Indoor Gardening – How to Master the Craft of Keeping Houseplants
When it comes to keeping houseplants many of us are notorious for killing them. As morbid as it may sound, some of us have even turned into house plant serial killers, letting our poor little green friends die as soon as they make it to their new home. You’re probably reading this article because you want to change your ways, to finally look after your houseplants and have them thrive. If so, you’re in the right place. Here at Grangewood we are houseplant experts, and we’re here to share our secrets! Below are some of our top tips for keeping some of our most popular houseplants not only alive but growing big and strong.
Water your succulents properly!
Succulents, particularly cacti, are a fan favourite when it comes to houseplants. Many people have the pre-conceived notion that these plants are hassle-free and watering them isn’t an issue. After all, they’re from the desert, right?
Whilst they might originate from arid climates, succulents still require watering. Not only this but it has to be done in a certain way. Regular splashes of water don’t do it for them; they need deep soaks followed by drought periods. A good rule of thumb is to water your succulent until the soil is completely saturated and water is running from the bottom. Then leave your plant until the soil is bone dry at least a few inches deep. This process can then be repeated. To make this method even more effective, it may be worth potting your succulents in cactus mix instead of normal soil. This drains much more quickly and so prevents overwatering too.
Plants need light!
This one sounds obvious, but so many people miss it. Plants need light to survive, so why are we still keeping them in dark corners? There are a few houseplants that don’t follow this rule, but typically keeping your plants in places that don’t receive much light is a key factor in why they’re not surviving. We get that your cacti might look nice on your corner table, but sometimes all that cactus wants is to sunbathe on the windowsill. If you prioritise plant health over aesthetic, you’re going to end up with stronger, healthier plants.
Get the right size pot!
Imagine being forced to wear clothes 3 sizes too small – that’s exactly how your plant is feeling! Your plant isn’t going to grow if its roots are shoved in a tight space. All plants are typically sold in pots that are too small in order to make them look big and blooming. As soon as you get home repot it into something much bigger! A good rule to go by is that 2/3 of the plant should be above the soil and only a 1/3 should be below it, allowing it enough room to grow.
Stop putting plants next to heaters and air con!
Plants can be delicate and placing them right on top of a heat source is a big no no!
Essentially you are cooking your plant and burning the poor thing to a crisp. The air is being heated and there’s no humidity at all, causing the leaves to shrivel up. Air con does the same thing. By cooling the air, you’re drying the air out and taking humidity away from the plant, which is vital for its survival. Start by taking the plants away from heaters, radiators and air conditioning units, but if you live in a particular small area or they’re in a small room, the effect of this might not be huge. In this case, your best bet is to not only move them but to buy a mister or humidifier too. Humidifiers can range in price, but if you’re only getting it for the plants a small one can be fairly cheap. Alternatively, buy a mister, fill it with water and spray your plants regularly!
These are only a few tips, but together they are bound to make a difference and save some lives! We’d love to hear how you get on with your houseplants over on our social media. If you have any further houseplant questions we’d love to hear them too!
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