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Monstera Obliqua- Unknown Care Facts About the Unicorn Plant

Monstera lovers would agree that there are many misconceptions surrounding the Obliqua sub-species on the internet.

Not all Obliqua leaves have large holes (fenestrations). The one that boasts signature fenestrations is “Peru Obliqua,” about 90% in circulation.

However, it does not mean other Obliqua sub-species are less beautiful or differently grown.

Monstera Obliqua needs a rich organic mix, warm temperature (59-77°F), high humidity levels (80-90%), and bright filtered sunlight around the year to attain full heart-shaped or signature fenestrated leaves growth.

Monstera Obliqua
Monstera Peruvian Obliqua (Source: Ecuagenera)

Moreover, ensure weekly watering during the growing season and feed once a month with diluted houseplant fertilizer to ensure even growth.

Read more to beat misconceptions around Monstera Obliqua and find a reliable growing guide.

Monstera Obliqua: Debunking the Myth

The big misconception surrounding Monstera Obliqua, pronounced [oh-BLIK-wuh], is that every plant belonging to the sub-species boasts about 90% holes on its leaves.

In fact, not every Obliqua species bear the signature fenestration; some are born with whole leaves and variegations.

The one with fenestration is ‘Peru Obliqua,’ which hails from Peru and is relatively high in circulation.

Monstera Obliqua with fenestrated leaves
Monstera Obliqua with fenestrated leaves (Source: Etsy)

Other least popular Obliqua include Panama, Suriname, Brazil, French Guiana, and Bolivia, denoting their homelands, respectively.

Another misconception is that Monstera Obliqua has only been spotted seventeen times in the wild.

The truth be told, Monstera Obliqua has been collected in the wild 710 times. The 17 often attributed to an outdated number Madison’s Revision did of Monstera in 1977.

Other than these myths, Monstera Obliqua is similar to any other Monstera plant with similar care requirements.

Hailing from the tropical regions of Central and South America, these tropical plants have a pretty high requirement for warm temperature and humidity.

Diagram of Monstera Obliqua leaves
Diagram of Monstera Obliqua leaves (Source: Madison’s Revision)

Here is a brief table highlighting the facts about Monstera Obliqua.

Scientific NameMonstera obliqua
Other nameMonstera Unicorn, Window-leaf, Swiss-Cheese Vine, and Mexican Breadfruit
NativeCentral and South America
Growth ZoneUSDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Plant TypeEvergreen
Growth Size8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m) tall and 15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m) wide
Growth RateSlow
Foliage1. Deep green, whole heart-shaped leaves
2. Heavily fenestrated heart-shaped leaves
3. Variegated (green and white) leaves
Foliage size10-25 cm
FloweringAny time of the year
FruitingSpadix fruiting
Toxicity Toxic to Humans and Pets
Common PestsMealybugs, Spider mites, and whiteflies
Horticultural DiseasesDasheen Mosaic Virus (DMV), Bacterial Leaf Spot, Powdery mildew, Southern Blight

Many growers confuse Monstera Obliqua with Monstera Adansonii because both plants boast heavy fenestration.

However, Obliqua, in opposition to Adansonii, runs deeper fenestrations and is a relatively slow grower.

Where to Buy Monstera Obliqua?

Much to our surprise, Monstera Obliqua is not so rare for buying.

You would know this plant from the famed Instagram hashtag #itsneverobliqua, created by plant enthusiast Mick Mittermeier.

However, many retailers may sell M. adansonii by calling it Monstera Obliqua. So, remember to find the differences between the two and always buy your plant from a reliable seller.

