Monstera deliciosa can become leggy if it is getting less than 6 hours of indirect sunlight. Leggy monstera plants will grow long, weak stems that will bend with the weight of the leaf. Stems and leaves will become light green or even yellow over time. To save a leggy monstera it will need to be pruned back to a healthy node, moved to a bright, light position and watered regularly.
This article will explore how to fix a leggy monstera deliciosa at home. This problem is common and you can save your plant if you catch it early. This article will give you 4 easy steps to save your plant and grow a strong, happy monstera.
Why Monstera deliciosa gets leggy
Monstera deliciosa will get leggy if it is not getting enough light. The stems will reach up, becoming long and thin searching for light. If your indoor monstera is getting less than 6 hours of bright, indirect light then it can become leggy as it searches for more.
How to know that your Monstera is Leggy
Here are the signs to look out for to know that your monstera is considered leggy. Look out for these signs to work out if you need to change the position of your monstera.
If your monstera deliciosa is growing long, thin stems that start to bend as the leaf increases in size then it could be considered leggy. If the stems are long and thin then they will not be able to hold the weight of the heavy leaves and will bend over.
Over time the stems can actually break, causing a wound in the stem and an entry point for disease.
Color is light green or yellow
Monstera deliciosa plants that have become leggy also usually develop light green leaves and stems. This is because the lack of sunlight means that less chlorophyll is developed in the leaves. Chlorophyll gives the leaves their deep green color.
When the problem gets worse the leaves can turn yellow which means that it is time to take action.
More sunlight will mean that the plant can develop more chlorophyll to process the light and carbon dioxide turning it into carbohydrates to help the plant grow.
Small leaves and slow growth
Another sign to look for when monsteras become leggy is slow growth and small leaves. Eventually when the plant is not getting enough light the growth will slow. Plants need sunlight to photosynthesize and make carbohydrates for growth.
You may notice that your plant has small leaves without the classic Swiss cheese look.
How to fix a leggy monstera – Easy steps
Monster deliciosa plants that have become leggy can be fixed with a few easy steps. Check out the list below to help your plant to recover.
1. Move it to a bright position
Move your monstera deliciosa into a bright position near a window that gets at least 6 hours of bright, indirect light. Find a window that gets morning light but is protected from the harsh afternoon sun. Keep the pot at least 2 feet away from the window to avoid any radiant heat from the window.
A south or east facing window is perfect in the northern hemisphere (US and UK) while aim for a north facing window if you live in the southern hemisphere (Australia).
The more light a monstera can get, the quicker it will recover from legginess. The existing leaves and stems will strengthen up (after you give it a prune).
If you can’t find a bright position indoors then it is perfectly fine to use a grow light. These lights are specially made for plants and emit UV light that helps indoor plants to grow.
2. Prune the monstera back to the strongest node
To help the monstera to grow back stronger it is important to prune off any long and leggy stems that are bending. Use sharp, clean secateurs and snip the long stems off back to the strongest node.
It is best remove a maximum of 1/3 of the leaf coverage so that the plant can still photosynthesize and can recover quicker.
Prune monsteras in spring or summer if you live in a cool region. If you live in a warm, tropical area you can generally prune all year round to help them to grow back stronger.
Always wear gloves when pruning monstera because the sap can irritate skin and give your hands a good wash afterwards.
3. Water monstera regularly but allow it to dry out in between
To help your monstera plant to recover from leggy growth it is essential that it receives regular water. Water is essential for plants to add back the and strength to their stems and grow new leave to replace the ones pruned off.
It is ideal to water monstera outside or in your sink. Water the whole surface of the soil thoroughly until you see water drip through the drainage holes. Water the monstera once per week in spring and 1-2 times per week in the warm summer months. Always let the plant dry out in between to avoid overwatering.
4. Add some slow release fertilizer and seaweed solution
To help monstera to recover from legginess and grow new, strong stems add some slow release indoor plant food. Choose fertilizer that is made for indoor plants to avoid the strong smell of outdoor fertilizer in your home.
Water the plant with a dose of liquid seaweed. This helps with strong root growth and will help the plant to grow back healthy stems quicker.
How to Fix a Leggy Monstera Deliciosa | Summary
Leggy monstera plants can be saved if you catch the problem early. Move the plant to a position in your home or outdoors that gets at least 6 hours of bright, filtered light. Make sur ethe plant is protected from full sun to avoid burn. Water it regularly and give it a dose of slow release plant food to give it a boost of nitrogen to grow back fast.