Monstera houseplants are known for their showy foliage, dramatic fenestrations, and unique leaf patterns that make a stylistic statement in any botanical garden. But more recently, the plants have entered the spotlight because of their delicious and edible fruits.
Yes, Monstera deliciosa plants can grow fruits, and they’re edible too – but this is no mean feat and requires extreme precision regarding care requirements. If you want Monstera deliciosa fruit, you must mimic the native habitat of the plant without any compromises.
And even then, the chances of getting the Monstera deliciosa plant to produce ripened fruit is meager. The high difficulty doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try at all.
As long as you manage your expectations, you won’t feel disappointed when the plant fails to produce tropical fruits. This guide will give you in-depth instructions on how to get Monstera to fruit.
Monstera Deliciosa Care Requirements
Getting the Monstera deliciosa to produce edible fruit is no easy task, and you must mimic the native conditions of the plant. This guide will take you through all the care essentials you must follow to get the plant to produce fruit.
Like any other tropical plant, the Monstera deliciosa prefers bright, indirect light for up to 8 hours per day. Although it can tolerate up to 12 hours of sunlight, too much exposure to light will create too much stress.
You can also use artificial light to mimic its natural habitat. The plant will reward you with faster growth and dramatic foliage with fenestrations and splits.
These plants don’t do well in a south-facing window because they receive direct sunlight in the morning and afternoon.
The same is true for west-facing windows because they expose the houseplant to direct sunlight and risk burning its leaves. You can filter out the sunlight with a cloth or light curtain.
Pro tip: Leaf discoloration is an obvious sign that your Monstera needs more light.
It is recommended to water the Monstera deliciosa every 1 to 2 weeks. It would help if you allowed the soil to dry out between each watering session.
You may have to water the plant more frequently in brighter light compared to lower light conditions. You can use the finger test to determine if the plant is ready for watering.
Gently insert your finger into the soil until you’re about two inches deep. If the soil feels moist, the plant does not need more water. If the soil feels dry, it may be time to water your Monstera deliciosa.
Monstera deliciosa plants are native to the tropical rainforests of Central America, where the humidity levels can go as high as 80%. Anything under 60% may be too stressful for the plant and result in yellowing.
Consider misting the plant every day or placing it near a humidifier. Investing in a humidifier is recommended because the device will automatically regulate the environment’s humidity.
If the humidity gets too low, your plant may be at risk of dying.
On the other hand, you should never exceed the 80% mark because excessive humidity will create condensation on the leaves and encourage mold growth.
Pro tip: Use a hygrometer to monitor the humidity levels of the surrounding environment.
To maximize the chances of getting fruit, you should feed some food to the plant. The best fertilizer has an NPK ratio of 20:20:20.
You may feed the plant once a day during the growing season and once every two months during the dormant months.
Careful not to over-fertilize the plant because it could damage the roots and destroy any chances of getting the plant to produce fruit.
The plant can also benefit from a slow-release granular fertilizer rich in magnesium.
Pro tip: White crust on the soil signifies that you have overfertilized your Monstera deliciosa. The white crust is caused due to the buildup of salts found in fertilizers.
It is relatively easy to propagate Monstera deliciosa from air layering and stem cuttings. Ensure that only sterilized tools are used when propagating through stem cuttings.
Try not to damage the plant during the process. Too many stem cuttings will increase the plant’s stress levels and make it vulnerable to pests.
Once the process is complete, you should allow at least 24 hours before watering the plant. Finally, you can also propagate the plant using air layering.
Monstera deliciosa house plants should be repotted once every year or two to prevent root rot. You may have to perform a visual examination to determine if it’s time to repot your Monstera deliciosa.
If you notice roots piercing out of the drainage holes, it’s time to repot the Monstera deliciosa. The new pot should be one size bigger because the plant prefers a cramped environment.
Ensure that the new pot has plenty of drainage holes. Finally, you should always use new potting soil for repotting your Monstera deliciosa.
It is essential to prune Monstera deliciosa plants regularly because it encourages healthy growth.
Cuttings taken from the plant can also be propagated, giving you a reliable supply of new Monsteras. It is recommended to prune the plant in early spring and before the growing season.
Growing Monstera Deliciosa Outside
Monstera deliciosa rarely produces fruit in an indoor environment. It is recommended to grow your Monstera outside if you have a sheltered location that protects it from direct sunlight and frost. The plant requires a well-drained location with dappled shade.
You also need to provide it with sturdy support because the plant can grow nearly 2 feet tall yearly.
Cover the Monstera plant with sheets or a frost blanket to prevent frost damage. Inspect the soil regularly to ensure the plant’s roots are healthy. You may have to take the plant indoors if outdoor temperatures fall under 50 °F.
Monstera deliciosa prefers warm temperatures in the range of 65-85℉. They can survive temperatures under 50℉, but the foliage will not look as bright or produce fruit.
The plant does not respond well to extreme fluctuations in temperature. It would help if you kept it isolated from drafty windows, doors, and any heat source.
Prolonged exposure to temperatures under 50℉ and over 80℉ will stunt its growth. Cold damage, in particular, is very deadly to Monstera deliciosa because it is irreversible and leads to cellular death.
Bring your Monstera deliciosa indoors during the colder months if you are growing it outdoors.
For best results, you should mimic the native habitat of the tropical fruit. Use high-quality potting soil that drains quickly.
The plant can also grow well in nutrient-rich soil but doesn’t do well in soils that contain bark.