Where to BuyWhat they OfferPros/Cons
EtsyFind from fenestrated to variegated M. obliqua at reasonable pricesPros: Expect to receive your delivery within 7-10 days.
Cons: Not many items are available
Carousell.sgFind from small to mature  M. obliqua speciesPros: Shipped worldwide through Singapore
Cons: Slightly expensive
NSE TropicalsFind mature M. obliqua plants starting from over $300Pros: Availability of assorted tropical species
Cons: Slight expensive shipping fee ($12 for each plant and $12 for each additional plant)
Plantly.ioFind a quality Monstera Obliqua plant at $520 for your home or office.Pros: Quick shipping and return policy
Cons: Costly

Monstera Obliqua- Complete Grow & Care Guide

Your Monstera Obliqua is an easy-to-care-for plant that requires regular care and occasional maintenance around the year.

Here is a table highlighting the care requirements of Monstera Obliqua.


10-12 hours (75%-80%)
of bright filtered sunlight

Distilled water
once or twice a week

Fast draining airy aroid-mix
pH level: 5.5-7.0
Fertilizer icons created by Smashicons - Flaticon

Diluted houseplant fertilizer
Every month in the growing season

59°F to 77°F
(15°C to 25°C)

80% to 90% Humidity

Repot only when the root ball engulfs the soil

Propagate via Stolon and Stem cuttings

Now, let us delve deeper into the complete care guide for Monstera Obliqua.

1. Bright Filtered Sunlight and Proper Location

Monstera Obliqua naturally thrives in partial shades with filtered sunlight provided by dense rain forests.

Try mimicking the same environment at home by placing your plant close to the window, door, or canopy that receives moderate indirect sunlight.

Place your Monstera Obliqua in a medium to a sunny location with about 10-12 hours of indirect sunlight throughout the day.

To obtain signature fenestrations or rare variegations, it may require at least 75% to 80% of filtered sunlight in the active growing season.

Hence, the plant will fail to thrive when left in a shady location with low light, often leading to leggy growth with discolored leaves.

Bright, indirect sunlight
An illustration of the bright, indirect sunlight (Source: Mr. Houseplant YouTube)

However, the plant left in direct sunlight will do more harm than good as the direct sunlight will pierce the leaves, leading to excess transpiration of water and eventually sunburn.

Tips to Ensure Optimal Light Intake for Monstera Obliqua

  • Placing the plant close to a south-facing window with partial shade or curtain. Otherwise, move it at least 4-5 feet away from the window.
  • Otherwise, place it close to the east or west-facing window that receives a few hours of direct sunlight. The thick leaves can easily withstand about 3 hours of direct sunlight.
  • Some other ideal locations around the house include a patio, door, window, or greenhouse.
  • Consider rotating the plant every few weeks at the same spot to maintain the ideal intake of sunlight.
  • Consider using an appropriate LED grow light for plants in the dark corner or away from the window for 10-12 hours.

Using a full-spectrum lamp would be even better because it mimics the natural sunlight and provides the correct color spectrum required for vertical growth and foliage/flower development.

Treat Overexposed or Underexposed Plant

Start with diagnosing the plant for over-exposed and under-exposed symptoms.

Signs of Insufficient Light
  • Slow Growth
  • Wilted leaves
  • Curly leaves
  • Weak new leaves
  • Reduced pigmentation
Signs of Overexposed Light
  • Yellowing of leaves
  • Brown leaves
  • Crispy and dry leaves
  • Discoloration of leaves
  • Browning on the tips and edges of leaves
Dimensions of light
Dimensions of light (Source: Michigan State University)
  • Move the plant under the shade to prevent direct sunlight and wait until the leaves revive to administer other treatments.
  • Increase the watering frequency from once to twice a week and increase misting to increase humidity around the plant.
  • Consider bringing them close to the bright window or placing them under appropriate LED grow light for under-exposed plants.

2. Regular Watering

Monstera Obliqua is temperamental about improper watering, ensuring that the soil stays slightly damp but not too moist or soggy.

Water Monstera Obliqua plant once or twice a week in the growing season (spring and summer), but cut back to earlier in two weeks or longer in fall and winter.

A Monstera plant would require 600-800 ml of water every week to maintain a steady supply of oxygen and nutrients to its hemiepiphytic roots.

