The Rhaphidophora tetrasperma is commonly known as the Mini Monstera. It also goes by Monstera Minima. Of course, to make things even more confusion, some refer to it as Philodendron Ginny or the Monstera Ginny as well.
Thus, all these names mean the same plant, even if you have 3 different genera in there.
This is a rare plant that also comes with an expensive price tag. And it is best known as the mini or smaller version of the Monstera Deliciosa.
But, by smaller, they refer to the similar looks and shape of its leaves which happen to be a miniature size compared to those of the Deliciosa. The plant itself is not small and will grow quite big as I’ll explain below.
Finally, it is worth noting that despite its resemblance, this plant is not a Monstera,. Instead it is a Rhaphidophora.
How do you care for Rhaphidophora tetrasperma (Mini Monstera)? The plant is fast growing and needs bright, indirect light to support this. It also prefers warm, humid conditions to grow optimally. While it does like moist soil, be careful not to overwater the plant as it is susceptible to root rot. Instead, let the soil dry between waterings.
Mini Monstera Plant Care
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma Light Requirements
The Mini Monstera is a fast growing plant that will benefit from medium to bright, indirect light. This will allow it grow optimally so you see it get bigger and produce more foliage as soon as possible.
That said, it can also tolerate low light.
But you want to be careful with giving it too little light as this will slow its growth and cause it to produce smaller leaves.
On the other hand, too much light is likewise bad.
While the plant will be happy with direct morning or late afternoon sun because it is gentle, avoid direct sun exposure during mid-day. The times between 10:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. is when the sun is the harshest. Therefore, keep the plant away from the sun’s rays during this time.
Too much intense light exposure will turn its leaves yellow. It can also scorch its foliage leaving you with brown burn marks on them.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma Temperature
When it comes to temperature, the Mini Monstera prefers conditions between 55 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a broad range which makes it easy to accommodate the plant.
But while it can tolerate different temperature levels, it is important to watch out for very cold environments.
The plant is native to tropical regions. Therefore, it is used to getting sunshine all year round. Just as importantly, it does is not accustomed to seeing snow, frost or freezing conditions.
Thus, avoid areas that have temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Note that I have seen the plant tolerate as low as 40 degrees. But I don’t suggest pushing it to its limits.
Instead, try to stay in its ideal range as that is when the plant grows fastest.
Monstera Minima Humidity
The Rhaphidophora tetrasperma has an ideal humidity of 60% and higher. This gives it enough moisture in the air to keep it happy.
And I’ve also noticed that you if keep it in high humidity, the plant not only grows faster but also produces more vibrant colored leaves.
That said, most homes maintain humidity levels of 20% to 50%.
This can make it difficult to maintain its ideal level unless you keep it in a greenhouse or something similar.
Luckily, the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma will likewise tolerate humidity of 40% or higher.
And if needed, it can take levels as low as 35%.
However, the lower you go, the more careful you want to be. That’s because when the air gets too dry, its leaves will turn brown on the tips and edges. They will also become crispy and brittle.
This is your sign that the plant needs more moisture in the air.
And you can use a humidifier to fix that.
Alternatively, you can also mist the plant a few times a week or use pebble tray.
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- When Do Monstera Leaves Split? (And How to Encourage It)
How Often to Water Mini Monstera
From what I’ve noticed, the Monstera Minima is a water guzzler. Therefore, it likes the soil to be consistently moist.
The risk here is that it is easy to water too much or too often which will leave the soil wet. Be careful of doing this because the plant is likewise susceptible to overwatering.
As such, you do need to adjust how often you water depending on the time of year.
During the summer, when the weather is hot, you’ll likely end up watering about twice a week. But you’ll likewise need to cut down during winters as the cold weather will keep the soil wet longer.
During this time, you’ll likely end up watering once every 2 weeks or so.
To determine the exact time, stick your finger into the soil every now and then. Once the top 2 inches of soil feels dry, it is time to water.
However, avoid watering before then.
This simple method will help you avoid overwatering. At the same time, it ensures that the roots are kept in moist soil.
Mini Monstera Potting Soil
The Monstera Minima needs loose, well-draining potting soil that’s fertile.
This is due to the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma’s susceptibility to overwatering. Good drainage and aeration are important in addition to soil that can stay moist.
Because the plant grows quickly, giving it soil with good organic matter content will be beneficial as well
If you already have houseplant mix at home, you, you can use standard potting soil and add perlite to improve its drainage and aeration.
That said, the best soil I’ve found for the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma is an Aroid mix.
Note that aroid mixes can vary because there is no standard. Basically, it is just a kind of soil that has features that are designed for aroids, which include monsteras, pothos, philodendrons and anthuriums.
Thus, you can use this soil for these other plants as well.
In case you prefer to make your own DIY potting mix at home, here’s a great one that works really well for the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma.
- 1 part sphagnum moss
- 1 part perlite
- 3 parts orchid bark
- 1 part horticultural charcoal
This gives the plant the different things it needs to grow healthy and avoid issues with overwatering or waterlogging.
