Why is my monstera weeping?

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Don’t worry, guttation is nothing to worry about – it’s perfectly normal for house plants to have water droplets on the ends of their leaves.

It can be quite alarming to see water droplets forming on the ends of your Monstera’s leaves when you’ve been so careful not to overwater it.

My Monstera Thai Constellation currently has water on the leaves.

If you’re new to plant care, but you’ve been doing your research, this could be a red flag, because a plant rejecting water is surely a sign that it’s being overwatered…

…but actually, water droplets on Monstera leaves are the result of a perfectly healthy, natural process.

(it sounds like I’m giving the talk. You know…the Talk)

weeping monstera

Why is my monstera weeping/crying/sweating/dripping water?

It’s a process called guttation and it’s not exactly water that’s accumulating on the end of the leaves, it’s xylem sap, which is basically water and minerals your plant doesn’t need anymore.

Plant pee, if you will.


When you water a plant, it takes up water (shocking, I know). But, rather like us when we have wine, the plant doesn’t know when to stop sucking up water. If it takes up more than it needs, it expels the excess moisture (plus some other crap it doesn’t need) through its leaves.

But why doesn’t it just respire, like a normal plant? I hear you ask.

It’s too do with the time of day. You’ve probably noticed that you usually see plants leaking water from the ends of their leaves in the morning, and it’s because they guttate at night. Plants close their stomata at night so the water has no choice but to leak out of the end of the plant.

There is only so much water a plant can absorb and expel – if you water too frequently, you can end up with root rot.

Is guttation the same as dew?

No. Guttation is an internal thing a plant does, but if you’re looking at outside plants, it can look the same.

Usually, a plant gets rid of excess moisture through transpiration, and you can’t see the moisture leaving. You know, because it’s tiny molecules of water vapour. But plants don’t transpire at night, and the roots carry on sucking up water.

Understandably, with the roots taking up water and the leaves not expelling any, pressure builds.

Guttation occurs when the water is forced out of the stomata and collects on the tip of the plants, like a little teardrop.

Dew, on the other hand, has never been within the plant.

It’s moisture that’s been hanging around in the air and the condenses on cold surfaces such as plants.

It’s unlikely to occur indoors unless you’re leaving your windows open at night, so if you have water droplets forming on your plants, it’s probably guttation.

Is guttation bad for your plants?

I’m going to say no, but keep reading, because obviously I’m going to mention overwatering, because when don’t I?

Guttation is a perfectly natural part of a plant’s life, and it isn’t a sign that your plant is anything other than totally healthy.


My own observations have found that plants weep more when they’ve just been watered, so if you’re noticing more guttation than normal, then maybe check your soil.

Guttation can’t absolve overwatering, much like you can’t outrun a bad diet.

water droplets on schefflera
cute little water droplets on schefflera

You may notice more water coming out of your Monstera’s leaves in the morning.

During the day, plants rid their leaves of excess water through the process of transpiration, but at night, they close their stomata and stop transpiring.

Guttation becomes the number 1 process for shedding excess water, which is why your plant’s leaves might be wet in the morning.

I want to reiterate that there may be nothing wrong with your plant – since it’s a natural response to excess water. There are a plethora of reasons (temperature, humidity, plant size) that your plant is…guttating? Is that a word? Surely there’s a verb form of the noun guttation?


So whilst guttation is nothing to worry about, it’s always worth keeping an eye on your plant, especially if it was a £89.99 Thai Constellation.

By the way, my Thai does need repotting, I’m just waiting for my worm castings to show up. I’m transferring her into terracotta too so her roots can be very aerated. She deserves the best.

I’m also shuffling her around the house a lot so that she gets the best light and humidity, so I notice when she drips on me. My other plants could be guttating just as much, I’m just not noticing it.

Guttation does seem to happen in monstera more than other plants, but maybe I just notice them more because of the huge leaves.

Guttation is only bad when…

  • It’s ruining your furniture. Water damage is real kids.
  • Your plants are over fertilised. If you see a white mark that looks like an ink blot, then this may be a sign that you need to ease off on the fertiliser, or switch to a gentler one like bunny poop or worm castings (also poop). Your plant can get leaf burn from the excess fertiliser present in the xylem.

Does guttation happen in every plant?

No – big woody plants (some would call them ‘trees’) don’t guttate because they’re big and gravity is a real thing so the plant doesn’t have the ability to resist gravity to push the xylem up the stem.

