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Pest attacks are much more common outdoors in the garden, but even the most experienced houseplant owner will still fall victim to an attack indoors from time to time. Don't worry though, we've got you covered. We're going to share our experience and knowledge to help you easily sort out pest problems. Just before we get on, let's quickly point out that sometimes your plant will have a disease rather than a pest problem - in which case you'll need to head over to our disease page. Where possible we'd suggest giving the eco-friendly method for pest eradication and control a go first. Because let's face it, none of us need to be spraying strong synthetic chemicals around our home unless we really have to.

  • How to Correctly Mist Plants: Misting and Humidity Explained
  • How to Increase Humidity for Indoor Plants
  • A Guide To Watering Indoor Plants
  • 7 Indoor Plants that Repel Insects
  • Know best indoor plants to buy, how to keep them healthy
  • Spotting & Solving Spider Mite Problems
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: 8 Healthiest Plants To Have In Your House

How to Correctly Mist Plants: Misting and Humidity Explained

By: Larry Hodgson. House plants are a nice addition to the home. See more pictures of houses plants. In this article, we will talk about lighting house plants , watering house plants , humidity for house plants , temperature for house plants , fertilzing house plants , potting house plants , grooming house plants , propagating house plants , decorating with house plants , preventing pests and diseases in house plants , and vacation care for house plants.

Scientific studies show that people are calmer, more efficient, and more satisfied with their lives when they have living plants around them. Tending to plants is known to be therapeutic, with beneficial effects on both our physical well-being and our mental health.

There is also more and more proof that green plants filter common pollutants from the air around us. Literally millions of house plants are sold across the country each year.

Interior decorators feature them in all rooms of the house, and home decorating magazines never show a finished design without them.

Indoor plants are readily available in nurseries, plant stores, supermarkets, and department stores. In fact, it can be surprisingly simple.

Armed with the knowledge of certain basic techniques, anyone can succeed in growing house plants. Learn how to use light for house plants in the next section. Green plants live off light the way animals live off food: They absorb it and convert its energy into the sugars and starches they need to grow and survive.

Without adequate light, no plant can thrive. Fortunately, house plants tell us when they are not getting enough light. Their growth will be pale, and they will stretch toward the nearest light source.

Flowering will be weak or totally absent. Southern exposures get full sun from late morning to mid-afternoon. The light needs of different house plants vary. What may seem like a dark corner to a flowering house plant may be perfectly acceptable to a foliage one. Whatever your conditions, as long as enough light to read by exists, certain house plants will thrive there. Light intensities vary according to season. A south window, which may be too intense for many foliage house plants in the summer, is the best location for most house plants during the winter months.

During the summer, move plants back from hot south or west windows, or draw a sheer curtain between them and the glaring sun. A north window, on the other hand, may not receive enough light for flowering house plants during the winter, but almost every house plant will thrive in its cool brightness during the summer months. Never hesitate to move house plants from site to site according to season. If your house plants show signs of lack of light, you can increase the intensity they receive by removing any obstacles that block the path of the light: for example, curtains, blinds, and outdoor foliage.

Even cleaning the windows regularly will help. Another easy way of improving light is to paint nearby walls and furniture in pale shades, so they reflect light rather than absorb it.

House plants adapt perfectly well to growing under artificial light. Incandescent lamps, however, even those offered for plants, produce light of poor quality that promotes weak, unhealthy growth. They are only good choices for house plants receiving some natural light. Fluorescent lights and halogen lamps, on the other hand, produce light so close in quality to sunlight that house plants will thrive under them.

Window by Window. Most house plants like their soil kept evenly moist, that is, neither soaking wet nor bone dry. A few prefer that their soil dry out entirely between waterings.

No matter what the watering needs of a given plant may be, always water thoroughly, then wait until the plant needs more water before starting again. You can either use tepid water straight from the tap or let water stand overnight. In areas where water is very hard or where water is artificially softened, rainwater is often the best choice for watering your house plants. Plants will often tell you they need water by dramatically collapsing, but it is best not to wait that long, since most plants never recover from severe wilting.

Pour out excess water from the saucer after watering house plants from below. Most people prefer to water from above. In that case, water thoroughly until excess moisture runs out of the bottom of the pot. If the plant has dried out entirely, to the point of wilting, this method may not be sufficient, since dry soil often repels water.