Watering the plant
Watering the plant (Source: Tenor)

Moreover, ensure that the water used in the process is distilled or kept at room temperature for at least 24 hours to rid of harmful chlorine.

As per the rule, you should water your Monstera Obliqua only when the top few soil inches of topsoil dries out.

Overwatered or Underwatered Monstera Obliqua

Regular watering will help keep the plant healthy, but too much watering can quickly lead to root rot.

The visible signs of an overwatered plant include:

  • Dark-colored soil
  • Browning or darkening leaves
  • Lower stem decay
  • Smelly potting medium

The visible signs of an under-watered plant include:

  • Light greyish soil
  • Yellowed leaves with a crispy texture
  • Wilted or curled leaves
  • Hard to touch stems

Tips to Ensure Adequate Watering for Monstera Obliqua

  • Water your Monstera once a week in the growing season twice a week, especially in summer when the temperature soars above 85-degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Use a soil moisture meter to assess the soil condition before continuing or postponing watering.
  • Correct watering technique: Slowly pour water on top of the soil but foliage until it drains out of the bottom. Empty the saucer immediately.
  • Mist the plant leaves in summer to prevent transpiration.
  • Cut back on watering and check for root rot for an overwatered plant until it revives.
  • Consider deep watering the plant or placing the container on a pebble tray filled with water for an underwatered plant.

Pro Tip: Download a water scheduling app to keep a tab on watering your Monstera Obliqua.

3. Warm Temperature

Like any tropical plant, Monstera Obliqua does well in a relatively warm climate with significantly high humidity levels.

Place your Monstera Obliqua in a warm location with a day temperature ranging from 77°F (25°C) and at least 59°F (15°C) at night.

It may do well in a slightly high temperature as a warmth-loving plant, even above 80°F (26.7°C).

However, it would hate to sit in the cold with a temperature usually below 55°F, which is indicated by stunted growth and dead foliage.

Guy Shivering
Monstra could suffer from the cold stress (Source: Tenor)

Monstera Obliqua would naturally thrive when grown in three USDA hardiness zones: Zone 10a (30°F), Zone 10b (35°F), and USDA Zone 11 (40°F).

The more stable the temperature, the happy your Monstera!

Tips to Maintain Ideal Temperature

  • Finding an ideal spot around the house that gets 10-12 hours of sunlight each day will help provide a warm location.
  • Alternatively, you can place them under LED grow light to compensate for the lack of sunlight, especially in fall and winter.
  • Avoid taking them near the air conditioner or heater as it will suck the plant dry.
  • Move the plant inside when the temperature drops below 60°F.
  • Otherwise, cover the Obliqua pot with a frost blanket or clear plastic bag to avoid the risk of cold stress. Alternatively, place a heating pad underneath the plant’s container.

4. Higher Humidity Level

As a tropical plant, Monstera Obliqua enjoys from the high humid condition,

Provide your Monstera Obliqua anywhere from 80-90% of humidity to attain healthy leaves and growth.

However, attaining such a significant amount of humidity in a familiar home environment may seem implausible.

Hence, you can resort to using an artificial room humidifier to boost the relative humidity level in the house.

A mini humidifier to increase humidity for plants. (Source: Amazon)

However, be wary about regularly increasing humidity levels as anything above 70% will risk the contraction of fungal and bacterial growth in the plant.

In fact, the high humid condition is a significant factor behind fungal and bacterial infections in tropical plants.

On the other hand, the low humid condition will dry out the plant, leading to the transpiration of leaves.

Hence, always keep your eyes out to catch the tell-tale signs of over or under humidity problems.

Too Low HumidityToo High Humidity
Wilting and shriveled LeafStems and leaves rot
Yellowing of leaves edgesPatches of grey mould on the leaves
Brown leaf tipsFungal growth
Leaves may fall in severe conditionsMold presence in the soil and flower as well.