I’m assuming it’s either pushed out of the roots, but I really have no idea. Presumably, they can just take in an awful lot of water. Or they rot. Nightmare.

Alocasia tend to drip water from their leaves a lot, and so do Anthurium (at least, the clarinervneum that I have does). I’ve actually found that the water leaves marks on the leaves of my Anthurium clarinerveum:

water droplets on anthurium clarinerveum leaf

Guttation usually happens at the bottom of Monstera and Alocasia leaves, but on anthurium it seems to happen on the lobes at the top, and then trickle down.

I’ve noticed that guttation happens more in newer growth – if you’re looking for it, check the newest leaves first. Here’s a water drop on the end of my Florida green’s newest leaf:

water droplets on philodendron leaf

Plants in hydroponic systems still guttate

I don’t know why it surprises me that the Monstera growing in my aquarium guttate just as much as the ones in soil or leca.

I have a tiny baby Monstera in there. Here he is:

monstera growing in an aquarium with water droplets on its leaves

Look at his roots! And his two leaves coming out at once! He’s loving life!

I assume that either plants simply don’t know how much water they’re going to need, and err on the side of caution OR guttation is important for getting rid of, e.g. excess salts. See? Plant pee.

Why is my plant sticky?

Xylem fluid isn’t sticky, so if your plant is covered in sticky droplets, that’s not a sign of guttation.

But if you have philodendron, you may have noticed sticky drops on the stem, leaves, or cataphylls.

water droplets on philodendron cataphyll

Firstly, you need to check for pests. Scale insects in particular produce honeydew, which can cause sticky leaves.

In fact, if you google ‘sticky philodendron’ all you get is a load of scale horror stories. But in my experience, either philodendron start expelling seriously sticky xylem once their stems reach a certain girth, or they’re just naturally sticky.

I have no idea which it is, but my P. golden dragon, P. hastatum, and P. subhastatum are all healthy, have no bugs (famous last words) and are sticky as hell.


I know what it is!

They’re extrafloral nectaries, and they crop up, er, sometimes.

So, what are extrafloral nectaries?

Well, they’re glands that produce nectar, but rather than doing so in/on the flower (that’s the extrafloral bit) they’re on the petioles or leaves.

They have been described on most above-ground plants, and whilst botanists aren’t 100% sure what they’re for, they’re pretty certain it’s to attract predatory bugs. The bugs rock up at the promise of nectar, and stay around for the bugs that are eating the plants.

I mostly see extrafloral nectaries on the stems/petioles of my Philodendron (they are incredibly sticky), though you can get them on leaves too.

water droplets on philodendron golden dragon

If your plant has spots on the leaves that are pretty uniform, and your plant seems otherwise healthy, you may be seeing extrafloral nectaries. Just to make things more confusing, they’re apparently not always sticky


It can be alarming to notice that your indoor plants are dripping leaves, or that the leaves on your prize Monstera are wet, but guttation is a natural process that isn’t harming your plant.

So this article from the Spruce seems to suggest that guttation is different from the roots sucking up excess water and expelling them through its leaves, but every other article suggests that it’s the same thing.

water droplets on philodendron brasil

I’m not saying the spruce is wrong, but it’s unlikely that a plant can suck up water and expel it, unchanged.

I mean, when we drink a lot of water, we pee it out, but it’s not pure water. It’s pee.

Water plus other stuff we don’t need. Salts etc.

It’s *kind of* the same with plants.

I conclude this essay by comparing the process of guttation to the process of peeing more when you’ve drunk (drank? what’s wrong with me today?) too much water – it won’t kill you but maybe chill it with the hydration.

Hope that helps.

I’ve seen a lot of people in Facebook groups that have been FLEECED when it comes to buying Monstera. There’s no need. Monstera are very common (they’re literally an invasive species in MANY countries).

All the shops listed below are in the US I believe. Here in the UK you can buy Monstera in supermarkets. Don’t pay more than £20 unless it’s a really big one.

Don’t buy wet sticks (unrooted nodes) to propagate unless you know what you’re doing. If you want a cheap variegated Monstera, they’re coming. I have some tips for dealing with wet sticks here.

I got a Thai for under £100 which is still expensive, but people are literally paying that for crappy cuttings.

They’re in tissue culture and are fairly easy to find in the UK and EU. There are rumours that they’re coming to the US soon, so just hang on a bit longer. Unfortunately, I don’t have any news for when you’re getting cheaper anthuriums. Those things are PRICY in America.

