How To Care For And Grow Your Swiss Cheese Plant

Swiss-Cheese-Plant-Plntd-Macro-2

Swiss Cheese Plants

LOW-MAINTENANCE | LARGE SPLITTING LEAVES | INTERIOR DESIGN FAVORITE

Native to: Central America

Watering needs: Every 1-2 weeks

Lighting needs: Medium to bright indirect sunlight

Difficulty: Low maintenance

Great for: Anyone wanting to get creative with their interior design

Pet-Safe: No

1.0 Choosing your Swiss Cheese Plant

Simple Swiss Cheese.

It’s Alright If You See:

Lots of stems and leaves

Will lead to fuller and more impressive growth.

No slits in leaves

Slits form as the plant matures so smaller Monsteras may not have them yet.

White roots

A healthy Monstera should have thick and thin white healthy roots that cover the entire outside of the soil.

But, Watch Out For:

Browning on leaves

Indicates potential issues with humidity or plant health.

2.0 Picking The Right Spot (Lighting, Air Conditioning, Temperature)

Half of plant parenthood is choosing the perfect spot.

Lighting

Avoid complete darkness or bright direct sunlight. The more light your Monstera gets, the larger its leaves will grow and the larger its splits will be.

When you bring your Swiss Cheese Plant home, place it as close to a window as you can, making sure it has the largest possible view of the sky. Then, keep an eye on it for a few days. We highly recommend placing it near a window for the first month, so it gets acclimated to its new home.Scorch marks on your Swiss Cheese Plant means it’s getting too much sunlight.

Pro-tip: You don’t need to worry about UAE windows, most of them are tinted, so the sunlight coming through is already filtered indirect light, not direct. If you were to keep your Swiss Cheese Plant near a non-tinted window, you would see scorch marks on its leaves within the hour. 

Air Conditioning

Place your Swiss Cheese Plant as far away as possible from the direct air escaping from your AC vent.

Temperature

Like most houseplants, Swiss Cheese Plants are happiest between 18 °C – 30 °C.

3.0 Caring For Your Swiss Cheese Plant (Watering, Dusting, Re-potting)

How to keep your plant alive (and also show your love).

Watering

Maintain moist soil

Monsteras like their soil to stay slight moist. Wait until the top 2 inches of the soil is dry, then slowly water until water drips out the bottom of its drainage holes.

Note: The more light it gets, the more often it’ll need to be checked and watered.

Dusting

Once a month, gently wipe away any dust on your plant.

Wiping your Swiss Cheese Plant free of dust with a damp rag once a month will help it soak in light and breathe through the little pores on its leaves (stomata).

Re-potting

Leave it in its nursery pot

Once you receive your plant, place it in the spot you plan to keep it in (whilst still in its nursing pot) and allow it at least 6 months (ideally 12) to acclimate to your home's temperature and light levels. Once acclimated, you can choose to either repot your plant or leave it in its nursing pot.

Time to re-pot

Re-potting is recommended when the root system outgrows the current pot.

When it's time, transfer your Swiss Cheese Plant into a pot that's about 1–2 inches in diameter larger than its current one (or one or two sizes up), and opt for pumice or soil with a good drainage componenets.

When in doubt, reach out to our team at hello@plntd.ae, and we’ll help you identify whether the soil bag you’re considering will work for your Swiss Cheese Plant.

Remember, always go for a pot with drainage holes.

Pro-tip: To keep watering simple and easy, you can simply re-pot your Swiss Cheese Plant into a larger nursery pot and place that nursery pot in a larger planter.

4.0 Beginner questions

Ask away, grasshopper.

How much light does my Swiss Cheese Plant need?

In their natural habitat, Swiss Cheese Plants are vines that grow on forest floors and use their aerial roots to climb other trees toward the light. They have, therefore, evolved to grow in the shade, under the canopies of tall trees.

Your Swiss Cheese Plant will be happy in similar medium-light conditions, however, the more light it gets the bigger its leaves will grow and the more slits it will have.

