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How to Prune Monsteras (And 4 Reasons You Should)

How to Prune Monsteras (And 4 Reasons You Should)

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Monsteras are a common house plant that are very popular among plant growers. Interestingly, this plant can grow massively under the right conditions.

Therefore, every houseplant lover should learn how to prune them. That’ll allow you to keep it in check and maintain its healthy appearance without letting it take over the house.

Keep reading for more about why and how to prune Monsteras. This article also tells you how to use the clipped foliage and lists other ways to control the growth of the plant.

4 Reasons to Prune Monsteras

There are several reasons to prune your Monstera, such as:

1 – To Control Growth

Monstera tends to grow outwardly. We’re not exaggerating when we say it can take over your entire living space.

Therefore, pruning is the ideal way to tone down its fast growth. When you prune your Monstera, you slow down its growth and give it a healthier look.

2 – To Beautify It

Pruning allows you to cut down the messy bushes of your Monstera. This way, you give it a more beautiful shape.

The good thing here is that you can do it according to your taste. Prune your Monstera to give it the shape you wish for.

3 – To Propagate the Plant

Pruning Monstera allows you to create new ones. If you cut your stem at a certain spot with some foliage intact, you can plant it into a new pot to form a brand-new baby Monstera.

Note that it’s important to put the new plant in a pot large enough to allow the roots to grow.

4 – To Promote Healthy Growth

Despite being a hardy plant, Monstera can be susceptible to some diseases over time. For instance, old stems can develop stem rot.

Therefore, prune these old stems and leaves to promote your plant’s healthy growth. By getting rid of the old foliage, you’re making room for new healthier growth.

Where to Prune Monsteras

Different purposes call for different pruning techniques. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t do them all together.

For instance, you can begin by removing the older leaves. Then, you can trim parts for propagation and cut down rootballs. This allows you to combine all methods to clean, resize, and propagate your plant.

The exact spot for pruning your Monstera differs according to your purpose. For instance:

For Propagation

If your goal is to create baby Monstera plants for propagation, cut the stem about two inches under the node. Make sure that each section you trim contains three or four leaves.

This way, you can reuse these clippings to form new plants.

For Repotting

Interestingly, plants grow at the same rate above and below the ground. Thus, expect that your Monstera’s roots are as large as its lush foliage.

If your Monstera outgrows its pot, you need to trim the roots to avoid root rot. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Carefully pull the plant out of the soil
  2. Brush the soil off the roots
  3. Cut the roots back using sanitized garden shears
  4. Put the plant back into a new pot

If your Monstera has a healthy ball of roots, split it into two to propagate the plant. Interestingly, Monstera has aerial roots. So, you don’t have to trim these roots unless they’re too long.

To Slow Growth

You may also trim the plant to slow down its outward growth or get rid of old leaves or stem sections. In this case, simply cut the old or yellowed parts.

When to Prune Monsteras

Generally, the best time to prune any plant is during its dormant period. This period is, typically, during winter, when growth is toned to a minimum due to the lack of sunlight.

This period is ideal because it comes right before spring, which is known for its high growth activity. That way, your Monstera will have plenty of time and energy to repair any damage caused by pruning.

3 Other Ways to Control the Growth of Monsteras

In addition to pruning Monstera, there are other ways to control this plant’s steady growth. Those include:

1 – Don’t Repot the Plant

When you replace your plant in a bigger pot, you encourage its growth. A larger pot gives the plant’s root more room to grow. In turn, this translates into a bushier plant.

Therefore, you shouldn’t repot it if you want to curb its growth. You can safely keep the Monstera in the same pot for years.

2 – Move to a Darker Spot

Typically, Monsteras flourishes in tropical rainforests. In other words, it thrives in filtered indirect sunlight. That’s why it might be growing wildly in your house.

One way to control this growth is to move your plant away from the light.

Since Monstera requires about five hours of indirect morning light, decreasing the amount of sunlight it receives, curbs its growth.

Thus, we recommend that you move your plant into a darker spot, where it doesn’t receive the sunlight it requires to grow.

Don’t worry about your plant either. This step won’t kill it. It’ll only slow down its growth rate. In addition, it might grow leggy with a long stem—but certainly not bushy.

3 – Train Your Plant to Climb a Pole

To stop your Monstera’s outward growth, train it to grow upward. You can do this by wrapping it around a moss pole.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Gently insert the pole into the soil
  2. Use plant ties to attach the stem of the Monstera around the pole

You should keep your plant in a sunny spot, where it gets the indirect sunlight necessary to thrive. This way, your plant clings to the pole and grows upward.

You can buy moss plants from gardening hardware stores too. You can also do it yourself.

5 Tips to Safely Prune Your Monstera

Pruning can be difficult for a plant. Therefore, you should minimize the damage as far as you can. Here are some tips to help you do that:

1 – Sterilize Your Tools

For pruning, you should use sharp sterilized tools. This way, you avoid spreading infections and diseases.

2 – Cut at the Beginning of Spring

Spring is the time of growth. Prune in the early spring by the end of the dormant period to allow the plant time to grow.

3 – Don’t Cut Haphazardly

You need to determine your goal before pruning. Remember that the position of your cut depends on your aim. Anyway, it’s much safer to begin by cutting the old yellow leaves.

4 – Wear Gloves

For your own safety, it’s crucial to wear gloves when pruning Monstera. This beautiful plant has a toxic sap that may cause skin rash and irritation.

5 – Prune Your Monstera Regularly

Monstera is a fast-growing plant that needs to be cut regularly. Given the right conditions, this plant never stops growing. Don’t expect that pruning it will be a one-time thing.

Final Thoughts

Wondering how to prune Monsteras? It’s easy.

The first thing to consider is why you’re doing so. If you’re pruning for propagation, cut underneath the nodes. However, trim the roots if you want to keep the plant from outgrowing its pot.

On the other hand, if you’re pruning a Monstera to get rid of old foliage, it won’t matter where to cut it.

In the end, pruning your Monstera is a great way to keep it in shape and maintain its health.

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