If you want to buy a monstera of whatever type, I have an article here on how much monstera cost.

There are loads of Etsy shops you can get Monstera from if you live somewhere where they’re super pricy:

66 thoughts on “Why is my monstera weeping?”

  1. Oh thanks for this!! I bought my first monstera a few weeks ago and gave it a good watering a few days ago, and woke up to what looked dew drops this morning. I checked in case I’d left the window behind it open all night – nope. Water leak from the apartment above? Thank god, no. So reached for trusted Google and found your helpful article. I feel much better now. Have a great day!

  2. I’m glad I could set your mind at ease! Good luck with your Monstera, may it grow big and strong.

  3. I put my varigated monstera outside for a few hours so it could get some “fresh air”. Unfortunately, it was windy and the new, beautifully varigated leaf broke off. 🙁 The plant has been weeping for a day now and I am very glad to have found this. Thank you!

  4. oh noooo what a nightmare! Don’t worry, that scenario is one that wild Monstera will come across all the time, so the plant will survive. You can put the leaf in water – they last a pretty long time.

    Sometimes single leaves grow roots and will last even longer, but unless there’s a node there, it’ll remain a single leaf.

  5. I thought I was going insane, I kept finding water droplets on my new monstera! My first thought was that we had a leak and never noticed, and even got up on a chair and felt the ceiling for wet patches! Thank you for this wonderful article, I honestly had no idea plants did this!

  6. Yeah, I was moving mine to a different spot a couple of years ago and water was running down my arms – it’s so weird when you don’t know where it’s coming from!

  7. Thank you so much!! I’ve been wondering for a while my mostera does this and yet looks so healthy! xx

  8. Wow… really? This is really informative… I just bought a montsera yesterday, water it when I got home because the soil is kinda dry. Then earlier this morning my fingertip got wet when I touched the leaf. I thought my hand was probably wet so I just ignored it, But then this afternoon I noticed there is water droplet on the tip of one leaf, then other leaves have water droplet too. I found it weird. So I started to search and your article was the first one to give me an answer to my curiosity. It’s a common phenomena. Now I don’t have to worry about my montsera… Thanks again.

  9. You’re welcome! Yeah, it’s totally normal. In my experience monstera are pretty forgiving plants – great for beginners.

  10. Thank you for this. I bought my monstera four days ago, and I haven’t watered it yet because every day I’ve been seeing these droplets on its ends… I assumed it was over watered at the nursery, and there also are two white dots on one of its leaves (this article REALLY covered all my questions, lol) I just wanted to confirm, since it is guttating? Or whatever, lol, it has sufficient water right now then, and I won’t need to water it for a while still, ya? Can you tell this is my first plant, haha!

  11. Yeah, I’d leave it to dry out for a bit. It’s best to check the soil (I’m a big moisture metre fan), but it’s unlikely to need more water if it’s guttating.

    Congrats on your first plant! May it be the first of many!

  12. Thank you for this humorous & informative article! I have a photo of mine with the big droplets on top of the largest leaves (which was puzzling, as it wasn’t on the small ones), and a white spot on one of the leaves, if you’d like to have an example for your article. (I would’ve posted it here if there were an option.) I just got it yesterday. The soil was drenched, but…it was $12.99 at Trader Joe’s so I expected it would need some TLC. 😉

  13. I find that only a few of the leaves have droplets on the end – it usually depends how much water they need to get rid of. I’m not sure why the water would stay on top of the leaf – could it have dropped from a higher leaf?

    The white spot could be from a bit of physical damage or past thrips action. Thrips LOVE monstera, and monstera are usually pretty happy to host the odd bug without too much damage (I just spray the leaves with diluted neem oil and wipe the bugs off).

    Most likely is that someone tried to help the leaf unfurl and damaged it. Almost every one of my plants bears some scar from me doing this (am impatient and bad) and they fade over time.

    Awesome bargain by the way! I’d love to put the photo in the article – email me (caroline@planethouseplant) and drop me a link to a site or social handle and I’ll credit you.

  14. Amazing article, it helped me a lot since I had no idea what was going on with my monstera. Thank you so much! 🙂

  15. Very good read. I have a few different plants that very often have droplets, and at first I was worried. Thank you for the information, and for making this article fun! 🙂

  16. Thank you for your post, helped calm me down! I just got my monstera yesterday. This morning i woke up and saw water droplets and panicked that they will turn brown — i actually started wiping the leaves! Then i googled it and found you! I think im just gonna leave her for a while til she needs watering. Im gonna keep reading your stuff!

