Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa (Key Similarities and Differences)  

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The Monstera genus consists of several species that are popular as houseplants. The Monstera deliciosa and its varieties are especially popular among plant lovers.

Here, we examine the similarities and differences between Monstera compacta and deliciosa to help you decide which suits you better.

Why is it called Monstera Compacta?

two Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa leaves

The Compacta is a Japanese cultivar of the deliciosa, and the name is more commonly called online on Instagram or Etsy. The Monstera compact is a smaller version of the deliciosa plant, which shares many similar characteristics other than size.

The plant is also called the Monstera Tauerii; as the name suggests, it is a more compact form of the deliciosa. Due to its smaller size, it is also called the mini Monstera plant and is often consumed with the tetrasperma plant.

Monstera Deliciosa Compacta Origin

Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa leaves

Monstera deliciosa compacta is a vining plant that grows in the tropical rainforest of Central and South America, albeit rarely.

The smaller form of the deliciosa plant, a Monstera common variety, has smaller leaves that tend to perforate quicker than the original.

Monstera compact shares characteristics with many Monstera species. Moreover, the Monstera compacta also appear in variegated monstera plants, although rarely.

Monstera Compacta vs Deliciosa: Key Similarities

Despite subtle differences, these two plants share many similarities in their growth habits, care requirements, and striking appearance.

Below are some of the key similarities between Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa.


Monstera Deliciosa under leaves

Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa are known for their huge, heart-shaped leaves with distinctive split patterns and characteristic holes that give them a unique appearance.

The dark green leaves of both plants have a glossy texture and are known for their attractive appearance.

While Monstera deliciosa leaves can grow up to 3 feet in length, Monstera compacta’s leaves are typically smaller, reaching a maximum of around 12 inches. However, both plants have a similar growth habit and produce new leaves at the end of their stems.

The Monstera leaves are known for their fenestrations, including splits and tiny holes on the leaves. These holes are the main reason the Monstera varieties are known as the Swiss cheese plant.

Light requirements

Gray striped domestic cat sitting on a window nearby Monstera

As tropical plants, Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa prefer bright, indirect light. In their native habitat, these plants are accustomed to the bright, filtered light from the forest canopy.

They are not suited to direct sunlight, which can burn their leaves and tolerate low light conditions. While Monstera deliciosa can tolerate slightly lower light levels than Monstera compacta, both plants benefit from being positioned in medium to bright indirect light.


Both Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa are relatively low-maintenance plants when it comes to watering. They prefer to be kept moist but not over-watered. It’s best to allow the top layer of soil to dry out between watering sessions to prevent overwatering, which can lead to root rot.

Generally, you only need to water the plants once a week in the growing seasons and once every two to three weeks in the winter.

Soil Requirements

Both Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa thrive in well-draining, nutrient-rich soil. They require a soil mix that is well aerated to allow for proper drainage and prevent waterlogging.

You could use a potting mix made for aroid plants for the Monstera deliciosa species. Place the potting mix in a clay pot with adequate drainage holes. You can also add perlite or coco peat to improve water drainage.

Humidity Requirements

Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa prefer high humidity levels of over 60%.

They will benefit from being placed in a humid environment, such as a bathroom or near a humidifier. Alternatively, you can mist their leaves regularly to increase humidity levels.

However, too much humidity can lead to root rot in the aerial roots and damage the plant.

Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa: Key Differences

Despite their many similarities, some key differences between these two plants are worth noting.

Below are some of the main differences between Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa.


Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa in a shop

One of the most significant differences between Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa is their size.

Monstera deliciosa is a much larger plant, with mature Monstera reaching up to 30 feet in height. In contrast, Monstera compacta is a more compact plant that typically grows to a maximum height of around 6 feet.

Leaf shape

While Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa have distinctive split-patterned leaves, their leaf shapes differ slightly. While the difference may be difficult to tell in a juvenile form, they become more apparent in mature plants.

The leaves of Monstera compacta are more elongated and oval-shaped, while Monstera deliciosa has more distinct heart-shaped leaves.

The Monstera deliciosa leaves are also much larger, often reaching over two feet in length, while the leaves of Monstera compacta are much smaller, generally no more than 12 inches long.

The Monstera compact leaf stems are shorter, and the nodes are less spaced apart, while the deliciosa has a more vining growth.

Growth habit

Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa in a white pot

Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa also have slightly different growth habits.   Monstera deliciosa tends to be a more climbing plant that can attach to trees and other supports with its aerial roots, growing as a vine.

In contrast, Monstera compacta grow more upright and do not require support. It produces new leaves at the end of its stems, while Monstera deliciosa produces new leaves along the length of its stems.

Moreover, the deliciosa exhibits beautiful flower growth in the spring and produces edible fruit that tastes similar to pineapples. The fruit of the plant is also known as the Mexican breadfruit.


There is a noticeable difference in price between Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa. Monstera deliciosa is a much more common plant and is, therefore, much more affordable.

In contrast, Monstera compacta is a rarer plant and can be significantly more expensive.

To Conclude

Monstera Compacta stems

While Monstera compacta and Monstera deliciosa have some subtle differences, they share many similarities regarding their care requirements and appearance.

They are both relatively easy to care for and make great houseplants for beginners and experienced plant owners alike.

If you are looking for a plant with striking, unique foliage that is also low maintenance, either Monstera compacta or Monstera deliciosa is a great choice.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the rarest Monstera Plant?

The Monstera species are rare plants in the Aracaea family by default. However, some species of Monstera are rarer than others.

The Monstera obliqua, Monstera pinnatipartita, Monstera acuminata, Monstera siltepecana, and Monstera adansonii are among the rarest varieties.

However, the rarest is the Monstera variegata, which occurs due to an extremely rare natural mutation in the Monstera plants.

What are the differences between Monstera Deliciosa and a Split-leaf Philodendron?

The biggest difference between the Monstera deliciosa and a split-leaf philodendron is the fenestrations, which are present in the deliciosa but not in the philodendron.

Moreover, Monstera deliciosa leaves are much larger than the philodendron leaves and have a deep green color.

Are Monstera Borsigiana and deliciosa the same?

Monstera Compacta vs. Deliciosa fenestrations

Monstera borsigiana is a synonym for Monstera deliciosa, where the latter is a more accepted scientific name. While the borsigiana appears smaller than a true Monstera deliciosa, they are the same plant.

What are the most popular Monstera Varieties?

Monstera is a relatively rare genus that is difficult to find in local gardening centers. However, you can get some Monstera species online.

The most popular varieties include the Monstera dubia, Monstera Peru, Monstera standleyana, Monstera acuminata, Monstera epipremnoides, and the deliciosa.

Other popular monstera varieties include variegated Monstera, but they are much more challenging to get a hold of.