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MONSTERA deliciosa

Image of Monstera deliciosa

Forest & Kim Starr

Family

Araceae

Botanical Name

MONSTERA deliciosa

Plant Common Name

Tarovine

General Description

Swiss cheese plant is a lush tropical vine with large, glossy leaves, some with holes, the reason for its common name. The youngest leaves are a bright green and usually entire (no lobes). As the leaves grow they develop narrow, elongated, deeply cut lobes or rounded holes. Once established, this vine, native from southern Mexico to Panama, blooms in the warm season with typical aroid flowers that have a hooded, felt-like spathe shielding a creamy, finger-like spadix. After the flower matures, the spathe drops off, leaving the spadix to ripen its kernel which are sticky and delicious, tasting of a blend of pineapple and banana. Avoid unripe fruits, as they will likely cause a stinging discomfort and rash in the mouth.

Grow Swiss cheese plant outdoors in a frost-free location in partial sun to partial shade, such as on the trunk of a large tree or palm. Ensure it has a rich, well-drained soil for best growth and development of large leaves. Ample moisture is necessary from spring through fall. Reduce watering in the weaker-light months of winter. This vine also makes a handsome houseplant when smaller. Indoors, it needs a moist soil and a warm location with bright light. In time, it will become a large plant.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Vine/Liana

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    15'-30' / 4.6m - 9.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Mexico, Central America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Vining/Climbing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White, Ivory

  • Fruit Color

    Ivory

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    Yes

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Edible, Feature Plant, Houseplant, Tropical, Vine

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No