The Thai constellation monstera or monstera Thai constellation is a hybrid that was created in Thailand. It was engineered from the monstera decliciosa. And, is well know for its stunningly beautiful cream and while veragations.
Like many monstera species, this will grow big. It gets to between 8 and 18 feet tall and about 3 to 10 feet wide. Its leaves can also develop to as big as 12 inches long.
The best thing about the plant is that it is easy to grow and low maintenance. As such, you can enjoy its amazing looks in your living room.
Thai Constellation Monstera Plant Care
Thai Constellation Monstera Light
The Thai constellation monstera like bright, filtered light. And, it needs a lot of it. That’s because its leaves have a good amount of white variegations. These parts are not able to absorb light.
As such, the plant needs to be exposed to more light in order to get enough of it. Doing so lets it produce enough chlorophyll for photosynthesis, which is process it creates energy to us.
This means that if you leave it in a location that doesn’t receive enough light, its growth will struggle and slow down. It will produce less leaves. And, the leaves will lose their variegations.
So, if you like in a apartment or condo where windows don’t get a lot of light, it is a good idea to supplement with artificial lights.
Similarly, it is a good idea to dust off its leaves when you clean or inspect the plants as part of your weekly or bi-weekly routine. Dust and debris can reduce the amount of light is leaves are able to absorb.
That said, you do want to be careful about the type of light you give the plant.
You don’t want keep it under direct sunlight which will burn its leaves. Similarly, you want to be careful with full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight) if you live in warm areas or during the summer.
You want to be aware of where the sun hits during the afternoons and summertime because these are when the sun is most intense.
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Thai Constellation Monstera Temperature & Humidity
Your monstera Thai constellation does best when temperatures stay between 65 and 75 degrees. It enjoys moderate to warm temperatures. So, as long as you keep it between 60 and 85 degrees it will be happy.
This makes is hardy to USDA zones 10 and 11. So, if you live in these areas, you can grow the plants outside in the garden. You can likewise keep the in containers in the patio, deck or porch.
However, the Thai constellation monstera is not frost hardy. It cannot take freezing or even very cold temperatures. So, once the climate drops to under 60 degrees, it is time to move it indoors or to a warmer location. If you don’t, you’ll notice it begin to experience stress which results in a slowdown in growth.
Once things drop below 50 degrees, it will stop growing and visibly struggle.
The monstera Thai constellation is native to tropical areas (Mexico and Panama). This means it is used to and likes humidity. As such, you want to keep conditions moist.
You want to maintain humidity of over 60% at all times to keep the plant happy. Thus, if you’re not sure what room humidity is in your home, it is a good idea to invest in a digital hygrometer. This is a very affordable device that instantly tells you what the humidity is at any given section of your home.
If air moisture happens to be under 60%, which is the case for most household, you’ll want to employ one of the following strategies to increase it.
- Keep the plant in the bathroom, as long as there is enough light there.
- Group it together with other plants, provided that you leave enough space between them for good air circulation.
- Place it over a water tray, so long as you keep the pot above the water. You can do this with pebbles or stones.
- Humidifier. If your home’s humidity is between 30 to 40%, you may want to use a humidifier.
- Misting. Spraying with water a few times a week helps keep air moist. But, don’t wet the leaves too much.
Watering Thai Constellation Monstera
Allow your Thai constellation monstera to dry between waterings. You want to allow the top 1 to 1.5 inches of soil to dry out before watering again.
While the plant is not as drought tolerant at other monstera varieties, it is sensitive to overwatering. Thus, you want to avoid letting it sit in water or stay in soggy soil for long periods of time. Doing so will lead to root damage.
As such, you want to look out for:
- Yellow leaves, which are a sign of overwatering.
- Water droplets forming on the leaves, this is the plant telling it is getting too much water.
Root rot is a very real problem that monstera plants are susceptible to. As such, you want to avoid these situations since damaged roots will affect the health of your plant as they are the once sourcing water and nutrients from the soil.
