A Houseplant Primer
When the year’s gardening season ends there is no need to stop gardening; you simply move your attention indoors. Houseplants add beauty to any room and, for the most part are not too difficult to take care of, as long as you follow a few basic guidelines.
Basic Steps to Houseplantsuccess:
1- Assess the space you plan to place your houseplants; you need to know how much light the spot gets so that you can purchase a plant that will thrive in that spot. Plants can get too much sun as well as too little.
2- What is the plant’s need for water? The main cause of houseplant failure is either too much or too little water. Indoors you cannot rely on the weather to provide the plant’s needs, it is your task.
3- A rule for watering, until you know the houseplants’ water routine, check them once a day to see if they need water. Use your digit finger and put it into the soil. If the soil is dry up to the first knuckle then water; if it is damp wait and test again the following day. In time you will develop an awareness of how the changing conditions indoors affect the plant’s use for water.
4- Buy a mister and mist the leaves weekly. Humidity plays an important role in plant growth. Many of the plants sold as houseplants are tropical plants and need conditions that make them feel at home.
5- Keep the plants away from cold drafts and do not allow the plant leaves to touch windows.
6- Before buying give though to the size the plant will be when as it grows. You may need to repot and/or move it, if it becomes larger than the place you first set it.
7- If design is an important feature then select plants that complement the design of the room you are putting them in.
Houseplants add warmth, colour and activity to any room they are placed. If you take the time and that brings us to another vital point, how much time do you have to look after them? They do need care, even cacti and succulents which can endure neglect, will require a bit of your time. Take stock of your schedule and habits before adding plants to your daily life.
When you invest the time the plants will repay that investment many times over. Houseplants bring warmth, colour and beauty to a living room, dining area or anywhere people gather.
- Houseplants - University of Illinois Extension
Several factors influence your success with indoor plants. The key factors for plant growth are light, temperature, humidity, and water. Take time to read about their individual requirements and then try to match their needs to your indoor setting.
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