Ask any avid plant parent to talk about their children, and they will likely tell you about their monstera plant! The monstera plant originates from Mexico and Central America. This beautifully big, green-leafed plant has become very popular and is easily recognized as a beloved houseplant. If you have always wanted this tropical plant in your home, you first need to know how to grow and care for it! As they are tropical plants, they require greater care and attention than some hard-to-kill houseplants.
Here is what you need to know about how to grow and care for a monstera plant!
- Monstera plant, cutting, or seed
- Potting soil
- Medium to large pot (depending upon the size of the plant)
- Watering can
- Mist bottle or sprayer
- Garden gloves (optional)
Get Your Monstera Plant, Cutting, or Seed
The most common way a monstera plant is attained is through a pre-purchased plant. Due to the popularity of monstera plants, almost any garden or plant shop will have monsteras ready for purchase. Monstera plants come in various sizes, from small starting-out plants to fully established, large monstera plants. They also come in different varieties, but Monstera deliciosa is the most famous. The main thing to consider when choosing a monstera variety is space; how tall they can grow varies widely.
Another way to get a monstera plant is through a propagated cutting from another monstera plant. Propagating monstera is either done by using a cutting of the aerial roots or below the leaf node. Once you have your leaf or root cutting, submerge the roots/nodes in water. Change the water frequently, and roots will appear after a few weeks. Once the roots are established, the cutting is ready for planting in its new home!
The final way to grow a monstera plant is through seeds. Though not as commonly done, monstera plants will grow from seeds if done with care and attention. Once you have your monstera seeds, you need to germinate them. Soak them in water for 24 hours, then sow your seeds in a healthy mixture of peaty potting soil. Seeds should be planted about half an inch deep. Keep your germinating plant in a warm location, water regularly (keep reading for more on watering!), and watch them grow!
(Re)Pot Your Monstera Plant
Depending on how you attained your monstera, you need to plant or repot it into a more functional pot. This is the pot they will live in for the next two to three years! Whether you choose a decorative pot or a utilitarian one, the pot needs good drainage. Good drainage will reduce the risk of root rot or other overwatering issues.
Next, fill your new pot with a potting mix suitable for indoor plants. The soil you select needs to be well-draining and high in peat. Place your monstera plant in the pot, covering the roots (or seed) with the soil. Pro Tip: Add new soil to your pot every one or two years. Doing this will allow fresh nutrients to the plant and keep them healthy and happy!
Note: While it is possible to grow your monstera only in water, it will be much happier living in soil.
Find Your Monstera Plant’s New Home
Monstera plants do well in sunlit rooms, but they should never receive much direct sunlight. Its natural rainforest home is well sheltered, so your monstera plant needs a spot with limited sunlight. Take note of the amount of sunlight each room in your home gets. Find one that remains bright but does not have sun streaming in. A good space is vital in the hotter summer months when the monstera grows the most.
You should only keep your monstera outdoors if you live in a warm climate. Monstera plants thrive outdoors if properly acclimatized and only do well outdoors in a hardiness Zone of 10 or 11.
Water Your Monstera Plant
The most important factor to consider when caring for your established monstera plant is the water received. Because monstera plants originate from humid climates, they require plenty of moisture (both for the leaves and the roots). You should water your monstera plant regularly, about once every one or two weeks. When watering, give the plant enough water, so the soil is moist but not wet. Allow the soil to dry between watering.
Another way to support and encourage the health of your monstera plant is through misting. Misting is an easy extra thing to help increase the humidity for the plant. Using a misting bottle or sprayer, mist your monstera every one or two days. Only mist in the morning, as misting at night leads to un-evaporated excess water, which may cause fungi or disease.
Watch Out for Pests
Just as any houseplant sometimes draws in pests, make sure your monstera plant doesn’t become overcome by bugs. Common bugs that affect your monstera plant’s health are mealybugs and aphids. Keep an eye out for these pests or any eggs on the leaves. To remove mealybugs, use an alcohol-soaked cotton swab and remove them that way. For aphids, wiping or spraying the plant with soapy water is an effective solution.
Wipe Down Your Monstera Leaves
To take your monstera parenting up another level, it is good practice to wipe the leaves regularly. Monstera leaves are large, so they become a good spot for dust to gather. Too much dust on the leaves could affect your plant’s growth in the long term. Using a cloth with warm water, gently wipe the leaves clean, being careful not to injure the plant.
To Sum Up
A monstera plant is an excellent addition to any household! Make the decision to adopt one of these large-leafed plant babies and let them add beauty to your space! Care for your monstera plants by giving them an excellent well-draining pot. Don’t forget to have plenty of healthy soil and a place for it in a room with indirect sunlight. Give it regular watering, watch for bugs, and wipe down the leaves for increased plant health!
Does monstera sound like the plant for you? Find your very own monstera and love on your new plant baby!