No question, Monsteras are the “it” plant of the 2020s. These trendy tropical dynamos, known for their signature leaves, exploded onto the scene and show no signs of going out of style. There are two primary varieties we’re going to focus on: Monstera deliciosa, the larger one that’s graced the Instagram feeds of millions, and Monstera Adansonii (the Swiss cheese variety), the one with smaller leaves that grow on trailing vines. To keep your Monstera looking like a 10—no filter required—you’ll need to know how to care for and support them properly. After all, they’re accustomed to living in the rainforest, not your living room.
Monstera Deliciosa Care and Support
The best way to understand the necessary care of a Monstera deliciosa is to consider how it grows in nature. If you’ve ever been on a tropical vacation and seen them in the wild, these bad boys grow to impressive heights, but they need structural support to climb.
They cling to tall trees in the rainforest and sit comfortably underneath the shaded canopy of leaves. By this logic, if you want to make your Monstera deliciosa feel at home, you’ll need to do the following:
- Create a humid environment
- Keep it away from intense, direct sunlight, but ensure it still receives bright, indirect light
- Provide a structure to help it grow tall and remain upright
Even if your home is dry from air conditioning, the humidity part isn’t difficult. Just spritz your plant regularly with a spray bottle on the mist setting, or plug in a small humidifier nearby. They also love growing in bathrooms because of the steam from the shower, provided there’s some decent window light in there.
The support stuff is a little trickier, but it makes a massive difference in your plant’s growth once you get the hang of it. If you don’t provide support and allow your Monstera to “do its thing,” it will spread outward and won’t grow tall. Now, that isn’t the end of the world, but we’re aiming for maximum visual impact here!
Monstera Deliciosa Support Ideas
So, how do you support these plants? Their stems are stiffer than your typical vines, so it’s not like you can grab them and twist them around a stake. However, newly sprouted stems are more flexible, so once you’ve provided structure for your existing plant, it will be easier to train new growth to grow up the structure naturally.
Our favorite structures for Monsteras are Moss Poles, Coco Poles, Redwood Planks, and U-Shaped Bamboo.
Moss poles and coco poles are similar—they’re chunkier, pipe-shaped poles, but one has a sphagnum moss coating, and the other is coconut husk. Redwood planks arean easy and cost effective option if you’re not ready to invest in a moss pole. For each of these, the rough texture is similar to tree bark, which helps mimic your Monstera’s home habitat. To insert a pole into your plant pot, you’ll need to dig a hole to stick it in, preferably close to the back edge of the pot. You may need to remove and repot your plant to do this successfully.
Once the pole is in place, use plant ties to secure the stems to the pole. Be mindful of stems that stick directly outwards—if you try to position them vertically, they’ll snap; you’re better off leaving them alone or removing them at the base to propagate into a new plant.
U-shaped bamboo functions similarly to a garden stake but has two slender, stake-like poles connected at the top. It’s thinner than a plant pole, so it’s easier to insert into a pot. Again, just attach the stems with florist wire or soft ties.
As those new, flexible stems sprout, gently train them to twist and cling to the structure. You can use additional ties—your Monstera might not want to cooperate in the early stages, but with time and patience, it’ll get there!
Cleaning Up Your Monsteras
It’s crucial to remove any dead or damaged leaves—they don’t photosynthesize as healthy leaves do, and they drain energy from your plant. Use a sterilized, sharp knife or shears to remove the leaf at the base of the stem. As we previously mentioned, you can also remove awkwardly positioned leaves that stick out horizontally and don’t want to cooperate with your support structure. If those leaves are healthy and intact, then remove them right at the base of the stem and put them in a jar of water so they can sprout roots!
Wipe down your plant’s leaves with a damp sponge every few weeks; this will help to clear away dust, which gets trapped in the pores of the foliage, making it more difficult for your plants to soak up C02 and release fresh oxygen.
Monstera Adansonii Support Ideas
This vining plant is far more flexible than its bigger brother, so there are plenty of creative ideas for keeping it upright. You can use moss and coco poles or U-shaped bamboo, but you can also use other kinds of pretty stakes or trellises. Some folks like to buy plant clips that stick to the wall, so you can train your vines to grow all across it. Others will train the vines to creep up window frames, door frames, picture frames—any ledge around which it can climb. As it grows, twist the new vines around your structure gently. You can position the leaves to help the plant cling on its own without the use of ties.