Monstera Pests: Common Bugs and How to Get Rid of Them

By | Updated November 1, 2023

Common pests that can harm Monstera plants include aphids, mealybugs, thrips, spider mites, and scale insects. These bugs feed on the plant’s tissues and can cause damage, which can be treated with insecticidal sprays or natural remedies. Regular monitoring and early action are key to preventing further damage.

With their stunning, large leaves and unique growth patterns, Monstera plants have become a favorite among enthusiasts. 

However, like any other houseplant, Monsteras can fall prey to various pests that harm their appearance and hinder healthy growth.

Here we’ll explore the most common Monstera pests, explain how to identify an infestation and share practical methods for keeping your beloved tropical plant safe from these unwelcome critters. 

Common Pests Found On Monstera Plants

Monstera plants attract a range of pests, such as aphids, gnats, mealybugs, scale insects, spider mites, thrips, and whiteflies, making them susceptible to infestation.

Spider Mites

Spider mites are tiny, sap-sucking insects that can become a significant problem for Monstera plants if left unchecked. 

These tiny pests, typically measuring less than 0.04 inches in size, belong to the Tetranychidae family and can multiply rapidly in favorable conditions. 

Besides being prevalent on Monstera deliciosa, spider mites infested other popular varieties like Monstera obliqua and Monstera adansonii.

A telltale sign of spider mite infestation on your beloved monstera plant is the appearance of fine webbing or silken threads around leaves and stems. 

Additionally, you may notice tiny red or brown spots dotting the surface of the foliage – an indication that these pests have fed on your plant’s cells.

When left untreated, spider mites will continue to damage your Monstera, causing its leaves to turn yellow and eventually fall off.

To address a spider mite invasion effectively, horticulturists recommend implementing natural pest removal methods such as introducing predatory insects like ladybugs or spraying your Monstera with a DIY solution from dish soap mixed with water. 

Neem oil is another fantastic option for curbing these pesky bugs as it interrupts their life cycle without harming beneficial insects like bees and butterflies – make sure to coat both sides of each leaf thoroughly! 

Treating an infestation early minimizes the potential harm to your Monstera while ensuring that it remains healthy and vibrant for years.


Mealybugs are a common and pesky problem for many Monstera plant enthusiasts, as they can cause significant damage to these tropical plants. 

These tiny insects belong to the Pseudococcidae family and have a white, cottony appearance that makes them easy to spot on Monstera leaves and stems. 

In addition to their visual presence, mealybugs excrete a sticky substance called honeydew which can lead to mold growth on your plant.

The damage caused by mealybugs results from their feeding habits, sucking out nutrients from your Monstera deliciosa or Monstera adansonii while injecting harmful toxins into the plant. 

Due to this infestation, affected monstera leaves may become yellow, experience stunted growth, or even suffer destruction in severe cases. 

This highlights how important it is to address a mealybug infestation quickly before it gets out of control.

Thankfully, there are numerous ways to combat these irritating pests without causing further harm to your indoor plants, such as using rubbing alcohol applied with a cotton swab directly onto visible bugs.

Alternatively, natural remedies like neem oil or insecticidal soap sprays can also effectively tackle mealybug outbreaks with proper care routines like maintaining appropriate moisture levels within moist soil environments and exposing your plant leaf collection only to indirect sunlight sources.

Scale Insects

Scale insects are a common pest found on Monstera plants

These pests can be identified by their small, immobile, and waxy appearance. 

They tend to attach themselves to the leaves, stems, and even the roots of the plant. 

A severe infestation can cause stunted growth and yellowing leaves if left untreated.

To remove scale insects on your Monstera plant, use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to kill and remove them from the affected areas. 

You can also use insecticidal soap or neem oil as natural remedies for controlling these pests. 

Identifying and treating scale insects early is important before they spread to other plants.

Preventing scale insects is just as important as treating them. 

Regularly inspecting your Monstera plant for signs of infestation and cleaning it with a damp cloth will help keep these pests at bay. 

Additionally, ensure that you’re giving your Monstera plant the proper care it needs – avoiding overwatering or underwatering – so it remains healthy and less susceptible to pest infestations.


Fungus gnats are small, obnoxious flying insects that commonly infest Monstera plants. 

They’re often found in overly moist soil and feed on decomposing plant debris. 

While they aren’t particularly harmful to mature Monstera plants, they can cause severe damage to young ones by feeding on their tender roots.

To get rid of fungus gnats, you can try letting the soil dry out between watering or using insecticidal soap to kill off the adult gnats. 

