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Although this particular one is not commonly seen in homes, it is extremely sought-after due to its authentic leaves. Yes, it’s Monstera pinnatipartita, an unusual member of the breath-taking Monstera family with amazing powers of transformation. As it matures, it begins to fenestrate a lot, looking completely different than the baby version.
Care highlights: Despite the fact that it’s rare, it’s not a complicated one to take care of. When choosing soil, opt for the mix which is rich in organic matter. Put it in a brighter place but where the light is slightly diffused. Keep the soil moist but not wet, and maintain the average level of humidity. Fertilize Monstera pinnatipartita regularly to make the plant prosper. You can propagate it both in soil and water. As for the potting, bear in mind that this species likes the roots to be well-aerated, so never press the soil too tightly.
Introducing Monstera pinnatipartita
This intriguing specimen, often mixed with one member of Philodendron family, Split Leaf variant, originates from the rain forests of South America. It is native to Ecuador, Colombia, and Peru. Like any other member of the family, this one also appreciates lots of moisture, indirect light, and moderate temperature.
One of the most fascinating things about this plant is the leaf transformation it undergoes. Its appearance changes dramatically, giving the mature plant an entirely different look than it had when it was younger.
As the plant grows and develops, its foliage becomes more fenestrated and more pinnated. If you pay close attention to this one, you will spot that its foliage divides all the way to the midrib, rather than just making holes.
When it comes to flowering, it tends to deliver monocot flowers. The structure of such flowers consists of spathe and spadix. These waxy flowers are typical of all members of the arum family, Araceae.
What about the size of the plant?
In its natural habitat, the plant can grow up to ten or even twenty meters. But have no worries, its size won’t go crazy when kept as a home plant. Let’s say 50cm to one meter.
You can keep it as both an indoor and outdoor plant. However, if you want to keep its size within the limits of average, I suggest keeping it inside. Place a totem pole in the container to support it.
However, if you are curious to see its “creeping powers”, you can leave it be outside. Once it finds a reliable surface to rely on, you can expect a true spectacle over time. Be patient, this process is slower.
Of course, be ever-watchful of sunlight when you place it outside. The last thing you want is to have the leaves burnt.
What Type of Soil is Ideal for Monstera Pinnatipartita?
When taking care of an exotic plant such as this one, the best way to make things work is to mimic the conditions of its natural environment.
So, this plant is an epiphyte. These plants are well-trained to adapt to all sorts of conditions. They grow without roots. When it comes to food, they collect nourishing particles it from the air, organic debris, as well as decomposing vegetation or animal dung.
What does that tell us?
This plant requires potting mix that is rich in organic matter to be able to develop properly. So, mulch, compost, and bark bits are the things you need. Or even better, if you can purchase organic manure, your Monstera will be eternally grateful for such a powerful snack.
50% mixed with another 50% that represents the combo of sandy potting soil and perlite is ideal for this lovely plant.
Also, bear in mind that it has to be a well-draining one, as you don’t want to keep your plant in soggy soil. Some even say that potting mixes for Anthuriums work for this plant as well, as the requirements are similar.
Does it Prefer Excessive Light?
When in its natural habitat, what this plant does is climbing in order to receive enough light. That’s why it can reach an impressive size of 10-20 meters.
So, if you want to grow a taller one, you should put it in a bright shade. It is tolerant to lower light, but you shouldn’t keep it in an overly dark place. However, it won’t be the happiest one if you keep it in total shade either. Its leaves will become darker and its overall progress will significantly slow down as well. Moreover, it won’t fenestrate, and without that, it loses the charm. And health, of course.
Also, avoid too strong light or you could burn the foliage. Balance is the key for happy and satisfied Monstera pinnatipartita.
What Are Its Watering Requirements?
The rule that goes for any plant is that no matter how often (or rare) you need to water it, you should always inspect the soil before you do so.
This particular one prefers humid soil. Mind the difference between humidity and wetness, they are not the same.
Some gardeners say that it is best to pour precious liquid to your Monstera pinnatipartita is when the soil is completely dry. I’d say a day before that is ideal. Don’t let it scorch but don’t add the new amount of water if it is already humid enough.