Tip to Maintain Moderate Humidity Level

  • Group all the plants in a place or room to naturally increase humidity.
  • If your Monstera Obliqua does not seem to be enjoying the congregation, consider installing an electric humidifier to boost the humidity level quickly.
  • Consider building a greenhouse or terrarium for your Monstera plants if you are a seasoned grower.
  • Using a hygrometer would help check the humidity before it rises to a dangerous level.
  • Mist the leaves occasionally in summer using the plant mister or when the temperature soars above 85-degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Alternatively, place the plant on a pebble tray filled with water to help increase humidity in the air.

5. Organic, Loamy Potting Mix

Monstera Obliqua is relatively selective about the proper soil need and may quickly wither in the wrong potting mix.

Choose an organic potting mix based on 80% peat moss and 20% coco coir, perlite, and other organic materials.

Monstera Obliqua thrives in an organic loamy soil mix that creates air pockets, allowing its aroid roots to breathe.

Schultz Sphagnum Peat Moss
Sphagnum Peat Moss (Source: Wikimedia)

It will retain water and moisture, which helps the plant absorb more nutrients and microorganisms in the soil.

On the other hand, loamy soil creates air pockets to help aerial roots get more oxygen and expand freely.

Moreover, the potting mix should ideally measure between 5 and 7 in the pH level to ensure slight acidic conditions required by the plant.

Consider commercial premium Monstera potting soil, including the following:

Soil Mix Image Features
Black Gold All Purpose SoilA multi purpose, nutrient rich mix that's ideal for most of the plants
Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting MixContains coco coir, which holds and releases water,
Also helps soil to get easily wet again
FoxFarm Ocean Forest Potting Mix Ocean Forest has a light, aerated texture that's perfect for indoor and outdoor plants

Otherwise, you can prepare an ideal Monstera potting mix at home by mixing the following items.

  • 80% Peat Moss
  • 20% perlite, coco coir, and activated charcoal

Pro Tip: Coco Coir breaks down slowly, helping improve soil drainage by retaining adequate moisture and allowing excess to drain away.

6. Monthly Diluted Fertilizer

Monstera Obliqua is a slow grower compared to most other Monstera plants; hence, it can get by with mild fertilization.

However, regular fertilization will be beneficial to attain healthy vertical growth and signature foliage.

Fertilize your Monstera Obliqua once every month in the growing season with a balanced liquid formula or concentrated formula diluted to half-strength by mixing it with water in a 1:1 ratio.

You can also apply slow-release granular or Osmocote once every three months to ensure an even fertilizer boost.

Here are a few recommendations for commercial liquid food and pellets.

Tips to Apply Fertilizer Properly

  • When applying, keep the fertilizer solution 6-inches away from the base of the plant to prevent root burns.
  • Apply fertilizer while you water the plant to allow the roots to absorb as many macronutrients as possible.
  • When using slow-release fertilizer, gently aerate the soil, insert the pellets, and cover it with the soil.
  • Cut back on fertilizing beginning in fall until the end of winter to prevent damage from fertilizer salts.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to avoid overfeeding your plant, leading to salt buildup in the soil.

Signs of Overfertilization

Here are some tell-tale signs of over-fertilization

  • Stunted growth
  • Drooping foliage
  • Brown leaf patches
  • Yellowing foliage.
  • Hard-to-touch stems
  • Light crumbled soil

Note: Nutrient deficiency on Monstera Obliqua is indicated by pale green leaves, yellow or brown areas, and a crispy appearance.

Revive Overfertilized Monstera Obliqua

  • Run your plant under the sink or tap water to flush out the salts and leave it in a warm place with bright indirect sunlight.
  • Cut back on fertilization until your plant seems to revive. Improving foliage is one of the early indications
  • Otherwise, consider transplanting it to a fresh potting mix if the plant does not revive for even a week.

7. Growth Rate, Foliage, and Flower

As previously mentioned, Monstera Obliqua is a slow grower and will take longer than usual to attain its standard height.

A mature Monstera Obliqua will reach a height of 8-10 ft (2.4-3 meters) and 15-20 ft (4.7-6 meters) wide when grown indoors.

