Ask a Question forum→Monstera albo root rot

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Northern Ireland
Hollyxo
May 12, 2020 4:46 AM CST
Hi there, im really hoping someone could help me!

I ordered a (very expensivešŸ„“) variegated monstera albo from amazon which looked incredibly healthy with a good root system which i assume was rooted in water.

I immediately potted it in a regular compost mix with nothing added for about a week then after some research i repotted into a mix of bark, perlite and soil. However me being me wanted to check that the roots were still doing okay so i dug a little to see them and noticed they had almost all rotted?? All except the aerial root which i had also placed into the soil.

I have no idea what to do. Should i cut off the rot and repot in water?

Any advice would be appreciated!

Thank you!!


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Name: Gina
Florida (Zone 9a)
Tropical plant collector 35 years
Region: Florida Tropicals Aroids
Image
Gina1960
May 12, 2020 5:50 AM CST
I have almost decided to stop answering these Monstera questions because quite honestly there are so many they are overwhelming. But as maybe one of 3 people on this site who actually has grown variegated Monsteras for longer than the last year (I have grown AND propagated them for almost 20 years) I guess I would feel guilty doing that.

If you suspect your root system which you received was rooted in water, and you transferred those fragile water roots directly into soil, then dug that up and repotted again, you damaged the roots and that is why they died.

This is why I personally never root in water. Water roots are not soil roots. They are water roots. They have never had to toughen up because they have never had to seek and find water. They are soft and fragile. When suddenly placed into a new environment with low water/no water, they can suffer setback. They are too pampered. I know people will come on behind me and say 'Water rooting is fine I do it all the time'. The people I know who have the best success with water rooting AROIDS specifically do a transition phase of potting the water roots into an almost pond like mix of soil and water, gradually increasing the soil and decreasing the moisture over a period of a few WEEKS. Until the soil mix is, well, soil. This gives the roots time to adapt. Aroids are not always like other plants in the way they root, especially when they are EPIPHYTIC like Monstera are.

If your plant came with those 2 nice adventitious roots, then it is ROOTED ALREADY. All you needed to do was to plant it as it was, with those roots in the soil mix you wanted to use. Upon consistent watering, those roots will then produce the necessary roots needed for uptake of water and nutrients while they are in the soil.

I would advise that you research the natural growth cycle of Monstera deliciosa in the wild. (And what holds true for M. deliciosa also holds true for almost all of the other Monstera species, should you decide later to pop for some of the varieties that are more rare and expensive than deliciosa)

They start life as seeds dropped on a host tree or other surface way up off the ground in the rainforest. The seed sprouts, roots come out and attach to the host. These roots travel DOWN the host (tree, cliff face, etc) to the ground, where they enter the soil and develop soil roots. Sometimes this trip is 15-30 feet down. The adventitious roots are capable of absorbing water and nutrients before they enter the soil. So are yours.

Just plant the plant as it is, in a SMALL UGLY NURSERY POT, in the soil mix you plan to keep it in, water it to keep the soil evenly moist but not wet, and let it grow without disturbing it again to check the roots. It is not going to start growing like gangbusters in a week. It is going to start growing slowly. Patience is necessary.
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Northern Ireland
Hollyxo
May 12, 2020 6:10 AM CST
Gina1960 said:I have almost decided to stop answering these Monstera questions because quite honestly there are so many they are overwhelming. But as maybe one of 3 people on this site who actually has grown variegated Monsteras for longer than the last year (I have grown AND propagated them for almost 20 years) I guess I would feel guilty doing that.

If you suspect your root system which you received was rooted in water, and you transferred those fragile water roots directly into soil, then dug that up and repotted again, you damaged the roots and that is why they died.

This is why I personally never root in water. Water roots are not soil roots. They are water roots. They have never had to toughen up because they have never had to seek and find water. They are soft and fragile. When suddenly placed into a new environment with low water/no water, they can suffer setback. They are too pampered. I know people will come on behind me and say 'Water rooting is fine I do it all the time'. The people I know who have the best success with water rooting AROIDS specifically do a transition phase of potting the water roots into an almost pond like mix of soil and water, gradually increasing the soil and decreasing the moisture over a period of a few WEEKS. Until the soil mix is, well, soil. This gives the roots time to adapt. Aroids are not always like other plants in the way they root, especially when they are EPIPHYTIC like Monstera are.

If your plant came with those 2 nice adventitious roots, then it is ROOTED ALREADY. All you needed to do was to plant it as it was, with those roots in the soil mix you wanted to use. Upon consistent watering, those roots will then produce the necessary roots needed for uptake of water and nutrients while they are in the soil.

I would advise that you research the natural growth cycle of Monstera deliciosa in the wild. (And what holds true for M. deliciosa also holds true for almost all of the other Monstera species, should you decide later to pop for some of the varieties that are more rare and expensive than deliciosa)

They start life as seeds dropped on a host tree or other surface way up off the ground in the rainforest. The seed sprouts, roots come out and attach to the host. These roots travel DOWN the host (tree, cliff face, etc) to the ground, where they enter the soil and develop soil roots. Sometimes this trip is 15-30 feet down. The adventitious roots are capable of absorbing water and nutrients before they enter the soil. So are yours.

Just plant the plant as it is, in a SMALL UGLY NURSERY POT, in the soil mix you plan to keep it in, water it to keep the soil evenly moist but not wet, and let it grow without disturbing it again to check the roots. It is not going to start growing like gangbusters in a week. It is going to start growing slowly. Patience is necessary.


Thank you so much Gina! I have been sitting here watching my phone praying someone would answer me haha so thank you so so much! I am so new to this and was so worried about my new plant i kept thinking i was doing the wrong thing but i know now i should have just left it alone in the first place:(

I have cut the rotten bit off the bottom and planted it in a small teracotta pot which is all i had! Fingers crossed for this little guy! Thanks for your reply again, god bless xx

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Name: Gina
Florida (Zone 9a)
Tropical plant collector 35 years
Region: Florida Tropicals Aroids
Image
Gina1960
May 12, 2020 8:17 AM CST
When you see roots start growing out the bottom of that repot into something only a size or so bigger. Keep stepping up slowly. I bet you will have success
Award winning beaded art at ceinwin.deviantart.com!

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