Table of Contents
There are a lot of plants out there with foliage that can have a very different look if allowed to climb. For example, the heart-shaped leaves that come with a baby Monstera. If you give that baby something to climb you are going to see big beautiful fenestrated jungle monstrosities. It is incredible to watch and Monstera is not the only plant to do that. There are a whole bunch more and we are going to talk about them today. Perhaps some of the plants in your collection could be leading a whole other life.
So we already talked about Monstera but let’s delve into that a little bit more. Monstera likes to climb. They are what are called Hemi-epiphytic plants. They want to climb trees. They want to climb walls. They want to climb anything they possibly can. If you give them something to climb on they are going to mature a lot faster. They are going to put out bigger leaves with a lot more fenestrations (the little slits in the foliage)] and they are going to become amazingly, incredibly, huge plants just by giving them something to climb! They can go from little two-inch leaves to two-foot wife leaves.
Syngonium can also go through a similar leaf transformation but instead of adding slits to their leaves, they will actually add little lobes. They add what looks like extra little leaf ears. Sometimes up to 5 different leaves total on these beautiful little arrow-shaped leaves. It is incredible to see. Definitely worth the time and effort.
What you have to do to get them to do that is allow them to climb up something. Syngonium also loves to climb. They love to climb trees and they are pretty invasive depending on where you go. If one gets a climb not only do they get bigger but they get more variegation. They get closer to a light so that they can provide more energy to them. This means they can grow bigger leaves and more leaves on those leaves which are incredible to see! They will get more coloration too. So, if they have pink you will be able to see pinker. The color just depends on the specific variety. There are a whole bunch out there but definitely give them the opportunity to climb and watch them transform. It is incredible.
Another kind of plant that is absolutely going to transform if they get something to climb is a Philodendron. For example, Philodendron Micans. So you can see them get bigger and darker and more elongated. less heart-shaped and more spear shapes with their foliage. It’s going to be a deeper velvet color. Other varieties are different when you give them something to climb. They will go from these little spear shapes to a lot more jagged edges saw tooth-shaped plants. They can do a lot of different things provided that you give them the energy to be able to do this if you give them something to climb on and a little bit more stability they definitely transform. They can be so much more than just these little heart-shaped plants.
Another plant similar to Philodendron with the heart-shaped leaves is Pothos. They can get massively huge and like the Monstera they can grow fenestrations. Out in nature, they are always climbing trees and they are actually very invasive. Especially the golden Pothos or Epipremnum Aureum. Very invasive plants and they will just climb like crazy. They get these very large spear-shaped leaves and they will get these amazing fenestrations in them as well. Give them something to climb in your home even if you are just leaning up against a board or a wall you’re going to see how big these leaves can get and it’s incredible!
This is an interesting one that’s often confused with Pothos because their leaves are similar. However, Scindapsus usually have some type of glitter or a sparkly type of variegation versus marbling variegation and their leaf shape is a little bit more heart-shaped.
When they are allowed to climb they will actually flatten themselves out on what they are climbing and go completely flat against a board or against a tree. They will even sometimes wrap themselves around it which is really cool to see! They do what’s called shingling. It’s a climbing process but because of the way they flatten themselves out on boards, it’s called shingling. They can add a lot more sparkle and a lot more glitter! They can cover an entire board with this foliage as it goes up. In actuality, the entire leaf flattens and attaches. Definitely not something that you see in a household environment very often. So it can create a very unique accent piece in your home or be a unique way to display this plant in your collection.
Hoya actually climbs trees as well. Generally, you see them where they are in hanging baskets of these plants! You will see big voluptuous baskets of them and they look incredible! However, what they can do is climb trees and their leaves will transform as well. You can get a lot more texture, a lot more color, and more sun stress. Hoya will also mature faster and you can get blooms faster if you allow them to climb. Their leaves are going to get much bigger too. You can have a leaf literally the size of a dinner plate on a Hoyas if you allow them to climb and it’s really incredible to see. It is not something that we see very often with Hoya in homes, unfortunately.
These are just a few common, easily accessible, houseplant varieties that can climb there are definitely many more. It is important to research your plants so you can best take care of them and have them become everything you want.