In this article, we’re going to address a trendy topic: Rhaphidophora tetrasperma vs Monstera deliciosa.
Keep reading to find out:
- The differences between the two plants
- How these plants are similar
- About the taxonomy of the two plant species
Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma vs Monstera Deliciosa: Similarities
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and Monstera deliciosa look very similar, which is often why people confuse the two at first glance.
However, looks aren’t the only thing these two species share. Rhaphidophora tertrasperma is not a type of Monstera plant.
Aside from the obvious resemblance in structure and design, the two plants have several things in common, which is why gardeners may interchange the two plant species.
Both plants grow with the help of aerial roots, which act as climbing supports.
Therefore, we can say that the Monstera deliciosa and Rhaphidophora tetrasperma love to grow as climbing vines.
However, a similar set-up indoors can be challenging to achieve, although not impossible.
As indoor houseplants, they grow best in a well-draining potting mix, which should also be well-aerated; this will ensure that moisture retention does not turn the soil soggy and drown the aerial roots.
The soil Rhaphidophora and Monstera plants thrive in is typically a medium sandy-loamy mix since it’s essential that they drain will yet retain moisture.
A peat-based potting mix combined with perlite and orchid bark help achieve the desired soil type.
Furthermore, both plants love vertical support, so the growth habit speeds up when you place a moss pole, trellis, or stake to help them grow vertically.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and Monstera deliciosa thrive in warm and humid climates.
Consequently, both plants enjoy humidity levels between 50% to 80%, thriving near 80% and barely surviving below 50%.
On the flip side, if you plant indoors, they can rapidly adapt to their environment, so it’s okay if the humidity levels fluctuate within the recommended range.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and Monstera deliciosa come from warm climates, so they thrive in environments with abundant sunlight.
Bright indirect sunlight is best for the plants, as direct sunlight can scorch the foliage.
Direct sunlight is especially bad during spring and summer since it can cause the soil to dry, sunscald, and several issues.
Monstera deliciosa and Rhaphidophora tetrasperma grow well near east-facing windows, where indirect light is plentiful.
Both these plants thrive in warm temperatures between 55 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
For indoor houseplants, you can help the monstera plant and the mini monstera to adapt to the indoor environment.
As such, your plants grow well if you keep the temperatures within the tolerable range.
However, the two plants require relocation if the temperature falls below 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
Both these plants belong to the Araceae family, like the Split Leaf Philodendron, which usually contains calcium oxalate crystals.
These crystals are mildly toxic to pets and humans. The saps are especially dangerous if you attempt to swallow them since they cause diarrhea, irritation, inflammation, and swelling of the lips.
Therefore, it’s best to keep Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and Monstera deliciosa in areas where children and pets can’t reach them.
The Monstera plant and Rhaphidophora tetrasperma have common pests and invaders.
They’re particularly prone to spider mites, aphids, mealybugs, and thrips. These pests typically damage the plant’s leaves.
Spider mites are the most common pest Rhaphidophora tetrasperma suffers from, like the Monstera deliciosa, since both hail from the same family.
Although not fatal, pests can quickly affect the entire plant. If you suspect a pest infestation in your plants, you can spray them with neem oil or insecticidal soap.
Many people regularly clean the plant leaves with cotton balls soaked in alcohol.
Both these plants require pruning as indoor greens. Since space is limited inside, pruning helps promote new growth within the plant system and manipulate their growth habit for landscaping.
Aerial roots can also be trimmed as they tend to become entangled. Since it is larger, the Monstera deliciosa requires more pruning.
Similarly, if the same plants suffer from root rot or an infection, pruning the rotten roots and leaves will balance the latter’s volume for the healthy roots.
Therefore, pruning is an essential similarity and requirement in both plants.
Monstera deliciosa and mini Monstera both respond well to trimming and pruning. Therefore, they’re excellent to propagate by way of stem cuttings and air layering.