You should also avoid over-fertilizing your plants, as this creates a perfect breeding ground for fungus gnats. 

Additionally, placing sticky traps near your Monstera’s pot can help catch any remaining adults and prevent a new generation from hatching.

If you want to keep fungus gnats away from your beloved Monstera plant in the first place, make sure not to overwater it and always use fresh, well-draining soil when repotting it. 

Also, consider adding beneficial nematodes to the soil as they prey on gnat larvae and other insect pests without harming the plant.


Aphids are one of the most common pests that attack Monstera plants. 

These tiny insects come in different colors, such as green, yellow, black, and brown. 

They feed on plant sap and can cause yellowing leaves and stunted growth. 

If you notice aphids on your Monstera plant, acting quickly to prevent an infestation is essential.

One effective way to eliminate aphids on houseplants is by using rubbing alcohol. 

Mix a solution of 1 part rubbing alcohol with 3 parts water in a spray bottle and apply directly onto the affected areas. 

This method will help kill the aphids without harming your Monstera plant.

Preventing aphid infestations in the first place involves proper plant care practices such as regular watering, fertilizing, pruning dead foliage, and keeping humidity levels optimal for tropical plants like Monstera. 

Including beneficial insects like ladybugs or lacewings can also help control potential pest issues before they become larger problems.


Whiteflies are a common pest found on Monstera plants. 

They resemble tiny white moths, often flying around the plant or resting on its leaves. 

The larvae of whiteflies look like mealybugs, appearing as fluffy white specks that move slowly. 

Whiteflies suck the sap from the plant’s leaves, leading to yellowing and wilting.

To get rid of whiteflies on Monstera plants, it is recommended to use sticky traps, insecticidal soap, or neem oil. 

Sticky traps will catch adult flies, while insecticidal soap or neem oil will kill both adults and their offspring by suffocation or starvation. 

It is important to regularly inspect plants for pests and diseases and take necessary measures to prevent their spread.

If left unchecked, whitefly infestations can quickly spiral out of control resulting in stunted growth, leaf loss, or even plant death. 

Hence early detection and prompt action are crucial in preventing significant damage. 

Regular care practices such as proper watering frequency (not too much nor too little) and a consistent temperature range (between 60-75°F) with indirect sunlight exposure go a long way in preventing pest infestations before they occur!


Thrips are tiny insects that can cause significant damage to Monstera plants

These pests have a rapid life cycle and can quickly multiply if left untreated. 

Symptoms of thrip infestation include silver or bronze streaks on the leaves, black spots, and distorted growth patterns.

You can use insecticidal soap or neem oil spray to remove thrips on your Monstera plant. 

Trimming damaged leaves is also effective as it removes any eggs the pests lay. 

Placing yellow sticky traps near your plant can also help catch adult thrips.

Prevention is always better than cure when it comes to pest control. 

Regularly inspecting and monitoring your plants for signs of infestations can help prevent further damage from thrips and other common pests found on Monstera plants, such as spider mites, mealybugs, and scale insects.

Identifying Monstera Pest Infestation

To identify a pest infestation on Monstera plants, you must look out for telltale signs such as discolored or deformed leaves, sticky residue on the plant surface, and visible bugs crawling on the leaves or in the soil.

Signs Of Damage

Yellowing around the edges of Monstera leaves is one of the most common signs of pest damage. 

The yellowing usually starts at the tips and progresses inwards, affecting larger areas over time. 

Another sign to look out for is small black bugs flying around your plant or crawling on its leaves. 

These could be aphids or fungus gnats, which can cause significant harm if left unchecked.

If you notice brown spots on your Monstera leaves, it could signify bacterial leaf spot disease caused by overwatering or high humidity levels. 

Black spots may also appear due to fungal infections that thrive in moist conditions. 

To prevent the further spread of the disease or infestation, it’s crucial to identify and isolate affected plants from healthy ones as soon as possible. 

Regular cleaning and pruning can also help keep pests at bay by removing dead foliage that might attract insects like mealybugs or spider mites.

Symptoms Of Infestation

If you suspect a pest infestation on your Monstera plant, there are specific symptoms to look for. 

One common sign is damaged leaves caused by various pests such as spider mites and mealybugs. 

These pests suck the sap out of the leaves, causing yellowing or browning spots on them. 

Another symptom is tiny black bugs on the plant, which could indicate an infestation of fungus gnats.

In addition, if you notice any aerial roots turning black or brown, it may be a sign of scale insects feeding on them. 

