Want to grow plants Indoor? 6 Tips for Growing Houseplants
By The Headlines, April 18, 2023 | 03:19 PM
Here are 6 Tips to Grow Plants Indoors:
Indoor gardening is ideal if you don't have enough room for an outdoor garden or just want to enjoy the beauty of nature indoors.
Different house plants have varying needs when it comes to care, however, having an understanding of the basic principles is essential for successful indoor gardening.
1. Be proactive and know when it's time to water your houseplants
When it comes to watering your houseplants, it is better to err on the side of caution by not giving them too much water rather than not enough. In most cases, a slight dryness is preferable to being sopping wet. You should ensure that your plants receive adequate water to keep their soil moist, but not wet. Succulents are an exception and may need to be fully immersed in water occasionally. Make sure to water your plants slowly and only when necessary. Generally, watering once or twice a week is sufficient unless it is winter, in which case you can reduce the amount of water given. Additionally, pour water until it drains out from the bottom of the pot. A reliable indication of a plant's need for water is to insert your finger two inches deep into the soil. If it feels dry, your plant likely requires some hydration.
2. Mind the temperature, humidity, and airflow to maintain efficiency.
Houseplants typically grow well in temperatures between 65 and 75°F during the day and 10 degrees cooler at night. In addition, they require a humidity level similar to that of their native environment for optimal growth.
Air plants are an exceptional species of houseplant, as they exclusively absorb water through the air. Consequently, misting them with a spray bottle is recommended for them to thrive. On the other hand, condensation that stays on leaves for too long should be avoided by providing proper airflow in all other houseplants to keep them healthy. Incorporating a fan near your houseplants helps to evaporate excess moisture and keep the leaves dust-free by circulating the air around them.
3. Make sure your houseplants get the required amount of light to ensure their healthy growth.
Photosynthesis does not occur without light energy and houseplants usually require indirect light for the same. Desert cacti are the only exception to this, as they prefer direct sunlight to thrive.
Houseplants can flourish when placed near west-facing windows, as long as the light isn't direct, or a few feet away from south-facing windows with bright light but no direct sunlight.
Certain plants are able to thrive in shady, low-light conditions and make great houseplants. These include ZZ plant, snake plant, pothos and philodendron - all of which can even grow in north and east-facing windows.
In places with limited natural sunlight hours or during the winter season, houseplants relying on artificial light will thrive when grown indoors. Houseplants need more than just regular domestic light bulbs to grow. You should ideally use fluorescent or LED grow lights, as they provide a balanced spectrum of both cool and warm light that replicates the effect of natural sunlight.
4. Knowledge of the right potting soil.
Investing in good quality potting soil can help plants flourish by providing the right balance of nutrition, aeration, and water retention. Typical potting mixes usually comprise peat moss, shredded pine bark, perlite & vermiculite. It is recommended to buy potting soil that is specific to the type of houseplant you are growing. For instance, fast-draining soils are best for orchids and bromeliads, whereas succulents do well in porous, sandy soils. Generic potting soils can be used but may not yield optimal results.
5. Ensure the pot you choose is suitable for your plant.
Picking the right pot is essential and involves considering the material, size & drainage capability. The pot should not be more than a few inches bigger in diameter than the roots of your plant to ensure it's proportional.
It's important to use the right size pot for the plant. If you start it in a pot that is too large, its roots won't absorb enough moisture and this could lead to problems with its growth. On the other hand, if it outgrows its current home, you can transfer it into a bigger pot. Plastic pots are great for hanging baskets or wall shelves because of their lightweight quality.
Clay or terra cotta pots tend to be heavier and have a porous surface, causing them to absorb less water than plastic containers. Always check if your pot has a drainage hole on the bottom before buying it.
6. Use the right fertilizers
For the healthy and long-term growth of indoor plants, it is important to replenish potting soil with nutrients on a regular basis. Generally, one should fertilize household plants once a month when they are flowering or in their growing stage. Winter is a time when the growth of plants slows down, so it's okay to reduce or completely stop fertilizing them. That said, it's important to keep in mind that these are just general guidelines and individual plants may require specialized care depending on their needs.