For stem cutting propagation:
- Take five to six cuttings, cutting each below a node or aerial root.
- Remove the leaves from the cuttings.
- Submerge these underwater or plant them in soil, submerging the node.
- Keep the soil moist, and change the water regularly for water propagation.
- Each cutting will transform into a new plant in a few weeks, which you can transfer to a potting mix.
These plants have very sensitive roots, which can be manipulated using air layering.
- Unlike before, make a shallow incision below an aerial root.
- Wrap the cut portion and neighboring roots with moist sphagnum moss.
- Wrap this with a sealable plastic bag and secure it with a loosely tied knot.
- Moisturize the sphagnum moss every few days.
- Enough roots will sprout in a few months for you to plant stems in a potting mix.
It’s best to propagate Monstera deliciosa and Rhaphidophora tetrasperma during the growing season.
Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma vs Monstera Deliciosa: Differences
Please notice the names in the title for those of our readers who don’t have a scientific background.
These are Latinized scientific names of the plants. The second part of the name is used to denote the species of a plant.
If you take a close look at the tetrasperma vs monstera deliciosa naming convention, you’ll be able to tell very quickly that they indicate completely different species!
Consequently, the first difference is present in the plant name. These friendly vining greens belong to different species and genera!
Here’s a short taxonomical table highlighting their classification differences for your guidance.
For the mini Monstera plant:
- Plant: Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma
- Other Name(s): Mini Monstera/Monstera minima
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Sub-Kingdom: Embryophyta
- Class: Liliopsida
- Order: Arales
- Family: Araceae (Juss)
- Genus: Rhaphidophora
For Monstera deliciosa plant:
- Plant: Monstera deliciosa
- Other Name(s): Split leaf philodendron, Swiss cheese plant
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Sub-Kingdom: Viridiplantae
- Class: Magnoliopsida
- Order: Alismatales
- Family: Araceae (Arum)
- Genus: Monstera
Mini Monstera features a small to medium plant body. The slender plant can reach 16 feet when grown in the wild. While the seeds grow in the direction of the light, a juvenile plant has more of a ground creeping nature, with the leaves slightly overlapping.
Monstera deliciosa, on the other hand, is a large, sprawling epiphyte that can grow up to 40 feet! The Swiss cheese plant also doesn’t shingle, meaning the leaves have long erect petioles more extended than the lamina.
Rhaphidophora’s leaves are the easiest way to tell the difference between them and M.deliciosa.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma leaves are considerably smaller, hence the moniker mini Monstera.
They can grow up to 16 inches long and 4-15 inches wide. Rhaphidophora plants appear to have heart-shaped leaves because of truncated bases and pointy apexes.
However, the actual shape is ovate and lance-to-oval.
Contrastingly, a Monstera’s leaves are quite large, having a length between 9 to 36 inches and a width between 9 to 30 inches.
The plant has true heart-shaped leaves. Monstera leaves have a heart-shaped base and an acute, mucronate apex, which ends at a sharp point.
The two climbing vines are remarkably different in their fenestration patterns.
M.deliciosa has evenly pinnatifid (split) leaves with frequent fenestrations or leaf holes. The pinnae are much broader than the sinuses, which are the gaps between the splits.
Contrastingly, Rhaphidophora tetrasperma has fewer pinnae and large sinuses. The splits are also quite uneven and thicker.
Many Rhaphidophora leaves also don’t develop any fenestrations. Leaves that do have holes feature rhombic fenestrations, which are placed close to the midrib.
Unlike the Monstera minima, deliciosa leaves have elliptic fenestrations.
If you have both tetrasperma and Monstera deliciosa in your living space, you can identify the difference in appearance by placing them next to each other.
Deliciosa leaves will appear more glossy and deep green, with a thicker and leathery texture.
On the other hand, Rhaphidophora plants will have thinner green leaves, which will neither be as glossy nor as leathery as the Monstera’s.
