There’s something about plants that brings a sense of vibrancy, life, and coziness to a home. Bringing a little of the outdoors back inside can keep you connected with nature while giving your home an added element of decor. At the same time, having an indoor garden can also provide you with easy access to some of your favorite herbs that you might like to use when preparing your favorite dishes.
To help ensure a flourishing indoor garden, consider the following tips.
1. Find the Best Spot in the House
Every type of plant may have its own specific requirements to ensure healthy growth. While some plants may thrive in direct sunlight all throughout the day, others might appreciate much lower levels of natural light.
For instance, plants that love lots of sunshine may do well on a windowsill that is facing north or north-east. Or, if the soil seems to dry up very quickly or there are signs of withering, move the plant away from the windowsill and more towards the middle of the room. Position your plants accordingly, and keep trying different spots until you find the best one for your plants.
2. Keep the Plants Far From Drafts
Whether it’s from an open window, an air conditioner unit, or a vent, plants should never be positioned in such a way that they will be in the line of fire of drafts. Even the slightest draft can kill a plant or severely compromise its health.
3. Water Appropriately
Many newbie gardeners tend to over water their plants thinking that they’re always thirsty. While watering is certainly essential, too much can actually kill a plant. Generally speaking, plants should only be watered when the soil mix feels dry.
You can check the moisture level of the potting mix by simply sticking your finger in it. If it’s dry, water it. If it’s still moist, it can go a little while longer without having to be watered.
4. Use Cool Water
Not only does the frequency of watering matter, but so does the actual temperature of the water itself. Plants typically like cool water as opposed to very warm water. More specifically, water that is around the 68°F mark seems to work best for plants, which appears to be the ideal temperature for plant roots to absorb water and nutrients.
5. Mist the Leaves
Indoor plants love having some water misted over their leaves, especially if the air indoors is quite dry. Just make sure not to mist too often and to only use water that is room temperature.
6. Fertilize the Soil
Outdoor gardens aren’t the only ones that could benefit from soil fertilization. Be sure to feed your indoor plants with a little bit of fertilizer. You can use liquid fertilizers that contain all the necessary nutrients that your plants need. Just be sure to follow the instructions about proper doses and frequency of fertilization.
Or else, you can always create your own natural fertilizer by composting with things such as vegetable and fruits peels, egg shells, and coffee grinds that can be added to the soil.
7. Trim Your Herbs
Your herb plants can grow much fuller if you trim them occasionally. Leafy herbs, like basil and cilantro, should be pinched or trimmed them back to the leaf nodule in order to stimulate the growth of lush leaves.
Woodier herbs, such as rosemary and thyme, get “woodier” as they grow older. These types of herbs should be pruned back to prevent them from becoming all stem and no leaf.
8. Wipe Off the Leaves
Just like all other surfaces in your home, the leaves of your plants can accumulate a layer of dust over time. As such, you’ll want to wipe them down in order to maximize the amount of sunlight that the plant receives and absorbs. If sunlight is blocked, the plant’s ability to photosynthesize will be reduced. Photosynthesis is how plant feeds themselves, so minimizing this process won’t do your plants any good.
The Bottom Line
Having a myriad of plants in your home can certainly breathe some life into your interior. But having plants is not a set-it-and-forget-it type of arrangement. Instead, your plants will need plenty of attention and a little know-how on your behalf to ensure they thrive. Keep these tips in mind when tending to your plants to create and maintain a thriving, healthy indoor garden.