Houseplants have become super trendy as of late, but people have been using them to brighten up their homes for decades. Whenever I go to a nursery or garden center, I can feel myself relax and breathe easier. However, I don’t have the greenest of thumbs and am always terrified of accidentally killing my plants with too much love! If you’re like me, don’t worry. Here are some tips to help you be a plant parent and not a plant killer:
1. Before you buy any plant, think about the light in your home
Do you have any spots with direct light, indirect light, low light, etc.? If you’re unsure, think about where the sun is when it rises and sets in relation to your home. When you have your lighting figured out, make sure to buy plants that do well in those situations. This will set you up for plant success.
I know what you’re thinking: how hard is it to water plants? You just water them once a day or week and that’s good! Not exactly. Every plant varies depending on what it prefers. Most houseplants are tropical plants, so think like you’re in the tropics! Place your plant in well draining soil in a pot with drainage holes (make sure to protect the surface underneath from getting wet). Only water when the top inch of soil feels dry. This means you’ll have to get a little dirty! Stick your finger in the soil to feel if it’s damp or dry. If it’s dry, give it some water. If it’s still damp, wait a couple days and check again. Overwatering is the number one cause of plant death. We love them too much!
3. Weekly care
Once a week, give your plants a good once over. Does it need water? Does it look happy and thriving or sad and limp? If the plant isn’t looking so good and you know it’s been watered correctly, it may need more or less light. You can always move it around to see where it thrives. If there are any leaves that are brown, yellow, or shriveled up, go ahead and remove those. Also make sure to check for any pests. You want to catch them early on so they don’t spread to the other plants.
4. Monthly care
It’s a spa day for your plants. Seriously! Did you know plants have pores that get clogged up with dust, etc and it makes it a lot harder for the plant to take in light. Use a soft cloth to wipe down the leaves. They love getting a bath!
5. Annual care
Spring is magic time for plants. The days are getting longer which means more light for plants, which basically gives them super growth powers ! This is the best time to repot any plants that are outgrowing their pots as this supercharge gives them the best chance to survive any repotting trauma. If you have a “climbing” plant (like a pothos or a monstera), when you go to repot them, give them something to climb up, like a pole or even an upside down tomato cage. Be warned - they will grow up fast!
We love to take care of our plants and they take care of us! What are some of the ways you take care of your plants? We would love to hear from you!
Your Squeaky Green Team