On the other hand, so many factors will determine the right time to water your plant. What’s the temperature like? Does it receive too much or too little light? Is it a mature or a young plant? And so on.
If the conditions are relatively stable, you can simply train your plant to acclimatize to them. This means that you should pour a specific amount of water once a week on the same day. That way you will create some routine for both your plant and yourself.
Always water the plant thoroughly until you see excess water running through the drainage holes on the bottom of your pot.
Is It Necessary to Keep the Temperature High?
While it is true that this plant is quite okay with temperatures up to 27ºC, you should still keep it in a balanced environment.
It thrives in temperatures between 18-27 degrees of Celsius (65-80ºF). Even though it is okay with lower temps, avoid exposing it to those below 10°C (50ºF). If you do so, its development process will simply stop.
In case you keep it outside, mind the frost. Tropical plants are susceptible to it.
Why Ensuring a Good Level of Humidity is Important?
Rainforests are places where the humidity is moderate to high. As you can conclude, Monstera pinnatipartita is exposed to heavy rains, which means higher humidity is normal for this plant. If you want the exact percentage, anything above 60% will make this plant thrive.
In case the humidity in your home is constantly lower than that, you need to apply some tricks to increase it.
Of course, buying a humidifier is the fastest and the simplest solution, but there are other ways to boost the moisture level in the air.
For example, consider grouping the plants. This way they will form some sort of microclimate and will ensure enough humidity for all of them. If you have Philodendrons and Pothos plants, you can place this one near them.
It’s not only excellent for their health and development, but it’s an enjoyable and breath-taking view as well.
You can also place a tray with pebbles and water under the container. Or, if it is spacious enough, you can accommodate M. Pinnatipartita in the bathroom. Of course, as long as there’s enough light.
How Often Do You Have to Fertilize This Plant?
This will also depend based on the soil you keep it in. If you were lucky enough to get some manure, then you won’t have to do it so often, as the soil itself will already be filled with nourishing elements.
On the other hand, this plant seems to enjoy being fed regularly. You can opt for slow-release organic food to ensure a constant influx of food over a longer period of time.
Also, the well-diluted fish emulsion can give a significant boost to the plant, if you add it once a month or every six weeks. It will promote blooming.
Of course, as with the majority of indoor plants, cut back on fertilizing during winter. That’s when the plant is passive, so it doesn’t require any additional food other than what it receives from watering.
When it comes to commercial mixes, products for anthuriums or fertilizers for orchids work for this member of Monstera family.
Tips to Propagate M. Pinnatipartita
For propagation, you should use either stem or tip cuttings, both in water and soil.
How practical isn’t it?
As time goes by, aerial roots will grow and enable the plant to develop well.
Let’s explain the essentials.
How to propagate tip cutting in soil?
Pick a stem tip from the healthy grown-up plant. If possible, find the one which already has aerial roots.
Make a cutting that contains at least 2 leaf nodes. The best tool for this is sharp and clean scissors. Pinch the lowermost leaves from the node and place them in the container filled with the combo of sphagnum moss and perlite. Make sure it’s humid- not wet.
It is important to insert the stem under the soil properly and push the soil to support it well. The good thing is that rooting powder is not necessary as those cuttings tend to root rather quickly. Place the container at a bright place where the light is not too strong.
Make sure the soil is humid so that the cuttings could root. After a week or two, roots should appear. You can transplant it to a potting mix after eight weeks.
Propagation in water
Make the same cutting as you would for propagation in soil.
Find a glass container that is deep and wide enough. A simple jar works fine as well. If it is too narrow, you could damage the delicate roots while extracting it. Fill the container with clean, tepid water and put it to a place where the light is indirect. Submerge the cutting so that the junctions are under the water and the foliage out.
Like with the previous process, expect the roots to appear after a week or two. They should be about an inch or two long. Place the plant in the ordinary mix after eight weeks.
How to Pot This One Properly?
This plant can be kept both as a trailing vine and as a climbing plant, so it’s up to you to decide what you like the best. And adjust potting accordingly.
If you ask me, the climber variant is more intriguing. To do this properly, you should get a larger container and some trellis to support the climbing. It can be a moss-pole or a long wooden stick.
