By checking the height of the plant. The higher the plant, the older it is. Another method that also works effectively is observing the shape of its leaves.
Monstera is a tropical plant that actually belongs to the heirloom plant! Wow, what does it mean? Well, heirloom plants are plants that grew before modern agriculture. Or, you can say that they are old species that can live for years. Amazing right? After knowing this fact, some will wonder, “how old is my Monstera plant?”. That’s why we are here to help you unfold this mystery!
Generally, Monstera deliciosa can live up to 40 years. It only applies if they meet specific growing requirements, like light intensity, soil condition, humidity level, and more. Unfortunately, they can’t live forever as the dark green leaves will eventually turn yellow as they age. To further know about this beautiful plant, you have to read this article to the end. Ready? Let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
- How Do You Tell How Old Your Monstera Is?
- How To Know The Age of Your Monstera Plants?
- How Many Years Does It Take For A Monstera To Mature?
- How Long Does Monstera Take To Reach Its Full Potential?
- How Many Leaves Do Monstera Plants Produce Annually?
- How To Make Your Monstera Plant Live Longer?
How Do You Tell How Old Your Monstera Is?
We will find a solution to the question of how old my monstera plant is. Despite being able to live to be 40, you can’t pinpoint the age of each Monstera without knowing its exact method.
Unlike trees that have stem rings to determine their age, it has none of that. So, how to estimate his age? Read the explanation of the following sections below to find the answer.
How To Know The Age of Your Monstera Plants?
Luckily, there is a simple and easy way to help you find out how old your Monster is. The first practice is to measure the height of the Monstera plant. While another one is calculating the width of the leaves and observing their shape. How do those methods work?
1. Measuring The Height
Considering the fact that Monstera deliciosa plants grow about 1-2 feet per year, you can estimate their age by measuring the height of this tropical plant. Generally, those grown indoors are smaller and shorter. This is because the growth media is in the pot, which only has limited space, unlike outdoors, where they can freely grow upwards. Now, let’s try it!
- Take a ruler or gauge (it could be in inches or centimeters).
- Position the measuring instrument on the base of the stem.
- Then, check out the number of measurements.
- After you get the results, divide the result by 2 feet (24 inches).
- And now you know the approximate age of the plant.
Moreover, the potted Indoor Monstera plant will commonly grow up to 6 feet. If calculated using the formula above, then their maximum age is about three years. In some cases, they can grow taller with support. You may check the age of indoor plants will be in the maximum range of 5-7 years. On the other hand, those growing outdoors may be more than seven years old since they have more space to flourish fully.
2. Observing The Leaves Shape
In addition to measuring their height, observing the shape of Monstera plant leaves is an easy technique to predict their age. Young Monstera does not or does not have holes on their leaf surface as they have not started the fenestration.
Meanwhile, those around 1-3 years old will have faint fenestrated leaves. On the other hand, the mature Monstera leaves bear significant splitting. Some even have holes and breaks in the foliage.
And so, it brings us to another question, “How to encourage Monstera leaves to split?”. The answer is cliche, yet it works best: provide what they need. Do not put it in the full shade because it will slow down its growth. Make sure you have sufficient humidity as they fully grow under such conditions. Don’t forget to water once or twice per fortnight, depending on the season.
3. Counting The Number of The Leaves
It may sound trivial, but it turns out that this method works great to help the Monstera owners predict the age of their plants. This plant will grow about 60-70 leaves in one year! With this info, let’s try to calculate it:
- Prepare a tally counter, so you don’t miss the calculation when counting the leaves.
- While counting, don’t forget to press the tally counter.
- Then, take note of the number on the counter’s display.
- Divide that number by 70. And you get the result!
The downside of this method is that Monstera leaves will drop with age. So, it may only apply to indoor plants with a relatively shorter lifespan than those grown outdoors.
As additional information, the leaves of Monstera grown indoors will be approximately 18 inches wide when mature. In contrast, they can reach 35 inches in tropical forests. The more they get enough sunlight, the leaves will get bigger, greener, and healthier. And, of course, they will grow faster and better.
How Many Years Does It Take For A Monstera To Mature?
