Plants add a wonderful touch to any décor, be it Colonial American, or Modern Minimalistic. With your indoor garden, you are adding a touch of whimsy or a living work of art. And any grade school student can tell you that plants offer a health benefit too by breathing in the carbon dioxide that we exhale, and exhaling oxygen which we need. Here are some helpful tips for beginners on making your indoor garden flourish.
All plants need some amount of light. But you have to be careful how much and what kind of light your indoor garden gets. Before you buy plants, keep track of what kind of light and how much each room gets. Then you can go to your local nursery and check the labels on plants you are interested in.
A plant you thought might be best for your bright living room may be better off in your dimly lit den. You may also be surprised to find a plant for your indoor garden that you had never even thought of before you had to take into account the lighting in a specific room.
Some typical indoor garden plants that require low to medium light are Philodendrons, Cyclamens, African violets, Boston ferns, and Creeping Fig. Along with the Boston fern, there are many types of ferns that require low to medium light levels and are a beautiful addition to an indoor garden. A helpful tip is that darker leaved plants typically need less light that their lighter leaved cousins.
The easiest way to kill a plant is to over water it. And that is a common mistake people make with their indoor gardens. A plant I the wild has a vast drainage system in which to get rid of excess water. Your indoor plants do not. Research your plant to find out their exact watering needs. Most nurseries sell hydrometers that can help you gauge the moisture content of the soil so you can prevent over watering.
One way to make your indoor garden even more attractive is to plant them in beautiful pots. These don’t have to be expensive and there are a wide variety of materials used to make these pots; many of which are made to look as if they are made from a more expensive materials. If you are reusing a pot, make sure you clean it well before potting a new plant so to ensure that you are not transmitting any bugs or infections to your new plant.
When you repot a plant because it has outgrown its old one, make the new pot only 2″ in diameter larger than the old one. You want you plant to continue to grow, but you don’t want to freak the roots out by having too much space.
Roots don’t want to be pot bound, but then again, they need to be able to firmly anchor the plant and a pot that is too big will weaken the roots by making them work too hard to reach the boundaries of their pot.
Winter air can be harmful to your indoor garden because it is so very dry. To counter this effect, use a plant mister in the morning to simulate natural dew and help keep your indoor garden well hydrated. The same approach applies in summer weather if you live in an area that requires air conditioning.
Air conditioned air can be very dry and your plants need a little help. Also make sure to dust your plants periodically with a damp, soft cloth to ensure your plant is able to breathe well.
Just as people tend to over water their indoor gardens, they also tend to over fertilize them. Each plant has specific fertilizing needs, so do some research to determine what kind and how much fertilizer your indoor garden needs. Basic indoor plant fertilizer can be bought at your local nursery and even at your local grocery store during the spring and summer months.
If you are brave enough to grow orchids, you will have to buy a special fertilizer for them. With a little research, you can have a wide variety of beautiful plants in your indoor garden and enjoy them for years to come.