Before filling your home with the best houseplants money can buy, it is wise to do a little research to find out which plants are suitable for your home, what you need to do to keep them alive (dead plants are not the best decoration!) And where to put them in your home.
Today we share with you what gardening experts have to say about potted plants and their care. Read on to learn more about houseplants and care tips, to help you keep them alive and thriving, as well as style tips to keep your greenery looking its best.
Tips for choosing potted plants
Plants that can support living indoors generally come from subtropical climates, so be sure to gradually acclimate your plant to your individual home climate. Generally speaking, plants with dark green leaves photosynthesize better than those with light green or colored leaves.
This means that they need less light to survive and are very tolerant of shade. Colored or patterned sheets tend to need more light. If your houseplant requires bright, indirect light, choose a room that gets enough natural light to read a book for most of the day.
When purchasing a plant from a garden store, be sure to check the plant thoroughly for pests, insects, or signs of general distress or lack of care. A healthy plant has strong leaves and a firm stem.
Potted Plants Which pot to get?
The best pots are those with drainage holes. Water can turn sour and houseplants may not thrive in pots that don’t drain well or allow roots to breathe. If you want to use a ceramic, metal or glass pot that won’t drain, use it as an external pot and keep your plant in a plastic pot inside and use a layer of charcoal or moss on the base to absorb excess water and keep clean. Some pots are made as self-watering or water-absorbing pots, which is great if you forget or travel a lot.
Terrariums, which function as mini-ecosystems, typically have a base layer of charcoal, then pebbles, and then moss to help purify the water. They easily grow in a bright position, but any maintenance work, such as trimming old fronds, can be tricky to do. Consider how easy it will be to replant the plant. Urn-shaped pots can be impossible to repot.
Keeping Plants in Pots
Indoor plants generally do not need pruning, although they do benefit from the removal of dead leaves, brown leaves, and, in the case of plants like peace lilies and anthuriums, old flowers. Occasionally reducing the growth of bushier houseplants, such as figs, will promote thicker growth.
Some taller growing plants, such as Dracaenas, can be trimmed to size when they have grown too large. They will then fire again from this incision. Cuttings grow roots easily, so you can make new plants by placing the cuttings in a vase, letting them grow roots, and then planting them in a new pot with the potting mix.
To get the best out of your indoor garden, remember to feed it. You can buy slow-release fertilizer specially made for houseplants, which will gradually fertilize the plants throughout the year. Supplementing this with added liquid vegetable toner, like Nitrosol, will promote luscious green growth. This normally applies once every three weeks or so.
What a plant needs is species specific; however, hardy houseplants should generally be watered once or twice a week in summer and once every two weeks in winter. A good way to check if a plant needs water is to push the index finger towards the top layer of the soil to the first joint, if the soil is dry it needs water. Try adding rocks or drainage material to the bottom of the pot. Brown tips suggest over or under watering.
Some homes can be very dusty inside, so when cleaning, don’t forget to clean the leaves of plants like rubber trees and fiddle-leaf figs, which can trap a lot of dirt. If your indoor plants are small enough to lift, place them in the shower once a month under warm water for 10 minutes; This does a great job of cleaning palm trees and ferns and simulates rain.
Let them drip dry, then put them back in their clean, cool place. For a final shine, wipe the top surface of your fiddle leaf figs, rubber trees, palm fronds, and peace lilies with a cloth slightly dampened with white oil.
August is the ideal time to refresh indoor plants with a repot. Make sure you buy a good quality potting mix. Here’s how to re-plant a plant:
Remove the houseplant from its pot and gently scoop or trim the circular or tangled roots. Plant again in the same pot or, if you want your plant to continue growing, plant a few sizes in a larger pot.
Make sure you don’t collect dirt around the trunk or leave the roots exposed – the new level should be exactly the same as the old one. Water the plant thoroughly to remove any air pockets.
How to style your potted plants indoors
Group them together
Assemble a gang of plants of varying heights in different pots to create a display with real impact. We also love how great greens look on soft furniture with plants.
Use a wall
You can purchase these ready-to-ride staghorn ferns from your local nursery. They almost look like pieces of art on the wall! Just remember to give these cuties regular spells outside.
Hang them high
Create a sculptural display on top with bird’s nest ferns and creeping plants like succulent String of Pearls and carefree Devil’s ivy – perfect options for hanging planters.
Tall plants, like this fiddle-leaf fig, look very elegant and dramatic when planted in pots sitting on metal or wooden supports. You could even do something like this yourself.