Houseplants bring life and ambience into any room, yet require special care for optimal growth. Proper light and water conditions are key components in creating healthy houseplants.
Understanding a plant’s watering, repotteting and fertilization needs can be daunting at first. But knowing when and how often they need attention can save time. You also must recognize possible issues like fungus gnats buzzing around its soil as well as how to prune for maximum health benefits.
Indoor plants add an elegant, natural element to any room and are an easy way to bring the beauty of nature indoors. While certain varieties can tolerate low light environments better, all require some form of sunlight for proper growth and survival.
Houseplant health can depend heavily on how much sunlight they receive. Different plant species require differing amounts of sun exposure; typically divided into three categories of light intensity: low, medium and direct sun.
At midday, hold a piece of paper up against a window and examine its shadow; sharper shadows indicate brighter light levels while softer ones indicate medium ones.
Make sure your plant is not too close to a window where its direct rays could burn it, and remove any dust from its leaves, as this could clog its stomata and prevent it from receiving enough sunlight.
Some indoor plants do best when kept in an environment with plenty of direct sunlight, but you can still enjoy lush greenery by selecting varieties which require medium or lower light settings such as Scindapsus pictus (Satin Pothos), Aspidistra elatior, Aeschynanthus (Lipstick Plant) or Calatheas.
Overwatering plants is a common mistake that can lead to root rot or fungal issues, while most prefer slightly dry conditions rather than being saturated by too much moisture. A watering can with a long spout gives you greater control of where and how you apply water into the soil without wetting leaves directly.
Misting houseplant foliage regularly with room temperature water helps ensure their health and encourage new growth, while simultaneously reducing dust that clogs their stomata and inhibits sunlight absorption. Deadheading spent flower stems saves plant energy that would otherwise go towards producing seeds by redirecting it toward producing blooms instead.
Houseplants require additional nutrition in the form of fertilizers in addition to sunlight. While outdoor plants receive nourishment through rainfall and their roots are free to explore new food sources, indoor plants must rely on what soil their container offers as food sources or on what supplements are given as supplements.
On the market there are various products offering nutrients in granules, liquid or powder form. Organic solutions such as worm compost and compost as well as kelp or fish emulsion offer great solutions for providing your plants with essential nutrition.
Liquid fertilizers are the go-to choice, easily diluting in water before applying with your regular watering can. Frequency depends on your plant type and nutritional needs – fast-growing begonias may require more frequent feedings than slower-growing species like cacti. But be mindful not to over-fertilize as too much could lead to salt build-up and root damage – read through your fertilizer’s label for guidance as to when and how often you should apply your feeds.
Grooming an indoor plant on a regular basis will help it look its best. Removing dead leaves and stems, crossing or rubbing branches, dead stems and leaves from pruning cuts as well as crossing or rubbing branches is vital to increasing new growth while decreasing disease risks for healthy plants. Pruning regularly also allows you to control its size ensuring it fits comfortably into the space available in your home or office.
Dust-free leaf surfaces enable your plant to absorb sunlight and create oxygen efficiently. Regularly wiping the leaves with a damp cloth is the best way to eliminate dust buildup that could obstruct photosynthesis.
Repotting is important when plants become larger. Selecting one size larger pot can help avoid overwatering and fungal diseases caused by overcrowding of roots, while when roots reach drainage holes or top of soil surface it’s time for an upgrade in container size.