This article, “How to Water Monstera,” will cover a step-by-step guide to watering Monstera plants, followed by some common mistakes made by new plant parents. Read on to discover:
- An overview of the Monstera plant and its watering needs.
- A step-by-step guide on how to water Monstera plants.
- Some common mistakes with watering Monstera plants.
- Frequently asked questions about watering your monstera.
Watering Monstera — An Overview
Monstera, often known as the Swiss Cheese Plant, is one of the most sought-after tropical house plants available on the market, prized for its unique leaf structure and flexible growth.
Since all Monstera plants, like Monstera Deliciosa, are tropical house plants native to Central and South America, knowing how to water them properly may not be as easy as it seems.
While Monsteras love to grow in consistently moist soil, they might be susceptible to root rot if overwatered. On the other hand, nothing kills a Monstera faster than under-watering.
This fact proves that watering your Monstera is a delicate balance between overwatering and underwatering. With the right guidelines in place, you’ll just do fine.
The question now is, how much water should you feed your Monstera? How frequently should you water them? And how can you avoid having trouble with watering?
Fortunately, Monsteras are quite forgiving. Here, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about watering your Monstera.
When to Water Monstera Plants
When it comes to Monstera plants, the key is to refrain from watering until the topsoil has lost around 80% of its moisture. This is the general guideline (typically every 10 to 14 days).
However, in addition to the soil mix, the size of the plant itself, the prevailing indirect light circumstances, and the temperature of the surrounding environment are all important aspects.
Since Monsteras prefer moderate watering, you should water the plant when the soil feels moist one or two inches below the soil surface. Here’s how to test the soil condition.
The Finger Test
Perform the finger test by carefully poking your finger into the soil until you reach a depth of about two knuckles. If the soil around your monstera plant seems dry, water it.
The poking-a-stick technique involves poking a wooden stick into the soil surface, such as a chopstick or a dowel. If you see dry soil on the stick, it’s time to water the Monstera plant.
Place the sensor into the soil about halfway down into the pot. If the meter registers somewhere around a 3, this indicates that the soil is drying up and is ready to be watered.
How to Know When Your Monstera Needs to be Watered
Besides checking the soil to water Monstera, it is essential to provide it with the right amount of moisture and prevent waterlogged soil, which may result in root rot and fungal infections.
The essential thing you can do for your Monstera plant is to check on it frequently and water it just when it seems thirsty rather than following a set Monstera watering schedule.
It’s not hard to water your monstera plant. The key is to have a good start on things from the very beginning. Take the following steps to ensure it is watered at the appropriate time.
- Lift the pot to check the weight. If it feels light on hand, the plant needs water.
- The plant is probably dehydrated if you notice curling, drooping, or crispy leaves.
- Leaf discoloration (brown or yellow leaves) on your Monstera can be cause for alarm.
- If you suddenly see several older leaves dying, the plant may need some water.
- If your Monstera isn’t putting out fenestration as needed, water it immediately.
- Crispy dark brown spots on the Monstera plant may indicate it’s severely underwatered.
- Your Monstera may be just thirsty if it doesn’t appear to be growing at all.
How to Water a Monstera Plant
Now that you know how to determine whether a Monstera plant needs to be watered, it’s time to move on to the next stage, which is how to actually water Monstera plants.
As a general rule of thumb, putting the tropical plant in the sink and using a watering can to gently add distilled water until it begins to flow out of the drainage holes is the best bet.
Avoid getting the soil too wet, and continue to clear the drainage hole tray. Instead of pouring water directly over the tropical plants, try adding water to the compacted soil around them.
Since Monstera Deliciosa plant and other Monsteras don’t like to be overwatered, ensure that the pot has an effective drainage hole. If you don’t do this, your Monstera may develop root rot.
Important Watering Tips
- Always use filtered or distilled room temperature water to dampen the Monstera plants.
- Allow the water to stay overnight so the chlorine and other chemicals may evaporate.
- Double-check the soil using the techniques mentioned above, especially during winters.
- Water the Monstera every other week in the summer and every few weeks in the winter.
- It is preferable to water your Monstera a little less often as opposed to overwatering it.
Step-by-Step Guide to Watering Monstera
Here’s a quick, step-by-step guide to watering your Monstera plants from top to bottom.
- First things first, to water a Monstera plant, carry it to the empty sink or bathtub.
- Use a long-necked watering can to water the plant’s surface.
- Before pouring more water, let each portion soak into the dry soil evenly.
- Add more until the pot feels heavy, with water flowing from the drainage holes.
- To let the excess water drain from the pot, keep it in the sink for a while.
- Lift, tilt, and gently raise the pot and watch for excess water draining.
- Once fully drained, place the pot back on its drip tray or inside the cover.
Bottom Watering Monstera Plants
The process of bottom watering entails putting your plant in a sink or basin that has a few inches of water. After that, the soil will get saturated with water due to the capillary action.
When watering from the bottom, the process takes longer since it might take healthy Monstera anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes to absorb enough water to become uniformly wet.
