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Monstera deliciosa care is easier than you think! This post is the ultimate guide on growing Monstera deliciosa, and I will also show you some remarkable tips and tricks on repotting Monstera as well so that you can be the best plant parent that you can be!
This plant was once popular a few decades ago, and it is back with a vengeance! Monstera deliciosa is one of the trendiest houseplants that you can grow these days.
Not only are they a striking houseplant, but they are also very easy to grow and a fantastic beginner plant! Anyone can grow a Monstera!
Keep reading to find out exactly how to care for Monstera deliciosa, and also learn about repotting Monstera.
I will also show you how to provide a very sturdy support so your Monstera can climb securely! Forget about the moss posts. I have a much easier and more effective solution.
About Monstera Deliciosa
There are so many common names for this plant: Swiss Cheese Plant, Mexican Breadfruit, and even Split Leaf Philodendron. Common names are enormously confusing and I always refer to this plant by its botanical name (genus + species), Monstera deliciosa.
You may be wondering about the botanical name Monstera deliciosa. The genus, Monstera, literally refers to the “monstrous” proportions that this plant takes on in the wild.
The species name, deliciosa, refers to its edible fruit that it commonly produces in the wild. Indoors, you may never see this, but know that it does produce an edible fruit!
These plants hail from tropical regions in the south of Mexico and also parts of Central America and are found growing at the base of trees. They will climb and attach to tree trunks via the aerial roots that they produce.
Monstera Deliciosa Care
As you can imagine by how this plant grows in the wild, as described above, it prefers filtered light, or bright indirect light. I grow mine in a large Eastern exposure window so it received plenty of light, including morning sun which is gentle on the plant.
It can tolerate much darker conditions, but your growth won’t be as spectacular. After all, plants need light to photosynthesize!
You’ll want to avoid too much direct sun however, especially the harsher afternoon sun.
If you live in areas that typically have a lot of strong sun, you’ll want to shield your Monstera deliciosa so that it doesn’t receive too much direct sun.
2. WATERING and FERTILIZING
Monstera deliciosa is pretty forgiving when it comes to watering. Just like most plants, I like to let the top part of the soil dry out before watering again.
Depending on the size of the pot, I’ll let the top inch or two completely dry out before I water again. Just use your finger to test the soil moisture.
Mine is growing in a 14 inch pot, so I’ll let the top 2 inches, roughly, dry out before I even think about watering.
Keep in mind that larger pots may take longer to dry out than much smaller pots, so don’t water by your calendar.
Use your finger as your guide! If your Monstera is in a smaller pot, let at least the top inch of the soil dry out before watering again.
Avoid extremes in watering. Never let this plant sit in water otherwise it can easily rot. On the other hand, try not and let the potting mix completely dry out if you can help it. Find a happy medium!
As far as fertilizing goes, I fertilize my Monstera deliciosa year round except for the winter months.
I sometimes rotate and change fertilizers, but I’m currently using Dyna-Gro Grow for most of my leafy houseplants and I don’t think I’ll ever switch again. This is an AMAZING fertilizer and I stock up on it from Amazon.
I like to fertilize dilutely with every watering. That way my plants receive constant nutrients, similar to how they would grow in nature, and I don’t have to remember the last time I applied fertilizer!
Want to buy your very own Monstera deliciosa plant? You can purchase one easily from Amazon! It is one of the most gratifying and rewarding houseplants in my collection!
3. LEAF PROGRESSION
One of the most rewarding parts of growing Monstera deliciosa is watching the plant evolve from its juvenile leaves, to the more mature adult leaves. Young plants have leaves that are completely solid and that have no slits or holes.
As Monstera deliciosa ages, the new leaves will have more and more fenestrations (holes) and slits among the leaves. Keep in mind that after a leaf develops, it will not change. As the plant matures, the newer leaves will slowly have more and more fenestrations.
Take a look at the following progression of leaves from my own plant:
For some general repotting tips, and knowing when to repot your plant, check out my blog post on repotting.
This post contains many critical aspects of repotting, so be sure to read up after you’re done reading this Monstera post.
