Now that a lot of people have realized the true value of slow living and having nature around, plants are making a comeback. Monstera Deliciosa or the Swiss Cheese Plant is no different!
The Swiss Cheese Plant is a unique, beautiful, low-maintenance plant, and part of every plant lover’s wish list. If you’re interested in getting one for your home, read on to learn all about its care and possible complications. Oh, and one more thing.
It’s not for the window sill!
What is a Monstera Deliciosa a.k.a Swiss Cheese Plant
A Monstera Deliciosa is one of the most cherished plants in the world of the internet at the moment. They have bright big leaves with splits and holes, and can grow up to 15 feet long even in a domestic environment! No wonder, they always grab the seeker’s attention.
These are one of the best accessories to have in your home if you wish to brighten up your space with nature. “What’s great about the monstera is how quickly it can transform a space, making it feel more alive and tropical,” says Hilton Carter, who has worked on a collection of plants with Target. “With its large leaves, holes, and splits, it’s an instant eye-grabber.”
Where is it found?
It is native to the tropical rainforests of Southern Mexico, where heavy rainfalls and hurricanes are common. The Swiss Cheese plant has great resistance to damage from storms because of the large holes in its leaves. It is also propagated in other areas of Central America where the climate is tropical.
Of course, now they’re present in a lot of homes around the world!
Indoor vs. Outdoor
Monsteras can only thrive outdoors if the climate is similar to their natural habitat – moist and cloudy. If you live in North America or any place dry and sunny, your best bet is to keep your Monstera indoor.
With a curated care guide, monsteras are known to do very well indoors.
How to Care for Swiss Cheese Plant
Monsteras can grow considerably tall, especially for houseplants, and will need support. You could use a moss pole for this purpose, a wooden stick or a metallic one, or even a pipe at the back. Just make sure you’ve got its back.
Mild sunlight throughout the day is best for Swiss Cheese plants. Keep them indoors but away from windows. It’s best not to leave them in direct sunlight.
“The more light a monstera gets, the larger the leaves grow, causing more holes and splits,” says Hilton Carter, referring to the famous holes in Monstera leaves. “The leaves of the monstera open up to allow light to shine through its upper leaves so that its lower leaves can bask in the light, as well.”
Do ensure they’re not kept in a very gloomy corner!
Swiss Cheese plants require moderate watering. You may water your plant when the upper half of the pot is completely dry.
Summertime requires more frequent watering than the winter. And if your plant is in a dry corner or near a source of heat, you may need to water it a little more.
Monsteras flourish in moderate to high levels of humidity. If your area receives a considerable amount of rain, you may not need to worry about it. In case of dry spells or living in a dry area, it is best to spray your plant with water a few times a week.
You may also consider letting your swiss cheese baby have its own little humidifier to pamper itself!
Feeding can allow your plant to flourish and grow luscious new leaves. Use any houseplant feed once a month during active growth periods. Make sure to not overfeed your plant.
In case your Monstera is getting big for your space, you may stop using feed altogether. Just make sure it is potted in good quality soil all year round.
Temperatures of 18°C / 65°F or higher are suitable for growth. Monsteras do well between 10°C / 50°F – 30°C / 86°F. However, it is best to keep an eye out for lower temperatures. In case of really cold weather, keep your plant baby in a heated room.
If you’re getting a Monstera, it’s likely you have already calculated the space needed. These are big plants and need their own space to spread and thrive.
How to Propagate Swiss Cheese Plant
Want to propagate from your plant? No worries! Simply remove a leaf and stem just after a node, and place it in a glass jar filled with lukewarm water. It’ll sprout roots within a few weeks, after that you can transfer it into soil.
Keep it in a similar compost mix as the parent plant and under the same conditions. And repot it when it grows a little and becomes more stable.
Younger plants need to be repotted after a short period. But otherwise, they can stay in the same pot for a couple of years! Repotting requires you to choose a slightly bigger pot, preferably made up of a porous material and some new soil.
Don’t repot your monstera into a bigger one if it’s already the size you would like it, or it’ll become a monster!
Swiss cheese plants are pretty low maintenance, but there are still a few possible complications that may arise with them.
Is the Swiss Cheese Plant poisonous?
The plant is mildly toxic to cats, dogs, and humans because of the presence of calcium oxalates. Side effects of oral consumption include swelling of the mouth, lips, and tongue, vomiting, oral irritation, and difficulty swallowing.
The good news is that calcium oxalate makes the plant taste unpleasant, reducing the chances of accidental exposure.
A few yellow leaves from time to time are normal as your plant needs to shed old ones as it grows. Excess yellow leaves are usually the result of either too much water or lower than recommended temperatures.
Harsh sunlight and underfeeding can also result in yellowing leaves. Try to stick to the recommended external conditions for best results and a healthy green plant.
Aerial roots are normal, and generally not a problem for your plant’s aesthetic appearance. You can either keep them as they are, cut them off, or tuck them around a moss stick.
Swiss Cheese Plants are a joy to have in your homes and workspaces. A plant parent or not, you can not deny their spectacular appearance. These are especially great to have if you want your space to scream nature without having to commit to a lot of plants. Got a Monstera? Share your experience with us!
Interested in nature’s treasures? Learn all about Monk Fruit here!