How do I care for a Monstera Philodendron house plant?
Here at SproutSouth, we like to make plant care easy for everyone to understand. We focus on being the best online plant shop we can be. We pride ourselves on providing the best online plant care guides and shipping the very best plants in prime condition. It’s hard work bringing you the best online plants, but someone has got to do it! We’re going to explain exactly how to care for your monstera in our guide, SproutSouth’s Tips & Tricks for the Monstera Plant.
The monstera plant comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. The two most common varieties are Monstera deliciosa and Monstera adansonii, which are often lovingly referred to as “swiss chess plants.” As their nickname implies, monsteras are easy to identify by the holes and clefts in their dark green leaves. M. deliciosa has large leaves, while M. adansonii has smaller leaves and grows like a vine. Although sometimes called “split-leaf philodendron”, in fact it is not a philodendron at all! Now that we know what to call them, let’s talk about how to care for these amazing plants.
Monstera plants are easy to care for by following a few simple tips. Monsteras make great indoor houseplants because they are tolerant of different light levels and infrequent watering – not to mention monsteras look great!
Tip #1: What type of lighting does a monstera plant need?
It is best to place monstera plants in a medium-lit to well-lit area with indirect light. Indirect light means light that has passed through a filter such as the leaves of tree, through a window curtain, or light that has been reflected off a building’s surface. Monsteras grow naturally in tropical jungles and never receive direct sunlight because jungle canopies block the sun’s rays. Therefore, avoid skylights and south-facing windows, especially during the Summer months. During the hottest part of the year, a sheer curtain placed over a window can make a big difference for your monstera. If your monstera’s leaves are turning yellow, it may be getting too much direct sun. Ideal placement is on the floor near an east-facing or west-facing window. Monsteras are adaptable and can tolerate low- to medium-light, although they may grow a bit slower.
Tip #2: What conditions help a Monstera plant thrive?
Like most jungle plants, monsteras love humidity. You can mimic a jungle environment by misting your monstera every day or two with a spray bottle or a plant mister. Avoid placing monsteras near space heaters or air vents because they can dry out your plant very quickly.
Tip #3: How much water does my monstera plant need?
Monsteras do not like to be watered frequently. Thoroughly water your monstera plant every 4-7 days in the summer, but only every 1-2 weeks in the winter. More frequent watering does not equal faster growth! To help your monstera thrive, be sure to let the soil dry out a bit between waterings. Monsteras like moist soil but do poorly in standing water. A pot with holes on the bottom and an appropriate soil mix (see Tip #5) can help with drainage.
Tip #4: What do professional growers do to help monsteras thrive?
Using filtered water (e.g. from your refrigerator or Britta) eliminates the chlorine and calcium that are commonly found in tap water. Alternatively, you can leave tap water out for a day or two, which allows most chemicals to evaporate away – your monstera will thank you!
Tip #5: What type of soil should a Monstera be planted in?
Monstera plants prefer rich, moist soil that mimics their jungle habitat. A simple but effective soil mix for monsteras is 3 parts potting soil and 1 part peat moss (sphagnum moss or coconut coir are fine substitutes). You want monstera soil to retain moisture without remaining soggy. Sproutsouth offers a premium monstera soil mix that incorporates high-grade potting soil, peat moss, coir, perlite, charcoal and an extended release fertilizer. Although some bloggers endorse the use of orchid potting soil for monsteras, we don’t recommend it due to its low nutrient content and the high amount of fir bark typically found in that medium.
Tip #6: What kind of pot is best for a monstera plant?
Monstera plants do best in medium to large pots with several drainage holes. The pot’s size determines how large a monstera will grow – outdoors, some varieties can grow up to 70 feet tall. When they are young, Monstera plants grown in medium sized pots look absolutely amazing due to the size of their large leaves. A large-leafed monstera in a lightly colored, medium-size pot is visually stunning – a true statement piece. Monsteras thrive for years even while rootbound. Best of all, monsteras are easy to repot!
Tip #7: How do I repot a monstera plant?
Monstera’s are forgiving and will tolerate repotting without protest. When they are rootbound, it is best to select a pot that is one third larger than the monstera’s previous container. Be sure the new pot has drainage holes and, of course, select an appropriate soil (see tip #5). A large monstera may require two people to lift and repot – share a pint or glass of wine with a friend and have some fun. Shake off any old soil without disturbing the roots (don’t pull the roots apart). Fresh soil should line the bottom of your new pot. Place the monstera such that its roots can be fully covered by fresh soil. Gently bend your monstera’s aerial roots into the new pot. Gradually fill soil around the root ball, firming it in place with your hands. Finish by thoroughly watering the plant and allowing the excess to drain out of the bottom. Do not water your monstera again for at least a week or two, because all of that fresh, damp soil will be inaccessible until roots spread outward. A large pot can stay wet for longer than you expect, so use your finger to test the soil before watering again.
Tip #8: When is the best time to repot the monstera plant?
Monstera plants should be repotted in early spring. It is best to repot before new leaf growth occurs, however, monsteras can be replanted safely any time of year. Monsteras are tolerant of frequent repotting yet remain healthy while rootbound, making them an ideal houseplant for novices.
Thanks for reading SproutSouth’s online plant care guide for monstera indoor houseplant. We strive to answer all your plant care questions and bring you the best quality online indoor plants we can find. Quality indoor house plants with detailed care instructions are part of our good service motto, and we’re thrilled to help you learn how to water and care for your very own monstera house plant.