Houseplants might be trendy, but they’re not just a pretty face: they brighten up your home, they can lift your mood and improve air quality. Which is why knowing how to look after houseplants should be top of any plant lover’s priorities. Here are 5 tips on nurturing leafy friends indoors, from how often to water indoor plants to how to clean houseplant leaves.
1. Know your plant
Indoor plant types can vary hugely, and they all have different preferences. Knowing how to take care of indoor plants that like shade and humidity can be very different to ones that like hot, dry conditions. Ferns naturally grow in streams and hollows, so they do best in conditions of high humidity and moisture, like the bathroom. Succulents, on the other hand, usually flourish in arid and sunny environments
2. Choose the perfect spot
Once you’ve taken your little green friend home, set them down in a position they’ll like. If you have a few plants that like the same conditions, sit them together. Also, keep them away from radiators and heaters: artificial heat is drying and damaging, even to plants that like naturally hot and dry environments.
3. Keep your plants fed and watered
Knowing how often to water indoor plants is key to houseplant care. Watering either too much or too little is one of the most common mistakes a budding indoor gardener can make.
So, how often should you water plants? It depends on the type of plant. Cacti and succulents can be the victims of over-attentiveness: a good water once a month is usually enough. Other plants that like humidity, like ferns, might need water a few times a week and a spritz of water over the leaves every day.
To maintain indoor plants properly, mix a little plant food from your local garden store with the water every 1-2 months. Follow the instructions on the bottle for the right amount and frequency, and research the right kind of food for the type of plants you have.
4. Clean plant leaves regularly
Giving your plants’ leaves a gentle clean once or twice a month prevents household dust from clogging your plants’ pores and getting in the way of transpiration. It also helps to rid your plants of pests. Here’s how to clean houseplant leaves:
- Be gentle when you clean. Indoor plants with delicate, feathery leaves, such as ferns, can do without a clean, especially if you mist them regularly. Only clean plant leaves that have hardy, shiny leaves, and remember to be gentle with these too.
- Wipe the surface and undersides of the leaves to remove excess dust or dirt with some very soft kitchen paper.
- Dampen the tissue slightly with water only and swipe it over the leaves again gently to clean them. You can give them a final wipe with a dry tissue to buff them to a shiny finish.
Keep a roll of Plenty The Original One handy to help out with all areas of your houseplant care routine. They’re strong enough not to fall apart when you gently wipe your plant’s leaves clean.
5. Look after your environment too!
Having houseplants brings the outside inside, which is fun! But there are a few elements of the outside you might not want there, like bugs and dirt. Once you’ve mastered how to look after houseplants, make sure you’re looking after your windowsills, carpets and upholstery too. Keep some absorbent kitchen paper handy to wipe up water spills and crumbs of soil quickly.
And remember, some plants and flowers can be harmful to pets. There are lots of plants and flowers that’ll keep your house looking beautiful – without causing your furry friends any trouble. Have a look online to see what’s best for your household.