Indoor Plant Care Tips

 

Some people have magic fingers when it comes to keeping an indoor plant alive, while others feel like they only have to look at it to wither and die.

Before buying your plant displays, you will need to think about where in your business or home  they will be.  Many of us will choose a plant we like and then choose an area to put it in, Instead, we should be assessing the space we have available and then selecting the plant best suited to those conditions.

Think, that’s the space, what light can it offer that plant? Is it next to a draft? Is it next to a radiator?, and let that help you decide the best plant for the area.

Here are some tips that will help you care for your indoor plant displays.

 

Position

Place your plant near a light source, ideally natural light or artificial light.

Determine what species of plant you have so you can customise the care for that particular variety.

 

Watering

Most houseplants are killed by over-watering ,  Keep the soil moist- It’s important to make sure that it is not too wet nor too dry. Aim to keep the compost moist but wait until it has almost dried out before rewatering. You can check by pushing your finger into the compost.

Generally plants will need watering more during the spring and summer growing seasons, than when dormant in winter. Water less in winter than in summer when actively growing.  Tap water is fine for most houseplants, but some specialist plants, such as orchids and carnivorous plants are fussier.

If the plant leaf edges begin browning and are crispy to the touch, its likely that the plant needs watering.  If the leaf edges are becoming brown but feel mushy, the plant has been over watered, in this case let the soil dry out. Yellow leaves may also indicate that a plant has too much or too little water, but this is not always the case.

 

Holiday Care

Most houseplants can survive being left for a couple of weeks with some preparation. Water all pots thoroughly before you leave.  Larger plants can be moved into shadier areas in the house while those in smaller pots, will do better in the bath, lined with an old towel soaked in water.

 

Feeding

Most plants should only be fed when actively growing in March to September.  Liquid feeds are generally the best, for flowering plants choose one high in Potassium.  For foliage plants controlled release fertilise will last the growing season. Reduce feeding in winter

 

Pruning

Pinch off dying flowers with your thumb and forefinger and remove any damaged or yellowing leaves, if necessary remove wayward branches with secateurs or scissors,

 

Cleaning

Dust can quickly build up on leaves This isn’t only unsightly but also prevents plants from growing properly. Clean with a piece cotton wool or cloth dipped in water.

 

Pests

Houseplants can suffer from a few pests and diseases, If the plant is looking sad check for tufts of white fluff. This is either mealy bug or woolly aphid, pests that suck the sap of houseplants. Remove with an organic soft soap spray.

Tiny limpet-like bugs on stems or leaves of plants are a sign of sap-sucking scale insect. Rub off by hand with a piece of cotton wool.

Fine webbing at the tips of plants and yellow speckling on leaves is a symptom of tiny red spider mites. They thrive in a warm, dry atmosphere – cut off the affected parts and mist around the plant to prevent another outbreak.