So, if you find that you’re having moisture issues with your monstera plant, I highly suggest getting a moisture meter. This low cost device will allow you to instantly tell how much water there is in the soil. So, you can use the digital reading to gauge precisely how much and when to water your Thai constellation.
Additionally, the plant’s roots are sensitive to chemicals. This means tap water or hard water are no-no’s. Chlorine, fluoride and other chemicals will eventually damage your plant as they build up.
Rainwater, filtered or distilled water a ideal options. You can likewise use tap water. But allow it to sit at room temperature for at least overnight to 24 hours. This lets the chemicals evaporate.
So far, I’ve been focusing on overwatering because it is the bigger problem. And, it can kill your plant if maintained for a long period of time.
However, lack of water will likewise cause the plant to wilt and slow down in growth. So, you want to make sure you give it enough water to keep it hydrated.
It also helps to use light soil or aerate the soil to make it easier to water and oxygen to penetrate the soil and reach the roots.
The Thai constellation monstera is an epiphyte. As such, it doesn’t need soil or water to thrive. In its native tropical rainforest environment, the plant gets it sustenance from the air and debris as it clings onto larger plants and trees.
But, it is likewise just as happy living in a pot.
As such, you have a choice on where you want to grow the plant.
If you do choose to go with a pot, as many growers do, you want the soil to mimic that of its native habitat. There, it gets drenches by regular rain. But, because it doesn’t’ grow in soil, air helps it roots to dry quickly.
This becomes your challenge with potting mix. You want it to be moist. But, fast draying (draining). You also want it to be light and airy to allow for oxygen to easily flow through.
Thus, a high quality peat-based soil mix is perfect for your Thai constellation monstera. Adding some perlite to improve drainage likewise helps.
In addition to this soil that’s high in organic matter with a pH of between 5.0 and 7.5 allow it to grow optimally.
Finally, remember that soil is only one part of the equation. Water is the other.
In the summer, the key is to keep soil moist as it tends to dry faster because of the heat and the plant’s active growing season.
In the winter, you want to let the soil dry because the cold weather reduces evaporation and the plant is dormant. As such, it doesn’t use up a lot of resources including water. So, watering often can easily lead to overwatering.
The principles above with watering apply to fertilizer as well. That is, you want to feed it more during the spring and summer. Then back off or stop during the fall and winter.
That’s because the plant is actively growing during the warmer months. As such, it needs plant food to support this growth. Come fall, it starts slowing down before taking a breather in the winter months.
Then, starting up again next spring.
As such, apply a balanced fertilizer once a month. You can use liquid or slow release. Each of these having its own benefits.
Liquid fertilizer allow you to control how much plant food you distribute since you have a hold of the nozzle. On the other hand, slow release gradually apply the fertilizer over a span of time.
Thus, the latter produces a more balanced time-based distribution. But, they come in pellet form. So, it is more difficult to accurately distribute it around.
That said, both work, just in their own way. So, it’s up to you to see which your prefer and which produces better reduces for your feeding style.
Keep in mind that the monstera Thai constellation is a slow growing plant. So, don’t expect it to suddenly have growth spurts when you apply fertilizer. And, it also means that adding more fertilizer won’t help it grow faster.
Instead, too much plant food is more harmful than it is good for your monstera plant.
Just as the plant’s roots are sensitive to the amount of water and the quality of water, it is likewise delicate to too much fertilizer.
Salt buildup in the soil is a side effect of the chemicals in fertilizer. As this accumulates, it can cause root burn and yellow leaves.
Flushing the Soil
To prevent this from happening, you want to avoid over feeding it. Also, flushing the soil every 4 to 8 months helps. Flushing is simply running water, via a hose (for a larger plant) or in the sink (for a smaller plant) for about 1 to 3 minutes.
This will soak the root ball and allow liquid to keep pouring from under the container.
After 1 to 3 minutes, allow the plant to drain completely. You want all the excess moisture to escape before returning it to its spot.
Flushing causes water to carry the salt, debris and other minerals that have built up inn the soil to flow out with the running water.
The Thai constellation monstera is a slow grower. In general, those with variegated leaves grow slower than those with solid ones because of their ability to produce chlorophyll.
