Identification: Plant ID

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by KPlante, Oct 5, 2007.

  1. KPlante

    KPlante Member

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    Howdy Folk,

    Can anyone tell me the names of the following two plants?
    Picture #2 has an Ivy in it (to the right) I'm not too curious about that.

    Thanks so much,

    Ken
     

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  2. Lila Pereszke

    Lila Pereszke Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    1. is an underage Monstera deliciosa... :)
    2. is a Dieffenbachia...
     
  3. KPlante

    KPlante Member

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    Thanks Lila!
    After looking it up(Monstera Deliciosa), it seems to me I need to be ready to get yet another container!
     
  4. photopro

    photopro Well-Known Member

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    Although often called a Philodendron, Monstera deliciosa is not a member of that genus. It is an aroid and a member of the rather small genus Monstera which contains just over thirty species.

    It was first discovered in southern Mexico and many still believe it is only found in Mexico. In reality, it is found throughout much of Central and the western portion of South America. Even though it is one of the most commonly cultivated tropical plants in captive growth, it is still considered rare in nature! Some sell it as "Philodendron pertusum".

    This large leaf favorite with holes in it's leaves (resembling Swiss cheese) is very easy to grow and will live well as a house plant or in the yard if you are fortunate enough to live in a semi-tropical climate. You just better give it a big pot!

    Monstera deliciosa has heavily coriaceous (leathery) leaves and is a native to the forests of Oaxaca and Veracruz in Mexico and points south through Ecuador and Peru. The holes are scientifically known as fenestrations. It commonly grows along stream edges and in limestone outcrops. Specimens south of Mexico have leaf blades that are typically smaller and often are not perforate at all. I've seen M. deliciosa climbing trees, growing in very deep shade and even out where it gets nearly full sunlight. In nature it prefers bright light.

    The leaf size of Monstera deliciosa can reach nearly 3 feet (90cm) but can be controlled by simply not watering as often. Some websites claim the leaves can grow to 5 feet (150cm) , but no scientific documentation to prove that size can be found.

    When mature, the plant produces a cream colored spathe with a cucumber shaped spadix that is actually a fruit and tastes very much like pineapple mixed with strawberry when fully grown. And if you have read on the internet that all Philodendron and Monstera sp. and their fruit are poisonous, I am proof this one is not poisonous. In fact, there is actually more of the chemical compound that is supposedly "poisonous" in spinach than in this plant! We eat them every year.
    The fruit of M. deliciosa is commonly eaten by people in South and Central America. Internet myths also claim the fruit will not mature in captive growth. Sorry, that one is not correct either! We just had fruit on three spadices which was delicious. The spathes are quite large and measure approximately 9 inches (23cm) in height. We love to see the fruit begin to grow! The plant drew its scientific name due to the taste of the fruit! It is deliciosa! However, it must turn yellow before you attempt to sample the taste.

    The plant grows in nature along the banks of streams and rivers and loves to have the roots in the water. It loves water! But will also last a long time with neglect. One specimen was observed to last, suffering, close to 5 months with no water at all before it died.

    The species prefers porous soil.

    Dieffenbachia on the other hand is not one you want to put in your mouth! A few deaths have been reported due a a combination of chemical substances in the plant. Don't chew it and don't let your pets or children chew it. That is why it is called "dumb cane". It can paralyze your vocal cords, at least temporarily.
     
  5. KPlante

    KPlante Member

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    Thanks Photopro,

    The information is totally fascinating.
    I recently looked up a picture of the monstera which was trellised up the side of what looked to be a three story building.
    The pot that it is in now is the third pot so far. I got the plant about a year+ ago in a 6" pot. I've come home twice to find it hanging out as if it pushed itself out.
    I've never had a plant as active as this one!
     
  6. photopro

    photopro Well-Known Member

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    The best way to keep the growth a bit slower is to limit the water. This species loves water which is why it grows along streams in native habitat. But if the water supply is kept limited it doesn't grow as wildly.

    You'll almost certainly need to get the plant some sort of support if you want to keep it looking good. I've got them as tall as 3 meters (9 feet) in my atrium and they are climbing the cedar framework of the building. A standard plant totem is not real great since the plant can get so large and heavy. A piece of old rough timber tends to work well. You'll just need to attach the plant in the beginning with tie wrap or cord.

    They can become beautiful plants. But they can also get BIG!
     

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