Gardening Magazine

The Monstera Deliciosa and the Private Rain Cloud

By Ozhene @papaver

A few days ago I saw the magic words attached to a lamp-post as I was walking into work...'house plant sale' and as I turned the next corner I realised I was walking past where they were setting up for the day. Shelf upon shelf of green house-plant loveliness was being unpacked. I sidled up to the lady doing the unpacking and asked 'any aspidistras?'. Sadly not but I glanced around the plants and confirmed that I would return when they were properly open for business.

Later on in the day I remembered this promise and returned to the stall. There was a queue of people waiting to pay for their plants, all clutching their prized future possessions. I rummaged through the shelves looking to see if anything would take my fancy. Actually, let's be honest, I was looking for what would take my fancy, I was very unlikely not to make a purchase.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

Then I saw it, a shelf of Monstera deliciosa, nicely sized and all looking very healthy. I checked on the price and it was within the reasonable range. A bit more poking about and the plant was chosen. Happy happy.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

I made my way to pay and whilst I queued my eyes fell upon a pineapple plant. I thought about it for a millisecond and picked it up. I got my plants home, found them suitable conditions to live in, gave them a water to say welcome and sat back happily.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

The next day I looked at my Monstera and was surprised to see there was water dripped on the leaves. I did that looking at the ceiling thing wondering if there was a leak. It would have been a terrifying leak if there was one as it would have gone through the bedroom above without my noticing. I decided I must have dripped water on it when settling it in. The drips dried and happy enough my thoughts moved on.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

Until, a few days later I looked again and to my horror the drips had returned.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

It was raining on my Monstera! It had its own private rain cloud! So I googled 'water on leaves of swiss cheese plant' and found a query where someone was asking why their plant was crying. Crying! I am now distraught! I now think that my Monstera is so unhappy in an Eeyore type way that it has its own private rain cloud and is crying.

The Monstera deliciosa and the private rain cloud

It turns out that this is something that Monstera and other plants do. When they have been watered they 'exude' (such a lovely word) moisture from their leaves and/or stems. Apparently this is called 'Guttation' (also a good word, and a new one to me). So I have stopped worrying, I have convinced myself that my plant is not crying at the very thought of being owned by me. It is a happy plant... (repeat as necessary and relax).

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