But, the monstera Thai constellation is especially slow growing even compared to other variegated monstera species.
As such, you don’t need to do a lot of pruning. This makes it fairly low maintenance.
However, you do want to remove dead, discolored and dying leaves because they hinder growth. Similarly, as the plant grows, you may want to trim it to control its size and shape.
As always use sterile cutting tools when pruning so as not to introduce bacterial via the wounded sections of the plant.
Thai Constellation Monstera Propagation
Thai constellation monstera can be propagated via stem cuttings, separation and air layering.
Stem cuttings is the easiest way of the three. And, the best time to do so is during the spring.
You can likewise separate the plant. But, this only works if you have a bigger monstera plant since you’ll be taking a part of the mother plant and planting it on its own container.
Here’s how to propagate Thai constellation monstera via stem cuttings.
- Select a healthy stem with at least one leaf on it.
- Using a sterile pair of pruning shears and cut the stem off just below the node. You want to keep at least one node with the cutting because that’s where the growth will come from. Without it, you won’t see any new plant emerge.
- Add some soil to a small pot. Use fast draining potting mix.
- Insert the stem cutting into the soil where it will root after a few weeks. You can likewise let it root in water first before moving it into soil.
- Water the soil and keep it in a warm, humid place with bright, indirect light.
- In the next 4 to 6 weeks you should see some kind of growth begin to happen.
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Thai Constellation Monstera Transplanting & Repotting
Thai constellation monstera will likely need to be repotted every 2 years or so. This depends on how quickly it grows, which is a factor of how much sun, water, humidity and fertilizer it receives to name a few factors.
The best time to do so is during the spring as the plant is growing. This allows it to better overcome the shock of being moved.
Before you repot, you want to have a couple of things ready.
- A pot that’s one size bigger. Go up only 1 to 2 inches. Note that the plant grows a deep root system. As such, you want to use a deep container and not a shallow one to allow it to grow properly.
- Rich, light, well draining potting soil.
Once spring arrives, you can start repotting. Here’s how.
- Gently slide the plant out of its current container.
- Inspect the root ball. Remove any excess dirt. And, check the roots to see if they are healthy.
- If you don’t want to move it to a bigger pot and are happy with its size, you can prune its roots. This will allow it to fit back into its existing container. Then, just fill the pot with fresh potting soil.
- Otherwise, partially fill the larger container with soil, up to about a third to a half.
- Insert the plant into the pot and backfill with fresh soil.
- You can use a support structure to keep the plant upright.
- Water the plant and return it to is place.
Monstera Thai constellation are toxic. Keep them away from curious hands and mouths. This includes both young children, dogs, cats and horses.
If ingested, it ill cause mouth, throat and digestive tract irritation and swelling which could lead to nausea, vomiting and other unpleasant symptoms.
Call your pediatrician or veterinarian if this happens.
Pests and Diseases
Thai constellation monstera is susceptible to pests and diseases. As such, you want to take precautionary steps to avoid these from happening. If they do happen, you likewise want to know what to do.
Root rot is the biggest thing to watch out for when it comes to disease. It occurs from overwatering. When your plant sits in water for long periods of time, its roots will start rotting.
As such, the best way to prevent it is to know when to water (see watering section above) and using light, well-draining soil.
However, if you do spot root rot when repotting, the best thing to do is assess how extensive it is. It it is major, you may have no option but to throw away the plant.
If less than half of the roots are black or mushy, you’ll want to trim off the rotted parts and repot the plant in well-draining soil. Don’t water the plant for a few days to help it recover.
Then, start watering using a modified routine.
There’s no cure for root rot. And, even if you take the steps above, there’s no certainty it will recover. So, the best thing to do is avoid this problem.
When it comes to pests, mealybugs, thrips, scale and spider mites are the most common. These can damage your plant’s beautiful leaves. As such, inspection is the best way to spot them early.
Remember a healthy plant with he proper living conditions will be more resistant to pests and diseases. As such, this is a priority as well.
If you do find pests, treat them with insecticidal soap spray or neem oil. It will take about 3 weeks or so to resolve completely.