Monstera – How to Grow and Care for

One of those ultra pretty plants that’ll instantly enliven any space is the monstera deliciosa—aka the Swiss cheese plant or split leaf philodendron. The Swiss cheese plant, Monstera adansonii, gets its name from its large, heart-shaped leaves. As the plant ages, the leaves become covered with holes that resemble Swiss cheese. This is a tropical perennial plant from Central and South American that is normally grown as a houseplant.

Botanical NameMonstera adansonii
Common NamesSwiss cheese plant, Adanson’s monstera, Swiss cheese vine, five holes plant
Plant TypeTropical vining perennial
Mature SizeUp to 60 feet with proper support
Sun ExposureBright indirect light
Soil TypePeat-based potting soil
Soil pH5.5 to 7.0 (slightly acidic to neutral)
Bloom TimeSpring (but usually only in the wild)
Flower ColorPurple, cream
Hardiness Zones10 to 11
Native AreaCentral and South America

Monstera deliciosa is a climber in its natural habitat, using its aerial roots to cling to large trees, so you should provide it with moss-covered support sticks or a trellis.

Monstera Light Needs

Monster plants are native to the jungles of Central and South America, where they grow under the coverage of trees. Therefore, the plants grow best in indirect sunlight. If direct sunlight is unavoidable, limit the exposure to just two to three hours of morning sun.


Monsteras are very tolerant when it comes to watering. A schedule probably won’t be beneficial, as there are times when your plant will need more or less water. In general, you will want to water your plant when the top one-and-a-half to two inches of soil in the pot becomes dry—test by poking your finger into the soil or using a moisture meter with a probe.