In that case, set the pot in water until it soaks up all it can hold. You can also water from below. In that case, fill the saucer with water and wait about 20 minutes. If there is still water in the saucer at that time, pour it out. If there is no water in the saucer, the plant might not have received enough. Add more, come back in 20 minutes, and pour out any excess water. For house plants that like their soil moist at all times, wicking can be a solution. All this requires is a water reservoir an old margarine container, for example kept next to the plant and a piece of yarn.

Insert one end of the yarn into the top of the potting mix, pushing it down into a drainage hole using a knitting needle. Punch a hole in the lid of the reservoir and insert the other end of the yarn into the reservoir. Water once from the top of the pot to allow water to soak through the wick. From then on, the plant will absorb the water it needs via the wick. Just keep the reservoir filled with water or a solution of water and fertilizer at all times.

This method is ideal if you are frequently absent, since wick-watered house plants can often go for weeks between waterings. A capillary mat can also be used. Cut the mat to fit the saucer or, for a collection of house plants, use a large tray and set the plants directly on the matting. Water thoroughly from the top the first time, then simply keep the mat moist. The plants will be able to absorb water from the matting when they need it. Most plants need humid air in order to thrive. The thinner the leaf, the greater its need for humidity.

Thick, leathery, or waxy leaves, or those covered with hair, are usually relatively immune to dry air. Symptoms of dry air include curled leaves and dry leaf tips, as well as a frequent need for watering.

Flower buds are especially susceptible to dry air and may turn brown or simply fall off if humidity is too low. Spraying house plants with water is a good way to increase humidity. In some areas of the country, dry air is a chronic problem, especially in the arid Southwest. During periods of extreme heat, air conditioning has a further drying effect on the air.

In such areas, the year-round use of a humidifier may be necessary. In areas with cold winters, humidity levels drop indoors during the heating season. Certain heating systems, such as electric heat, compound the situation by further removing humidity from the air. In such cases, some sort of system to compensate for low humidity may be necessary during the winter months. Plants outdoors are exposed to air currents of all sorts, and many seem to need a certain amount of air movement indoors.

Air circulation helps ventilate waste gases, remove excess heat, and prevent diseases that can develop in closed spaces. There is often adequate air circulation near large windows because of temperature differences between day and night, but elsewhere, especially under plant lights, it is wise to run a small fan to keep the air in constant movement. Just having it in the same room will provide the circulation needed. The best-known method of increasing air humidity is spraying houseplants with warm water.

Unfortunately, this is not terribly efficient, since the humidity provided dissipates rapidly. To efficiently raise humidity by spraying, repeat the process several times a day.

A room humidifier will do wonders in increasing air humidity. Just make sure to fill it up regularly. Some modern homes have built-in humidifiers that can be adjusted to the desired level. It is easy to build a plant humidifier of your own.

Simply fill a waterproof tray with stones, gravel, or perlite and pour water over them so that the bottom ones rest in water while the upper ones are dry. Set the plants on one of these pebble trays. They will benefit from the added humidity given off as the water evaporates. By keeping the tray constantly half-filled with water, a nicely humid microclimate will be created.

For house plants with moderate humidity needs, grouping them together during the heating season is a simple solution. Each plant gives off humidity through transpiration. Clusters of plants will create very good humidity in the surrounding air.

Delicate, thin-leaved house plants require a humidity level of over 70 percent, a level that is hard to achieve in a large room. If this level is impossible to maintain, a terrarium, easily made from an old aquarium, can be the best solution. Fitted with a glass lid, it creates a microclimate in which humidity levels rise to almost percent. Just open it slightly for ventilation if water droplets form. Almost all house plants come from tropical and subtropical climates with temperatures very much like those in our homes.

Generally speaking, indoor temperatures that you find acceptable will also be just fine for healthy growth of your house plants.

How to Increase Humidity for Indoor Plants

Many people choose to bring their houseplants outside during the summer to bask in the sunshine and humidity… but, how do you bring plants back indoors without the bugs!? Summer is a wonderful time for growing plants. Two things that will help you avoid major problems with your plants later on are knowing when to bring houseplants inside, and also how to bring plants indoors without bugs. When to Bring Plants Inside One of the most common questions is when should I bring my plants inside for the winter? Plan to start bringing your houseplants back inside several weeks before cooler weather hits in the fall. If indoor plants are left outside for too long, cold weather could trigger them to drop their leaves.

