How to Care for Indoor Plants

Gene Sumi
Written by Gene Sumi
Updated September 8, 2016
Indoor plants
Studies suggest that environments with indoor plants are more relaxing and productive, especially for those of us who spend a lot of time inside. (Photo courtesy of Gene Sumi of Homestead Gardens)

From aiding concentration to boosting health and well being, indoor plants really do it all.

In fact, new research further proves indoor plants combat a major, albeit quiet, threat to public health: indoor air pollution. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cites that indoor air is more polluted than outdoor air. As natural purifiers, indoor plants filter carbon dioxide and chemical pollutants while producing oxygen.

Keep your home cleaner, your air purer and your plants happier with these six tips for growing indoor plants.

1. Invite them in

Many people keep indoor plants outside during summer, but once temperatures start to drop below 50º, it’s time to bring the plants inside! Gradually reacquaint plants with the indoor lifestyle by bringing them inside at night and returning them outdoors during the day. Over the course of two weeks, slowly increase the amount of time that plants spend indoors. Check plants for pests before bringing them inside. 

2. Give them some space

If your plants are looking crowded, they are in need of additional space. Don’t be afraid to replant them in a new pot! Select a pot that is at least two inches larger than your current one and transfer. Use Espoma’s Organic Potting Mix to fill the rest of the container.

3. Conduct a health check

If the leaves look distressed, consider moving the plant. If there’s enough light for you to read a book, there’s enough light for a low-light houseplant. Some plants will need more light than others, so do some research! Avoid placing plants near heat or air conditioning ducts, on TVs or between the curtains and a chilly window. 

Indoor plant
Adding plants to your home are great visual pieces and improve your air quality. (Photo courtesy of Gene Sumi of Homestead Gardens)

4. Keep plants comfortable

Houseplants thrive when temperatures are between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 10-15 degrees cooler at night.

5. Keep them hydrated, too

Overwatering is the number one cause of houseplant death, so be careful to not overdo it! If the plant’s soil is dry about an inch below the surface, add water. Collect any excess water in a tray or saucer. Make sure your plants are never sitting in water. 

6. Keep them fed

Fertilize plants with an organic fertilizer such as The Espoma Company’s new liquid houseplant fertilizer during major growth periods, usually during spring or summer. 

With these tips, your houseplants will be bringing creativity and clean air to your home or workspace in no time!

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