  17. Thanks so much! Don’t worry, monstera are super forgiving as long as you don’t overwater – I’m sure they’ll be fine!

    Moisture metres were invaluable to me when I was a beginner (and I still use it now as a second opinion) so definitely get one if you’re not sure when to water. That being said, wiping the leaves is a great habit to get into, so keep it up!

  18. This was great! I just picked up a monstera last week and there is a leaf that has unraveled and grown tremendously since I took him home. I’m wondering if I should rotate the plant often to avoid leaning and potentially drooping (is that a thing?) Also, I have 2 small stems at the bottom that are turning yellow/brown for some reason – should I snip these, and if so where do I snip? Thanks so much this was helpful info for my first plant child!

  19. Rotating is great to stop leaning, but you may want to add a moss pole so your monstera can climb.

    Are the stems separate from the main plant? Monstera often have a couple of small leaves/stems at the bottom – they’re usually older leaves so it’s natural that they’re browning. Small leaves can’t make much energy, so the plant might sacrifice them and use the energy to grow bigger leaves.

  20. Thanks for the info. I purchased one from Lowe’s about a month ago and was wondering why mine was crying. One of the leaves was so wet it finally dropped and popped. I wiped the stem and moisture came out of it as well. I have yet to water it although I was running a humidifier in the room for my other plants. I’m still trying to figure what’s best for her. I named her Monae’. Any suggestions?

  21. It’s great that you gave a humidifier – it’ll help Monae to grow faster. In terms of watering, Monstera are happy to get fairly dry, so wait until she’s stopped guttering and the soil is dry. Plants are often overwatered in garden centres so it may take a while for her to dry out. Like, weeks.

    Keep an eye out for signs of root rot (like black spots) but don’t repot unless you think it’s necessary (like she has root rot or is busting out of the pot).

    If you want to grow big leaves, then give Monae plenty of light. Monstera will survive perfectly fine in lower light situations, but they love bright indirect light, I sometimes put mine outside in the shade for an extra boost.

  22. Thanks for your article! I’m an ex-plant killer and I really want to keep things alive 🙂 So I’m doing my research along the way. I bought my Monstera yesterday, the soil was dry so I watered her. Today I noticed the droplets and knew I had over watered. So I fell better now knowing that wasn’t the case. Thanks again!

  23. Monstera are great plants for people wanting to learn how to keep plants alive. Kudos for doing your research, and I wish you luck!

  24. Thanks for the info! I just picked one up from Trader Joe’s and she’s been wetting herself consistently every day since. I have also been noticing tiny mold patches on the top Soil and when I lifted and looked in the holes at the bottom there’s what looks like green slime??? Lol do you think I should repot her with some fresh soil?

    Definitely my fave plant site so far 🙂

  25. Often plants are waaaaay over watered in the store, so she may need to dry out – I sometimes put soaked plants outside (in the shade) because they dry out much quicker, but that’s not necessary. In tine she’ll dry out.

    The mold is probs a side effect of overwatering and whilst it’s not a problem for the plant (unless you keep overwatering), you can end up with fungus gnats. You can just scoop it off with a spoon and chuck it out.

    I wouldn’t repot unless you start seeing signs of root rot (mushy stems, black spots on the leaves) because it’s stressful for the plant. Wait until there’s roots coking out of the holes in the bottom.

    The green slime is probs algae, and isn’t a problem (I don’t think). My plants in clear pots sometimes get it and they haven’t suffered. It sounds like your plant was left sitting in a tray of water all the time, which is (sadly) fairly common practice.

    Leave her in her pot and give her as much light, warmth and humidity as you can (without burning her) and she’ll soon settle in!

    I’m glad you like the site! Let me know if there any topics you’d like me to tackle!

  26. I have a Monstera my husband bought me from a budget supermarket three years ago I keep it in my conservatory it’s had three new leaves its five foot tall (bought it was about a foot) the last new leaf this year is eighteen ins by twelve and it’s beautiful! My pride an joy!

  27. Thanks for this. It seems logical that my monstera is expelling excess water as you say, but I just gave it a bit more water this time because the leaves were curling slightly and I read that this can be a sign of under watering. It’s hard to get the balance right!

  28. Isn’t it though? It would be so much easier if all plants behaved the same but they don’t – I have three Monsteras and only one of them gets curling leaves when it’s thirsty – the other two go from seeming totally fine to crisping up overnight!

