The Monstera deliciosa benefits from the Monstera’s fenestrated leaves’ effective drainage. More than just letting light through, the leaves’ holes serve other purposes as well. They also give the plant the right drainage.
Option 1: Wait
Depending on how young and little your monstera plant is, you might just need to give it some time.
Young monsteras almost resemble a distinct plant because of their sturdy, heart-shaped leaves. Your monstera should grow and finally form those lovely holes and splits on its own when it is between two and three years old with adequate light, the proper quantity of water, and a little fertilizer. Be tolerant!
Option 2: More light!
This is typically the most crucial thing you can do to encourage your monstera leaves to split. However, without plenty of bright, indirect sunlight, monsteras won’t grow much or produce many splits (or numerous rows of splits), even though they can survive in reduced light. Your monstera leaves might not split even if you follow all other instructions to the letter without the proper light.
If you buy a mature monstera with split leaves, lower light may work, especially if you don’t want it to grow much bigger and take over your house (since monsteras often do!).
However, you’ll need good lighting if you have a young plant that you want to observe develop and flourish. The best windows are those that face east or south, while north can still be used. Just be extremely careful around windows that face west since they often receive a lot of direct, scorching afternoon light that might burn the leaves.
Don’t worry if your home lacks excellent illumination. A grow light can always be used as a supplement. To replace greenhouse-style lights that you may get from nurseries, you can either purchase ready-made grow lights or install grow bulbs in standard light fixtures.
As they enlarge, do monstera leaves split?
To begin with, the age of the plant affects the shape of Monstera leaves. You might observe that the splits emerge on the newest leaves if your monstera has some leaves with fenestrations and some leaves without. When the Monstera is old and content enough to produce mature leaves with splits, fenestrations start to form.
When a Monstera matures and forms its first fenestrations, it will be between one and three years old. When my Monsteras, which thrive in strong light conditions, generate 5–6 tiny leaves on the same stem, they usually obtain their initial split leaves. The precise quantity will change depending on your growing environment. In our article, you can read more about the ideal lighting for Monstera.
Last but not least, huge Monsteras that are 3 years or older to a few decades old can produce massive leaves. Even more fenestrations, which appear as extra rows of holes inside the splits, may arise.
It was probably propagated from a top cutting if you notice a monstera plant with enormous split leaves and no tiny baby leaves (learn more about propagating monstera in our ultimate guide). By doing this, the new plant was able to advance the maturity of its leaves.
Why are the leaves on my plant splitting?
Species-specific factors can cause leaves to split on houseplants, but an unfavorable growing environment is nearly always at blame. Bananas and other large-leafed plants have leaves that are engineered to split in the event of strong winds. Leaf splitting may be expected in large-leafed plants, especially in spaces with fans or a lot of natural airflow.
Low humidity frequently causes indoor orchids and other plants to develop leaves that split down the middle. Make sure your plant is receiving enough water, and that any trays that are maintained underneath it to improve humidity are fully stocked. In some cases, if the plants are too far from a source of humidity, soaking the leaves in the morning can help enhance humidity.
How can I tell whether my Monstera is content?
How can you prevent your Monstera from drowning? We’ve discussed a little bit about how to avoid overwatering it. Once you get to know your Monstera and understand all of its behaviors, you’ll notice lots of indicators that it needs water. Some of them may not come as a surprise because the indications that a Monstera needs watering are also quite similar to those that other plants exhibit.
Your Monstera’s Soil Is Dry
The primary indication that a Monstera needs watering is dry soil. A Monstera deliciosa shouldn’t thrive in arid conditions, despite the fact that it’s vital to allow the soil dry up a little bit between waterings. Although too-dry soil won’t immediately kill a plant, it will hinder its capacity to grow effectively.
Since every plant and indoor environment is unique and can necessitate a different amount of time between waterings, routinely testing the soil will enable you to determine when your Monstera needs to be watered. Using your finger is the simplest method for doing this!
If the soil is dry after sticking your finger in it for about an inch, water the plant. Don’t water your Monstera just yet if it’s moist or still wet.
Your Monstera is Leaning Over
Although it is an unusual indicator, I have observed a leaning Monstera in my collection. An underwatered Monstera will begin to sag in a manner that causes the leaves to droop, which is similar to wilting. On a little Monstera, this is much simpler to see, although it can be seen on bigger plants as well.