As we briefly mentioned, Monstera plants will reach their mature age when they are 2-3 years old with a relatively fast growth rate, around 1-2 feet per year. The flowers will start to appear 12-14 months after planting.
At that age, they will begin to display the fenestrated leaves. To be specific, fenestration is a process where Monstera leaves will form holes that will further split.
These split leaves are the hallmark of this tropical plant. Some say that foliage adapts to bad weather, such as strong winds or heavy rains that may damage the plant structure. Some others argue that split leaves make it easier for those at the bottom to get balanced sunlight. But honestly, the reason remains unknown.
Additionally, it must be taken into account that this healthy growth only works in the proper growing conditions. This plants require bright indirect light, rich and moist soil, and adequate water. Also, it is better to add fertilizer to provide more nutrients to the plant.
How Long Does Monstera Take To Reach Its Full Potential?
As the plant matures, the Monstera plant has reached its full potential. While baby Monstera has intact leaves, the fully established ones will begin fenestration 2-3 years after planting. At first, the leaves will form small holes near the center vein. Then, they will expand and split the surface of the leaf.
Furthermore, mature Monstera will also start producing flowers and fruits. In addition, the roots are also strong and established, thus ensuring a solid plant structure that is not easily damaged by bad weather. You can also start propagation to produce new plants. Luckily, this tropical gem can be propagated with soil and water.
The soil propagation of Monstera will begin with taking the cuttings from a mature plant. Make sure you take those with at least one node and one or two leaves. Then, plant it in a previously prepared pot with well-drained soil. And you are all set! This new planting will start developing roots about 14-21 days later.
Other than propagating Monstera in the soil, you can do it in the water. It is easier because you don’t have to get your hands dirty. All you need to do is to cut the mature part of the Monstera with nodes using sterilized, sharp shears. Then, put it in a clear plastic bottle or glass container filled with water. Next, wait for the roots to grow for around 2-3 weeks, just like soil propagation.
In addition, you can let it grow in water. But, you must change the water weekly and rinse the roots to prevent bacterial growth. However, your Monstera plant will not reach its full potential like those that grow in the soil.
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How Many Leaves Do Monstera Plants Produce Annually?
Your Monstera plant will, on average, grow about 60-70 leaves per year. You can also determine whether they live happily or not from the frequency of their growth. Healthy Monstera will bring you new leaves every 4-6 weeks.
However, it highly depends on the cultivars. Some slow-growing Monstera plants, such as Monstera obliqua, will only produce a maximum of three leaves yearly or even less.
Apart from cultivars, another factor that affects the production of Monstera leaves is the number of nodes. Nodes are growth points on the Monstera stem, where you can expect new leaves. The more nodes, the denser your Monstera plant will grow later, and vice versa.
These nodes also become determinants for cell plant propagation. A more complete explanation regarding Monstera’s propagation has been explained above. Scroll up!
Suppose your Monstera plant is mature but not producing as many leaves as we mentioned above; you may need to spit it up! The best way to do it is to ensure its current living condition in accordance with the natural habitat of Monstera. This plant needs bright sunlight but indirectly to prevent sunburn. And as a tropical plant, the humidity level and watering schedule must be kept on track. Otherwise, your Monstera will have yellow leaves.
How To Make Your Monstera Plant Live Longer?
By showering your Monstera plant with so much love, you can accelerate the plant’s growth and keep it living longer than expected! So, what do you have to do? Provide what they need to perform best. Check out the details below so you won’t miss a thing!
1. Check On Light Intensity
Some plant lovers sometimes neglect to provide a proper place for their Monstera. Instead of bright indirect sunlight, they put it under extensive sun exposure, making the leaves’ edges crisp because of sunburn. Others try to save the plant in the shade, inhibiting its growth and making them grow small foliage.
Hence, you have to ensure you are not wrong in giving them what they need. The best places to put your potted indoor plant are on the east-facing patio for outdoors and the south-facing window for indoors. In these positions, the morning sun will shine on the plant without harming the leaves.
2. Keep The Humidity On Track
Monstera plants need at least 60-70% moisture. Without such humidity, it will begin to wither. Some other signs that grow in low moisture appear yellow or brown, followed by dropping leaves. If this condition is allowed, you must say goodbye to your plant.