Can I use UAE tap water to water my Swiss Cheese Plant?

Yes. Swiss Cheese Plants can be fed using UAE tap water.

However, like most indoor plants, they are sensitive to the chlorine and calcium found in the water.

To combat this, make sure to:

  1. Leave tap water out for 24-48 hrs before using it. This will allow the chlorine time to evaporate.
  2. When watering your Prayer Plant make sure to water through the soil until it is dripping out the bottom of the nursery pot. This flushes out any excess build-up of calcium (and other minerals) from the soil.

Finally, look out for tell-tale signs of too much chlorine or calcium:

  • Scorched brown tips at the leaves = too much chlorine.
  • White crystals on the soil = too much calcium.
Why are their holes/slits in my Swiss Cheese Plant? Is this normal?

Yes! The slits/holes in your Monstera's leaves are an adaptation to its native rainforest habitat.

These slits serve two purposes:

  1. They allow the plant to withstand heavy rainfall and
  2. Allow light to pass through to its lower leaves.
Will my Swiss Cheese Plant come with a moss stick?

Our taller Swiss Cheese Plants (usually above 80cm) will come with a moss stick fixed to it. In the wild, Swiss Cheese Plants look for trees to climb — that's what the moss stick simulates.

But I really don't like the moss stick — can you remove it?

Without the moss-stick, your Monstera will grow wide (as opposed to tall). If you prefer that, you can let us know and we'll remove the moss-stick for you before shipping it out.

5.0 Some Common Problems

It's all about the leaves.

Yellowing/browning leaves

Cause: Overwatering 

Suggestion: Allow soil time to dry out sufficiently, then slowly re-water.

Curling/wilting leaves

Cause: Underwatering

Suggestion: Time for a drink! Check soil dryness and water if needed.

No holes in leaves

This is normal; usually Monsteras take time to develop their holes. If yours has over 7 large leaves with little to no holes, then try giving it more light.

6.0 Buying Swiss Cheese Plants Online

When shopping for a plant online, look out for the following:

Height

If you're looking for a table-top plant, then go for one that's 40cm tall. A 60cm tall plant would work well on a low side-table. Plants about 1 meter or taller would work well as statement floor plants.

Note: Stated heights will always include the height of the plant AND planter.

Pot style

This is all about the vibe you're looking for, and you'll typically have a choice amongst different colors and shapes.

If you're looking for subtlety, we suggest a circular pot in white. To make more of a statement, look for contrasting shapes and colors!

Delivery

It goes without saying that your plant supplier should meticulously package all plants.

When you personally buy a plant from a store, you're able to rush it home, ensuring it stays outside for as little time as possible. But when you order online, your plant will ride-share with a lot of other plants all on their way to their new homes.

Depending on where you live, weather can play a big part in your plant's health along the way.

If possible, ask your plant shop what precautions they take to ensure your plants stay as safe as possible en route to you.

Reviews

Reading customer reviews is a good way to get an idea of the customer experience provided by the seller (here's ours, by the way), but you need to practice caution there.

Don't expect to be able to tell a fake review right away, some reviewers can be great con artists, and some negative reviews can be fake to harm the seller.

Your best bet is to zoom out and look at multiple comments from multiple categories to get a good overview of whether you can trust this company and/or their review section.

For example, look at how recent the reviews are, and how spread apart. Was there a sudden spike of comments in a short amount of time? Do they sound like they're all written by someone rehashing the same template? Do they all sound too positive to be real?

Yes, going all detective on reviews can be a chore, but Future You will thank you for it.

Returns and refund policies

Things can go wrong.

Sometimes it's no one's fault, and sometimes there's nothing anyone can do.

So the best practice is to offer (and honor) a no-questions asked return/refund policy. Check out the seller's policy before you make a purchase, so you know you're insured in case things don't work out.

You can check out our return/refund policy here.

Ready to adopt a Swiss Cheese Plant?

Your Swiss Cheese Plant can't wait to meet you — just choose a height and pot and let's introduce you two!