Fungal problems are some of the most persistent issues facing gardeners. Even indoors, a variety of fungal organisms can affect your plants.

A Guide To Watering Indoor Plants

Plant pests are a pain in the you-know-what. Plants thrive best when you can closely recreate their natural living environment in your home. Unfortunately for tropical plants, it can be challenging to maintain their ideal environment, especially over winter when indoor air tends to be so dry. Spider mites are among the most common pests that show up when the air is too dry around your plants. You can identify and prevent these pests on your indoor plants with these tips. Spider mites are teeny tiny little critters related to spiders that love a hot and dry environment. They have an average lifespan of 30 days, and females can produce up to eggs in that time.

7 Indoor Plants that Repel Insects

Some houseplant owners go years simply watering and fertilizing, without ever having to deal with pests. And then, they bring home one new plant, and suddenly find themselves with a huge infestation of spider mites or scales. Use the links below to skip through the article and learn how to get rid of bugs in houseplants. Aphids are tiny green, yellow, or white bugs that suck on the stems and leaves of your plants and slowly kill them. Luckily, aphids are soft-bodied and can be killed easily.

We all want to be the best plant parents we can be, but it can be a daunting task taking care of multiple precious plant babies.

Know best indoor plants to buy, how to keep them healthy

My home, particularly in winter, is extra, extra dry. I have an old Modine Hawt Dog heater, nicknamed "The Monster" , that you'd typically find in a garage; when it turns on periodically, it successfully warms up—but also dries out the whole house. The lack of humidity in your home is also the reason why your skin may be dry as well, so just think how our plant friends feel! If a plant is faced with dry heat and low humidity, then moisture will be wicked more easily from the plant's leaves and you may notice leaf edges starting to turn crisp and brown. This means the plant will likely need more watering and a more humid environment.

Spotting & Solving Spider Mite Problems

If your houseplants have spent the summer outdoors, now is the time to end their vacation and move them back inside. Bringing tender tropical and subtropical houseplants back indoors once outside nighttime temperatures dip below 50 degrees Fahrenheit protects them from chilling injury and death, and allows you to enjoy them throughout the fall and winter months. Maintaining healthy plants indoors requires that you provide them with ideal growing conditions. Prior to transitioning your houseplants, ensure that they will receive adequate light by cleaning nearby windows. If conditions are too dim, invest in full-spectrum bulbs, which come in various sizes and can be used in standard light fixtures. Also stock up on the tools and supplies you'll need during the winter months, such as pruners, containers, potting soil, stakes and ties, a watering can and fertilizer. Before you transition your houseplants indoors, inspect them for signs of pests.

Many homes are drier than that – and while most houseplants can handle it, adding some moisture can help them thrive. Leaf curling, yellowing, and leaves with.

If Kitty is having a party with your plants -- a dinner party, that is -- you might be tempted to take some drastic measures. Spraying your plants with something Kitty hates would make the leaves unattractive to him and would ensure that you still had a garden at the end of the day. Vinegar is a great cat deterrent. Unfortunately, it's also a great plant killer, so effective that it can kill weeds.

Problems with spider mites? Give your plants a bath with insecticidal soap! Made from a simple soap solution, insecticidal soap is a greener, more eco-friendly approach to insect problems in the garden and on houseplants. You can buy insecticidal soap in a ready-to-use spray or make your own using this simple recipe. Insecticidal soaps work by disrupting the cell membranes and dissolving the natural waxy coatings found on soft-bodied insects including:.

By: Larry Hodgson. House plants are a nice addition to the home.

While having the correct light levels and watering properly are two of the most important steps in growing healthy indoor plants, houseplant growers also have to constantly monitor their plants for signs of pests. There are many types of houseplant bugs, and arming yourself with a little information goes a long way toward preventing or eliminating an infestation. Certain houseplants are definitely more prone to pest issues than others, but houseplant bug problems are often prevented by following a few simple steps. Carefully inspect new houseplants for pests before you bring them home from the garden center. Before putting any new houseplants with ones you already have, put it in solitary confinement in a separate room for a few weeks.

Indoor plants often benefit from humidity levels higher than our homes naturally provide. This can be a particular problem in winter when we have the heating on and the windows shut. This article will show you some great ways to increase humidity for indoor plants to create a more pleasant environment for them and for you. How to increase humidity for indoor plants: Increase humidity for your houseplants by grouping your plants together, misting them, using a humidifier or using a humidity tray.


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