Monstera Adansonii AKA. Philodendron / Swiss Cheese Plant* / Adanson’s Monstera / Five Holes Plant

Loved for the distinctive holes that pepper the foliage, the Monstera Adansonii is so regularly confused with its perhaps more well-known relative, the Monstera Deliciosa (the Swiss cheese Plant), that despite a few nitpicky differences between the two species, the names have become almost interchangeable. Easy to care for and a real stunner, the Monstera Adansonii is the perfect piece to brighten up humid, indoor spaces like utility rooms and conservatories, or to feature in a cosy, self-sustaining terrarium. 

baby monstera

Where Does It Come From?

Native mainly to the humid jungles of Central America, many varieties of monstera populate the jungles of Mexico and its close neighbours. This tropical vining perennial thrives in balmy lowlands and can also be found brightening up forests in the West Indies on islands like Dominica, Antigua, Granada, Guadeloupe and St Lucia.

Why Should I Get One?

  • As well as making an attractive addition to one of your DIY terrariums, the Monkey Mask is a fantastic trailing, climbing and hanging plant.
  • These bad boys are comfortable growing in just about any direction and thus make a lovely piece of signature décor in indoor spaces.

How Big Can It Grow? 

In the wild these bad boys can go truly mad, growing up to 60 feet high if they leverage themselves against a large forest tree or other vegetation. Depending on the conditions you’re able to create for your plant in your home, growth tends to be fairly moderate and you can use small canes or ties to train the vine upwards or along shelving etc. 

Where Should I Keep It? 

Although the Monstera Adansonii hails from tropical climes, it is best to avoid direct sunlight for this species. Normally growing in the sweaty underlayers of the jungle, close to the ground, the plant prefers bright, but indirect, sunshine and can tolerate moderate shade. Humidity and temperature are key for the Monstera genus, which is why these littl’uns work so well in a terrarium! Although the plant will tolerate anything over 12°C, they much prefer warmer conditions between 18 and 27° and should be placed tucked away from any cold draughts. 

A very important note is that the leaves of this pretty plant can be extremely toxic to humans and animals alike. If you choose to bring one of these into your life, make sure to keep this one well out of the reach of pets or children. 

How Often Should I Water It? 

Not a fan of being over-watered (read: loved to death), it is best to water this little one only whenever you notice the soil starting to look a little dry. During the early growth stages, a monthly feed with a balanced fertiliser also goes down a treat. A moist and pH-neutral soil works best. 

Other than giving the leaves a quick wipe every few weeks to remove accumulated dust that can wither the plant’s health, once you have your plant set up in an appropriate environment, this little guy is fairly low maintenance and can happily spiral away up canes and trellis’ to create a stunning wall of deep-green foliage. Offering a truly unique look, a Monkey Mask can add oodles of personality to your space with the right love and care. 


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