I love Monsteras. The most common names for Monstera Deliciosa are Split Leaf Philodendron, Mexican Breadfruit, and (my favorite nickname) Swiss Cheese Plant.
Monsteras are super unique looking and relatively easy to care for and I hope this post can help you feel the same. This post is jam-packed with my top tips for caring for your Monstera. If you have any questions, feel free to comment below or connect with me on Instagram.
My Care Tips to Get Your Monstera Leaves to Split
1) Let There Be Light
I have two Monsteras; one in our south-facing bedroom balcony window and one in the foyer next to the bay window. Fun Fact: Their names are Mr. and Mrs. Swiss. During the winter and fall, I use a plant light to supplement when there is less sunlight.
Monsteras love bright light. They will tolerate living in low-light, but it will grow very slowly and possibly very leggy. Remember to rotate it every so often so that it gets light on all sides.
They like the light slightly diffused because if it receives intense direct sun for several hours a day, the leaves will burn, turn brown or black, and become very brittle.
Monsteras are epiphytic. This means, a plant that grows above the ground, supported non-parasitically by another plant or object, and deriving its nutrients and water from rain, the air, dust, etc.
2) Watering Your Monstera
I water my Monsteras regularly of about once every 4-5 days. In the summer, watering is more frequent than in the winter because, as with all plants, the more light, the, more watering and the less light, the less watering it will need. Monsteras do have very thick roots, so, it is important not to kill them with kindness by overwatering them.
3) The Perfect Temperature for Monsteras
If your home is comfortable for you, itâ€™ll be so for your houseplants too. Monsteras prefer it on the warmer side in the growing months & cooler in the winter when it’s their rest time. Just be sure to keep them away from any cold drafts as well as air conditioning or heating vents.
4) Monsteras Love Humidity
Monsteras are tropical plants and love humidity just as much as Jennifer Lopez in her countless music videos. haha
If you notice the tips of the Monstera leaves are tuning brown it may be trying to tell you the air in your home is too dry. If you are concerned about browning leaves, you can try misting your Monstera. I just bought the cutest gold mister!
I have dehydrated skin and we have two diffusers on the main level and a humidifier in our bedroom that is frequently running. I love it, and, my plants do too! We live in the Midwest, so we have our heat on the majority of the year, so I always make sure none of my houseplants are too close to the heating vents.
5) Fertilizing for Your Monstera
I give most of my houseplants some diluted coffee about once every two weeks. I give my Monstera more coffee during the summer than in the winter. I prefer using diluted coffee as fertilizer for my plants because it is less of a risk than using true fertilizer which, can burn your plant and cause nutrient buildup.
6) Monsteras Need Healthy Soil
I know there are lots of opinions about what makes the best soil for houseplants. I know what has worked well for me, so that is what I will share with you.
I fill the bottom of my planter with gravel or small pebbles. Then I pour a layer of soil, then a layer of perlite, mix, add the plant, and then more soil and perlite. My soil to perlite ratio is about 80 soil to 20 perlite. The soil I most commonly use Miracle-Gro Nature’s Care Organic. The perlite is Miracle-Gro Perlite
7) Make More!! Propagate Your Monstera
My first plant propagation was a Monstera and it was so easy! There are a few ways to propagate Monsteras, but I’ve only tried the water propagation method and have had success from it! I love propagating my houseplants in water because it is easy to monitor how the roots are developing on the cuttings.
I have a full in-depth blog post about it, but basically, you will use a sharp, sterilized knife, pruning scissors,s or trimming shear to cut a mature leaf or stem from the plant that includes a small stem or “root node.” Then you will put it in water for several weeks and watch the roots develop. You can read my full post on propagating a Monstera here.
8) Monstera Pests & Other Issues
Knock on wood, I have never had any bugs invade my houseplants. Bugs are gross & nobody wants them buzzing around their home. The excellent news about houseplants and pest removal is once you know the root of the problem (pun completely intended) it is far easier than you might think to solve!
Prolonged damp soil can create root rot or cause fungus gnats, which are small annoying bugs like fruit flies. Sticky traps work great, but I highly recommending re-planting your Monstera in fresh soil, and be sure to inspect for mushy roots which can indicate root rot.