Monstera deliciosa: How to grow and care for this popular indoor plant


Want to channel your inner green thumb and fill your home with as many monstera deliciosa (or some may call it the swiss cheese plant) as your heart desires? Follow this step-by-step guide for how to propagate and care for monster plant. 

Monstera deliciosa, some may call it by a different name, the Swiss Cheese plant (not to be confused with its cousin, monstera adansonii) propagation is an easy way to have beautiful fruit salad plants in abundance at home; it’ll save you money and ensure your home is filled with freshness and colour. Here’s how.


You can never have enough of these beauties. Picture: LaPorte

Step 1: Locate your cutting

Find a healthy monstera leaf growing out of a stem with a short aerial root below it. Just below that root, cut a small notch about one-third of the stem’s diameter.

Step 2: Wash cutting and remove lower leaves

Take your cutting from the main plant and wash it under clean water. If you have any lower leaves attached, remove them from this cutting.


Healthy monstera leaves grow curled up and then slowly unravel Picture: LaPorte

Step 3: Place cutting into a vessel with water

Pour fresh water into a vase or vessel (or you can use a moss pole) and place in the cutting so that it sits upright. You could lean the leaf on a small post or stick to keep it upright and centred.

Read more: How to grow hibiscus plant

Step 4: Keep cutting near filtered natural light

Every few days rinse the root and replace the water in your vase. Be sure to keep your cutting near filtered natural light so that it does not receive too much direct sunlight. Note: The cutting should not be in a dark room. You should start to notice the small nub on the stem growing into another aerial root, and more roots will eventually grow from the stem itself.


The monstera looks good even when propagating. Picture: Getty

Step 5: Allow 2 months for monstera propagation

Leave the split-leaf philodendron to propagate for at least a couple of months in the vase before you finally plant it in its very own pot. Buy some good-quality soil from your local nursery and plant the newly rooted monstera leaf into the soil. You should see your monstera deliciosa blossom into a big and viney full-grown monstera within a year or two.


Large and dramatic, the monstera deliciosa is a beautiful indoor plant in any home. Picture: Getty

How to air-layer a monstera plant

There are two ways to propagate your fruit salad plants: propagation is the easy option for anyone who has a bit of a black thumb, while the most reliable method is air-layering. The steps for air-layering are a little different – here’s what you need to do.

Step 1: You’ll need sphagnum, ties and sandwich bags

Get yourself some sphagnum, ties and plastic sandwich bags.


Sphagnum moss up close. Picture: Getty

Step 2: Cut the monstera leaf

Make a small cut about halfway up the stem of your healthy monstera leaf, including the node/nub, which will turn into your aerial root.

Step 3: Wrap stem with sphagnum moss

Rather than putting your stem into a vase of water – like in the above instructions for propagating your monstera plants from cuttings – wrap the bottom of the stem with some moist sphagnum moss.

Read more: 17 indoor plants you can’t kill (so easily)

Step 4: Place in a sandwich bag

Place the stem and moss in the sandwich bag and secure it with your tie or elastic band to mist your monstera.

Step 5: Keep root and moss moist

Every few days, unwrap the bag and check the root and moisten the moss. Keep the moss moist until the root develops, then you can cut the stem at the bottom and plant it into a pot to prevent root rot.


Every few days, check your moss and ensure it stays moist. Picture: Getty

Monstera deliciosa care

  • How often to water monstera: Water monstera about once a week, and be sure to water it evenly, all around the plant root and soil.
  • Where to position monstera: Monstera grows better in a warm climate away positioned in bright indirect light.
  • If the heart-shaped leaves of your monstera are turning yellow or are starting to brown, feed your plant small amount of houseplant fertiliser to the plant to encourage leaves to flourish.

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