With a houseplant, you gain the opportunity to bring a bit of nature indoors with you. Touches of color, matched against the sharp light lines of a home or office, create a softer environment for us to enjoy.
Houseplants can even filter the air we breathe. To do that, however, they must be healthy.
To grow healthier houseplants indoors, here is what you’re going to want to do.
1. Match your houseplants to your lighting.
Different light requirements are necessary for each unique variety of houseplant. Some prefer a reliable light source, like being set next to a window. Others prefer the soft light of a sunrise. Where you place a houseplant in its distance from a window will affect the quality and intensity of light it receives.
2. Use the correct pot.
Houseplants require larger pot sizes to continue growing. Smaller containers constrict the root base, which forces the plant to stop growing to prevent it from overwhelming its soil resources. For some plants, the material of the pot must be considered. Even the color of the container may impact the health of the plant.
3. Use a potting soil of good quality.
Houseplants require thorough watering. The frequency of that action is dependent upon the size of the pot and the quality of the soil being used. Try to wet the entire root ball of the plant during each watering session. Allow water to stand in the tray beneath the pot for about 24 hours. Then remove excess water to prevent mold or mildew growth in the soil.
4. Give houseplants a heavy watering session monthly.
When you water plants at home, salt tends to build up in the soil. That can prevent the houseplant from achieving its maximum health. A thorough washing of the soil each month by watering it heavily will reduce the impact of salt in the soil. Place the pot in the sink, then allow the water to run through the soil.
5. Prevent drafts in your home.
Air flow is essential to the health of a houseplant, but unnatural air movements may also cause harm. Make sure that you set your plants away from doors, heater vents, and windows which are drafty. In the winter, check on your indoor humidity levels to see if they are at healthy levels. You can increase local humidity around the plant by placing the pot on a tray with a layer of small pebbles and water.
6. Keep the houseplant clean.
Remove dust from the houseplant whenever it settles on the leaves. Debris on a plant will block the light and encourage pests. A moist towel is all that is required to clean the plant. If you do spot pests, make sure to treat them immediately with an appropriate control option.
Growing healthier houseplants does take time and energy, but it is a practice which becomes quite rewarding over time. Implement these best practices today, and your houseplants will thank you for your efforts!