Always examine the soil before watering because leaning plants might occasionally be an indication of a different problem, such as overwatering. Never add more water when the earth is damp; dry soil indicates that it is time to water.
Your Monstera should bounce back within a few days after receiving a thorough watering if the cause of drooping is too little water. As much stress as possible should be avoided allowing the Monstera to become this dry as it will stunt the plant’s growth.
Your Monstera’s Leaves are Curling
Leaf curling is just another sign that a Monstera needs watering. The leaves of a Monstera that needs water will start to curl inward, making them appear smaller and less wide.
This is a temporary problem that almost always goes away with some time and some good watering! If the soil is dry, check it and give it a nice, thorough watering. Within a few days, the leaves ought to resume their regular state.
If they don’t, there might be another problem going on. Before watering once more, take some time to run a diagnostic.
Your Monstera’s Leaves are Brown, Yellow, or Dead
An alarming sign may be the yellowing of your Monstera’s leaves. Dark green, waxy leaves are present on a healthy, happy Monstera (though younger plants or new leaves may be lighter green).
Some discoloration is expected because older Monstera leaves gradually turn yellow and drop off as they become older. However, you have an issue if you notice many sections of the plant with yellow, brown, or dead leaves or new leaves.
In addition to underwatering, additional issues that might cause leaf discoloration include overwatering, excessive or insufficient sunshine, or parasites. Don’t water the plant right away; instead, take the time to inspect it for any signs of these issues.
Although older growth will occasionally die off, you should take immediate action if any leaf loss is accompanied by other symptoms like drooping or discolouration. The soil’s moisture content should always be checked as the initial step. Water the soil deeply if it is dry. Look for indications that your plant may have been overwatered if the soil is wet.
Your Monstera Isn’t Putting Out Fenestrated Leaves
With adult Monsteras that haven’t started fenestrating or that produce leaves with holes in them, a lack of fenestration can become a problem. Fenestrations are nearly always a sign that the plant is not receiving enough light.
This can occasionally be brought on by inadequate sunlight. Examine the surroundings of the plant to rule that out. Monsteras require six to twelve hours a day of bright indirect sunlight. Try transplanting the plant to a brighter location if it isn’t receiving this much light.
Set a smart alarm to remind you to inspect the soil if lighting isn’t the issue and you think your Monstera needs extra water. This will assist you in forming the practice of routine plant maintenance. You can establish the ideal watering balance by making sure the soil is moist enough many times per week. Be careful not to overwater, though!
How frequently should Monstera be watered?
Monstera deliciosa and Monstera adansonii are the two varieties of Monstera that are grown as indoor plants. In addition to having entirely enclosed leaf holes, Monstera adansonii differs from M. deliciosa by having longer, tapering leaves. Leaf holes on Monstera deliciosa eventually mature, move toward the edge, and then open up.
Though they hardly ever flower or produce edible fruit indoors, they are one of the few aroids that produce edible fruit, especially Monstera deliciosa, which is a member of the Araceae, the Aroid Family. Although the indigenous peoples of Central America had been familiar with monsteras for a very long time, the botanical community only became publicly aware of them in the early 20th century, like many aroids.
thrives in direct light that is bright to medium. Although it cannot tolerate strong, direct sunlight, it can become accustomed to it.
Water every one to two weeks, letting the soil dry out in between applications. In brighter light, water more frequently, and in less-bright light, less frequently. Pro tip: Water that has been filtered or set out overnight before use is beneficial for monsteras.
Although normal room humidity will do, humid circumstances are preferred. Use a fine-mist mister or humidifier to increase the humidity level in the room.
Most houseplants enjoy temperatures between 65F and 85F. (18C-30C). It’s ideal to keep the temperature above 60F. (15C).
Use a potting mix that drains well. As needed, include elements like perlite or lava rocks to improve soil aeration.
The Monstera is a calm and often pest-free plant. Treat pests as soon as they show up by wiping down the plant frequently and weekly applications of a natural insecticide like neem oil.
SYMPTOM: Edges of leaves that are turning brown and crunchy. CAUSE: Overwatered, thirsty, or high salt buildup
Allow Bright, Indirect Sunlight Exposure
Among all the elements that support fenestration on a monstera, light is at the top of the list.
