How to care for Monstera Deliciosa's
Native to Mexico, the Monstera Deliciosa is an exotic indoor houseplant with large and leathery leaves. Young plants have leaves that are smaller with no lobes (holes), but as they mature the holes will become apparent. Also known as the “fruit salad plant”, because the Mexican breadfruit that this plant produces tastes like exotic fruits.
Monstera Deliciosas grow upright but will topple over if they get too heavy. We recommend using a natural pole that your Monstera can grip to as the plant grows. With the correct support structure it can grow and to its maximum potential height, which is about 2.5 metres! Monstera’s are very easy-care house plants requiring minimal maintenance. In addition they have very thick stalks making propagation easy. But like any other houseplant, a little knowledge can go a long way. Let’s discuss the basics…
How often should you water Monstera's?
You should water your Monstera when the top 2-3cm of soil has dried out. When watering, give your plant a thorough soaking, but ensure not to leave your Monstera sitting in any water that has accumulated in the saucer. This may lead to root rot.
Under watering - You will notice the leaves turning yellow and droopy.
Over watering - You will notice a combination of yellow and brown on the leaves.
How much light does a Monstera need?
The placement of your Monstera is one of the most important factors. Try to find a spot that receives filtered indirect but bright light. If you place this plant in full sunlight it will struggle to cope with the hot temperatures and the leaves may become brown and sunburnt. Equally if you place your plant in full shade without any light this may stunt its growth!
Do Monstera's like to be Misted?
While this plant will thrive in various environments you may want to increase the humidity levels by misting a few times a week. Especially in Summer as temperatures increase. Misting may help to enhance the growth rate of your Monstera as it will replicate the tropical atmosphere it has originated from.
How to fertilize Monstera' s
Monsteras will benefit with a small dosage of fertilisation once a month through spring and Summer. Do not fertilise in the Winter as this is when the plant is dormant and needs time to rest during this cooler period. Over-fertilising can cause the soil to spoil.
How to propagate Monstera's
The thick long stalks on this plant make it very easy to propagate Simply cut a stem that has several nodes or leaves and place it in water. We recommend using a large clear jar so that you can check the growth rate. Place this in a warm and bright location and remember to regularly change the water to keep it fresh.
Once the roots are prominent and abundant the stem is ready to be re-potted! The time for root-growth is generally around 2-3 weeks so be patient with the process and trust that you will get a beautiful new house plant at the end of it.
How to clean your Monstera
Dust build-up on the leaves of your Monstera may stunt the growth.Be sure to regularly clean your plant. To ensure optimal plant health fill a spray bottle with water, a teaspoon of neem oil, and a drop of dishwashing liquid. Once you start to notice dust building up wipe dust off with your home-made solution and a clean cloth.
Are Monstera's Toxic?
The leaves of this house plant are mildly toxic and can result in a rash around the mouth if considerable amounts are ingested. If you have young children or untrained pets in your home, you may want to opt for a smaller version that you can put out of reach until the curiosity of your little ones has worn off. On the other hand, the ripe fruit that often grows on Monstera’s is delicious and safe to eat. We had an flowering Monstera at Moffatt's Flower Company a few years ago and got to try the fruit – it smelt devine and tasted like pineapple!
- Only water your Monstera when the soil has dried out
- Place your Monstera in bright indirect light
- Mist regularly (depending on the season) to encourage growth
- Keep out of reach of children and animals
- Clean regularly with a natural solution to keep the dust away