  29. Thank you – lots of helpful info; good detail and great writing style! A joy to read and I come away feeling stress free and confident. (Will also nip out and get a terracotta pot, I think!)

  30. So helpful! Just got my first monstera and couldn’t figure out what the drops were! Also, the place I purchased it from must’ve been using too much fertilizer, as it had the “burn” marks on some of the leaves as well! Great, comprehensive info.

  31. Hi ! Thank you for the article on the lovely monstera ! Anyhow … the top soil on mine was white . I decided to remove it . Its there an explanation to that . I’m I over watering it ? And the leaves are turning yellow then crusty brown
    🙁 Thank you !!

  32. The white sounds like mold – it’s largely harmless but it’s often a sign of overwatering, as you suspected. I would take it out the pot and check for signs of root rot. Remove any mushy brown roots and return to the pot. Don’t water until the soil is totally dry and it should be fine. They’re pretty resilient!

  33. Thank you!
    Yesterday I found a monsterra plant in the street. I took it home. It has been massively over watered and its leaves were weeping. Now I know why. I know how to take care of it.

  34. Hello,I have a Swiss cheese plant which I got at the end of January about 80/90cm,it’s already growing and spreading quite fast,I noticed droplets from the leaves and after reading your advice I’ve unfortunately overwatered,hopefully I haven’t caused any damage.there are some roots appearing from the bottom of the pot,do I need to repot my plant….if so what size pot would you recommend and when do I do this ??? What potting soil do I need ? and lastly should I add a moss pole,many thanks Elaine

  35. Thanks so much for your informative splurb (hahaha).
    Love our witty comments and they are not rude or petty in anyway. In fact they give a light hearted effect that could have been just another boring blog. Well done and very informative. Thank you once again.
    Kind regards Dee

  36. Aw, thanks so much! I don’t like offending people but I also don’t want to take myself too seriously. It’s a fine balance. I really appreciate the support!

  37. Thank you so much for all the info!! I now know just about everything there is to know about plant pee lol.
    I do have a question; is the xylem sap that is leaking on/around my monstera toxic to cats? I have a cat who’s not interested in nibbling on the leaves however I’m worried that, since monstera are notoriously toxic to cats, the droplets might be as well.

  38. Ooo good question, and, er, I’m not sure. The toxins in the leaves are calcium oxalates which are insoluble, so they shouldn’t be in the sap.

    That being said, there is evidence that insecticides can be found in the water produced in guttation, so maybe keep your cat away if your treating for pests.

  39. Thank you so much for this information. I have a baby monstera that is getting quite big already – I think it is about 12 months old. Thank you for the information about the yellowing leaves as the first leaves (the smallest ones) when I first bought it yellowed and dropped off but no others have turned or fallen off since. I now let it dry out before I water it now but still even when dry has droplets on the tips of the leaves. It was only a couple of pounds in the supermarket and am so glad that I bought it such a calming influence in this upside down world.

  40. Im glad it’s bringing you so much comfort! If it seems happy, leave it be (rule #1 when it comes to plant care), but if it’s guttating when the soil seems dry the soil might be a bit dense. A bit of perlite should help if it starts showing signs of root rot.

  41. Thank you for this! I was wondering what these tiny droplets were! I don’t think I over watered but who knows. I bottom water every couple weeks or so but did a bigger dose since some leaves were unfurling and thought it might need a boost, so I poured some fertilized water from the top. I did notice one leave has had a translucent spot on one leaf, the sudden has a dark brown spot in the middle of it. I wonder if that has to do with it “blistering?” Again, thanks and I’ll wait a while before I water again.

  42. You’re welcome! The translucent spot sounds like edema, which is when the cells burst. Like guttation it can be a sign of overwatering, but some plants (such as alocasia) are pretty prone to just doing it anyway.

    The spots that have edema are more vulnerable to things like sun and fertiliser burn, so that could be a cause.

    As long as the rest of the plant looks ok, I’d just accept that brown spot and move on!

  43. Where are you getting your Thai Constellation for only £90? Where I live single leaf cuttings go for more than that so I haven’t been able to get one yet.

  44. I got mine from a garden centre near York, in January 2020. I think I was in the right place at the right time!

  45. Love this as am a total newbie. But how you have simplified it down into basic English and similar to the human body, makes it relatable so thank you. I have subscribed.

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