The majority of Monstera plants I’ve come across that don’t fenestrate are frequently planted in a dimly lit, shaded section of the home.
How much light is required for a Monstera?
Monsteras typically require 5 to 8 hours of bright indirect light every day to flourish. More light is required to bring out the stunning coloring of variegated species, such as the Thai Constellation Monstera deliciosa or Variegatta Monstera deliciosa.
When Monstera leaves unfold, will they split?
No. You should be able to see the fenestrations before your Monstera begins to unfold if it has large, fenestrated leaves.
Before they unfold, even the smallest leaves break, though they may still be linked at the tip.
This implies that the splits the leaf currently possesses are the only splits it will have once it has unfolded (indeed, probably before then). It won’t continue to grow with time.
Should you pick up the tarnished leaves?
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We’ve experienced our fair share of brown, decaying leaves as we’ve learned how to properly care for various home plants over the years. We weren’t sure at first whether to take them out or leave them. Here is what we’ve discovered works the best.
Do you need to remove the dead leaves? Yes. Your indoor plants should have brown and withering leaves removed as quickly as possible, but only if they are more than 50% damaged. By removing these leaves, the plant looks better and the healthy foliage that is left can receive more nutrients.
Even though it might appear straightforward, there’s more to it than merely cutting those leaves off. To keep your plant healthy, you must assess how much of the leaf is dying and then carefully remove the damaged areas.
How is a split leaf plant cared for?
As long as you give this philodendron a large enough pot and scale up as it grows, growing it indoors is simple. For it to flourish, it will require a location with indirect light and routine watering.
Zones 8b through 11 are suitable for split-leaf philodendrons to grow outside. Rich soil that is consistently moist but doesn’t flood or have standing water is preferred. Although it prefers direct sunlight, it may also thrive in some indirect light and partial shade. Maintain soil moisture.
The gorgeous philodendron split-leaf cultivar thrives in containers and makes a wonderful foundation planting in a warm garden. It can lend a tropical touch to the pool area or serve as the room’s focal point.
Should I mist my Monstera?
Monstera Deliciosas may tolerate low to high levels of indirect, dappled light. Their leaves may burn and scorch if exposed to direct sunlight for an extended period of time. Low light conditions will inhibit growth.
Make sure your Variegated Monstera Deliciosa gets enough of bright indirect light if you have one.
You should spritz your Monstera Deliciosa frequently and water it once a week. In the winter, when you may only need to water your plant every two weeks, let the soil dry up in between waterings.
Because Monstera Deliciosa prefers a humid atmosphere, we advise often wetting its leaves. To boost the humidity of the air around your plant, you might also place it close to other plants.
Additional care information
From a stem and leaf cutting, you may quickly reproduce your monstera deliciosa in water. Make sure to make the cut just below a stem node.
The Monstera Deliciosa’s huge leaves are readily covered in dust over time. Use a moist towel to routinely wipe them.
Yellowing leaves may indicate that your Monstera Deliciosa has experienced moisture shock or has received too much light.
Browning leaves are a sign that your plant has been receiving insufficient light or has been exposed to low humidity.
Do monstera plants prefer little pots?
Unquestionably, one of the most well-known indoor plants in history is the monstera deliciosa. The characteristic leaves are frequently seen in movies, video games, and printed on at least three pillows at your neighborhood home goods store. In addition to being a true fashion classic, it is also a very resilient and adaptable plant. We delve into the requirements for caring for this plant in this article.
Other names for Monstera deliciosa include “fruit salad plant,” “elephant ear plant,” and “swiss cheese plant.”
When should I water my Monstera deliciosa?
During the warmer months of the year, wait until the soil has dried to at least 50% of its depth. Allow the soil to totally dry up before watering in the winter.
How much light does a Monstera need?
Although they can withstand medium to low light, monstera prefer bright light. A good test is a room with enough light to read a book by. They will develop more quickly and larger the more light they receive.
When should I fertilize my Monstera?
Mid-Spring to mid-Autumn, apply a liquid fertilizer every other time you water. You can fertilize your plants every time you water them if they are growing quickly in the summer. Fertilize not during the winter.
Should I re-pot my Monstera?
