If you’re following the Monstera trend, you might be willing to introduce some Monstera to your home or office. Though, overwatering and underwatering are common problems among novice plant owners.
For that reason, you need to understand the basic requirements of your plant to avoid such issues.
Monsteras are generally easy to care for. That’s because they require watering once every one or two weeks. Still, there are some other things to consider while watering your Monsteras.
In our Monstera watering guide, we’ll explain everything about Monstera watering. From watering frequency to avoiding common watering mistakes. So let’s get started.
In the wild, Monsteras are classified as hemiepiphytes. This means they grow along trees and use them as a support to climb away from the soil.
Hemiepiphytes derive moisture and nutrients from the soil using their aerial roots. That way, they reach tremendous heights while still depending on the soil to suck moisture and nutrients.
Likewise, indoor Monsteras require moisture to grow and thrive. But on the flip side, their epiphytic roots are prone to rotting when waterlogged.
Therefore, you need a balanced watering schedule to provide your Monstera with consistent moisture without overwatering.
As a general rule of thumb, Monsteras need to be watered once every one or two weeks. This watering frequency ensures the plant gets consistent moisture without overwatering.
However, we don’t recommend you strictly follow this schedule. Because the frequency of watering depends on some other factors.
The best thing to do is to inspect your plant’s roots to determine whether it needs watering or not. In other words, the soil should be dry before each watering session.
If the soil is still moist, you shouldn’t water your plant, unless you want to deal with root rot.
In case the soil appears dry, then you should grab your watering can and start watering your Monstera.
To further inspect the soil, you can lift the pot to test its weight. Additionally, you can softly dig into the soil to check moisture. If the top ⅓ of the soil is dry, you can water your Monstera.
You also need to ensure the pot has proper drainage to allow excess water to flow while delivering the required oxygen to the plant.
Some factors influence the frequency of watering your Monsteras. That’s why you shouldn’t just stick to a fixed watering schedule.
Most Monsteras grow well in indirect sunlight. Because it resembles the light they get in nature. Still, Monsteras tolerate moderate and even low light levels. That’s why they’re versatile indoor plants.
Watering once each week or two is based on optimal sunlight. In other words, you should water your Monstera once every one or two weeks only if it receives an adequate amount of indirect sunlight.
Conversely, if you place your Monstera in low light, it will need fewer waterings. Why? Because sunlight evaporates the soil water faster. As a result, the soil dries out more quickly.
As seasons and temperature change, Monstera’s growth rate varies as well. For example, spring and summer are active growing seasons for Monsteras.
Plants draw water more often, accordingly, they need more water. On the other hand, in winter and autumn, the plant becomes dormant and its growth rate declines. In that case, Monstera requires much less watering.
Humidity also affects the watering frequency for Monsteras. When there’s high humidity, the plant evaporates water slower than usual, so it needs less watering.
Conversely, in low humidity, evaporation is faster and the soil dries out more quickly. As a result, your Monstera needs more water.
Your plant’s size is another important factor to consider before watering sessions. Young Monsteras in small pots often dry faster and need frequent watering.
On the other hand, large Monsteras in huge pots can retain moisture for a few weeks without top-ups.
The growth environment also influences how often you should water your Monsteras. If conditions such as sunlight, moisture, and humidity are ideal for growth, the plant will need more water for photosynthesis. In less ideal conditions, your plant will need less water.
Fortunately, Monsteras do an excellent job of letting you know when they need water. That said, there are some signs you need to look out for to avoid underwatering issues.
Monsteras need watering when 75 to 80% of the topsoil has dried out. You can check this by poking your finger about ¼ into the soil. Or even better, you can invest in a moisture meter to determine the exact moisture levels.
If the reading is 3-4, then it’s time to water your plants. In case the reading is higher than that, you might need to wait a few more days before watering.
Leaves are a great mirror of what’s happening to your plant. If the leaves are curling or losing their vibrant green color, the soil has likely dried out. Moreover, if the leaves are developing black or brown spots in winter, it’s a clear sign that they need moisture.
