Monstera not growing new fenestrated leaves?
This probably means you’ll need to make a change to the way that you care for your Monstera. Whilst the absence of fenestrated leaves is normal for young Monsteras, an older Monstera that has already grown fenestrated leaves should continue to do so. If your Monstera is not growing new fenestrated leaves, it might be due to one of the following causes:
– Lack of light
– Cold air / drafts
– Not enough water
– Too little fertilizer
If your Monstera is quite large, there’s a chance that the top leaves are not receiving enough water or nutrition. You can remedy this by pressing the aerial roots down into the potting soil.