The majority of indoor plants are content to grow in small containers and will even profit from being somewhat root-bound. There is never a rush to increase the size of your pot until all the soil has had roots grow through it, just an inch or two.
It is preferable to place your Monstera in the brightest area possible when it is cultivated indoors. A excellent place to start is with enough natural light to comfortably read a book. Make sure your plant doesn’t receive too much afternoon sun in the summer to avoid burning it. Even while a location may be ideal throughout the year, on a day with a temperature of +40°C, the heat and light may be too much for the plant to take.
Monstera may thrive in low-light conditions, however the smaller the leaves are, the less fenestration there will be to grow.
Fenestration refers to the distinctive holes that make a monstera leaf so simple to recognize. Faster growth, bigger leaves, and more fenestration will occur as a result of increased light levels.
The majority of indoor plants are vulnerable to overwatering. During warm weather, we advise you to water this plant just after the top half of the soil has dried out. Try to let the soil dry up almost completely over the winter.
Depending on the time of year, the location of the plant, and the flow of air, this will take two to four weeks. Please be aware that this is the shortest length of time you can wait; especially in the winter, you can wait much longer!
In severe circumstances, overwatering this plant can cause root rot, darkened leaf tips, and even plant death. However, if you skip watering for a week or two, the plant may not even notice or may simply wilt, giving you a very clear indication that it’s time to water.
As a plant with a potential for rapid growth, monstera will undoubtedly profit from routine applications of liquid fertilizer. Every second cycle of watering throughout the warmer months of the year—spring and summer—can include some fertilizer. If your plant continues to develop during the winter, you could consider reducing the intensity of your fertilizer and using it less frequently.
Although products made from seaweed, like Seasol, are low in the essential elements for development (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium), they are excellent soil conditioners and helpful for avoiding hydrophobia and pot shock.
Monstera enjoy being crammed within their containers. Regardless of the size of the pot, they will grow enormous. Your monstera won’t grow any bigger or faster if you put it in a big pot; most likely, all the extra damp soil will cause root rot, or your monstera will focus more energy on growing roots than leaves. It is preferable to concentrate more on a pot that complements your aesthetic while repotting and to use that pot for a few years.
It’s better to repot during the warmer months of the year if you do decide to do so. Be cautious to plant it in a container with sufficient drainage (at least one big drainage hole). The soil may dry up a little bit quicker if you choose to use a porous terracotta pot, which can be quite beneficial in preventing over-watering. A premium potting mix is an excellent place to start, but a cacti/succulent mix or even chunky orchid mix works great to help with drainage. Monstera flourish in a well-draining potting mix.
After a year or two, Monstera deliciosa’s size as a vine can become painfully obvious. This plant will spread across the ground and climb trees in the wild. You might need to stake the plant as it gets bigger in order to sustain this sprawling epiphyte and keep it standing erect. You can take a clip from the lead portion of the stem if you think the plant is getting too long. This will stop the stem’s growth and promote new shoots to emerge from the lowest parts of the plant.
The cutting can either be submerged in water or planted in wet ground. A node should be present on the stem of your stem cutting for about one inch. If the cutting already has an aerial root, it will grow considerably more quickly. Don’t worry if your cutting loses its leaves; they are not at all necessary because the stems can photosynthesise.
Overwatering is the most frequent problem that you may encounter. This will result in wilting, root rot, blackened leaf tips, and frequently white mold on the soil. Check to see if your pot is emptying and if you are watering excessively. Once it is dried, stop watering it again! In extreme circumstances, you might replace the moist soil with dry soil or move the plant outside into a covered area to hasten the drying process. Simply wait. Although this plant is unbreakable, it will take some time. A lot of good airflow will be quite beneficial.
If your plant isn’t getting enough light, it will grow long, lanky, and floppy to help it reach a potential light source. The internodes will be longer and the leaves will be more sparse. Stake the plant and/or relocate it to a more sunny area. It must be a permanent shift; periodically moving the plant into a light area would not work.
The most frequent pests are mealybugs, scale, and gnat flies, but I have never found M. deliciosa to be particularly vulnerable to insect invasion. The best course of action is to manually remove them to halt the spread right away, and then obtain a solution like neem oil, which will eradicate a variety of unpleasant creatures while being extremely safe and non-toxic.