Home & Garden Everything You Need To Know About Watering Houseplants

06:20  12 august  2022
06:20  12 august  2022 Source:   familyhandyman.com

How to Grow Your Own Food: A Beginner’s Guide

  How to Grow Your Own Food: A Beginner’s Guide Everything you need to know about growing your own food at home, whether you have a large backyard or a small balcony The post How to Grow Your Own Food: A Beginner’s Guide appeared first on Reader's Digest.Think of it this way: When you buy fruits and vegetables from the supermarket, you're supporting a production chain that involves transporting produce from one side of the world to the other—and creating greenhouse gas emissions in the process. But just as you can eat sustainable fish and seafood to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle, you can learn how to grow sustainable food too.

For decades I killed almost every houseplant I owned, either by kindness (overwatering) or neglect (no water at all). After all of that wilting, withering and eventually succumbing to the lack of proper hydration, I'm happy to say that I now know how to be a responsible houseplant parent.

I reached out to expert Mary Vargo, an urban horticulture agent and master gardener coordinator with Clemson University Cooperative Extension, to help put together a houseplant watering resource that's simple to use.

Whether you're a new homeowner or have kept houseplants for years, the guide is chock-full of practical information to keep your indoor greenery properly irrigated.

10 Signs You’re Overwatering Your Plants

  10 Signs You’re Overwatering Your Plants Before you water your plants again, check for signs that you may actually be watering them too much.It's easy to overwater plants in containers, so watch for these signs and adjust your watering accordingly.

Basic Rules for Watering Houseplants

We know that H2O is the elixir of life — all living organisms need it to survive. To keep your houseplants at their optimum hydration level, here are a few basic rules that everyone should follow.

Water only when needed

Overwatering is something Vargo recommends you avoid at all costs because it's the number one cause of most houseplant failure. "Underwatering isn't as severe an issue because houseplants can generally bounce back from it," she says.

Not all plants are created equal

Watering requirements depend on the individual type of plant you're caring for. Obviously, cactus and succulents need less watering than, say, pothos.

Some varieties prefer a bottom-up watering approach, while others like to be soaked from the top down (see below). Knowing your particular plant's preference is critical.

Here’s What It Means If You See Powdery Mildew on Your Plants

  Here’s What It Means If You See Powdery Mildew on Your Plants Getting rid of powdery mildew on plants is easier than you may think. The post Here’s What It Means If You See Powdery Mildew on Your Plants appeared first on Reader's Digest."Powdery mildew is actually an umbrella term for a wide range of fungi that cause similar symptoms, such as fuzzy powder on leaves," says Jessie Liebenguth, a horticulturist with Reiman Gardens at Iowa State University. "Because there are multiple fungi that cause powdery mildew, nearly all plants can be affected.

Water temperature

In general, tepid (lukewarm) water is best for most houseplants. Avoid giving them water that's too cold or too warm — extreme temperatures can shock plant tissues and roots.

What Type of Water Is Best for Houseplants?

Unlike outdoor plants, houseplants are confined to pots and subject to the water quality we choose for them. "Most of the time, plain old tap water will do the trick," says Vargo.

Water quality differs, depending on where you live and your municipal water treatment system. Water treatment plants commonly add chlorine and fluoride to city water. Over time, this could affect your houseplants' health.

"A way to ensure no harm comes to your plants," Vargo says, "is to fill a container with water and let it sit out overnight or over a few days, which allows chlorine and other chemicals to escape as a gas." And, she adds, "If feasible and convenient, try collecting rainwater to irrigate houseplants, as it contains traces of beneficial micronutrients."

How to Grow Marigolds

  How to Grow Marigolds Marigold care is easy, since the plants thrive almost anywhere they have sun and well-draining soil. They are often g rown as companions for vegetables because of their reputed ability to repel insect pests and parasitic nematodes. According to the University of Florida, however, “simply planting them alongside another crop has not been shown to reduce nematode populations.”The best marigolds for vegetable gardens are low-growing French types not likely to shade your crops. You may also want to raise the gem variety there, since its marigold sprouts can be consumed as microgreens.

However, you should not use rainwater if you live where precipitation is likely to be contaminated with harmful chemicals.

Note: Distilled water is also okay to use.

What Is the Best Way To Water Houseplants?

There are a number of good ways to deliver water to houseplants.

  • Overhead watering: "Overhead watering is an easy, no-fuss way to deliver water to your plants," Vargo says. Use a watering can or another container with a spout to pour water on the surface of the soil. Stop when it starts to drain through the holes into the bottom of the pot. Frequently, leaves can block the soil, making it harder to water. "In this case, be careful not to splash water on the foliage, which can sometimes cause leaf spots to appear," she says.
  • Bottom watering: For a more thorough wetting of the soil, Vargo suggests placing plants in a deep container, sink, bathtub or saucer of water until the top of the soil becomes moist. Depending on the size of your plant, soaking time will vary. "For smaller plants, this may only take two to three minutes," she says. For larger plants, the time it takes for the soil to wick up and distribute water evenly will be longer. When soaking is complete, remove the potted plant and put it someplace where it can drain before returning it to its spot in your home.

How Often Should You Water Houseplants?

According to Vargo, "The rule of thumb is to water when necessary."