After watering your Monstera from the bottom, remove it from the water and empty the container in the same manner as you would if you had been watering it from the top.
The most significant benefit of bottom watering is that it is a gentle method of watering your Monstera plant and prevents essential nutrients from being washed out of the plant’s soil.
The only drawback is that it takes more time, and a sink or basin can only hold a certain number of plants simultaneously, making this method extremely time-consuming.
How Often to Water Monstera Plants
Monstera Deliciosa is likely the species of Monstera that is the most widely available for purchase. Due to its leaves’ pattern, it is sometimes referred to as the Swiss cheese plant.
Even though they are lovely to look at, these plants may be difficult to hydrate properly. When planning to Water monstera Deliciosa, it is important to consider the time of year.
Watering Habits During Winters
Like other Monstera species, Monstera Deliciosa is among the many tropical plants that enter the state of dormancy (stop growing and conserve energy) during the colder months.
Therefore, when watering the M. Deliciosa during winter, it’s important to avoid overwatering since low absorption may cause the potting soil mix to become too wet.
On the other hand, prolonged soil moisture may lead to root rot. Your Monstera plant needs watering no more often than once every two to three weeks or if the soil dries.
Watering Habits During Summers
During summer, Monstera is in a state of vigorous growth since it belongs to the tropical environment where temperature and humidity are highest for extended periods.
It would be best to water the plant once a week during the summer. With time, you’ll discover that your Monstera plant needs more water in the summer than in the winter.
However, it is preferable to water your Monstera a little less often than over-watering it. The recommended frequency is once every 10 to 14 days from spring through the end of summer.
Common Mistakes with Watering Monstera Plants
When it comes to watering Monsteras, a few factors might lead to significant complications. Let’s go through some of amateur Monstera owners’ most common mistakes.
Not Emptying Drip Trays and Terracotta Pot
When watering the Monsteras, excess water generally drains into the terracotta pot or drip tray, leaving the bottom inch of the potting soil and roots sitting in the water.
Besides checking the soil condition to water Monstera plants, it is essential to provide it with the right amount of moisture and prevent waterlogged soil, which may result in root rot.
Root rot is the most common cause of death in plants, and it often progresses to a point where it is fatal before the problem is even discovered; therefore, it’s better not to take the risk.
Watering on a Schedule
When it comes to the watering frequency of Monstera plants, don’t follow a pre-determined schedule since this method often causes over-watering or under-watering issues.
Many plant owners agree that Monstera water schedule is a surefire way to make it sick. Therefore, water them once or twice weekly instead of giving quick drenches every other day.
Additionally, we recommend checking on plants every two or three days by feeling the weight or following the soil method (highlighted above). Just make sure your plants get what they need.
Wrong Type/Amount of Water
Although tap water is OK for most Monsteras, you may have problems if your tap water is excessively mineralized or if it includes significant amounts of chloramines or fluoride.
At times, the use of tap water results in dark patches or dark brown spots on the leaves. If you’re experiencing the same issue, you may consider switching to rainwater or distilled water.
Since Monsteras prefer moderate watering, water the plant when the soil feels moist one or two inches below the surface. Generally, 16 ounces of water per plant every three weeks is ideal.
Utilizing Poor Draining Soil Mix
A compacted and poorly-drained soil mix may slow down water circulation through the soil volume. This might result in the root being submerged in water due to soggy soil.
Even after ten days, if the soil has not dried up, you should immediately repot your Monstera into fresh soil since this might be fatal to the plant’s health and moisture level.
According to botanists, a soil mixture/potting mix with peat moss or coco coir, one part perlite, and four parts pine orchid bark fines is ideal for plant growth and Monstera roots.
Frequently Asked Questions
Whether you’re planning to fix the watering schedule of your Monstera collection or feeding your brain with general information on the watering process, we hope this article helped.
Here are some frequently asked questions about watering a Monstera plant.
What is the Ideal Monstera Soil Moisture?
Monstera plants need consistently wet soil in order to grow. This necessitates soil that is damp but not drenched and one that always retains moisture even during low humidity.
What is a Moisture Meter?
A moisture meter is essentially a little hygrometer used to determine the amount of moisture in the soil. It is usually equipped with one or two metal probes inserted into the ground.
How to Know if the Soil Moist?
To determine how wet or moist the soil is, give it a little squeezing. If it clings together, this indicates that the soil is damp. However, it needs more water if it stays in a loose pile.
How Often to Water Monstera?
Water a Monstera once every 1–2 weeks, allowing the soil to get completely dry in the meantime. Plan to water more often in areas with higher light levels and vice versa.
What Do Yellowing Leaves in a Monstera Indicate?
The yellowing leaves in Monstera indicate inappropriate temperature, overwatering, underwatering, improper light conditions, low humidity, and fungal infections.
How to Promote Healthy Growth in Monstera?
The act of providing your plant with food promotes robust development. Therefore, when selecting a fertilizer for your Monstera, do your best to use one on the milder side.
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.