Obliqua leaf diagram
Obliqua leaf diagram (Source: Wikimedia)

When grown in a conducive outdoor environment, these plants will witness a gigantic height of 20 feet or more.

The size of the plant is usually determined by the pot size, substrate (soil) quality, indirect sunlight intake, and regular watering.

Foliage, Flower, and Fruiting

Like any Monstera plant, Obliqua is also defined by the quality and appearance of its foliage.

Each stem boasts numerous leaves in the shape of the heart that usually reach 10-25 cm in length.

Fenestrated Obliqua leaf
Fenestrated Obliqua leaf (Source: Etsy)
  • The fenestrated Obliqua Peru will begin exhibiting signature holes even when they are young.
  • While variegated Obliqua will only begin producing a whitish layer on the leaves as they mature.
  • Other Obliqua subspecies will boast heart-shaped leaves usually rich in deep green color.

Talking about the Monstera Obliqua flowers, the indoor kept plant will rarely blossom. When grown outdoors, the plant may bloom any time of the year.

However, it will only begin flowering after 1.5 years from germination. You would know it by cream to white color spadix 5-6 inches in length.

An outdoor growing Obliqua will begin fruiting soon after it produces a flower.

It will begin as a green spathe that changes color throughout the development process. The spathe will turn deep orange in the latter phase.

However, unlike other Monstera fruits that witness berries arranged together, Obliqua berries are free from one another.

Did you know that Mostera fruits can be eaten? Read our article to learn more; Monstera Deliciosa Fruits Benefits

8. Yearly Pruning

Do you remember that Monstera Obliqua is a slow grower?

Therefore, it would hardly require any pruning. However, keep pruning to control its shape or remove damaged foliage.

Tips to Prune Monstera Obliqua Effectively

  • Keep pruning to the start of the growing season, usually in the early spring.
  • Using a sterilized pruning shear, start with removing old and decayed leaves.
  • Remove the leggy growth to allow other vines to develop
  • Contain its size by cutting off the top and sides when grown indoors.

Pro Tip: Always use sharp and clean tools sterilized with 98% ethyl alcohol to prevent wounds and bacterial onset on the plant.

9. Repotting Overgrown Monstera Obliqua

Being a slow grower, it would only require repotting when the roots have substantially outgrown the pot.

Repot your Monstera Obliqua every three years when the substrate has significantly dried up or when it becomes severely rootbound.

Ensure that the new container is not too big as it will drown the root and not too small to choke the new root growth.

Woman potting and repotting plants
Woman potting and repotting plants (Source: Pexels)

Alternatively, you can repot it in the same vessel if you want to retain the current size, but ensure to provide fresh soil mix each year.

Steps to Repot Monstera Obliqua

Here is the step-by-step guide to repotting your Monstera Obliqua.

Step 1: Choose Spring or Summer
  • Start with choosing spring or summer to repot your Monstera Oblique when the risk of cold stress is at least.
Step 2: Choose a Container and Prepare the Mix
  • Choose a container at least 2-3” bigger than the previous container.
  • One with multiple drainage holes will ensure optimal draining.
  • Prepare an ideal potting mix at home or buy a commercial potting mix.
Repotting Pot with Drainage
Repotting Pot with Drainage (Caption: Amazon)

Here are a few recommendations.

Classic Planter, 8" (Plastic)They are durable and lightweight. The drainage holes lie at the bottom
LE TAUCI Ceramic Plant Pots (Ceramic)4+5+6 inch, Set of 3, Planters with holes in the bottom
Plastic Planter, HOMENOTE (Plastic)Comes in five different sizes 7/6/5.5/4.8/4.5 Inch
Step 3: Transplant into the Container
  • Tip the container on its side and coax the plant out using your fingers.
  • Massage the roots to brush off old soil.
  • Inspect the rootball for visible signs of root rot
  • Trim the affected area using a sterilized pruning shear.
  • Apply some fungicide to the trimmed end to prevent fungal growth.
  • Fill the new container with 1/3 potting medium and place the plant with roots facing downwards.
  • Fill the sides of the pot and thoroughly water the mix before placing it in its original location.

