With gorgeous, large leaves, and unique natural holes, the Monstera plant is one of our favorites for indoor cultivation. While they’re usually easy to care for, there are some ways you can inadvertently kill them.
Maybe you consider yourself to have a black thumb. No matter what you do, plants under your care don’t end up surviving. How do some folks keep plants alive for years with no problem, and yours always end up dying?
When it comes to Monstera varieties, there are five factors to consider. Join us as we dig deep to discover how to keep them thriving.
Let’s check it out!
Is Monstera a Good Indoor Plant?
Generally easy to care for, the Monstera commonly comes in two varieties. Monstera delciosa and Monstera adansonii are readily available at most nurseries. The most significant difference between the two varieties is in the holes, or fenestrations, that form as they mature.
Monstera deliciosa has holes that go all the way through the edge of the broad, green leaves. Conversely, the adansonii has more slender leaves with fenestrations contained in the leaf’s body.
Both plants thrive in partly sunny, humid environments. In the right conditions, they may grow up to ten feet tall.
They make perfect indoor plants because of their unique look and simple needs. But don’t be fooled into thinking your Instagram-worthy green friend will always be that way. From yellowing leaves to curling or browning, symptoms of poor plant health are tricky to diagnose.
Let’s look a bit more into the problems and solutions for budding Monstera parents.
#1 Overwatering or Underwatering Your Monstera Plant
Besides fertilizer, water is the most basic thing you’ll give your new plant baby. And while it’s an essential need, knowing exactly how much water your Monstera plant needs is tricky. Experts say the key is keeping the soil damp but not soggy.
Because your Monstera needs regular watering, putting her in a pot with adequate drainage is important. By doing this, it’ll hopefully keep you away from the first problem, overwatering or underwatering your plant.
The first clue your plant isn’t doing well will be in the leaves. Overwatering can result in blackening, browning, yellowing, or limp leaves. Try to stick to a regular watering schedule to avoid this problem.
The worst thing that happens with giving too much water is root rot. This will almost certainly doom your Monstera plant.
Underwatering is the opposite side of the coin. Look for crispy brown spots on the leaves, the plant looking droopy, and overall slow growth. These are sure signs it’s not getting enough water.
You’ll be able to tell the difference if it’s getting too much or not enough water by touching the soil. If it’s very dry or soggy, you need to change your watering schedule.
You can also repot in a larger container to break up the root ball a bit to ensure they grow properly. This can also help evenly distribute the water throughout the soil.
#2 Providing Too Much or Too Little Sunlight
Sunlight is necessary for plants to survive but finding the perfect amount is challenging. Especially in hot climates, too much sunlight is a serious issue. Thankfully, the symptoms vary from too much to too little sunlight, and it’s easy to move them around to fix the problems.
Too much light will cause leaves to curl, blacken, and dry out. Monstera is a resilient species and can acclimate to more sunlight over time. Changing the location of a plant should be done slowly, as significant changes may shock it.
Yellowing leaves usually indicate too little sunlight. Photosynthesis is how plants make their food, and light is a necessary part of that process. If your Monstera plant isn’t getting enough sunlight, check the soil first and then find a spot with a little more daylight.
Another symptom of too little light is failure to fenestrate. As this is one of the best features of the “Swiss cheese plant,” you’ll want to avoid too little sunlight.
Experts suggest giving these plants a day of full sun once a month to encourage fuller growth. Just be aware of temperatures in the hotter months, and you’ll be good to go.
#3 Not Maintaining Adequate Humidity for Your Monstera Plant
Monstera naturally occurs in jungle environments that have high relative humidity. Indoor environments are usually much drier, especially if central air or heat runs most of the time.
Symptoms include several we’ve already mentioned. Curling or browning leaves indicate that your Monstera is drying out too fast. You may need to run a humidifier or move the plant to a more humid room in the house, like the bathroom.
Another way to increase humidity around a Monstera is to group house plants in one space. Doing so will naturally increase the ambient moisture in the room.
#4 Letting Your Monstera Plant Get Too Hot or Cold
As we mentioned, Monstera plants thrive naturally in jungle climates which are relatively stable temperature-wise. If your home experiences wide swings in temperature, your Monstera may be at risk.
Most house plants do best between 65 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping the room your plant lives in within that range will help the overall health of your Monstera.
If you don’t keep things in the suitable range, you’ll notice your plant leaves curling or browning at the tips. Don’t fret, though; adjusting the temperature or moving the plant to a different room can quickly solve your problem.
#5 Not Providing Your Monstera Plant With the Right Type of Soil
Soil is perhaps the last thing you think to check when buying a new plant. It’s easy to overlook because of the many options available at your local nursery. But nutrients and water all transmit through the soil into the roots of your Monstera. The right kind of potting medium is vital.
Use peat-based potting soil for indoor planting to ensure proper drainage and aeration. Outdoors, the plants can handle sandy, loamy dirt quite well. But your Monstera plant will be fine as long as it has adequate drainage and is moderately moist.
The wrong soil may lead to underwatering or overwatering, which we discussed above. If your plant is too dry or soggy, you may have a soil issue rather than a watering one.
Perhaps the worst issue you’ll run into is root rot caused by overwatering or poorly drained soil. Blackening, drooping leaves let you know you should check the root structure. If it’s mushy or smells bad, you may be in big trouble.
It’s not impossible to recover a plant from root rot, but avoiding it altogether is the best plan.
Keeping Plants Happy and Healthy
Monstera varieties bring exoticism to your indoor plant family, something we all appreciate. Taking good care of your potted friend is usually easy. Our list of five ways to accidentally kill your Monstera plant should help if something goes wrong.
A healthy, mature Monstera has a way of playing with the light we just can’t get over. Head to your local nursery and see for yourself!
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