There are many plants that you can propagate in water, Monstera included. This is an effective way to start the plant’s growth, but can you grow the plant in water completely?
You may have seen all of the Leca plants on Instagram being grown within clear vases and might be wondering whether this same method would work for a Monstera.
It is relatively easy to grow a Monstera in water, but it will require more care and attention. It will look incredibly aesthetic and will be a talking point when people come into your home.
Your Monstera will undoubtedly survive in water with the proper care and attention. Within 2 weeks of being transferred to a container of water, you should notice your Monstera growing new leaves.
That being said, it is unlikely to grow to its full potential, like it would in a pot of soil. Your best bet is to grow it for a while in the water and eventually transfer it to a pot of soil.
Pros of growing Monstera in water
Opinions are fairly divided on whether Monstera plants can be grown successfully in water. It looks incredibly cool and gives you a unique way to present and utilize your glass vases.
It is much less messy than planting your Monstera in soil, particularly if you have antsy animals roaming about your home.
It is cheaper to grow your Monstera in water than in soil. You do not need to buy specialist potting mixes, all you need to do is turn on your tap. You can also check the roots with ease, as they are immediately visible.
Another advantage of growing your Monstera in water is that the pest risk is greatly reduced. Many pests, such as gnats, require the soil to lay their eggs in. This is not possible in the water. In the case that you do get a pest infestation, it is easier to wash the bugs off when your plant sits in the water.
This may seem counterintuitive, but growing plants in water can reduce the risk of overwatering them. This is due to the network of special, delicate water roots that grow, ensuring that not too much liquid is uptaken by the plant.
Cons of growing Monstera in water
There are some important factors to consider when attempting to grow a Monstera in water. You will need to change the water out frequently to prevent it from becoming discolored and smelly.
This will need to be done at least once per week but may be required as frequently as every 2-3 days. This ensures that the oxygen levels in the water are sufficient to support the growth of the plant.
It is strongly advised that you do not use tap water as a growing medium. This is full of chlorine and is very bad for the health of your plants.
It is also high in salts and other chemicals to make it safe to drink. We recommend using rainwater as a growth medium and for watering your plants.
You must use a hydroponic fertilizer. This will help to incorporate nutrients into the water for your plant to absorb.
Without these nutrients, it will not grow, and will eventually die off. A seaweed emulsion should be sufficient, particularly if it is just the Monstera growing in the water.
You will end up with algae in your vase. This is unsightly and almost impossible to prevent from growing, but will not harm the health of your plant at all. If you do not wish to see algal growth, we recommend using an opaque pot.
As we have mentioned, the growth potential of your Monstera will be reduced if you grow it in water. This is because it is not the optimal condition for the plant’s health.
Care tips for water-grown Monstera
The roots of the Monstera will need to be properly cleaned of the soil before placing it in the vase. When you transplant it from soil to water, the root system will change. The soil roots will eventually be shed and replaced with water roots.
If you leave an excessive quantity of soil on the roots then this will prevent oxygen from being absorbed. This can rapidly lead to root rot, a fatal disease for most plants.
If you notice your Monstera looking a little worse for wear, we suggest increasing the light, temperature, and humidity levels. This helps the Monstera to generate additional energy and can prevent it from dying of shock.
Monstera plants are relatively hardy, although they can die if the conditions are not correct. Do not place your plant in direct sunlight, and try to keep the ambient temperature under 82 degrees Fahrenheit.
You are likely to need to test the pH levels of the water, particularly if you are using it to grow multiple plants. If the pH level of the water is not correct then your Monstera will not be able to absorb nutrients for growth.
How to clean your Monstera roots
When you first remove your Monstera plant from the soil, you should try to pry off as much soil from the roots as possible using your finger.
You will snap some of the roots as you do this, it is unavoidable. Try to be gentle though, to limit the amount of damage done.
Hold your plant under a tap of running water and use the stream to wash any soil remnants off of the roots.
If you have a variable pressure tap or hose, start with gentle water pressure and gradually increase it. We advise doing this over a bucket to avoid sending lots of soil down your drain.
You should then turn off the tap and allow your Monstera roots to soak in the bucket of collected water.
This will allow the water to soften any remaining dirt, making it easier to remove. Many people recommend gently scrubbing the roots with a toothbrush to assist with this process.