Does the Mini Monstera Climb?
Yes, the Mini Monstera is very similar to the monstera deliciosa in that it likes to climb. However, this one grows faster that the bigger version.
As such, the plant will appreciate a support to grow on.
You can use a moss pole, trellis or something similar. The plant will also grow faster when you allow it to climb because this allows it to grow similar to how its does in its native environment.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma Fertilizer
To support its growth, supply the Philodendron Ginny with fertilizer once or twice a month.
It needs these nutrients to grow. But be careful not to be too generous and give it more plant food than it needs.
You can use a balanced, liquid fertilizer diluted to half strength. And only feed the plant during its growing season. It does not need fertilizing when the weather gets colder around mid fall and winter.
Alternatively, you can give your Philodendron Ginny a slow-release fertilizer. This will reduce the number of times you need to apply.
It also releases the nutrients on intervals which reduces the amount applied each time. Therefore, reducing the risk of fertilizer burn.
Rhaphidophora tetrasperma Pruning
Its name Mini Monstera is actually a misnomer is a way because the plant is not a small one.
Indoors it can grow to between 6-8 feet tall. Outdoors, it will reach between 15-20 feet high.
However, it gets its name because it resembles the Monstera deliciosa but comes with smaller leaves. Thus, the “mini” refers more to its leaf sizes than the actual size of the plant.
That said, the Mini Monstera does make up for its smaller foliage by producing a lot more of them.
Therefore, if you prefer a good sized, climbing plant with an abundance of small to medium sized leaves, this is perfect for you.
I’ve likewise mentioned a few times that the plant is a fast grower. And with proper care it can grow 2 or so feet in a year.
As you would expect, most of its growth is done during spring and summer. And this does slow down considerably during winter. Nevertheless, this shows how quickly it can get bigger.
Because of its growth rate and its numerous leaves, you will need to prune it once in a while.
How often will depend on how you want the plant to look.
But regular maintenance will be needed to keep it tidy looking and limit it size if you don’t want it to get too big indoors.
How to Propagate Mini Monstera
Propagating the Mini Monstera is simple and straightforward. This makes it easy to reproduce this beautiful plant.
The best method for home growers is stem cuttings because it is easy, roots fairly quickly and has high success rates.
To propagate the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma using stem cuttings, you need to make sure that your plant is healthy. Don’t propagate a plant that is sick or dealing with some problems.
The first step to propagation via stem cuttings is to look for a healthy stem. Here, you are looking for a stem with at least one node and 2-3 leaves.
Then, cut the stem just under the node and remove the lower leaves.
These leaves will ultimately end up in the soil or water so it is best to get rid of them. But leave the upper leaves as they will help the cutting grow faster.
Dip the cut end of the stem into rooting hormone.
You will also want to prepare a pot and fill it with fresh, well-draining soil.
Finally, you can plant the cutting into the soil. Make sure the nodes are all under the soil. Then water the soil until moist.
Leave the new plant in bright, indirect light, ideally somewhere with high humidity.
It will take about 3-4 weeks for the cutting to grow roots.
Alternatively, you can also root the cutting in water. After it grows roots, you can transfer it to the potting mix.
How to Repot or Transplant Mini Monstera
The Rhaphidophora tetrasperma will likely need to be repot once every 1-2 years. Although this will ultimately depend on how fast it grows.
The healthier the plant is and the more light, water, humidity it gets the faster you’ll see it get bigger.
The simplest way to tell when to repot is to check the bottom of the pot.
You will see roots coming out from the holes under the pot once it needs repotting.
Similarly, you may see roots coming out from the surface of the soil or circling the root ball.
All of these are signs that it is time to repot your mini monstera.
Is the Monstera Minima Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs
Like other plants in the Araceae family, the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma is toxic when ingested, This is true for humans, dogs and cats.
It will cause various digestive tract issues including swelling, irritation and pain in the mouth, tongue and lips. It can also make it hard to swallow and lead to excessive drooling.
Therefore, keep the Rhaphidophora tetrasperma away from young children and pets.
If you notice then chewing or consuming parts of the plant, make sure o call you pediatrician or veterinarian.
Mini Monstera Problems & Troubleshooting
Monstera Minima Pests
Spider mites and mealybugs are the most common pests problems your Mini Monstera will face.
These are troublesome bugs that will hide on the undersides of leaves and in the joints between the stems and the petioles. As such, when inspecting it is important to be thorough.
Keeping the plant healthy and avoiding stress are the best things you can do to prevent pests.
Cleaning the leaves also help as these insects are attracted to dust.
But in case they do come around, immediately isolate the plant and begin treatment.
Use neem oil and spray it on the affected areas. Don’t spray the entire plant though.
Leaf infections like spot disease and root rot are the biggest threats here.
They are both caused by excess water. So, avoiding too much water and keeping the plant somewhere with good light and air circulation will help prevent this.
With root rot, it is also important to use well-draining soil and a pot with holes to let the excess moisture out.