Monstera Adansonii Care Guide- How To Grow Swiss Cheese Plant

Last Updated March 9, 2022 By Bella Zinti

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The Monstera adansonii plant is a stunning and notable plant known for its unique leaves and evergreen vines. One of many plant lovers' favorite houseplants, and for good reasons too.

The deep green pointed leaves with holes running throughout them like Swiss Cheese; many refer to this plant as "Swiss Cheese Plant"! It is also known as the five holes plant, monkey mask plant, and Adanson's Monstera. This plant is fairly easy to care for if you can mimic the plant's natural conditions. Below, we'll talk about how to care for your Monstera adansonii swiss cheese plant so that it looks its best.

What Is A Monstera Adansonii?

Like other Monstera plants, the Swiss Cheese Vine originates from the tropical forest in Central and South America. Being a tropical forest plant, they can benefit from the bright light of the tropics but filter through the leaves of the treetops above and around them. 

The larger leaves evolved to maximize the indirect sunlight they capture, with the trademark holes allowing light to pass through the top leaves and hit the lower leaves that might not get any sunlight otherwise. The holes also helped the plant to withstand the high winds and heavy rains of tropical storms. If space is limited, they are a great alternative to the Monstera deliciosa since the leaves look similar.

The Monstera Adansonii doesn't grow as fast as some other monstera varieties, making this plant an excellent choice for smaller spaces. Smaller size but will have a big impact on your space, and it can be grown well indoors and outdoors.

Monstera Adansonii Care Tips

Light Requirements

Monstera adansonii needs bright indirect light. Originally living under the canopy of jungles, they did not evolve to handle direct sunlight, and they can easily burn. Swiss Cheese plants can grow in low light if they have to, although they will grow much slower. 

Ideally, you should place your plant in north or south-facing window. Remember that the early morning sun is less harsh than midday or afternoon sunlight. So an east-facing window will likely be okay.


The Monstera Adansonii requires moisture retention in its slightly acidic soil with a pH range from 5.5 to 7.0. It should also be well-draining soil. The best growing medium is coco coir or moss-based potting soil, as they can help trap moisture in soil without making it soggy.

The pot you use should have proper drainage holes so it can release any excess water without it being trapped inside and causing root rot.

Water Requirements

Tropical plants require a balance between moist and dry soil to best simulate their natural environment. Test the top inch of your plant's soil frequently rather than rely on a set watering schedule.

If the top layer of the soil is dry, water it - thoroughly. If not, wait a few days and check again. You'll likely water your Monstera Adansonii weekly during the growing season and every two weeks when its growth is dormant. Be sure to use lukewarm water! If you use cold water on the roots of this tropical plant, you'll likely shock it!

Temperature and Humidity Requirements

Monstera adansonii plants are tropical plants found in the deep jungle. Therefore, it makes sense they thrive on high temperatures and high humidity levels that simulate their native habitat. 

Now, you don't need to make your house as hot and muggy as a jungle, but you do need to keep these needs in mind if you want our plant to thrive. Keep your plant away from drafts and air conditioning vents. Set your thermostat so that it doesn't dip below 60°F, and if you set your plant outdoors, be sure to bring it in when it gets below that temperature or lower overnight.

There are many ways to pump up the humidity levels around your Monstera Adansonii without turning your house into a greenhouse.

  • Place the plant near your bathroom window if it won't be in direct sun. The steam from showers will supply the humidity.
  • Use a mister to mist the plant frequently.
  • Place the pot on a pebble water tray - a tray filled with pebbles and then filled with water. Setting the pot on this tray will allow water to be slowly evaporated up into the air around it, without the roots soaking up too much water.
  • Set a humidifier near your houseplants.
  • Group other plants with similar sunlight need together. Growing houseplants close together will raise the humidity level naturally.


Your Swiss Cheese plant will appreciate some slow-release fertilizer throughout spring and summer.


If the plant becomes a bit too wild and leggy, you can prune it. The best time to prune is Springtime. Remove leggy growth and any dead or damaged leaves. This will encourage more new foliage growth and make your plant look better.

Swiss Cheese Vine

Swiss Cheese vine loves to climb, but they can either trail down or climb up, depending on your preferences. They make a good pick for hanging baskets or training to climb stakes or trellis.

The aerial roots on this plant can grow quite long as they can absorb moisture and nutrients from the air, just as they would if they were underground. They can also anchor themselves around a stake, trellis, or moss pole so that the plant can begin to climb upwards.

If you place a stake in the pot and position the vines so that a few nodes are touching it, you'll soon see aerial roots growing out from those nodes and securing themselves to the stake. But you can also just let the trailing vines hang out and trail down.

Monstera Adansonii Propagation

Monstera adansonii is a very easy plant to root and propagate, and water propagation is the most common way of propagating Monstera adansonii. You'll do this with stem cuttings and a rooting hormone, which encourages roots to sprout from the nodes on the cuttings.

Use a sharp scissor, cut right below a node. There should be at least two nodes (where leaves form), and dip the cutting in rooting hormone. Then either plant it in moist soil or place it in a jar of water.

Soil propagation: Place the node in soil with rooting hormone. Cover the top of the jar or pot with a plastic bag to ensure that the propagation is getting enough moisture. You'll start seeing new growth quickly.

Water propagation: place the cutting stems in water for a few weeks. Once a network of roots appears and new leaves merge, you can then plant them in soil.

Common Problems With Monstera Adansonii

  • Yellowing Leaves - If you notice the plant leaves are turning yellow, this is almost always a sign of overwatering. Roots need air around them, and they can get waterlogged. This can eventually lead to root rot. You can't reverse leaf damage from too much watering, but you can unpot the plant to inspect and dry out the roots and trim off dead or damaged leaves. Once the roots have aired out, repot your Monstera adansonii in coco coir or moss-based potting soil.
  • Brown Leaf Tips + Edges - Your Monstera adansonii is getting too much direct sunlight! It also might need more frequent watering.


Is Monstera Adansonii Toxic To Pets?

Moderately so, yes. It can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing in dogs and cats. If your pet doesn't bother your houseplants, you probably don't need to be concerned. However, if that's not the case, you should either place your Monstera adansonii out of reach or choose a pet-friendly houseplant.

What Is The Difference Between Monstera Obliqua And Monstera Adansonii?

These two plants look very similar. The difference between the two is subtle but important as Monstera Obliqua is very rare. Obliqua is paper-thin and has more holes than the leaf. Adansonii, on the other hand, has more leaves than holes and has a subtle texture to touch.

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About the author

Bella has a Bachelors degree in interior design, is a master gardener. She designs nourishing outdoor & indoor spaces guided by the practice of Feng Shui.