Everything you need to know about the moss pole!
A moss pole is a handy tool which helps your houseplant to climb to higher places. In this blog we'll tell you all about the types of houseplants that need a moss pole and how to use and take care of the moss pole.
Which houseplants need a moss pole to grow higher?
Tropical plants like the Monstera and Philodendron are used to tropical rainforests. Due to the density of the rainforest they naturally only get enough sunlight by climbing high. The way these plants grow is by climbing onto trees in order to get more sunlight. The climbing plants have a natural desire to grow tall but the stems and leaves are too heavy to grow upwards without help. When you don’t use a moss pole (or alternative) for these plants, they will grow very wide instead of tall.
How to recognize climbing houseplants
You can recognize climbing plants by the aerial roots that grow on the stem on the above ground parts of the plants. These aerial roots naturally function as anchors which the plants use to attach to supporting structures like trees or rocks. When a moss pole is used, the aerial roots will attach to the pole and start growing upwards.
Is a moss pole made of moss?
A ‘ready to use’ moss pole, which you can find in our shop, is not made of moss (like you would expect!) but it is made of coconut fiber.
What does the moss pole do?
The coconut fiber has the same effect on the plant as moss on trees in nature: the aerial roots can attach to the coconut fiber and the plant will grow higher and higher. The moss pole helps your climbing houseplants to grow faster and higher. Also the leaves will often grow larger which makes them prettier and happier!
How to pot and tie up your plant?
First make sure that you repot the plant together with the moss pole. If you add the moss pole at a later moment, the chances are big that you damage the roots of your plant. This will not make your plant happy… Make sure that the roots of the plant are loose so that the moss pole can be added in the middle of the pot with the roots placed slightly around it. Add enough soil for the plant to stand firmly in the pot. Then it’s time to tie up the stems! The plant will not attach immediately so the stems always need to be tied up with rope or fishing line before the plant will attach to the moss pole. When the plant is comfortable with the moss pole, the aerial roots will attach to the pole and it can grow independent without rope from that moment on. Keep an eye on the growing process, sometimes the plant need some help at a later time too. Don’t hesitate to help her a little by tying her up when needed.
Tip: keep the moss pole hydrated!
Give the fiber on the moss pole some daily spraying. When the fiber is hydrated it will stimulate the aerial roots to attach to it!
Alternatives for the ‘ready to use’ moss pole
Instead of a ‘ready to use’ moss pole you can also use a bamboo stick or you can make your own moss pole out of a branch which you cover with moss. The downside of the bamboo stick is that the plant will mot attach to the stick. You’ll need some rope of fishing line to attach the stems of your plant to the stick.
Lisa has spent quite a fair amount of hours in the greenhouse and loves to share her experience with others!