Originating from the tropical rainforests and jungles of Central and South America, where they climb up to 60’ into the trees, Monsteras are yet another member of the family Araceae, this mighty family also includes superstar houseplants such as caladiums, dieffenbachias (dumb cane), philodendrons, and spathyphyllums (peace lilies). Show More >
Originating from the tropical rainforests and jungles of Central and South America, where they climb up to 60’ into the trees, Monsteras are yet another member of the family Araceae, this mighty family also includes superstar houseplants such as caladiums, dieffenbachias (dumb cane), philodendrons, and spathyphyllums (peace lilies). It is a relatively small genus (only around 100 species, which is downright tiny in the plant world), but it nonetheless counts some amazingly attractive houseplants among its ranks. For example, our flagship Monstera, the delightful and irrepressible R. Tetrasperma, is an easy-to-grow, yet captivating plant that looks very much like—and is frequently mistaken for—a lush philodendron (when its leaves are young) or a showpiece Monstera (when its leaves mature). While Monstera might not be the largest genus in the Araceae family, it is one of the most recognizable thanks to its foliage: large, deep green leaves marked by intricate patterns of holes and slashes that’ll have you scanning the plant for caterpillars wearing berets and talking about art.
The Monstera Family - beautiful tropical plants for indoors and outdoors
In their natural habitat, Monsteras use their vine-like shape and specialized anchor roots to scale tree trunks and reach heights of 60’ or more. In the home, they tend to stay a bit smaller, but they do still love climbing. Give them a moss stick or other vertical support and watch them go—and don’t worry, they’re easy to prune back to size if they get a little too ambitious. Whatever height they’re allowed to reach, Monsteras will adorn themselves with some of the most unique foliage in the plant world. Large green leaves, sometimes heart-shaped and sometimes thinner, but always at least 8-16” long, carved with swiss-cheese-like holes, wide fissures, and more. Very few other plants look like a Monstera, which is one of the things that make this genus so special.
It's like having your own tropical plant nursery
As exotic as Monstera look, they have remarkably typical care requirements. Like many tropical plants, they love bright dappled or indirect light. An east or north-facing window is often ideal. However, they can also survive in medium or medium-low light. They grow quickly and appreciate soil with some richness and organic matter, but proper drainage is also a must, as they are susceptible to fungal root rot if allowed to sit in soggy soil. They thrive on the “soak and dry” watering method, in which the plant is given a deep drink, allowed to drain, and not watered again until the top 1-2 inches of soil have dried. They do appreciate extra humidity, so misting and giving the plant a pebble tray (or humidifier) are a good idea. They respond well to general fertilizer applied at half strength once a month during the growing season, and they especially appreciate having a moss log, wire frame, or trellis to climb. Pruning is necessary but uncomplicated, and trimmed cuttings can easily be rooted in soil (well-drained-but-moist) or water.