If you want to do everything right with Monstera plant care, you should primarily deal with the origin and botany of this popular houseplant. If you know that it is a liana from the Central American rainforest, you better understand the requirements for location, watering, and fertilization.
In this post, I have put together what matters when it comes to Monstera care. You can buy other interesting potted and container plants.
Interesting facts about the Monstera
If you want to experience a Monstera deliciosa, its full botanical name, in the wild, you have to travel to the Central American rainforest. It is very typical and grows as a liana that grows up on trees and lets its aerial roots hang down from above.
These aerial roots do not play a central role in Monstera care but should be retained due to the appearance that is so characteristic of the plant. In the jungle they are used to absorb nutrients and moisture, in a culture in this country longer roots can be stuck into the soil of the pot, from where they absorb water and the nutrients dissolved in it.
Monstera deliciosa, the window leaf
The Monstera gets its name ‘window leaf’ from its very characteristic leaves. These have gaps or ‘windows.’ These ‘windows’ reveal a lot about the adaptation of the Monstera to the light-poor situation in the rainforest. Thanks to the openings, the leaves, which grow staggered on long stalks, allow light to pass through, reaching deeper leaves. The light harvest of the plant is optimized, and lush growth is guaranteed.
The number and size of the windows also depend on the type. The ‘Borsigiana‘ variety available in this country has narrower and less windowed leaves. But the amount of light itself also determines the number of openings:
If the plant receives a lot of light, it is generous and passes the light on to the leaves below through many spaces. However, if there is little light, the leaves are more likely to be closed, so they tend to keep the light to themselves.
White and noble – the Monstera flowers
The Monstera flowers make the relationships clear because the plant belongs to the arum family. If you have an older plant, the chances of flower formation increase significantly. So it pays to be a little patient with the Monstera. The flower only appears as a bulb-shaped bud, where the elegant creamy white is already recognizable. When the petal opens, the distinctive piston typical of the arum family becomes visible. It becomes up to 15 cm long and has numerous bisexual flowers.
Monstera plant care: How does it work?
It is, therefore, worthwhile to cater to the needs of the plant when caring for Monstera. The most crucial factor for successful care is the location.
The ideal location for the window leaf
The Monstera is a tropical plant for which the steady temperature should be around 20 ° C or slightly higher. Accordingly, in this country, there is a houseplant that can thrive in the home all year round. Anyone who thinks that the Monstera care works particularly well with the window leaf on the window is wrong.
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The plant must not get direct sun because it has not adapted to it. A place in the second row, where diffusely scattered light can get there, is therefore sufficient. However, they may not get enough light, as a minimum value of 500 lux is reported.
In addition to the light available at the Monstera location, the statics of the plant is of course, also vital. Since it is a liana, it has no trunk and needs scaffolding and a climbing aid. Plants sold in stores, especially when they are larger, are supplied with climbing aids. If the Monstera is to and is allowed to grow, this climbing aid may have to be expanded.
Pot and earth for the window leaf
If you want to buy a Monstera, it will be delivered to you in a pot. If you bought the plant from a technically experienced supplier, the substrate for the Monstera is also suitable. To do this, it has to be permeable but still rich in nutrients.
You can buy suitable soil as a potted plant soil or mix it yourself. With a mixture, you can use humus-rich potting soil and use a drainage material such as Poroton blocks to avoid sufficient water drainage and waterlogging. To increase permeability, coconut fibers are suitable. Peat should be avoided as part of the earth. You have to repot the window leaf – as part of the Monstera care – when it has grown a lot. Then roots grow out of the bottom of the pot, a clear sign that the pot has become too small.
Water monstera properly
Frequent care mistakes with plants arise when too much is watered. Most plants are stressed not by too little water but by too much watering. Especially if you feel inspired by the thought of tropical rainforests, reaching for the watering can happen too often.
What is overlooked is that the monstera plant, which grows as a liana, can only be reached by dripping water and not by standing water. So it is not a water plant and should therefore only be kept moderately moist.
A sign of too much water is leaves and leaf margins turning brown. They show that due to the excessive moisture, the roots are not receiving enough water, so that they cannot adequately supply the leaves.
Fertilizer for the window leaf
The Monstera plant is also easy to care for when it comes to fertilization. It needs nutrients when it grows, i.e., when it forms fresh leaves. This is the case in summer when it also receives more light in the apartment.
Then you should give a conventional house plant fertilizer every two weeks. When it comes to dosing, it is also advisable to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. He knows best about the fertilizer effect.
If the plant sheds leaves on its own when fresh leaves appear, it can be a sign of nutrient deficiency. If you haven’t fertilized by then, you should start fertilizing. But also the opposite of too little fertilizer, over-fertilization is dangerous. As a sign of over-fertilization, you should take brown leaf margins seriously.
Pruning the Monstera
Since the plant does not lignify, it can be pruned as desired. However, this is only necessary if individual leaves become brown and unsightly due to their age or possible care errors. Another reason to prune can be overgrowth. Strong growth is, of course, a good sign at first. However, in contrast to the rainforest, you should not have unlimited space for the window leaf. So it makes sense to cut back the leaves a little if the plant gets too big.
So that the window leaf stays beautiful …
… you should dust it off from time to time. This settles on the leaves and makes them dull. Of course, a noticeable layer of dust is also unfavorable for growth. So there are good reasons to do something about dusty leaves.
With smaller plants, you can put them in the shower and rinse off vigorously. This should be difficult with larger plants. Here you have to wipe sheet by sheet with the rag. In addition to removing dust, you can keep the monstera leaf clean with occasional spraying with water.