As the plant becomes higher and higher, its long aerial roots hang down, which is indeed an interesting sight to observe.
Related: Picking the Right Pot for Indoor Plants – 6 Rules
Is Air-Layering Complicated?
It is not, but there’s a precise process you should follow if you want to make it work.
First of all, get a six-inch see-thorugh plastic bag, a bit of moist peat moss, and a couple of twisty ties.
Then, pick a node with a firm leggy stem and, of course, aerial roots on it. Cut it under the junction, but no deeper than ¼ of the overall thickness of the stem. Pierce a couple of holes at the bottom of the bag and then place a handful of moss. Cut the top end of the bag so as to get flaps. You will use them to wrap the stem up. Hold the moist moss in the bag with one hand. Place the stem and roll the flaps around it. Secure the bag using ties.
? Did You Know? It’s not necessary to use rooting powder to speed up this process. As a matter of fact, some research even show that rooting hormone actually cause the rooting to take longer.
It’s essential to keep the moss humid. You will do so by pouring the precious liquid through the holes you have pierced. After two weeks, you should spot the roots that have grown into the moss.
The next step is to gently eliminate the moss. You don’t want to damage the new roots, do you? Cut the stem below the newly-formed roots to disconnect the cutting from the main plant.
Plant it in the container and like with propagation, maintain good humidity level of the soil to make sure your delicate new plant will adapt well.
If you want to boost chances for success, you can try this with more than one node. At least one of them will develop roots.
Common Issues and How to Tackle Them
All indoor plants have some problems, and Monstera Pinnatipartita is not an exception. Luckily, none of them is impossible to deal with.
One of the most common reasons for this is an excessive amount of water. If your plant is in soggy soil for a longer time, and the drainage is not proper, its leaves will signal that your watering schedule requires modification. As I mentioned, always check the soil before you administer the additional amount of water.
Brown and crispy edges
This happens either because your plant is not receiving enough water or it is exposed to direct sunlight. Move it to some other place, and water it more frequently, and this problem will be gone.
No splitting in new foliage
Light is the guilty one here. For a plant to fenestrate properly, it is essential to receive enough light. But, with this particular one, Monstera Pinnatipartita, it could be also the lack of support for climbing.
When the aerial roots attach to some surface, they help the foliage mature, and fenestrate. So, get a moss pole or any other trellis for your plant.
Pests and diseases
Yes, as you could assume, mealybugs and spider mites are those notorious, annoying enemies. To minimize the chances for them to invade your plant, use neem oil once a month, or insecticidal soap.
If you keep the surroundings neat and tidy, get rid of the dead foliage, water your plant wisely, your Monstera shouldn’t have any issues with fungi or bacteria.
7 Quick Tips to Make Your Plant Extra Happy
- Find a well-lit location where the sunlight is not too strong
- Never let your plant sit in soggy soil
- Get some manure to make it prosper
- Find some trellis to support climbing
- Group it with other epiphytes to maintain the desired level of moisture
- Turn the pot around from time to time so that the entire plant receives enough light
- Put more than one vine in the container to achieve the bushier look
Frequently Asked Questions
Can this plant live in water?
It can for a shorter period of time. But, knowing that it prefers to climb, I’d say soil is always a better choice.
Are Monstera Pinnatipartita and Split Leaf Philodendron the same plants?
Even though many people mix them, they aren’t. Truth be told, they are related, but you cannot cross-pollinate them. Also, Monstera’s flowers are unisex, while Philodendrons have bisexual.
What to do to make Monstera Pinnatipartita look bushier?
As it grows, this plant gets leggier and it doesn’t branch much. If you want to make it look fuller, the best would be to put more than one cutting in the pot.
Having in mind their unique appearance, no wonder Monsteras got so popular among gardeners. Now, they may be tropical plants, but they are not complicated to maintain. As long as you follow all the tips and instructions, there’s no room for mistakes.
Hope my guide brought you some valuable insights about this intriguing specimen.
What do you usually use to support Monstera Pinnatipartita climbing? I’d like to hear from you, so share your experience with me in the comments section below.