• Paula

How To Cut & Propagate Your Monstera

Cutting your monstera can be scary. If you've had your plant for a while, you've probably grown attached to it. Who wants to chop a green friend into pieces? I confess, I've set out to cut my monstera a few times and lost the nerve.

Your motive may help you muster the courage. Sometimes a nasty bug infestation will get the best of your plant - you literally have to cut your losses to save it. In other cases, it just takes up too much space. You've adapted over time by ducking underneath it, but realize.... this is crazy.

In the right growing conditions, a healthy monstera will consume more and more space. Monster-sized leaves that grow both upwards and sideways eventually tip the plant over. Not to worry, it's just time to downsize. You can divide your plant and share with friends, or create smaller monsteras for your own collection.

Here's a guide to successfully divide and propagate your monstera deliciosa.

Map It Out

Take a moment to examine the stems. Each stem has petioles (the stalk that attaches the leaf blade to the stem), nodes (the spot where leaves and potential roots grow), and may have aerial roots.

If your monstera has aerial roots, that's great! New roots grow on both stem bottoms and aerial roots, so if your plant has aerial roots preserve a portion of the root near the base of the cutting. This will jump start the rooting process. Choose stem sections with at least one node. Without nodes, stem sections alone won't produce roots.

Make The Cut

Use sharp scissors or pruning shears to cut. It's important that your shears are sterilized. This may seem excessive, but dirty sheers expose your plant to bacteria, fungi, and viruses. I've skipped this step in the past and unintentionally gave my poor jade plant a systemic infection. So treat this like surgery and wipe, spray, or dip your shears in alcohol.

Cut the stem on an angle to increase the potential rooting area. Healthy aerial roots develop fresh new roots, so include those if you can. The more roots the better. Cut with confidence; no sawing, no hesitating. Press hard and make one clean cut. You can do it!

Place Cut Sections in Water

Choose a vase or vessel for the newly cut sections. Fill it with water and refresh the water every week. In a few weeks (more or less, depending on the season), you'll see new roots on the stem and/or aerial root. Wait until these roots are at least an inch long before potting, but don't wait too long. The roots in this video are ready to go.

Repot When Ready

Now that your cutting has rooted, you can transfer it to a pot. Choose a new, small pot, or place your cutting back in the original pot with the mother plant for a lush and full-looking monstera. I did this with the one in the photo below.

You've just given your plant a fresh new beginning. Now make sure your monstera has the right growing conditions, you can find monstera care and growing tips here. Keep in mind, roots that develop in water need time to adjust to soil. If your plant looks a bit dull during the first few weeks, it may be adjusting. In time, it should perk up and start to shine.

Questions or comments? Drop them in the comment section below. I would love to hear from you.

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