5 Signs of an Overwatered Monstera + Step-by-Step Guide To Save It

If you’ve overwatered your Monstera, don’t worry! There is still hope. In this step-by-step guide, we will show you how to tell if you’ve overwatered your plant and, if so, how to get it back on the road to recovery. Follow these simple steps, and your overwatered Monstera will be back to its healthy self in no time!

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link. For more information, see my full disclosure here.

5 Signs of Overwatered Monstera

Overwatering is one of the most common problems in houseplant care, and it’s often tough to tell if you’re doing it until it’s too late. And these plants have such beautiful split leaves, you definitely want them to be healthy. So if you’re worried that you might be overwatering your Monstera (aka Swiss Cheese plant), here are five signs to look out for.

1. Yellow leaves

One of the first things you may notice is a yellow leaf. If the leaves turn yellow and drop off, it’s a sign that the plant is not getting enough oxygen. This is because your plant can’t take up oxygen from the soil if there is excess water.

2. Soggy Soil

Another telltale sign of overwatering is soggy soil. The plant’s roots are not getting the air they need and are drowning in water.

To check if your soil is soggy, stick your finger into the soil up to the second knuckle. If it feels wet, it’s time to let the plant dry out.

And if it’s been longer than ten days since the last time you watered, and the soil is still soggy, that’s definitely a sign that you are overwatering.

Brown Spots on Leaves

monstera leaf with black spot

When a Monstera is overwatered, it can develop brown spots on its leaves. These spots are usually circular or oval-shaped, and they may be surrounded by a yellow halo. If you notice brown spots on your Monstera’s leaves, it’s important to take action immediately. Otherwise, the problem will only get worse. 

4. Root Rot

Root rot is caused by waterlogged soil, which cuts off the plant’s roots from the oxygen they need to survive. The first signs of root rot are often yellowing or wilting leaves, followed by brown or black spots. The plant may also drop its leaves, and the stem may become soft and mushy. If you suspect that your plant has root rot, then your Monstera is in the danger zone. It’s essential to take action quickly. 

If you notice a foul odor coming from the pot, then it’s likely that root rot has already developed.

Mold Is Growing on Top of the Soil

Mold growth on top of the soil is one of the most common signs that your Monstera plant has been overwatered. Mold is a form of fungi that thrives in wet, damp environments, and it can quickly start to grow on the surface of too-wet soil. In addition to being unsightly, mold can also be harmful to your plant (and you!).

How To Save an Overwatered Monstera

At this point, you’ve probably concluded that your Monstera is overwatered. And now you’re wondering what to do to save it. Don’t worry. There is still hope. Below we’ll go over some simple steps that you can take to save your overwatered plant.

Remove From Pot & Allow To Drain

The first step is to remove the plant from its pot and allow it to drain. Place it on a towel or in a sink and let the excess water drip off. This will help get rid of some of the water that’s saturating the roots and soil. This will also allow you to inspect the root system and look for root rot (more on that below).

Remove the Potting Soil

Next, you’ll need to remove the potting soil. Be sure to do this gently so as not to damage the roots any further. Carefully loosen the roots and shake out the old potting soil. You can also gently spray water over the root system to wash off the old soil.

Once the potting soil has been removed, you’ll need to replant your Monstera in fresh, dry soil. Believe me, this is much easier than trying to dry out the waterlogged soil.

Clean Up Your Monstera Plant

You should be able to see the roots now that most of the old, waterlogged soil has been removed. If any of the roots are black or slimy, then you have root rot.

In that case, trim off all the rotten roots you see. Root rot will spread if left alone. In that case, trim off all the rotten roots you see. Root rot will spread if left alone. You’ll want to use sharp pruning shears or scissors to cut away the infected roots. Be sure to clean your shears before and after using them so that you don’t spread disease from one plant to another.

This is also a good time to remove any damaged leaves from the plant. Brown leaf spots will never go away, so you might as well remove the leaves.

Removing unhealthy Monstera leaves and roots also frees up energy that your plant can use to generate new growth.

Repot With New Potting Soil

Once you’ve removed the old potting soil and trimmed off any rotten roots, it’s time to replant your Monstera in fresh soil. Be sure to use a well-draining potting mix that contains perlite or vermiculite. These ingredients will help keep the soil aerated and prevent it from becoming waterlogged.

This is also a good time to ensure that your pot has good drainage holes so that excess water can drain out. If it doesn’t, use a different pot or drill holes in before replanting your Monstera. If you use a pot with poor drainage, then you’ll be right back in this position again very soon.

Make Sure Your Monstera Is in the Right Spot

One reason plants become overwatered is that they’re not in the right spot. Monstera plants need bright, indirect light to thrive. If your plant is in a dark or shady spot, then it won’t need as much water, meaning that it’s easier for you to overwater it.

Temperature is also a factor. Monstera plants like warm temperatures and will struggle in cooler environments. So if your home is on the cool side, make sure to place your plant in a spot where it will receive some warmth from the sun.

