Indoor Plant Care Tips You May Not Have Considered and Mistakes to Avoid
Proper watering and lighting are the most important components of indoor plant care, but humidity and temperatures also play a role.
Table of Content
The Soil for Your Indoor Plant Care
If your soil is too dry or overwatered, it can damage the plant’s roots and prevent the plant from growing. Caring for indoor plants, you need to keep the soil moist, however, not too wet, with watering it only when your soil becomes lighter or appears cracked.
Water occasionally and allow the soil to dry between watering. It’s obviously time to water when the soil is dry all the way to the bottom, but this may be too late for the plant.
Check Potted Plants Daily If You Have Warm, Dry Conditions
Some plants can survive in low light, in poor soil, and with minimal water, making it one of the most durable indoor plants. Most like bright, indirect light and prefer moist soil, they will still do well if it dries out occasionally.
Exceptions to this are citrus species, which do better with higher moisture soil. If you have doubts, check to see if the soil is moist about an inch below the surface.
If a plant has yellow leaves, check the soil in the pot to see if the soil is dry. You can see the warning signs when your leaves are bone dry or discoloured, and the soil looks as if it needs watering.
- Usually watering should be done in the morning.
- As with watering, every plant has different light requirements.
- Leaves will also fade if it does not get enough sunlight.
- No specific frequency works for all indoor plants.
If the proper care is taken to keep the plant with correct soil, fertilization, light, humidity, then it can last reasonably indefinitely. Annual house plant care will include re-potting, that could be a transplant to larger pots or the same pot and new soil and cleanup.
Get into a routine and check the soil in your indoor plants regularly. “Soil” is a misnomer with the growing media used for indoor plants.
Often the best growing media is soil-less and is a combination of equal parts peat moss, perlite, and compost. For those growing herbs or anything else you plan to eat or use on your body, I would suggest an organic mix that hasn’t had chemicals added to it.
Most houseplants fall into two categories, tropical or succulent.
Major factors you need to consider when caring for houseplants are moisture, light, soil mixture, temperature, humidity, fertilizers, potting, and pest control. Most houseplants cannot tolerate soil always wet.
Plastic pots dry out slowly and really are ideal for those house plants that like their soil to remain evenly moist. House plants preferring drier soil will do better in clay pots, since these allow water to evaporate, reducing the danger of overwatering.
Watering and Indoor Plant Care
Usually, when the top 2.5cm of soil is dry, it’s a good indication that watering is needed. Some plants like their roots constantly moist, while others actually prefer the top inch of their soil to dry out between watering.
Temperature, humidity, light, container type and size, and soil type all influence the speed of growth and therefore, the water needed. Humidity is also liked and they do not like dry soil, so they must be moist, but not overly-watered to avoid root rot.
Both under and over-watering can be detrimental to a houseplant. The drip or wick method is ideal if you are frequently absent since these house plants can often go for weeks between waterings.
Indoor Plants May Develop Fungal and Bacterial Diseases
Try to allow the top couple of inches of soil to dry between watering. If you keep watering them at summer rates, they could develop rot or diseases.
Most prefer bright, indirect light and should be allowed to dry between watering. Light, short watering just goes out the drainage holes before the plant gets the moisture or the soil can absorb the water.
Why Are Indoor Plant Leaves Turning Brown?
One widespread problem with indoor plants is a lack of light. If your plant isn’t getting enough light, its leaves will turn brown. This usually causes the leaves to turn brown just at the tips. Try misting your plant with water, or setting the pot in a dish of small stones and water.
A good indication that your plant needs water is to touch the top of the soil or just below to see if it is moist or dry. Keeping them in a cool, sunny spot, and allow the soil to dry out before watering can help.
Usually, if you have brown tips on the leaves of houseplants mean that you’re not watering enough and watering correctly. Also, the non-draining pot is a red flag, most plants don’t like wet feet, and any stress to the plant, including over or under watering, will cause leaves to fall off.
Be careful and dont get too generous with the watering can, since most plants do not grow well with excessive water. The most common mistake in the care of peace lilies is overwatering.
Extended periods of extreme heat may be harm your house plants.
How you water your indoor plants determines its longevity as watering wrong is the leading cause of loss. Getting the watering right is crucial to the health of your indoor plants.
For most house plants, reduce watering to once every fortnight. Following being brought into a typical household, the watering and nutritional requirements decline as the plant’s growth rate slows.
Since houseplants grow slower in December light, cut down on watering by half until active growth resumes. Most houseplants die from overwatering than from anything else!