Both plants have differences in stem structure. Monstera deliciosa enjoy thicker stems with shorter internodes. The stems of these plants can become as thick as 3 inches in most cases.
Unlike them, tetrasperma plants have very thin stems, most less than an inch thick, and considerably long internodes, measuring between 2 to 4 inches.
While the leaves have an alternating appearance in both plants, those in the tetrasperma may appear slightly spiral because of the upper and lower genicula.
Fruits and Flowers
Fruits and flowers are the easiest way to identify these plants in the wild. Deliciosa plants produce edible fruit in their native habitat.
The flower Monstera produces is located atop a large white or green spadix, which turns bluish-green nearing the fruiting stage.
The spathe is creamy white to yellow and more prominent than its Monstera minima counterpart. The edible fruit features spheroidal seeds.
In contrast, tetrasperma plants have a smaller spadix with small white flowers. The spathe is also not prominent and is white, shaped like a canoe.
As the tetrasperma flowers emerge, they produce prominent cataphylls, which subtend from the flower body.
Monsteras favor lateral growth, particularly the deliciosa species, and don’t vine as quickly as their cousins.
Therefore, they have a slow to moderate growth rate, adding only 1 to 2 feet to their height each year.
As opposed to them, tetrasperma has a fast growth rate. In fact, the plant can add up to 2 feet each growing season!
Price is another crucial difference, mainly if you source a plant online from a trustworthy marketplace like Etsy.
Exact prices wildly differ depending on plant type, variety, variegation, maturity, and quality. However, Rhaphidophora plants are cheaper ($10 up to $100) than deliciosa plants, which produce variegated subspecies.
Deliciosa plants can cost from a few dollars up to several hundred, whereas their rare varieties can set you back a few thousand dollars!
Deliciosa plants have longer petioles than the lamina, approximately 12 to 40 inches in length., and feature a wrinkly geniculum. It may or may not dry out and fall in some varieties.
Rhaphidophora plants will feature a shorter and more grooved petiole, considerably shorter than the lamina.
Moreover, these plants have a prominent upper and lower geniculum, which helps the leaves with locomotion.
Deliciosa leaves turn brown when they dry and fall off, whereas Rhaphidophora plant leaves turn dark brown.
While these species are closely related, they hail from different geographical locations.
They indeed thrive in warm, humid climates, but these climates are not distinct to a specific continent or even a geographical location.
Thus, it’s good to learn that R.tetrasperma originates in Asia, specifically Malaysia and Thailand.
Monstera plants, on the other hand, hail from Central and South America and the West Indies. They’re commonly found growing in the tropical regions of southern Mexico, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, and even Chile!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q.Is Monstera minima called Rhaphidophora tetrasperma monstera?
A mini Monstera might be called Rhaphidophora tetrasperma monstera by a sketchy seller, although that is not an actual name. Rhaphidophora tetrasperma and Monstera are different plant species.
Q. Is it easy to care for Rhaphidophora and Monstera plants?
It is pretty easy to care for them. They don’t require too much sun, just ample indirect light. Spraying them with neem oil keeps the leaves healthy.
They have delicate roots that love aerated soil and thrive on organic fertilizer. Too much fertilizer can cause fertilizer burn, while overwatering can cause root rot.
Therefore, use a liquid fertilizer. A slow-release, balanced liquid fertilizer can be used every few weeks. Pay attention to these tips, and your plants will grow wonderfully.
Q. What is Rhaphidophora tetrasperma monstera deliciosa?
It’s the incorrect name for a tetrasperma plant, utterly different from Monstera varieties. It is also incorrectly called the Philodendron silver queen or the Ginny plant.
Q. Rhaphidophora tetrasperma vs monstera deliciosa: which requires more repotting?
Neither plant requires frequent repotting as they produce adhering roots that grow above the growing medium.
However, Rhaphidophora may require comparatively more frequent repotting than M.deliciosa since it has a faster growth rate.
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.