Monstera Deliciosa "Thai Constellation"

Monstera deliciosa is a hardy and easy to care for plant known by many names, but most commonly the “Swiss cheese plant” due to the unique development of ridges and holes on its more mature leaves. The “deliciosa” part of the plant’s name comes from the pineapple-like fruit it bears in its natural habitat!

Monstera Deliciosa “Thai Constellation” or yellow-variegated Monstera Deliciosa has been one of the highly sought-after houseplant ever. Its incredible form of leaves can grow up to 3’ wide with large holes. This cultivar produces unique leaf with exceptionally beautiful cream-and-green variegation, the pattern is in small sections scattered across the leaves, reminiscent of stars in a galaxy, hence the cosmic name.

Unlike the green Monstera Deliciosa, this variegated form has much slower growth and not a drought tolerance as the regular form can do. The yellow portion of the variegated Monstera leaves cannot absorb light, thus, low light conditions are not ideal. A fairly bright room with plenty of shade is best. Direct sunlight will damage the leaves and not enough light can slow down the growth.

Monsteras appreciate a warm, humid environment, a good amount of water and gentle sunlight. Place your Monstera away from vents and drafts where it would be subjected to dry air and in a spot where it can receive medium to bright indirect light.

A good soil mix is one that is light, open and airy, so the chance of overwatering can be reduced. A moisture meter will help but of course using your finger to test works too! A good mix consists of the following ingredients in equal parts:

  • Compost mix (substitute: organic potting mix) - food for your plant and added moisture retention.

  • Peat moss (substitute: coconut coir) - moisture retaining but light

  • Pumice (substitute: perlite) - Provides drainage and slowly releases water back to the plant adding minerals that differ depending on the site the pumice was mined.

  • Charcoal (substitute: Orchid bark) - provides draining and increases the surface area of the soil so the soil can dry, won’t compact, prevents the mix becoming hydrophobic. Charcoal absorbs excess water from the roots of your plant and keeps the soil “sweet” by guarding against bacteria, fungus and rot. It also helps to eliminate odours, and is particularly effective in terrariums.

 

You will need to keep your plant warm. Place it in an airy open area and provide with good natural bright, indirect light, filtered light (this is very important!) or a little morning sun is ok. If you have a dark apartment or house grow lights can be a good subtitute - full spectrum is best. Make sure you allow the substrate to dry out completely between watering.

HB101 is a great product to use to help with transport/repot shock - I would personally use both the liquid and granule version. Sprinkle some granules onto the soil, *cover with bark/coco chips and then water with a mixture of the liquid version. Rule of thumb for HB101 liquid version - 1-2 drop for 1 litre of water.

*Why do I cover the top of the soil with bark/coco chip? By doing so, it would reduce the possibility of Gnat or insects laying eggs in the soil.

If the plant(s) is falling over you will need to stake it, either with a moss pole/stick - if they stay horizontal they may rot.

Keep an eye on the moisture levels of the soil. Rot is a process that happens very quickly so your soil needs to be drying out quickly enough and not staying wet.

Frequently Asked Questions regarding Monstera Deliciosa Variegated or "Thai Constellation"

 

Help! The edges of my Variegated Monstera are turning brown.

  • This could either be a result of too little light or salt build up in the water. Because the white portion of this plant's leaves contain no chlorophyll, they cannot aid in photosynthesis. Therefore the Variegated Monstera requires a higher light location than a non variegated Monstera. In addition, this variety is sensitive to salt buildup, so it’s best to let your tap water sit out uncovered for 24 hours before you water the plant. Many of the minerals and chemicals will evaporate and stop brown tips from occurring.

 

Help! My Monstera is turning yellow!

  • If your leaves are turning yellow, there are many things that could be causing it. First, try to ensure that your Monstera is receiving the proper water and light. Yellowing can often be the first sign of overwatering. If you eliminate these as possibilities, then there is a chance that your Monstera might be rootbound and needs to be potted in a larger pot. You can tell if it is rootbound once the non-aerial roots become exposed above the topsoil and seem to be swirling around the pot, searching for a new home. Most Monsteras need to be repotted up a size roughly every 2 years.

 

There are these weird, leafless brown growths coming off of my Monstera. Is that normal?

  • Yes! These are aerial roots and they are totally normal. In nature, these are what helps give support to the plant and allow it to climb and reach for more light. The roots will not damage walls or surfaces, and you can always prune them if they get unruly.

 

How fast will my plant grow?

  • The growth of your plant depends on its access to light and water. In ideal conditions, with bright indirect light and consistent moisture, Monsteras can grow 1-2 feet per year. Keep in mind that the Monstera's natural growth pattern is to spread wide rather than reach tall. Try staking your plant to encourage vertical growth.

 

My Monstera has gotten way too big. What can I do?

  • Prune it back! These guys are very hardy and can handle a good trim. You can also train your Monstera to grow whichever way your heart desires by using moss poles, stakes and ties.

 

Can I put my Monstera next to the AC / heater?

  • Variegated Monsteras are tropical plants that appreciate a humid environment. If conditions are too dry they will drop their leaves. While Monsteras will thrive in an air conditioned apartment, always avoid putting them in the direct line of fire for either AC or heating units. If their leaves are wagging from the air, it’s best to find another spot.

 

How often should I fertilize my plant?

  • In general, house plants will thrive when they are fertilized spring through fall. Fertilize once a month with an organic houseplant fertilizer, following the package instructions for dilution and administration. The Plant Concept uses HB101, both the granules and liquid version, HB101 granules is a slow release fertilizer to be sprinkle on/in the soil, HB101 liquid version can be used weekly or bi monthly by adding 1 drop to 1 litre of water. 

 

How often does my plant need to be repotted?

  • For larger floor plants, we suggest repotting every 18-24 months. Typically you want to choose a pot size of 2”- 4” larger in diameter to allow for growth. Don’t choose a pot much larger than the previous as this could drown the plants roots. If you prefer to maintain the current size of your plant, repot into the same pot, providing new soil and trimming away some roots and foliage. Spring or summer is the ideal time to repot as the plant is at its strongest.

Happy planting and I hope you enjoy your newest addition! Any other questions in regard to care please add in the comments or message me and I will endeavor to answer asap.

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