Humidity and Your Plant Care
The secret to keeping a houseplant alive is to replicate its natural growing zone by giving it the humidity, light, and water it prefers. Those tropical plants are used to higher humidity, so misting leaves and stalks with a spray bottle helps.
If your plants are sitting in air conditioning, they can dry out quickly due to the lack of humidity. Misting indoor plants on a regular basis will give them the humidity they need and help keep the leaves clean and fresh.
Dont forget incorrect watering is the leading killer of houseplants.
Ivy likes humidity, so mist it or place it in a tray of pebbles and water. Try using a lower temperature and increase both the watering and humidity levels.
Try improving the light conditions and reduce the humidity. Orchids prefer bright, indirect light and lots of fresh air and high humidity.
The humidity of growing conditions will have a significant impact on the rate of evaporation of water from the soil and the quality of transpiration from the leaves.
- Humidity is slightly more challenging to control than temperature.
- Indoor plants can be just as much fun as having an outdoor garden.
- If dry, this indicates that the plant needs water.
- Summer is probably the most difficult time for container plant watering.
If the lower leaves turn yellow and drop off, your houseplant may need more humidity, fertiliser or a new location. You can provide a little humidity by sitting your plants on top of a saucer or tray that has some pebbles and fill it with water.
Simply mist the plant every day to increase the humidity indoors. Even when they are in an air-conditioned office, your indoor plants can suffer from the adverse effects of summer heat and humidity.
Many of our houseplants come from the tropics, where humidity is high. Misting houseplants is a straightforward and effective way to boost humidity.
For potted plants at home, you may be unsure of how often to water them.
Tropical houseplants and plants that love high-humidity—such as the Boston Fern, Chinese Evergreen, and Majesty Palm—will benefit most from misting. Many popular houseplants hail from jungles with moist air and do well when the humidity is between 30-40%.
Those thin-leaved house plants are more delicate and may require a humidity level of over 70%, a level that’s hard to achieve in a large room. Therefore spraying house plants with water is an excellent way to increase humidity.
Like a mist on your face, an extra spray of water between watering helps to keep humidity levels more in balance for these delicate plants.
The Growing Conditions for Your House Plants
Houseplant care is about growing houseplants and ensuring they have the conditions for survival and continuing growth. Temperatures in the home fluctuate from daytime to evening, dry air, short days and limited light are less than ideal growing conditions.
If you notice less growth than usual, ease up on how much water you give your plants until they grow more again. Sufficient light is essential to growing healthy plants; it’s one of the most important factors for growing houseplants.
Dust and Grease Can Accumulate on Indoor House Plants
Even when individual plant size and species is necessary, so are the growing conditions. House plants can adapt well to growing under artificial light.
Rotating your pots when you water them, so the plant on all sides gets some sun and to help keep the plants growing evenly, rather than stretching to reach the light. Plants will need less water in the winter, when they’re growing slower, the days are shorter, and the sunlight is less intense.
More demanding growing conditions like lower light levels, dry air, shorter days and chilly temperatures put houseplants through the paces. Unless adequate light levels are supplied, and the plant is growing well, fertilizing will do more harm than good.
Where Should House Plants Be Placed?
Keep in mind that your plants do not need direct sunlight at all hours of the day, this can scorch the leaves and the roots of the plant. Most plants will be happy with a window either West, East or South facing. So do not look to have too many plants facing a Northerly window.
Cuttings are often rooted in water, but it is best to use a pasteurized rooting mix such as soilless growing media, perlite, vermiculite, or sand. Fertilising is very important for those plants growing in soilless potting mixes.
The secret to helping plants survive winter is adjusting care routines to suit seasonal growing conditions. But, while peace lily plant care is easy, proper growing conditions are still necessary.
Fortunately, growing house plants indoors isn’t difficult. Armed with the knowledge of specific basic techniques, anyone can grow house plants. Most plants grown as houseplants are selected because they are already adapted to growing at typical house temperatures, between 15° and 25°C.
Most House Plants Thrive in Ready-Made All-Purpose Potting Mixes
If your houseplants start to look a little tired, and are not growing, they could be hungry. Fertilise only when your houseplants are actively growing or flowering.
An occasional trim will help to shape the plant and contain more vigorous growth is the final touch to keep indoor plants well maintained over the growing season. For people unable to garden outdoors, growing indoor plants allows them to indulge in a hobby that gives great pleasure.
Newly purchased or re-potted house plants should be given a few months rest from feeding so they are able to use up the nutrients already present in their growing mix.