As I mentioned earlier, Monstera deliciosa is a climbing plant in nature, so you’ll want to add some support, and the perfect time to do this is when you repot your plant!
This way, you will minimize the damage to any roots. Although if you are careful, you can really add support at any time.
After you take your plant out of the pot, be sure to loosen up the root ball a bit. Only choose a pot that is 1 or 2 sizes bigger than the current pot. And always use a pot with drainage holes!
I like to cover the drainage hole with a broken pot shard (placed like an upside down U over the hole, which leaves space on the sides). Some people like to place a piece of old window screening over the hole.
When you repot, this is the perfect time to add a support so that your plant can start climbing! As the vines grow, you can loosely tie them to the posts.
Take a look at the bamboo tee-pee that I created below.
I simply purchased some bamboo stakes online from Amazon, and put three of them in the pot at the time of repotting. I like to have extras on hand because I also use them in my garden.
Then I simply took some garden twine and tied the top up. It is a very stable structure!
You can also add a moss post when you repot. I wrote a printable, detailed how-to blog post that shows how you can make your own moss post! It’s way better than anything you would buy pre-made and much better quality.
As far as potting media for Monstera deliciosa goes, I like to use a good potting mix, such as Miracle Gro Indoor Potting Mix but I also like to mix in some #3 size perlite. Use about 1 part of the perlite to 2 parts, or even 3 parts, of the potting soil.
If you want an AMAZING organic potting mix that you can use straight out of the bag with no adjustments, I highly recommend ‘House’ Houseplant Mix.
It is a highly sustainable mix, and the owners of the company compost food scraps and add the compost to the mix. I’ve had amazing experiences with this mix and am switching most of my houseplants to this mix (when the time comes to repot).
It already contains plenty of perlite, so there is no need to adjust at all!
I also surveyed my readers to inquire about all their frustrations with potting mixes, and the makers of ‘House’ potting mix answered all these questions and more. To learn about this top quality mix, and my experiences using it, check out my blog post: Best Organic Potting Mix for Indoor Plants.
This will give you a nice airy, nutritious potting soil that this plant loves!
5. Propagating Monstera Deliciosa
Who wouldn’t want more of a good thing? If you want to propagate your Monstera deliciosa, it is very easy to do.
There are a couple of different ways that I will describe to propagate your Monstera deliciosa.
If you are impatient and don’t want to spend too much time, you can simply just cut a vine and place it in water. Not just any old vine though. You’ll want to choose a vine where you see an aerial root.
Then simply just cut below where the aerial root is, near where my finger is in the photo below.
Then simply place this cutting in water. The aerial root will quickly grow in water and it you’ll be able to pot it up in no time at all.
The other method that you can use to propagate your Monstera deliciosa is by air layering. You’ll want to air layer in the exact same spot that I described above (where my finger is in the photo).
The benefit of doing this is that your vine will be much less stressed (versus just cutting it completely off the plant).
You can check out my blog post on air layering houseplants where you can read exactly how to do it! You can do it exactly as described in that post.
Or, alternatively, as long as you choose a vine where you can wrap the sphagnum moss around an existing aerial root, you don’t even have to cut into the vine like I mention in the air layering post.
Simply proceed without cutting because the aerial root will start growing almost immediately.
Other than that one detail, you can follow all the rest of the instructions. Then once it is ready, you can simply cut the vine under where you air layered and pot up your new plant!
Be sure to get everything you need to help your Monstera deliciosa thrive. To summarize, these are the products I talked about in the blog post so you can grow your own gigantic Monstera deliciosa. (Pretty soon, mine will overtake the living room…)
And don’t forget the bamboo stakes to make your tee-pee with. Monsteras need support as they grow.
I hope you have enjoyed this post on how to care for your Monstera deliciosa.
If you have been struggling with growing this plant, check out my related post that will answer your burning questions: Monstera Problems: 11 Frustrating Problems and Solutions.
MONSTERA DELICIOSA TOXICITY
Monstera deliciosa is toxic to cats and dogs, according to the ASPCA, because it contains calcium oxalate.
If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments below and thanks for reading!
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