Monstera deliciosa is a gorgeous climber native to Central and South American rainforests. These climbers grow super quickly, and you may wonder when to trim them.
Monsteras need to be trimmed regularly to encourage growth. You can also propagate the cuttings taken from the plant for a regular supply of Monstera in your garden.
People who are new to gardening and house planting may think that the idea of slicing your Monstera plant is terrifying.
You must understand that trimming is simple and is necessary for the healthy growth of plants. Do the trim in early spring before the growing season.
Can you trim a Monstera plant?
Yes, you should trim a Monstera plant. Periodic trimming benefits all plants as it encourages growth in the newly-pruned areas. Apart from promoting growth, regular pruning maintains the overall health of your climber plants. Monstera plants grow aggressively, and hence trimming them becomes significant.
In a well-grown Monstera plant, the older foliage will die back over time. The leaves will become yellow and dry. The older parts of a plant are more prone to diseases, infection, and pest attacks.
Although Monsteras are tough plants, a stem rot infection is common in these plants. Even if a single part of the plant gets infected, it will affect several other segments.
Soon, the infection will spread throughout the plant and also to adjacent plants in your garden.
Remove dead, damaged, diseased, or insect-infected stems using a pair of clean hand clippers. To control split-leaf philodendrons, cut the leaves into the heart of the vine.
Monstera plants grow aggressively and might outgrow your living space. Trimming does not only mean removing the older leaves but also shortening the stems. It is vital to make sure that the plants do not become unruly.
You can keep your plants small through regular trimming without causing any harm to them. If you are pruning your Monstera plants for size reasons, cut them back during their dormant period.
Why should you trim your Monstera plant?
You should trim your Monstera plant because it will benefit them. Trimming is also a way of plant caring where you cut-off all the unwanted leaves and stems. In this way, you can accumulate the needed energy for the healthy growth of plant other parts such as roots, leaves, and stems. You can control the shape and size of plants and also where the new leaves will sprout out.
The main benefit of trimming is that it encourages growth in the plant.
Other than this, it maintains the plant’s general health and also accelerates growth in new areas.
The old foliage will turn yellow with time and will eventually die. Sometimes the tips of leaves become brown due to overwatering. The old parts are most susceptible to fungal infections and disease attacks. The infection may also spread to the newly grown leaves and stems.
Another case where trimming helps is when your Monstera plants outgrow pots or containers. These climbing plants grow super quick and may make gardening difficult. You can trim some stems to keep the plants small and attractive.
Trimming will also ensure that your plants remain in the specified regions so that maintenance becomes easy. Propagate these cuttings to develop new plants and make your garden more beautiful.
Can you cut back the Monstera plant?
Yes, you can cut back your Monstera plant. It can attain a growth of up to 8 feet or 2.4 meters. So cutting it back becomes essential to maintain space and the health of your Monstera plants.
Cut the leaves that are turning yellow, black, or brown. Simply cut them off the base so that they do not affect other leaves. Aging can cause the yellowing of leaves.
Brown and black colors in leaves are due to over-watering the plants. Always water your plants only when the soil is dry. If the leaves are yellow, dark brown, or black, they do not need more water.
You can cut back the aerial roots of Monstera plants without causing any harm to the plant. Once the stem of these climbers becomes too long for support, consider trimming them.
You can always root the cut-off stem to make new plants. Cutting the damaged leaves of your plants will be an outstanding aesthetic appeal to your garden. If you do not remove these leaves, they will fall off on their own.
The lower stems tend to lose the dry and damaged leaves, but the upper stem does not. So you will have to remove the dead and damaged leaves from the lower end yourself.
What happens when you cut a Monstera?
Trimming will affect a Monstera plant differently according to the part that gets trimmed. You can do the trimming from different parts of a plant. Which part should you cut depends totally on what your goal is? Trim back its roots if you want to prevent it from outgrowing the pot.
