Growing an indoor garden, be it one plant or fifty, can be very satisfying and rewarding. Plants purify the air you breathe and rid your home of air pollutants. They also provide color, depth, and dimension to your decor. The best part for many people is a plant’s ability to create a happier environment by having mood-boosting properties to fight off anxiety and depression.
The first step when getting started creating an indoor garden is providing optimal conditions for plant harmony. This article is all about teaching you how to create a plant-loving environment indoors to help set you up for success.
Indoor plants are popular because they are usually relatively easy to care for, and typically their natural climates can be similarly reproduced.
Popular indoor plants are tropical and desert thriving. Palms and cacti are among the top choices for most gardeners due to their ease of care and ability to grow in indoor conditions.
Many factors go into having your indoor garden. Sunlight, humidity, and temperature are all just minor factors. You have to consider location, plants individual needs, and also the benefits of some said plants. You should do individual research on every plant you bring into your home to determine their needs, but this will cover the basics for most plants.
Lighting is a big deal for all plants. Sunlight affects new growth tremendously. When a plant is outside, it has most of its growth when in the growing season’s March through September, and then it will go dormant October through March.
When bringing a plant indoors, you want to try to replicate this process. Think of a plant’s leaves as giant solar panels soaking in and storing sunlight. Finding a bright sunny room with plenty of indirect lighting is ideal.
The majority of plants will burn if exposed to direct light for too long, causing them to turn red, dry out, and die so, plenty of indirect light is best. Indirect light means avoiding the direct sun rays.
Another good idea for optimal sunlight exposure to encourage growth is to rotate your plant’s position every time you water your plant. Watering could be every week to every two months or so. Just make it a habit to rotate, even if only 45 degrees every time you water.
Watering will vary by plant, which will require research for your plant before bringing it home.
Many tropical and desert plants like the soak and dry method; This method is a way of soaking your plant with water and then allowing it to fully dry out inches beneath the soil surface before watering again.
I do not recommend just doing the soak and dry method carelessly though, make sure it will work for your plant before doing so.
Plants love humidity and need it. Most plants need more humidity than the average home provides, especially when the furnace is on in the winter months. A way to combat dry air is by adding a humidifier to the area your plants will be.
If the majority of your plants are in a sunroom or living room, add a humidifier to that room to add some additional moisture to the air.
Misting your plants several times a week can provide some of the moisture they need, but some research states this isn’t as beneficial as we would like to believe. Results will vary using the misting method but it could be worth a try.
A final option is if you have a plant that requires a high percentage of humidity, then add a humidity tray beneath your plant.
Since many indoor plants are tropical or desert, they like warmer temperatures but will survive with the average indoor ranges of 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Most will not tolerate cooler than 55 degrees; if it is cool outside, move these plants away from windows or doorways to prevent freezing.
When searching for a warmer area in your home, the kitchen is a good idea. The kitchen tends to be more generous because of how often we cook and use the space which generates heat.
If you are debating creating an indoor garden, get started making your own compost. Home composting is a great way to set any plant up for success. Compost additives to any soil can provide optimal nutrition needs and help mimic natural environments.
Most indoor plants like well-draining perlite-based soils. Consider mixing a perlite or sand base soil with your compost to help plants thrive.
Family pets and plants’ toxicity levels are essential considerations to create a plant-loving environment indoors.
If you have cats or dogs, considering your plant’s placement is crucial if your pet is curious. Hanging plants or ones mounted on walls do best to keep the plant healthy and the pet safe.
Tropical and desert plants both have species that are toxic to pets. Usually, the toxicity requires ingestion, but it is better to air on the side of caution.
Even when attempting to do everything right and create the best plant-loving environment possible, mistakes can be made, and optimal conditions are missed causing plants to start dying.
A few common reasons indoor plants die:
- Overwatering or Underwatering – As stated above, many indoor plants do well with the soak and dry method. But this doesn’t mean all of them will like this. Always research what your plant type needs and even set a calendar alarm in your phone reminding you to check and water your plant.
- Too much or too little light – Most indoor plants are chosen due to their ability to survive in low light. However, even though they can survive in low light doesn’t mean it is best for them. Figure out your plants’ lighting requirements and try to cater to them as much as possible. Too much or too little light, even for low-light plants, can cause death.
- Neglect – Life is hectic. Indoor plants can slip through the cracks quickly, resulting in plant death. Calendar reminders are the easiest way to keep up on your plant’s needs or at least set a day aside per week to monitor your plant and upkeep.
Being a plant enthusiast requires always doing research before bringing a new plant inside.
Evaluating your rooms, lighting capabilities, time constraints, pets, and humidity resolutions are the basic first questions you can ask yourself to have a solid base to create a plant-loving environment indoors.
Creating your home compost is super easy and can be very beneficial. To get started, you need a metal bucket to keep outside or on a porch, preferably. Add in any natural kitchen scraps to your bucket. For example, old fruit or vegetables, coffee grounds, banana peels, and eggshells are a simple start. Allow this compost time to sit and break down over time and it will create an amazing soil additive for plants indoors and out.
You can have the best of both worlds. Plants and pets can live harmoniously. Bring plants indoors that are not harmful to your pets. A few good plants to try are Spider Plants, Parlor Palms, Boston Ferns, Ponytail Palms, Orchids, Christmas Cactus, and Pathos.
Just naming a few, there are Aloe Vera, Sago Palms, Jade Plants, Schlumbergera, Parlor Palms, Majesty Palms, Ferns, Anthuriums, and Pathos.
Yes, absolutely. If you cannot provide much light for your plants, go for a plant that doesn’t require too much, like an Aloe Vera plant or most other succulent plants. You can provide artificial lighting to your indoor plants during specific daytime hours to give them the illusion of natural lighting. Artificial lighting will provide not only light but also warmth to help you grow plants indoors.
Indoor plants usually die due to too much or little water or sunlight. The apparent beginning stages of noticing if your plant is dying is watching out for yellowing, browning, or sunburnt red leaves.
Black or brown dots on leaves or roots emerging above the soil surface are also good indicators to start taking steps to repair and save your plant.