Thrips can also cause damage to Monstera plants by creating small scars on new growth that later turn into silver patches. 

It’s important to check your Monstera regularly for these symptoms so that you can take action quickly and prevent further damage.

If left untreated, a pest infestation can worsen over time and even lead to the death of the plant in severe cases. 

Understanding The Causes Of Infestation

A common reason for pest infestation in Monstera plants is improper care. 

Overwatering, poor soil quality, and lack of sunlight can weaken the plant’s immunity, making it more vulnerable to pests. 

Maintaining adequate watering schedules and ensuring the soil has proper drainage to prevent root rot or other fungal issues is essential.

Another factor contributing to pest infestation is bringing new plants into your home without adequately quarantining them. 

New plants may already have pests or diseases that can spread quickly to your existing collection. 

Inspect new plants before bringing them indoors and keep them separate from other plants for a few weeks while monitoring their health.

Lastly, neglecting regular cleaning and pruning can lead to pest buildup in Monstera plants. 

Dust accumulation on leaves can attract spider mites, while dead leaves provide breeding grounds for gnats. 

Pruning helps remove any infected plant parts before pests can spread further.

How To Get Rid Of Monstera Pests

Learn how to eliminate pests that attack your Monstera plant with natural pest removal methods like neem oil, insecticidal soap, and beneficial insects while avoiding pesticides as much as possible. 

Pruning damaged parts and isolating the affected plant are also crucial.

Natural Pest Removal Methods

If you’re concerned about using harsh chemicals on your Monstera plant, you can try several natural pest removal methods. 

These include:

  1. Neem Oil – This organic oil is derived from the neem tree and can effectively control spider mites, mealybugs, and aphids. Mix a tablespoon of neem oil with a quart of water and spray the solution on the affected parts of the plant every seven to 14 days.
  2. Horticultural Soap – A mixture of water and horticultural soap creates a soapy solution that can suffocate pests like aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies. Spray this solution on the affected parts of the plant every three to seven days until the infestation is under control.
  3. Change the Plant’s Environment – Pests like fungus gnats thrive in moist soil conditions. Allowing your Monstera’s soil to dry out between waterings can help prevent an infestation. Additionally, placing yellow sticky traps near your plant can help catch flying pests such as whiteflies or thrips.
  4. Physical Removal Methods – Sticky tape or traps placed near infested leaves can capture flying insects. In contrast, wiping affected leaves with diluted alcohol or removing heavily-infested foliage manually can slow down an infestation.
  5. Encourage Beneficial Insects – Ladybugs are natural predators who feast on thrips or aphids at various stages in their lifecycle; releasing these onto plants is an eco-friendly way to control their populations. Lacewings feed on spider mites and aphids at all stages in their life cycle, which makes them an excellent choice for preventing further outbreaks if caught early!

Remember that natural methods may take longer to show results than chemical pesticides because they disrupt pest feeding habits rather than outright killing them off.

Chemical Control Techniques

Chemical control techniques can be effective in getting rid of Monstera pests but should be used cautiously. Here are some chemical control methods that can be used:

  1. Insecticidal soap: This is a natural solution that can help control pests like aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, and whiteflies. It suffocates the pests and can be sprayed directly on the affected plant.
  2. Horticultural oil: When spraying, this oil can smother insects like the scale on the plant leaves or stem. It is also effective against spider mites.
  3. Insecticides: These are specially formulated chemicals that kill pests. Always follow instructions carefully when using insecticides to avoid damaging your plants or harming beneficial insects.
  4. Repotting: Sometimes, it might be necessary to repot your Monstera plant in fresh soil and eliminate any infested soil with pests before applying treatment.

Isolate The Affected Plant

If your Monstera plant has a pest infestation, it is crucial to isolate it immediately to prevent the spread of the problem to other plants in your collection. 

You can move the affected plant away from other indoor plants or even place it outside for treatment if the weather permits.

Isolating the affected plant also helps you focus on treating and eradicating pests without cross-contamination. 

It allows for more efficient and targeted treatments, such as using insecticidal soap or beneficial insects that won’t harm other plants nearby.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure – quarantine any new plants before introducing them into your indoor garden. 

This step will help mitigate issues before they spread throughout your entire collection, making stopping infestations at their source easier.

Preventing Monstera Pest Infestation

To prevent Monstera pest infestation, plant enthusiasts can take measures such as proper plant care, regular inspection and cleaning, quarantine of new plants, and using beneficial insects for pest control.

Proper Plant Care

Proper plant care is crucial when it comes to preventing Monstera pest infestations. 

