Article: Guide to Differentiating Monstera Large Form & Small Form

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Thank you for this!

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Anytime! Please share as you see fit.

In my previous home in California, there was a Monstera deliciosa growing in my side yard that was likely planted there by the previous owners decades ago. The plant was mature enough to produce fruit while I was living there. In the third photo of my Instagram post you can see the internodal spacing which seems pretty short to me, so I’ve always thought it was a large form.

3 years ago, I had taken a cutting off this plant from a smaller stem that had branched off from the main stem and crawled along the ground. I’ve grown this exclusively indoors with whatever natural light I had and the internodal spacing had started out relatively tight but has now become long. I had always assumed it was because I hadn’t given it enough light nor a proper pole to latch onto. But based on your description could it just be that this was small form all along? Below are photos of the plant I grew from the cutting.

What do you think this is based on the photos of the mother plant and the cutting?

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Hey Lily! The specimen is gorgeous! Thanks for sharing it. Totally see the confusion, it’s why I imagine all these little factors help inform one opinion or another. When they are coaxed to grow vertically they do space out, when I’m home I’ll share a photo of one of my large forms that is. That said, the node spacing on yours is further than any I’ve seen for a large form, the length of the nodes still appear closer than most small form especially given the maturity (girth) early on. The rounder leaves are classic to large forms. It’s hard to see here, and more of a in person comp, but if you have a matured small form vs a matured large form, you’ll note the overall structure of the plant is meatier for the large form. Here the stem is large, the petioles are thick, and longer than what small forms have gotten to.

Of course that’s all to consider, if we didn’t have your bigger momma photo to look at, which most definitely indicates large form given the growth pattern.

Hope this is helpful, and welcome to the forums!!

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Thanks so much for your insights!


Manny, Thank you for clarifying the differences between the large forms and small forms. There is so much info out there that it makes it very difficult to know what is fact. I have a variegated monstera that I have had for some time now (12+ yrs). This is one of the cuttings that I grew and somewhat trained it to grow up a moss pole, but, have taken the pole down as it grew too tall for me to extend the pole and kept flowering. People have always questioned and a few have challenged me on it being a large form or small form. I was wondering if you could take a look at some of my pics and provide ne your opinion on whether you think it is a large form. Thank you! Lori