How to take care of plants at home

8 tips to keep your plants alive and healthy.
Breakfast nook with phalaenopsis orchid and monstera plantPhotographer: Mindi Cooke

While we love the idea of filling our homes with lush greenery, many forget to research essential details of how to take care of plants and the reality is that we often struggle to keep plants alive. We talk to Gisele Zanier, founder of Beyond Sunflowers, about how to keep our indoor plants happy.

When gardening indoors it’s important to take into consideration the following points.

1. Best lighting for plants

Do I have the right light? Different pot plants thrive in different light, so make sure you tailor your indoor garden to the right lighting needs. Make sure you position pot plants around the home according to their necessary light levels and temperatures. Some plants are fine in the bathroom, while others thrive in colder temperatures, whereas some need light.

2. Pet-safe plants

Some plants are poisonous to animals (such as peace lilies) – so check these details about your chosen plants before bringing them into the home.

Photographer: Chris Warnes

(Credit: Photo: John Downs / Stylist: Kylie Jackes)

3. Know what your plant needs

A lot of plants are seasonal, so your green thumb work needs to extend into the off-season. Make sure you have a clear understanding of what is required to care for your plant before you buy and if it’s too much, opt for hardier varieties and low maintenance plants.

4. How much water to give your plants

Do not over-water your plants. While you think you might be doing them a favour, some pot plants only require a small amount of water and too much can drown them. Keep soil moist with regular but light watering. Keep a tray to catch any excess water below to avoid over-watering them or, better still, cut the guesswork altogether and pop in a sensor probe to get notified when your plants need water!

Try this starter pack from Willow to get you on the right path.

5. How to treat bugs on your plant

Keep an eye out for bugs. If you notice any bugs on your plants, remove them. Get rid of any dead leaves to prevent disease. Be aware of the types of diseases your indoor plants can catch. For example, indoor palms can catch mealy bugs. To avoid this, wipe down the palm leaves and spray a palm-safe insecticide.

Photographer: Chris Warnes

6. Air supply for your plants

Make sure your plants have the right air supply, especially if they are kept inside. They not only need fresh air to grow but it also helps reduce disease.

7. Fertilise your indoor plant

Fertilise every one to two months depending on your plant. Always make sure you have information about when is best to feed your plant as so many indoor plants vary.

8. Repot your plants

Repot your plants every one to two years depending on how quickly they grow. This will help your plants thrive and grow.

brisbane workers cottage breakfast nook

Photographer: Mindi Cooke

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