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Monstera Deliciosa Care & Repotting: 5 Crucial Tips

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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!

monstera deliciosa care

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!

My plant which was barely 1 1/2 feet tall when I purchased it, grew quite large after less than 3 years.

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

1. LIGHT

As you can imagine by how this plant grows in the wild in its natural habitat, 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, low light 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, FERTILIZING & HUMIDITY

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. Tap water will work just fine.

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 experience root rot. Always discard any excess water that accumulates in the plant saucer.

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!

As far as humidity goes, although this plant would appreciate high humidity, it does just fine in my home, even with low humidity during the winter time.

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 opens up, it will stay the way it is and will not change.

As the plant matures, the newer leaves will slowly have more and more fenestrations.

Depending on how good your growing conditions are, very young monstera plants may take years indoors before they start to exhibit any fenestrations.

Take a look at the following progression of leaves from my own plant:

4. Repotting

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 and important steps, so be sure to read up after you’re done reading this Monstera post.

Perhaps the best time of year to repot your plant is early spring when plants are starting to perk up. It can really be done at any time of year if you have good growing conditions. Later winter or early spring is a good bet though.

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 larger pot that is 1 or 2 sizes bigger than the current pot. And always use a pot with drainage holes!

I used a wheelbarrow outdoors to blend my potting mix and loosen the root ball on my plant.

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 pole or moss stick 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 many 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, well draining soil that this plant loves!

Looking to purchase a Monstera deliciosa? One of my favorite and most convenient one-stop-shops to buy practically any plant is Etsy. Check out the Monstera deliciosa selection (link to Etsy) today!

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…)

Use 2 or 3 parts Miracle Gro Potting Mix to 1 part #3 perlite. This provides a beautifully airy and well draining potting mix that these plants just love.

Dyna-Gro Grow is just simply one of the best fertilizers around. Use it regularly on you Monstera deliciosa plant and ALL of your tropicals!

And don’t forget the bamboo stakes to make your tee-pee with. Monsteras need support as they grow.

RELATED POSTS

Also, this is only ONE type of Monstera! There are many other Monstera species. I also grow Monstera adansonii, Monstera siltepecana, and variegated Monstera and I’m in love with those too!

If you want to browse other species of Monstera that you’d like to explore growing, don’t miss my post that includes 15 Amazing Monstera Varieties to add to your collection.

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.

There is a huge debate on whether you may have a Monstera deliciosa vs. Monstera borsigiana. Be sure not to miss my post on how to tell the difference between the deliciosa vs. borsigiana species.

If you like the look of Monstera deliciosa, but don’t have the room, you can consider growing Rhaphidophora tetrasperma. It is commonly called “mini-monstera” but isn’t actually a Monstera. It does have a similar look, but with smaller leaves.

Be sure not to miss my YouTube video on all my Monstera delciosa growing tips!

MONSTERA DELICIOSA TOXICITY

Monstera deliciosa is toxic to cats and dogs, according to the ASPCA, because it contains calcium oxalate.

Looking to purchase a Monstera deliciosa? One of my favorite and most convenient one-stop-shops to buy practically any plant is Etsy. Check out the Monstera deliciosa selection (link to Etsy) today!

I hope you have enjoyed this post on how to care for your Monstera deliciosa.

If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments below and thanks for reading!

Please do me a favor and share this post to social media because it will help me spread the Ohio Tropics houseplant care tips to the masses! Also, check out my shop on Amazon for all your houseplant care needs:

OHIO TROPICS PLANT CARE STOREFRONT

Ryan

Monday 27th of September 2021

Loved the article! I was wondering if it is possible to change how my monstera deliciosa grows? I know that it loves to vine, but is it possible to get it to spread/fill out a bit at the base? It has 6 leaves total, 4 or 5 of them with fenestrations, but each new leaf seems to come off of the previous new leaf/stem. The plant is very healthy, but I keep it indoors so it can only grow vertically for so long. The nodes on the older stems closer to the base are still present but never produce any new leaves. I would propagate one of the older leaf/stems and plant it in the same pot but repotting it is hard enough already. Are there any pruning methods you could recommend? I appreciate any insight!

Raffaele

Thursday 30th of September 2021

Hi Ryan! I'm glad you enjoyed the article! Unfortunately, they're vining plants and they will continue to grow vertically. Like you mentioned, if you wanted it fuller at the base, you'd have to propagate and plant those back in the pot. Even if you pruned the vines, you won't get what you're looking for. The only thing I could suggest is if your plant gets too big, take several cuttings, root them, and grow them all in one pot. This will give you a fuller look. I hope this helps a bit!

Baylee

Thursday 12th of August 2021

Hello, I love your blog, it's the first place I go for all of my plant questions! I am propagating my monstera and I was wondering -- do I need to let the stem develop a callus before I put it in water? Everyone seems to have a different opinion about that. Thanks so much!

Raffaele

Friday 13th of August 2021

I'm glad you enjoy my blog Baylee! No, you do not need to do this for Monstera. The callousing is mainly just for succulent plants.

Judy

Wednesday 30th of June 2021

I’m not sure if this question has been answered, as there are many posts here....too many to sift through. I have the green monstera, but I also have Albo and Thai Constellation. Can I plant all of them in the same pot? Thanks! :-)

Pashije

Saturday 26th of June 2021

What can I do with the aerial roots there are so many of them

Raffaele

Saturday 26th of June 2021

You can redirect them so that they grow in your pot, or if they get out of control, I've trimmed them a bit. Mine actually grew a gigantic mass of roots and they were all over my floor, so I trimmed them a bit. It won't hurt the plant.

Evelyn

Sunday 13th of June 2021

Hi there! So my Monstera is over 1 year at this point and looking nice. I have noticed that i water the plant thoroughly, but per a moisture meter and my finger, the soil is totally dry 2 days later. Is this normal? It's by a south facing window with plenty of filtered light. I'm located in humid Florida. Also, new leave growth is lacking fenestrations. Any idea what is wrong? Again the plant is looking healthy overall.. Thank you in advance!

Raffaele

Monday 14th of June 2021

Hi Evelyn! Is the plant root bound? Has the potting mix gone really dry at some point? How are you watering? When you are watering, if you notice that the water just goes straight through very quickly, I would move it to a bathtub or sink and really soak it. Sometimes when potting mixes get really dry, you have to work at it a little bit so that the potting mix absorbs water again. (Just something to keep in mind!) Always water thoroughly and moisten all of the potting mix. I would recommend ditching the moisture meter and just using your finger. Moisture meters are notoriously unreliable and dangerous. As far as the fenestrations go, it just has to do with the plant's age. It sounds like your light situation is very good, so you'll just have to give it a while because the plant has to grow out of its juvenile phase. Hope this helps! Good luck!