Read our article about treating a drooping Monstera after a transplant.

Propagation Methods for Monstera Obliqua

Your Monstera Obliqua can easily be propagated at home using a few minimal steps like any other Monstera plant.

In fact, propagating Obliqua would be a great idea as you can get multiple plants from a single mother plant.

Propagating Monstera Obliqua can be done using two different mediums; stolon and stem cutting, where the latter is more accessible and yields quicker results.

1. Propagating via Stolon

Propagating via stolon is slightly tricky and more appropriate for seasoned growers.

Stolon is any slender stem that grows horizontally along the soil line and produces roots and aerial branches.

Stolon growing out of a plant
Stolon growing out of a plant (Source: Wikimedia)

Moreover, Monstera Obliqua plat does not often create stolon, making it difficult to acquire one.

  • Here is how to go about it when you acquire a stolon.
  • Identify the stolon and cut it above the lower node using a sharp pruning shear.
  • Place the cutting in a substrate and set it aside in a warm location with bright indirect sunlight.
  • Mist the stolon regularly after it begins developing roots.
  • Once the root grows about 1-2 inches, after 3-4 weeks or more, transfer it to a new pot with the appropriate potting mix.

2. Propagating via Stem Cuttings

Propagating via herbaceous stem cutting is the easiest way to propagate Monstera Obliqua.

Follow this step-by-step guide to propagate Obliqua stem cuttings successfully.

Step 1: Take Stem Cutting

Wait until spring or summer to take the stem cutting when the shoots are nimble enough to cut and propagate.

  • Identify healthy stems indicated by green growth and upright stature with multiple leaves.
  • Take 5-7 inches long stem or stems with at least two nodes using a sterilized pruning shear.
  • Remove all but two or three leaves at the top and root hairs.
M Lechleriana stem cutting
Monstera stem cutting with node (Source:

Step 2: Root the Stem Cutting

The next step is to root the stem cutting in either two mediums: water or soil.

1. Rooting in Water
  • Take a tall glass or small crystal jar and fill it with clean, chlorine-free water (water kept at room temperature for 10-12 hours).
  • Drop some liquid rooting hormone into the water and submerge the cutting with the cut ends below the water.
  • Move it to a warm location with bright, indirect sunlight and change the water every 4-5 days to prevent bacterial growth.
  • Keep the cutting in the water for at least 3-4 weeks before witnessing 1-2” long feeder roots.
  • Consider transplanting it to an appropriate potting medium to continue the growth.

2. Rooting in Potting Medium
  • Start with preparing a small container (3” big) with the appropriate potting mix containing peat moss, vermiculite, and coco coir.
  • Thoroughly moisten the mix with water and let it sit.
  • Apply a mix of fungicide and rooting hormone to the trimmed end and gently slide the cutting into the potting medium.
  • Place it in a warm location with indirect sunlight and cover it with a self-sealing plastic bag to reduce water loss.
  • Let it sit for at least 4-6 weeks or more to begin seeing new feeder roots.

Pro Tip: Refrain from fertilizing the stem cutting for at least 3-4 months to allow the new shoots to develop naturally.

Toxicity of Monstera Obliqua

Yes, all Monstera species, including Obliqua, are toxic to humans and pets.

Monstera produces a resin called insoluble calcium oxalate crystals that is highly toxic and tends to be poisonous when touched with bare skin or consumed orally.

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals lists the genus Monstera as one of the toxic houseplants for pets.

Cat near Indoor Plant
Cat near Indoor Plant (Source: Pixabay)

However, the severity of the poisoning would depend on the contact and intake dosage.

Usually, touching the plant sap may lead to itchiness, rashes, and stinging, while consuming the leaf, unripe fruit, or stem may cause humans nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

In pets, especially cats and dogs, the poisoning may lead to nausea and intense mouth, tongue, and throat burning.