Cut off the unhealthy and yellow leaves if you need to protect your plant from a fungal infection. But, if your goal is propagation, you need a different approach.
Propagation is the process of rooting parts of an established plant in either a growing medium or in water. These cuttings will then grow into a separate plant. It may sound daunting to new gardeners and beginners, but it is a simple process.
Cut the plant beneath a node to propagate it. The parts where the leaves and stems of a plant grow are known as nodes. Are you wondering how to identify a node? On a Monstera plant, these areas are raised and have a little light green shade.
To find a node in your plant, select a leaf and follow it to the segment where it meets the main stem. This way, you will surely get a node. In older plants, nodes have several leaves growing out of them.
What is the best time to trim a Monstera plant?
Spring is the best time to trim a Monstera plant. You can remove dead or dry leaves anytime.
But the spring season will be best in case you are planning a substantial trimming. Consider that trimming time is significant because pruning can cause a bit of stress to a plant.
Plants may grow weaker when they get trimmed in their dormant period.
They may also not be able to rebound from the damage. The soaring season is the start of the growing season. Making cuts at the beginning of the growing season gives plants more time to heal.
Trimming puts plants under a bit of stress as food-producing leaves are cut-off. But it also promotes healthier growth in plants by redirecting energy from the older parts towards the newer ones.
How to trim a Monstera plant carefully?
Follow these steps to trim your Monstera plants carefully.
1. Trim the Monstera plants before the spring growing season
Gardeners can trim a plant for many reasons. If your plant has yellow, dry, and damaged leaves, then you can prune them at any time during the year.
But if you want to trim your plants to control their shape and size, you must plan to do the trimming before the spring season. Spring is a growing season, and this will allow better healing of the plants.
2. Clean your scissors, shears, and other garden tools with rubbing alcohol
Dirty scissors and gardening tools can infect your plants.
Cleaning all the tools before trimming is significant. Clean them with a cloth dipped in running alcohol or diluted bleach.
You can also make your disinfecting solution by mixing nine parts of water with 1 part bleach. If the tools are too dirty, first soak them in water to remove the dirt and disinfect them.
3. Always wear gloves while trimming
Gloves will protect your hands from the irritating sap of plants. The sap of Monstera plants has calcium oxalates that can irritate your skin and cause rashes.
Wearing gloves will protect your hands from skin problems.
Never trim the plants in front of kids or pets. If sap accidentally gets on your skin, wash that area with warm soapy water as soon as possible. Do not touch your face or eyes with that hand.
4. Cut off yellow, dry, and dead leaves near the base of the stem
Cut the damaged leaves from a sanitized pair of scissors.
To ensure that long and straggly stems are not remaining on the plant, cut near the base of the stem.
The leaves that are yellow on the top can be simply cut-off. If you often see yellow leaves in your plant, you are over-watering it and must stop this practice immediately.
5. Cut off stems near the main branch
To control the plant size, cut off stems near the main branch. Look for items on the top with no leaves and are clinging out.
Use sterilized shears to cut back these scraggly branches and reduce the Monstera plant size.
Cut them straight across the branch where they meet the base stem. It will encourage new plant growth near the base of the plant. If you want to control the size, you can also cut each branch by 1/3 or ½.
6. For repotting, cut back 1/3 of the roots
When you see roots coming out of the pot’s drainage holes, it is time to re-pot them.
Carefully pull the plant out of the pot and loosen the roots. Using sterilized shears, snip off 1/3 of the root. Fill the pot with fresh soil and repot your trimmed Monstera in it.
Trimming is significant for the health as well as the beauty of Monstera plants.
When done regularly in the correct manner, it can encourage new plant growth.
If you trim your plants at the wrong time, they will not die, but they will take a longer time to heal.
Properly follow all the steps mentioned here for a successful trim of your houseplants. Take extra care of your Monstera plant after trimming to ensure that it does not face any stresses.