However, avoid direct sunlight, as that can stress out your plant. Monstera is a tropical plant; it grows along the rainforest floor in their natural habitat, where they are not exposed to direct sunlight. They’ll thrive in indirect light.

Water Carefully

After you’ve replanted your Monstera, it’s time to reintroduce watering slowly. First, water your plant thoroughly, but then allow the soil to dry out completely before watering again.

Your watering frequency will depend on the conditions of your environment and the season. I typically water my Monstera once or twice a week in the summer. Then I cut back to once every two weeks in the winter months.

Pro-tip: Remember, it's better to underwater a houseplant than overwater it.

You should also wait a bit to fertilize your repotted plant so that you don’t burn the roots.

It will take some time for your plant to recover from being overwatered. Be patient and give it the care it needs, and eventually, it will bounce back. With a little bit of love and attention (actually maybe a little less attention), your overwatered Monstera plant will be healthy and thriving in no time.

Tips To Avoid Overwatering Your Monstera in the Future

Now that you know how to save an overwatered Monstera, it’s time to learn how to avoid overwatering your plant in the future. Here are a few tips:

  • Water your plant deeply, but less often. Monstera plants like to dry out between waterings. Water thoroughly until water runs out of the drainage holes, but then allow the soil to dry out completely before watering again.
  • Check the soil before watering. Use your finger or a moisture meter to check the moisture level of the potting mix. Only water if the top few inches of soil are dry.
  • Make sure that you use an appropriately sized pot. If the pot size is too large for the plant, then the soil will not dry out fast enough.
  • Consider using self-watering pots. These pots have a reservoir that stores water so that you can water less often.
  • Don’t forget about humidity. Monstera plants like humid environments. If your home is on the dry side, consider placing your plant on a pebble tray or using a humidifier to increase the moisture in the air.

By following these tips, you can help to prevent overwatering your Monstera plant in the future.

Overwatered vs. Underwatered Monstera Plants

It’s important to know the difference between overwatered and underwatered Monstera plants. Overwatered plants will have yellow or wilted leaves, while underwatered plants will have dry, brown leaves.

If you think your plant is overwatered, then follow the steps in this blog post to save it.

If you think your plant is underwatered, then water it thoroughly and make sure to check the soil before watering again.

By knowing the signs of overwatering and underwatering, you can help to keep your Monstera plant healthy and thriving.

How To Correct Soggy Soil Without Repotting Your Plant

Maybe you accidentally watered your plant too early (been there!). Or perhaps you don’t have any fresh potting soil on hand.

Don’t despair. There are some things you can do to dry out the soggy soil. Be aware, though, that this won’t help if your plant already has root rot.

  • First up, stop watering your plant for a few days. This will give the soggy soil a chance to dry out.
  • Place your plant in a sunny spot. The heat from the sun will help to evaporate any extra moisture in the soil. If it’s wintertime, you can also place the pot near a heating vent to aid in drying out the soil.
  • You can also try turning on a ceiling fan or putting a fan nearby. This will create some airflow that can help dry out the soil.

Wrapping Up

Overwatered houseplants are a super common problem, but they can be saved! If you think your Monstera is overwatered, then follow the steps in this blog post to help it recover. And remember, by following a few simple tips, you can prevent overwatering your Monstera plant in the future.


What does overwatered Monstera look like?

An overwatered Monstera will have yellow or wilted leaves. Or you may notice brown spots on the leaves. In addition, the potting mix will be soggy, and the roots may be rotting.

What is the best way to water a Monstera plant?

The best way to water a Monstera plant is to water deeply, but less often. Water thoroughly until water runs out of the drainage holes, but then allow the soil to dry out completely before watering again.

How often should I water my Monstera plant?

Monstera plants like to dry out between waterings. So water your plant deeply, but less often. Rather than relying on a strict watering schedule, test the soil. Use your finger or a moisture meter to check the moisture level of the potting mix. Only water if the top few inches of soil are dry.

Is it better to overwater or underwater a Monstera plant?

It’s better to underwater a Monstera plant than overwater it. (This is true of most houseplants.) Overwatering can lead to root rot.

How can I tell if my overwatered Monstera is still alive?

If your overwatered Monstera is still alive, then you may see new growth emerging from the soil. However, if your plant has root rot, then it’s likely too late to save it.

My Monstera’s leaves are turning yellow. Is this a sign of overwatering?

Yellow leaves can be a sign of overwatering or underwatering. (That’s an annoying answer, I know. Nevertheless, it’s true.) Yellow leaves are usually a sign that your plant isn’t getting enough oxygen, which can be caused by either too much water or not enough.

Check the potting mix to see if it’s soggy. If so, then overwatering is likely the problem. If the potting mix is dry, then underwatering is likely the problem.

It’s also possible that your plant isn’t receiving enough nutrients. If the soil is damp but not wet, then fertilize your plant with a balanced fertilizer to resolve any nutrient deficiency.

Want to remember this?  Save Overwatered Monstera to your favorite Pinterest board.

signs of overwatered monstera