Monstera Deliciosa (small form) albo variegata...what a mouthful. More commonly known as a Variegated Monstera, these plants are in short supply and high demand. Valued by those in the plant community for their unique expression of variegation between individual leaves and plants. They are a unique piece to add to your collection.
Variegated Monstera's require similar care to the standard Monstera Deliciosa with the exception of the consideration of how variegation affects a plant.
The word variegation comes from the Latin word variegatus which means "made of various sorts of colours". Variegation refers to the different coloured zones through a single leaf or stem segment. It can be due to a number of different causes including genetic mutations (chimeral), viral infections, pattern-gene variation and blister/reflective variegation. It is important to remember that unlike a standard plant, variegation results in differing plant tissues where one has the ability to produce chlorophyll and one does not.
What does this mean? If you have two plants and one is a standard Monstera and the other a variegated Monstera, the standard plant with more green zones will be able to readily produce more energy and grow. Due to the lack of chlorophyll producing tissue, variegated plants are often more slow-growing and therefore require expert care.
Bright indirect sunlight is best for these plants. Be very cautious of too much light and direct sun as the leaves can get damaged, particularly the white variegated segments. A variegated Monstera will typically require more hours of bright light than a standard green Monstera due to their reduced ability to produce chlorophyll.
Use a chunky soil mix which is well draining. Orchid bark and perlite are great options to add to your mix. These plants can be prone to rot if sitting wet.
Watering about once a week to keep the plant slightly damp is recommended. Ensure the water freely drains and doesn't sit soggy. Wait for the soil to almost dry out before watering again.
Will tolerate dry conditions however, they love high humidity. Some people see benefits spraying their plants regularly.
Variegated Monstera's enjoy temperatures of approximately 18-27 degrees Celsius. Cooler temperatures will reduce the growth rate of your plant.
The growth of a variegated Monstera will depend on the conditions and whether or not you choose to use a totem to provide support and attachment for the aerial roots. Totems or moss poles allow your plant to climb as it would in it's natural environment.
Due to the high demand of these plants, often buyers can only source a cutting rather than an established plant. Be aware of the difficulty and experience required to grow a cutting into an established plant.