Do not use cactus soil because the plant’s roots will not be able to hold onto the material. Using cactus soil will cause the plant to become unstable.
Monstera deliciosa plants prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH ranging from 5.5 to 7.0. Try not to lower the pH too much because this will prevent the plant from absorbing minerals and nutrients properly.
Soil acidity is essential in helping the plant absorb nutrients and should be kept at the recommended range at all times.
Some growers often misidentify a pH imbalance with nutrition deficiency because their symptoms are very similar.
Incorrectly diagnosing this issue can lead to an incorrect solution that could exacerbate the problem.
For example, yellow leaves and poor growth doesn’t always indicate lack of nutrition.
If poor growth is attributed to a pH imbalance, adding more fertilizer will not rectify the problem. So before adding fertilizer to the plant, check the soil’s acidity.
Monstera deliciosa plants are vulnerable to pests and diseases. The plants become weakened during the winter, and the low temperature could increase stress levels.
You will need to provide extra care to the plants during winter.
If you notice the presence of pests, such as scale and spider mites, the infestation may have already reached an advanced stage. It is essential to act at the easiest to remove the pest.
Clean the plant with an insecticidal soap to kill any pests. You can also use neem oil and other essential oils to kill the pests and their eggs.
It is also essential to provide the plant with the ideal growing conditions, as discussed in this article.
Rubbing alcohol is useful for getting rid of pests at an early stage of the infestation.
Here are a few signs that your houseplant may have a pest infestation:
● Yellow spots
● Honey dew formation
● Brown streaks
● Holes (not to be confused with fenestrations)
● Black powdery substance
Keep Track of Timing
When growing Monstera deliciosa, you keep track of any blooming. The plant may bloom at any time of the year. It is more likely to bloom in the summer months. Once it’s done flowering, the fruit will start appearing.
This is a crucial period in the plant’s life; you will need to fertilize it properly and increase exposure to light.
Is Monstera Deliciosa Fruit Safe to Eat?
Monstera fruit is safe, edible, and delicious to eat – but there’s a catch. You must only attempt to eat the fruit after you’ve confirmed that the fruit is ripe.
The oxalic acid found in unripe green fruits is toxic and can irritate the mouth and throat.
Moreover, you should avoid eating leaves since they are toxic to humans. The fruit is safe to eat once it is fully ripe. However, a small amount of oxalic acid may cause a tingly sensation in some people.
Can I Buy Monstera Deliciosa Fruit?
The Monstera deliciosa fruit is not easy to acquire in most markets. Your best bet is to go to a country where the Swiss Cheese plant grows in the wild and search the nearby markets.
The next best option is to simply order a Monstera deliciosa cutting, grow it yourself, and hope that it produces edible fruit.
How to Know if Your Monstera Fruit is Ready to Eat?
The Monstera deliciosa fruit tends to ripen from the stem to the tip. This will cause the green scales at the base to fall off, revealing white fleshed segments.
The process can be accelerated by keeping the fruit in a brown paper bag in a warm room. You may eat the white-fleshed segments while you wait for the entire fruit to become edible.
The presence of green scales indicates that the fruit is not ripe. However, the green scales will fall off a fully ripe fruit, and its inside will become yellow.
You may also notice a strong and sweet odor coming from the fruit, which is an indication that it is ripe and ready to eat.
The Taste of Monstera Fruit
Like any other tropical plant, Monstera deliciosa fruit is sweet and juicy. People describe the taste as a mix between white pineapple and banana.
Monstera deliciosa fruit also contains hints of coconut and strawberry. Its soft and creamy flesh shares many similarities with the texture of avocado.
Many influencers refer to it as ‘fruit salad’ because it is possible to use it alongside other sweet fruits to create a delicious salad.
Eating Monstera Deliciosa Fruit
The Monstera deliciosa rarely produces fruit, which is why it is such a delicacy, and you might want to cherish each bite.
There are several ways of enjoying the fruit of the Monstera deliciosa houseplant. The easiest of these is to eat the fruit by itself. Go ahead and take a bite once you’ve confirmed that the fruit is ripe.
Another way of enjoying the fruit is to make jam out of it. This method is a bit complicated but helps you get the most out of the fruit.
You may serve the jam with ice cream, on toast, or pair it with some cream. Monstera deliciosa fruit can be enjoyed with just about any dessert.
How to Keep the Fruit Fresh for a Long Time
Getting Monstera deliciosa to produce fruit is no easy task; the last thing you want is for the fruit to go bad. Moreover, the fruits can grow up to 12 inches long, so you’ll have plenty to eat.
So how do you prevent this delicious fruit from getting spoiled? You can use two solutions to prevent the fruit from going bad: freezing and dehydration.
When freezing Monstera deliciosa fruit, make sure to only use high-quality freezer bags. Your goal is to remove as much air from the bag as possible before sealing it properly.
Wrapping Up – Monstera Deliciosa Plant Fruit
Growing Monstera plants is relatively easy, but getting them to bloom and produce fruit is a tad bit difficult. Moreover, it can be challenging to tell if the fruit is ready for harvest. The calcium oxalate crystals in unripe Monstera fruit can be poisonous.
Have you managed to grow Monstera deliciosa fruit? If so, what steps did you take that led to the plant producing unripe fruit? Share your insights and experiences with us; we might update this space with more information.
My name is Daniel Elrod, and I have been houseplant love ever since I was 17. I love how much joy they bring to any room in the home. I’ve always been amazed at how a few pots of flowing leaves can turn a drab and sterile office into an inviting place where people love to work at.