Delicious Monster, Split-leaf Philodendron and Mexican Breadfruit..

Monstera deliciosa also known as all of the above.

Monstera deliciosa is a creeping vine native to tropical rainforests of southern Mexico south to Colombia, also found in many gardens and offices in South Africa.

My Daughter has two growing in her garden and I have never seen the flowers before. When they opened a fantastic aroma of what I thought as liquorice could be detected. A few days later the flowers closed up again. I had to find out more about this plant and turned to the Internet. This is what I found…

The reproductive organ consists of a spadix grown at the center of a reproductive layer called the spathe. The spathe is sometimes mistaken to be a flower, but it is really a modified leaf that serves to protect the spadix. The spadix is divided into three sections: fertile male flowers at the tip, sterile male flowers at the center, and fertile female flowers toward the end of the flower chamber. The sterile male flowers in the midsection serve to prevent self-fertilization and to produce heat. Pollination is done by a Cyclocephala beetle species. The sterile male flowers produce and maintain a constant temperature that is 30Β°C above that of the environment during the two days the entire flower structure is open. (Wikipedia).

The fruit may be ripened by cutting it when the first scales begin to lift up and it begins to exude a pungent odour. It is wrapped in a paper bag and set aside until the scales begin popping off. The scales are then brushed off or fall away to reveal the edible flesh underneath. The flesh, which is similar to pineapple in texture, can be cut away from the core and eaten. It has a fruity taste similar to jackfruit and pineapple. (Wikipedia).

I took some photos…

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51 thoughts on “Delicious Monster, Split-leaf Philodendron and Mexican Breadfruit..

  1. Thanks for the info. I have this in my garden too and it smells so amazing I wish I could bottle the scent. I couldn’t figure out how to eat it, though, so thanks for the tips!

  2. Fantastic pics!!! I actually got a better look at the spadix in these pics than I did with my own eyes looking at mine in the backyard. Thank you for directing me here.
    I hadn’t found anything online to indicate how often a single plant will produce a spadix. Do you happen to know?

  3. Hmmm Bulldog, why did I think the flower and fruit were poisonous? I have a prolific flowerer in my garden, but the fruit usually rots and then I ditch it. Laura

    • Laura I’m also under the exact same thought… I’ve always kept my kids and grand kids away from it… but research says not so… I have done a bit more looking up and apparently the beetle it needs to make the fruit is not found here… and it is only that beetle that can pollinate it… so I think we are also likely to get a rotten fruit that is just going to fall off… Oh well here I thought I’d make history in SA but the only history I’m likely to make is killing myself with a poisonous plant…

      • for the first time our 2 trees produced what i now think are flowers. didn’t look at the tree for 3 days (was grey and rainy in SoCal a few weeks ago, unbelievable) then came home and saw 1 of 5 “flowers” partially opened. took photos (look like yours) and my husband said it will be open more tomorrow. wrong! closed up. none of the others have opened (unless they opened prior to my noticing the first one). the smaller tree now has 3 flowers and the larger one has produced 2 more. with every new leaf now a flower forms. we are getting new leaves so often it’s crazy. so hope they open!!! and i see them! so, will i get fruit or is it only fruit when the famous beetle pollinates it? and if it closed back up does it produce fruit in a year? some of my leaves are turning brown on the edges. i am going to water more often this season. but i don’t think i can prune the brown leaves off since the flowers came from some of those leaves. or can i? are they now separate from the leaf? this is so unusual and i love it. we moved to the san fernando valley a year ago and even the mature plants (40 – 20 years old) are doing things they never did before. succulents are flowering like crazy, the fruit trees are producing so much fruit that we had to prop up branches so we wouldn’t lose them. guess it’s the love i give the plants. and yes, i talk to them. my husband laughs but the results are astonishing. hope to hear back. thanks!

  4. I had one of these when I was younger and lived in a cold climate. It was an indoor plant and probably grew about three feet tall. When we moved to the tropics I grew one in the garden and it just kept growing. One day I came out to find it had a massive ‘thing’ growing off it so I ran inside and told hubby. He laughed a lot! He told me it was the fruit and I felt so silly not realizing that this magnificent plant actually fruited!
    I’ll be back in the tropics soon, so I’m definitely going to plant another. These are great pics – thank you so much for sharing (and reminding me of that time in my life when I knew absolutely nothing about plants!) πŸ˜€

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