The severe poisoning often leads to vomiting, difficulty swallowing, drooling, dilated pupils, and cardiac issues.

Read More: Is Monstera Toxic to Dogs?

Common Problems with Monstera Obliqua

Monstera Obliqua is prone to numerous pests commonly found in many houseplants. Similarly, it may encounter fungal or bacterial diseases when grown indoors in poor conditions.

One primary concern for Monstera Obliqua is the high humidity level because the humidity exceeding 70% tends to invite wet conditions; hence, more likely chances of encountering fungal diseases.

Let us discuss common problems with Monstera Obliqua and how to treat them.

1. Houseplant Pests

Being a tropical species, Monstera Obliqua is prone to sap-sucking insects that infest its juicy leaves, fruits, and stems.

Out of all pests, spider mites, whiteflies, mealybug, and aphids are more prevalent in Monstera Obliqua.

Whiteflies on the underside of leaves (Source: Wikipedia)
Common Pests Symptoms
White Flies1. They are small flying insects that typically feed on the undersides of the leaves.
2. Yellowing, shriveling, and dropping leaves are common
Aphids1. Curling and falling off leaves
2. Stunted growth
Mealybugs1. White cotton-like structure forms on the undersides of the leaves
2. Curling, wilting and falling off leaves
Spider Mites1. Discoloration of leaves
2. Stippled and yellowed leaves
3. Fine webbing on leaves might appear on the leaves.


  • Dislodge eggs and larvae using a water hose or apply the insecticidal spray to kill whiteflies instantly.
  • Otherwise, remove visible pests by picking with a hand and dropping them in a soapy water solution.
  • As an organic solution, rub all parts of the plant with horticultural oil or Neem oil.
  • As a last resort, apply pest repellants like Malathion solution or Pyrethrin spray to remove dangerous bugs.

Preventive Measure

  • Place yellow sticky straps around the plant to trap whiteflies or crawling insects.
  • Wash the plant with a clean or soapy water solution in spring and summer once a month.
  • Rubbing 98% isopropyl alcohol on the plant once or twice in the growing season will help repel pests.
  • Avoid bringing home suspicious-looking plants with yellowed leaves, decayed stems, and spider webs.
  • Begin with quarantining the plant for at least two weeks before introducing them to other plants
  • Grow basil and mint or sage and rosemary plants around the Monstera Obliqua to naturally repel the pests.

2. Horticultural Diseases

Your Monstera Obliqua is always at risk of encountering various fungal and bacterial diseases due to its high demand for humidity.

A few diseases such as Dasheen Mosaic Virus (DMV), Bacterial Leaf Spot, Powdery mildew, Blight, and Root Rot may become active when the humidity rises to over 70%.

Dasheen Mosaic Virus
Dasheen Mosaic Virus (Source:
DiseasesCausative AgentsSymptoms
Dasheen Mosaic VirusCaused by AphidsDistorted leaves, Curling leaves
Bacterial BlightXanthomonas axonopodis pv. dieffenbachiaeYellowed (chlorotic), water-soaked lesions in the leaf edges.
Bacterial WiltRalstonia solancearumLeaves veins and stems turn brown and bronze color.
Rhizoctonia Root RotRhizoctonia solaniYoung stems are girdled, water soaked lesions.
Phytophthora and Pythium Root RotPhytophthora nicotianae var. parasitica and Pythium splendensWilting plants, root sloghing, foliage may exhibit black to brown leaf lesions.
AnacthroseColletotrichumInfected plants develop dark, water soaked lesions on stems.


  • Inspect for the severity of the problem and dispose of it immediately if the situation seems worse, such as root rot.
  • For soft root rot, consider pruning the infected parts with sterilized pruning shear and transplanting them to a new potting mix, but not without applying fungicide to the cut ends to prevent further infection.
  • Common fungicides like Medallion (fludioxonil) and Prostar (flutolanil) are effective in treating a wide range of fungal infections.
  • Apply Agrimycin to treat bacterial infections and Dimethomorph and phosphorus acid to treat Phytophthora and Pythium diseases.
  • Alternatively, you can also use organic fungicides such as mefenoxam and aluminum tris/Fosetyl-al.

