29 Secrets Your Houseplants Would Tell You If They Could
Now you can best tend to your houseplants’ needs.
Make flower pots hold water longer
If your potted houseplants dry out too quickly after watering, try this simple trick for keeping the soil moist longer. When repotting, tuck a damp sponge into the bottom of the pot before filling it with soil. It will act as a water reservoir and may help prevent a gusher if you accidentally over water.
Shampoo your houseplants by hand
Houseplants get dusty, but they need to breathe. Make a soapy solution by adding a few drops of dishwashing liquid to a pot of water, dunk in a cloth and wring it out, and then wipe those dusty leaves clean. Growing plants is good for you, too. Don’t miss the 10 surprising health benefits of gardening.
Make sure to trim
Regularly remove all faded flowers, dried leaves, and bare stems. When you cut brown tips, leave a small brown border. Cutting into live tissue will cause more drying and dieback.
Give your plants a mineral bath
Don’t throw out leftover club soda: use it to water your indoor plants. The minerals in the soda water help green plants grow. For maximum benefit, give your plants a drink of club soda once a week.
Use ice cubes to water
Place them around the soil, but not touching the stem. The ice will melt slowly, releasing water gradually and evenly into the soil. Don’t miss these 10 expert gardening tips for beginners.
Lure fungus gnat larvae with potatoes
When you water your houseplants, do tiny gnats fly into the air? They are fungus gnats, which will be less of a problem if you let the soil dry between waterings. Meanwhile, you can use a potato to trap their larvae, which are tiny worms that often injure plant roots. Push slices of raw potato around the base of the plant, leave them for two days, and then start over with fresh bait.
Brighten up houseplants
Don’t use wax or leaf shine products, they can clog the pores and make houseplants look fake. Wipe down each leaf with a soft cloth dipped in half-and-half mixture of warm water and milk. You’ll get enough shine, but there won’t be enough residue left behind to clog the leaf pores. Or if you prefer, you can use the trick that professional florists use to keep leaves shiny and clean. Just rub a tiny amount of mayonnaise on the leaves with a paper towel and they will stay bright and shiny for weeks and even months at a time. These are more secrets florists won’t tell you.
Start buds early in a dark bag
Want that Christmas poinsettia to look gorgeous by the time the holidays arrive? Speed up mother nature by placing the poinsettia in a large, dark garbage bag for several weeks to wake up the plant’s buds. Find out how to take care of poisonous plants.