Monstera is a tropical plant from the Araceae family. Its name, as one might guess, comes from the Latin meaning “abnormal” because of its odd-looking, perforated leaves that are often punched through with holes.
- Monstera needs lots of space: Put it in a statement-making spot in the living room, rather than in a tight corner or on a windowsill.
- Monstera can grow up trees and other plants in the rainforest, and would benefit from some support indoors, too. Consider adding a small trellis or pole nearby.
- If you can’t commit to a whole Monstera plant—or if yours is running rampant—trim a leaf or two and stand them upright in a clear glass vase.
- Find a balance between sun and shade. If Monstera is given too much sun, the leaves will yellow. If it’s left in the dark, the plant will exhibit something called negative phototropism, where new leaves grow towards the dark, rather than the light. (It’s a pretty clever trick: In the jungle, darkness signals the presence of a larger tree that Monstera can climb up to reach sunlight.) Since this isn’t possible in a living room, indirect sun is best.
- Water Monstera moderately and evenly, about once a week. Wait until the soil is fairly dry before watering again. Keep in a fairly humid environment.
- To curb excessive growth, avoid re-potting too often and prune regularly by pinching off new growth.