Preventive Measures

  • Install an electric humidifier to increase or decrease the humidity level as required.
  • Inspect for problems in the plant and adjust the humidity level accordingly.
  • Quarantine the suspicious plant, indicated by brown patches on the leaf, brown spots, and decayed lower stems.
  • Avoid keeping them in low light conditions or overly damp locations.

Monstera Obliqua vs. Adansonii

Many growers mistake Monstera Adansonii for Monstera Obliqua because they boast similar-looking fenestrated leaves.

In fact, they both belong to the same Monstera genus with similar native habitats and growing conditions.

However, there are some striking differences between the two plants, which you should look closely at when purchasing.

Monstera ObliquaMonstera Adansonii
It develops thin, paper-like leaves with deep fenestrations.It gradually develops robust leathery leaves with lighter fenestrations.
The fenestrations are not symmetrical and may appear anywhere inside the leaf.The fenestrations are symmetrical in structure.
The variegated leaves lack fenestration of any kind.The fenestrated leaves are also variegated in appearance.
It is slightly pricier than Adansonii because of less circulation, costing a whopping $150 or more.You can easily find one for under $50.

Monstera Obliqua vs. Monstera Esqueleto

Talking about Monstera Esqueleto, it is another Monstera species that is often confused with Monstera Obliqua.

Although both Monstera boasts heavily fenestrated leaves, Esqueleto boasts slightly different colored leaves.

There are some striking differences between the two.

Monstera ObliquaMonstera Esqueleto
Monstera Obliqua is the most heavily fenestrated Monstera species.It boasts heavily fenestrated leaves but slightly lesser than Monstera Obliqua.
The leaves are almost paper-like thin when touched.The leaves feel leathery, thick, and waxy.
It gives a deep green shade (except for the variegated subspecies).It provides a slightly lighter shade of green with a yellowish tinge.

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FAQs About Monstera Obliqua

Is Monstera Obliqua Rare?

Monstera Obliqua is not a rare Monstera species, just less in circulation than other houseplants.

There are varieties of Monstera Obliqua subspecies, and each of them differs from the other in terms of appearance.

The one mostly found on the market is Monstera Peruvian Obliqua, which is in circulation about 90%.

Other subspecies such as Panama, Brazil, or Suriname are rarely in circulation.

Can Your Grow Monstera Obliqua Outdoors?

Yes, you can. In fact, Monstera Obliqua grown outdoors is more likely to produce flowers and fruits.

However, care to place them away from the direct sunlight by introducing an appropriate shade.

How Many Monstera Obliqua Subpsecies in Circulation?

Over sixteen Monstera Obliqua subspecies have been discovered so far; however, not all are in high circulation.

Monstera Obliqua Tarapoa, Obliqua Loreto, Obliqua Filamentous, Loreto Falcate, Obliqua Canelos, Obliqua Amazonas are all type of Obliqua subspecies.

Does Monstera Obliqua Grow Faster in the Natural Habitat?

Not really; Monstera Obliqua is a slow-growing Monstera species.

However, it will compensate for its slow vertical growth with lush foliage.

It can put out 30-70 new leaves between 12-and 18 months in its natural habitat.

A woman carrying Monstera Obliqua
A woman carrying Monstera Obliqua (source: Unsplash)


Monstera Obliqua is a magnificent tropical houseplant that does well in a stable home environment.

Just ensure to keep humidity levels relatively high to provide a healthy-looking plant with rich, deep-green foliage.

However, the pattern or size of fenestration depends entirely on the mother plant it has derived from.

Hence, do not automatically assume that each Obliqua plant will boast over 90% fenestrations.

Related Article: How to Care for Monstera Subpinnata

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