Fortunately, you can maintain this humidity by buying a humidity tracker. Once it drops, you may place a tray filled with pebbles and water, which will evaporate and improve the moisture indoors. A humidifier will also work effectively if you don’t want the hassle.
3. Set A Watering Schedule
In addition to the two methods for locking humidity above, watering may also help. By setting a regular watering schedule, your plants will get a steady water supply. However, that doesn’t mean you can give too much water. Overflowing the soil with water will trigger root rot. It will also lead to other issues, for example, a yeast infection.
Well, what’s the right way to know if your plants need water? Observe the soil surface. When about 1-2 inches of the surface is dry, it is time to water them thoroughly. But it is better to regularly water it 1-2 times per ounce or two weeks.
4. Prune Their Dead Leaves
You will notice lower leaves of Monstera plants die as they grow older. The dark green leaves will turn yellow, wither, and fall off. But sometimes, they must be removed using a sharp knife or shears.
In addition to improving the appeal, pruning dead leaves also stimulates new leaf growth. On this occasion, you can also check whether there is a pest invasion on the leaves. Occasionally, aphids or mealy bugs love to hide underneath the foliage. If you find one, immediately cut them off before spreading.
5. Fertilize Your Monstera Plants
Fertilization is one of the best practices to boost your plant’s growth and extend its lifespan. You will expect denser leaves, more blooms, and the most exciting one, fruits! Monstera fruits are the most awaited part of this plant. Apart from being rare, these tropical fruits are delicious.
Furthermore, you can try to add NPK fertilizers, all-purpose fertilizers, or Monstera-specific ones to your Monstera during its growing phases in the summer. Don’t give it too much as it will trigger fertilizer burn that can damage the roots.
6. Clean The Leaves Off Dust and Dirt
It seems unnecessary, but it turns out that the manifestation of dust and dirt on the surface of Monstera can inhibit its growth. But how come? The specks of dirt will block the stomata, worsening air circulation.
Worse yet, photosynthesis, the main process of producing energy for plants to carry out activities, is hampered. This is because the stomata, which are the space for oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange, are blocked. You can clean it periodically with a brush and damp cloth gently. This leaf cleaning also ensures that no pests are lodged in the leaves.
7. Repotting Is Necessary
Since they are long-lived plants, they have the ability to continue growing until they die. And so, repotting is required to offer more space to develop. Moreover, your Monstera plants need at least annual repotting to grow optimally.
Before repotting, make sure the pot size is one or two times bigger than the previous container. In addition, choose those with good drainage holes to avoid the risk of water being trapped in the pot for too long, which can trigger root rot.
The best and easiest way to know how old your Monstera plant, is by checking the height of the plant. The higher the plant, the older it is. Another method that also works effectively is observing the shape of its leaves. Mature monstera has completely fenestrated, heart-shaped leaves, while baby Monstera bears circular shapes with no split leaves.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
How long does a baby Monstera take to grow?
Baby Monstera requires around 2-3 years until it is mature and fully established. On average, they grow about 1-2 feet per year or one-third inches yearly. Once mature, the Monstera will begin to split the leaves, giving them an outstanding characteristic that is his trademark. In addition, they also start to flower and fruit. And amazingly, the Monstera fruit is edible and tasty!
How long does monstera live?
Under proper growing conditions, Monstera plants can live up to 40 years. They also belong to the heirloom plants, which existed much earlier than today’s modern agriculture. In addition, they can survive for a long time, both indoors and outdoors. However, you must ensure that the place where it grows is similar to the original habitat. In addition, provide shelter whenever extreme cold weather approaches.
What is the lifespan of a Monstera leaf?
The lifespan of the Monstera leaf follows the plant, which can reach 40 years. However, if you cut them, the freshly cut leaves will likely last up to 3 weeks. Moreover, the leaves will fully unfold within 1-7 weeks after growing. Meanwhile, the fenestration begins after the plant is 2-3 years old. Fenestration is a process of Monstera leaves split that will give the hallmarks of exquisite holes on the foliage surface.