This Chic Watering Can Makes Me a Better Plant Parent

  This Chic Watering Can Makes Me a Better Plant Parent Suddenly watering my herbs is no longer a chore.I used to consider myself a great plant mom for nine months out of the year, from roughly September to May. I call that the “easy season” because it’s when my plants and herbs ask very little of me; they thrive even if it’s been over a week since I watered them. For the other three months of the year, I was a pretty awful plant mom. When the hottest days of summer arrived, I could never seem to keep my plant children hydrated, especially the needy cilantro, mint, and basil in my window box. They’d scream for water almost daily, but daily watering they almost never got.

Use the following methods to determine if it's time to water a plant:

  • Touch the soil: Stick your finger into the mix, up to the first joint. If the soil is dry at the fingertip, it needs water.
  • Tap on the pot: When potting mix in a clay pot begins to dry out, it shrinks away from the sides. Give it a good rap on the side with your knuckles or a stick. If it makes a dull "thud" sound, there's a good chance the soil is still moist. A hollow sound likely means it's time for a drink.
  • Weight loss: When potting mix dries, the potted plant will feel lighter.
  • Eyeball the soil: If the potting soil changes from a darker to lighter color, it means plants are dehydrated.

How Much Water Do Houseplants Need?

Your houseplant watering needs will differ depending on many factors. Here are some tips.

Water more frequently if:

  • The container is made of unglazed clay;
  • A plant is large but the pot is small;
  • A plant has outgrown the pot and the roots are too tightly packed. If that's the case, re-pot;
  • A plant is in an active growth period (usually spring and summer);
  • Humidity is low and/or the temperature high.

Water less if:

  • The container is made of glazed clay or plastic;
  • It's a small plant in a large pot:
  • Roots have not yet filled the pot;
  • The plant has recently been repotted.
  • The plant is inactive (winter/low light);
  • Temperatures are low and/or the humidity high.
  • Your plants are cacti or succulents.

What Are the Signs of Too Much and Too Little Water?

"Oddly enough, overwatering and underwatering symptoms can sometimes look very similar," says Vargo.

How to Grow and Care for Petunias, Which Thrive in Everything from Containers to Garden Beds

  How to Grow and Care for Petunias, Which Thrive in Everything from Containers to Garden Beds Add these showy blossoms to your summer planters or plots for a burst of color.Petunias come in a full spectrum of colors and shapes, making these unfussy blooms a reliable choice for summer containers. And since these blossoms are easy to cultivate and grow quickly, once their seeds germinate, you can expect to see full-size plants in just 12 weeks.

Here are some helpful overwatering signs to look for:

  • Leaves on the lower portion of the plant turn yellow and drop off when touched;
  • Plant looks wilted even after watering, which may indicate root rot;
  • Rough, corky swellings on leaves or petioles (stems).

Tip-offs that you may be underwatering your houseplants:

  • Wilting foliage and soil that's dry to the touch;
  • Brown leaf tips and edges, usually an indication you've gone too long between waterings.

Houseplant Watering Tools

Watering can

  Everything You Need To Know About Watering Houseplants © via merchant

Vargo says to look for a lightweight, slender watering can with a long thin spout. This will make it easier to target water at the base of the plant or onto the surrounding soil surface.

One such can is the Haws Handy Indoor Plastic Watering Can. It's an affordable and lightweight alternative to this British company's classic cooper or powder-coated steel versions. Made of molded plastic, it's well-balanced for gently watering your most delicate houseplants, like orchids and African violets.

When you're hunting for a larger capacity watering can (one gallon), the Fasmov Plastic Watering Can is a popular option.


  Everything You Need To Know About Watering Houseplants © via merchant

Vargo recommends using saucers to catch water that may drip out onto areas you want to protect. Be sure to drain the saucer 15 to 20 minutes after watering to prevent the pot from sitting in excess water too long, which can lead to root rot.


  Everything You Need To Know About Watering Houseplants © via merchant

Misting plants, a great way to boost humidity, is best done in the morning so the soil has plenty of time to dry before nighttime. Tropical plants and ferns especially love this method.

Incredible celebrity landlords who will rent you a house

  Incredible celebrity landlords who will rent you a house We can't see them popping over to fix the plumbing, but just imagine writing out your rent cheque to an A-list celeb. From Kate Winslet's New York penthouse to Demi Lovato's Californian hideaway, you can live the celebrity life in these gorgeous rental homes, even if it's just for a week!

The Offidix Glass Watering Spray Bottle features a thick glass bottle, available in purple, green, blue, yellow or clear. To deliver a fine mist, one Amazon reviewer says, "...the trick is to hold it [the ring] with your middle finger and stabilize the spout over your index finger. It distributes the pressure more evenly."

What indoor plants are safe for cats? .
A quick way to decorate your home and improve air quality is to add houseplants. Before you head to your local greenhouse, though, if you have indoor cats, it’s important to know what indoor plants are safe for cats. Surprisingly, over 350 of seemingly harmless houseplants are actually toxic and poisonous to cats. Some plants […]Surprisingly, over 350 of seemingly harmless houseplants are actually toxic and poisonous to cats. Some plants can cause severe gastrointestinal problems and ingestion. Others may result in death. We’ve listed some common plants to avoid below, but do continue your research and ask your garden specialists for assistance to help you avoid choosing a toxic plant.

usr: 0
This is interesting!