Monstera deliciosa is a fantastic climbing arum from Central and South America. It is popular for its large glossy leaves, identified easily by the “windowpane” holes in the leaves. It comes from tropical forests in nature, where it will grow along the ground until it finds a tree to climb. Once in climbing mode, the plant can grow 10 metres or more in height. As an indoor plant, provide the plant with a support such as a bark slab or tree branch to replicate its natural growth habit. Some pruning may be required to keep it neat. Outdoors, this plant will climb buildings, fences, trees and any other adjacent structures, so best to keep it away from surfaces you don’t want damaged by the plants’ adhesive roots.
Monstera deliciosa gets the name ‘Fruit Salad Plant’ from the unusual edible fruit it produces. As the name suggests, the fruit tastes like a mix of other tropical fruits. Fruiting is uncommon in an indoor situation but it quite easy to produce on outdoor plants. Plants grown outdoor can be adjusted to grow in quite a bit of direct sun. This will produce the best cropping.
Monstera can also be used as an under-story planting. As long as they are prevented from climbing, they will clamber along the ground to form an attractive mound of leaves. They are surprisingly drought-hardy once established and will often survive on natural rainfall alone around Brisbane.
Very easy to care for. Choose a bright spot, close to a window if grown indoors. Insufficient light may cause the plant to lean or “point” towards the light, and may damp-off if kept overly wet. If grown outside, Monstera can be adapted to part sun or dappled shade. Monstera deliciosa will not tolerate prolonged frost periods. Regular fertilizing with products such as Troforte and Organic Link will produce lush, vigorous growth.