Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma, also known as 'Mini Monstera,' Philodendron/Monstera 'Ginny,' or Philodendron 'Piccolo,' is a unique species of plants originating from Malaysia and Southern Thailand. Although these plants are part of the Araceae family, they belong to an independent genus known as Rhaphidophora.
This mini Monstera is considered an exotic jungle plant, but it can also be found in rainforests or dry climates making it an easy-to-grow houseplant. However, hanging these plants can result in smaller leaves without splits.
Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma is a rare tropical aroid, having small and graceful ornamental leaves with 6 inch split lobes. Their leaves look like a smaller version of Monstera Deliciosa, which is why it is mostly referred to by the name Mini Monstera. However, it is a completely different species, with no edible fruits.
Depending on the environmental conditions, these plants can reach up to 12 feet in height. As a houseplant, it is usually preferred at 4 to 5 feet tall. They are vining plants, having aerial roots that climb trees or whatever is good for them to stabilize as they grow, such as trellises.
How to Care for your Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma "Mini Monstera"
Light: These plants are big fans of diffused bright light, so it is better to keep them out of direct hot sunlight. Too much exposure to the harsh sun can damage the leaves, drying and turning them yellow. If you want to keep them as houseplants, they should be fine if placed near a sunrise-showing window that provides them with plenty of light. You can also add extra ambient lighting using an artificial grow light. For outdoor growth, it is recommended that you keep these plants in a bright shade, allowing them to get a gentle touch of the morning sun. However, Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma is considered a fast-growing plant, so too little light will slow down the process and will produce small leaves.
Water: Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma is known to grow faster if it is provided with regular waterings, so it should not be left too dry for a long time. Although these plants are pretty thirsty for moisture, they can be very sensitive to overwatering. Your plant will be happy and healthy if you water it no more than once every 7 to 10 days (about 4 times per month) in the summer or warm temperatures. In cooler conditions or the winter season, the plant should be fine with watering every two weeks.
Temperature: The ideal temperatures that the Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma plants need to grow healthy are somewhere between 55°F and 85°F (12-29°C). They can be pretty tolerant of slightly cooler conditions too, but if the temperature starts to drop below 55°F (12°C), you should bring them indoors. During the summer months, you can place them outdoors, but relocate the plants in your household in the wintertime.
Soil: Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma plants thrive in an all-purpose potting soil, damp, well-draining, and rich in organic matter. If you want to improve the drainage system, you can use perlite which aerates the soil and promotes root growth. A potting mix used for orchids with added active charcoal would also be a good choice for these plants.
Fertilizer: Due to their sensitive roots, Rhaphidophora plants are quite susceptible to fertilizer burn. They prefer a high-quality, balanced organic fertilizer that lacks harsh chemicals to reduce the chance of burning. During the active growing phase, these plants are happy with regular fertilizing.
Re-potting: When you are repotting your plant, remove it gently from its pot and check it for symptoms of root rot. If there are any signs, cut the part which is damaged with a sterile knife. After this process, you should place the plant in a new pot. The container should be at least 10 inches wide for a full-sized plant, but with the possibility of buying a double-sized pot over time.
Propagation: When you start to notice leaf nodes on your Rhaphidophora Tetraspermas plant, it is the perfect chance to transform it into new little plants. Propagating these Mini Monstera plants is quite easy as the only thing you need to do is take a stem chunk from the mother plant and place it into a glass of water or root into a dump potting soil. Make sure your cutting will have one or more leaf nodes on it. The roots will form from the lowest leaf node, so make sure you place it under the water or soil surface. If you choose to propagate your Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma plant in water, you should keep a fresh growth environment changing the water at least once per day. The cutting will be ready for transfer into a potting mix within a few weeks when the roots are about 1-2 inches long. However, for cuttings placed in the mix from the beginning of propagation, it is necessary to wait for one month or so to root. All this time you need to keep it alive and then, check very lightly if there is any resistance for the plant. When there is, it means that roots have developed and it can be cared for as a new Rhaphidophora Tetrasperma plant.
Toxicity: Because Mini Monsteras are part of the Araceae family they contain calcium oxylate crystals, which are toxic to dogs and cats. These crystals can lead to internal damage like stomach pain and lethargy and external pain such as mouth stinging if ingested.
Arrives in a nursery grow pot. Pot sold separately.
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