This usually happens in winter or when the humidity levels are too low. In that scenario, you need to spray the leaves with water to increase the moisture. You might also consider investing in a humidifier if you live in a too-dry climate.
The best time to water your Monsteras is in the early morning. This ensures your plant gets enough time to collect water.
That’s because water retention is significantly better in the morning hours before the heat and light begin to evaporate the water.
Like most houseplants, Monsteras doesn’t need a specific amount of water. You just need to ensure that water fully saturates the soil, not only the top layer.
A general rule of thumb is to water your plant until extra water starts draining from drainage holes.
Still, a common mistake among plant owners is that they only water the topsoil. As a result, water doesn’t fully reach the roots, which deprives your plant of water.
On top of that, if your soil is compact, water might run off the sides of the soil without reaching the roots. In that case, you should continue watering until you see no dry patches.
Bottom watering involves putting the pot in a water sink for around 30 minutes. That way, you allow the soil to absorb a decent amount of water from the bottom.
This method is handy if you have compacted soil because it ensures even saturation.
Regarding watering from the top, it’s beneficial in removing unwanted salts from the soil. These salts can damage the roots in the future, so removing them improves your Monstera overall health.
So which method is the best? It depends. For huge Monsteras in large pots, it might be challenging to move the whole pot and place it in a sink.
Meanwhile, small Monsteras can be easily bottom watered. We recommend you try both methods and see what works best for your plant. Many experts suggest combining the two watering methods to get the best results.
If you’re a beginner, you might have heard about self-watering pots. They’re excellent for regulating the water and moisture of plants.
Luckily, they’re also suitable for Monsteras. That’s because Monsteras require decent amounts of water and moisture.
Self-watering pots also decrease the number of required waterings, making them a perfect choice if you’re busy or don’t have time to look after your Monstera. Let’s see how you can benefit from self-watering pots:
Self-watering pots distribute water evenly and slowly into the soil. Accordingly, your plant will need less watering. This is ideal if you have a busy schedule and can’t water your plant frequently.
Root rot is a common issue in Monsteras. It usually occurs as a result of overwatering. That’s where self-watering pots come in handy.
Because they release the water slowly, your plant’s roots won’t be sitting in moisture for extended periods. This helps reduce the risk of root rot and keeps your plant healthy.
Even though Monsteras are popular for being low-maintenance houseplants, there are some common mistakes that beginners usually make when watering.
Here are some things you need to avoid while watering your Monstera.
When you water your plants, excess water remains in the drip tray or cache pot. This leaves the roots submerged in water, which can cause root rot after a few days.
Many forget to empty the drip trays after watering their plants, so it’s critical to double-check the drip trays to ensure there’s no excess water.
It’s generally easier to water your plants on a fixed schedule. However, it’s not the best thing to do. That’s because many factors affect the amount of water your plant needs.
Instead of watering on a fixed schedule, it would be best to inspect your Monsteras every two or three days.
Look for any signs of overwatering or underwatering. Check the leaves, roots, and soil to determine if your plant needs watering.
Soil usually takes up to two weeks to dry out completely. That’s why you see many people watering their plants once every two weeks (on a fixed schedule). Some forget to check the state of the soil before each watering.
The mistake here is that watering moist or damp soil might suffocate the plant.
The soil should be completely dry before each watering. If you notice your soil isn’t drying out properly, you need to detect what’s wrong. Several things might prohibit the soil from drying such as:
- Your Monstera might not be getting enough sunlight
- The pot might be too large for the plant
- Drainage holes aren’t enough
Monsteras aren’t only popular for their aesthetically pleasing appearance and fenestrated leaves. They also need minimal maintenance and care. Still, they’re prone to many problems if you don’t know how to water them properly.
We hope we answered every question you had in mind in our Monstera watering guide. Remember to include your Monstera in your daily routine.
Inspect your plant every two or three days to find out if it needs watering. This remains the best way to keep your plant healthy and thriving.
Growing up with a mom who filled her home (inside and out) with all sorts of plants, Lisa got her start in gardening at a young age. Living now on her own with a home and yard full of plants (including an indoor greenhouse), she shares all the gardening tips she’s gained over the years.