This includes regular watering and fertilizing and ensuring that the plant is kept in a suitable environment with indirect sunlight. 

Overwatering can lead to root rot, making plants more susceptible to pests and diseases. 

It’s essential to allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings and not let the soil become too moist.

Another essential aspect of proper care for Monstera plants is regular pruning, cleaning, and inspecting. 

Dead or dying leaves should be removed immediately as they can attract pests and disease-causing organisms. 

Keeping the area around the plant clean also helps prevent the growth of fungus gnats, which are attracted by debris on top of the soil. 

Regular Cleaning And Pruning

Regular cleaning and pruning is one of the best ways to prevent Monstera pest infestation. 

Here’s how:

  • Wipe down leaves: Use a damp cloth or sponge to clean your Monstera plant leaves regularly. This will remove any dust, dirt, or pests that may have landed on them.
  • Remove dead or yellowing leaves: Dead or yellowing leaves can attract pests and diseases, so removing them as soon as possible is important. Use clean scissors or pruning shears to cut the leaf stem close to the main stem.
  • Trim back long stems: Long stems can be pruned back to prevent overcrowding and improve air circulation around the plant.
  • Check for signs of insect damage: Regularly inspect your plant for any signs of insect damage, such as small holes, discoloration, or webbing. Early detection can help you prevent a full-blown infestation.
  • Clean pots and soil: Pests can easily hide in the soil and on the surface of pots, so it’s important to clean them regularly with warm water and mild soap.

Regular Inspection And Monitoring

Regular inspection and monitoring are crucial in preventing Monstera pest infestation. 

As a plant enthusiast, watching for common pests such as spider mites, mealybugs, scale insects, gnats, or whiteflies is important. 

By conducting regular checks, you can detect the early signs of infestation before they cause significant damage to your beloved Monstera plant.

To inspect your Monstera effectively:

  1. Start by examining its leaves closely.
  2. Look out for any discoloration or yellowing leaves with black or brown spots that may indicate the presence of pests.
  3. Check underneath the leaves, too, since some bugs, like spider mites and aphids, prefer feeding on the underside of leaves. If you spot any issues with your foliage while inspecting it regularly, nip them in the bud immediately and trim away affected parts if necessary.

It’s not just about checking for visible signs – pay attention to other symptoms such as wilting, stunted growth, or root rot, which could also be indicators of an insect infestation. 

Take precautions by following good potting habits and remaining vigilant even after using prevention techniques, as many insects propagate rapidly!

Quarantine New Plants

Before introducing new plants to your Monstera collection, carefully inspect them for any signs of pests or diseases. 

Even healthy-appearing plants can harbor hidden infestations that could quickly spread to other plants in your home. 

Quarantining new plants in a separate area from the rest of your collection for one to two weeks effectively prevents potential pest infestations from spreading.

During this time, monitor the quarantined plant closely for any signs of pests or symptoms of diseases. 

This will give you ample time to take action before introducing the plant into your home environment and possibly infecting other healthy plants. 

Remember, prevention is key to keeping your Monstera collection healthy and thriving.

Use Beneficial Insects For Pest Control

One effective way to control pests on Monstera plants is by using beneficial insects. 

These insects feed on harmful pests and help keep their population in check. 

For example, ladybugs eat aphids, whiteflies, and mealybugs – common pests that can infest Monstera plants. 

Other beneficial insects include lacewings and predatory mites.

Introducing beneficial insects into your Monstera plant’s environment may require some research. Still, it can be an eco-friendly way to control pest infestation without using chemicals. 

You can purchase these friendly bugs online or from local garden centers and release them directly onto your affected plant.

By incorporating natural methods like this one into your gardening routine, you’ll be able to maintain healthy Monstera plants while keeping harmful pesticides at bay!

Final Thoughts

Keeping your Monstera plant healthy and pest-free is crucial for its growth and survival. 

With effort and knowledge, you can quickly identify common pests on your Monstera plants, such as spider mites, mealybugs, scale insects, gnats, aphids, whiteflies, or thrips. 

Regular inspection of the leaves and soil can help you detect any signs of infestation and take prompt action to remove them.

Prevention is always better than cure! 

Therefore proper care like regular cleaning & pruning should be done regularly to keep your Monstera healthy. 

Implementing appropriate preventive measures like quarantining new plants before introducing them into an existing environment also helps avoid most pest problems.

Following proper care guidelines that include regular inspection monitoring techniques and good sanitation practices inside our gardens, we can prevent many issues with pests while still keeping our precious Monstera thriving happily!

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