The days are getting longer and glimpses of warmer weather are starting to appear through the clouds. This means that your houseplants are beginning to wake from their cosy winter slumber by pushing out new shoots, leaves or blooms, making this the ideal time for you to give them a little boost with some basic Spring Indoor Plant Care.
Each of your houseplant will have their own special needs come Springtime, but there are 4 Top Tips that you can follow to assist them during this phase of new beginnings and growth.
1. UPSIZE OR RE-POT YOUR HOUSEPLANT
Spring is the time that your indoor plants start getting back into the swing of things by producing new growth for the first time in a while. This is the perfect time to consider giving them a little leg room to stretch out and grow into. This will also give your plant a much needed nutrient boost.
It is best to assess first if your plant needs upsizing (graduating the plant into a larger pot) or re-potting (re-potting is when you keep the plant in the original size pot but refresh the soil and cut back any dead roots). Keep in mind that many houseplants prefer being slightly root-bound, such as the beloved Fiddle Leaf Fig.
If you have found that your plant is extremely rootbound or has an abundance of roots growing out of the drainage holes, it may be best to upsize the pot, a general rule however is not to repot larger than a 5cm difference between the new and original pot sizes. For expert tips on repotting, check out our Repotting Blog Post here.
2. SPRING CLEAN YOUR LEAVES
Plants can get pretty dusty during winter what with all the heater, closed windows vibes. Give them a little extra attention by washing and wiping down the leaves will do wonders for your plant babies. Not only does cleaning the leaves make your plant look extra healthy but it actually helps them be healthier.
Dust clogs the little stomata (or breathing pores) and reduces the light contact on the leaf surface, both of which impede the plants’ energy production engine.
- Use a soft cloth and some lukewarm water with a drop or two of lemon juice to wipe down the leaves. The lemon juice dissolves any grime which may have collected.
- If you have a shower, pop your plants inside and give the leaves a gentle rinse off. Do this with luke warm water - not too cold and not too hot to prevent water burn.
It is important to note that not all plants like their leaves to be wet (this can cause marks), so be sure to wipe down your foliage of any excess water after the shower. This is also a great time to assess and prune any dead or leggy growth.
3. BATHTIME! GIVE YOUR PLANTS A SOAK
Winter is the time where less is more when it comes to watering as many houseplants like to be kept dry or at least be watered very sparingly. As the temperatures rise, so does the plants thirst for water, and a more regular watering routine is necessary again.
Choose a nice warm sunny day and give all your houseplants and 15 - 20 minute soak in room temperature water, to allow the soil to soak up as much as it can. Allow them to drain well afterwards, for at least 30 minutes, and return all your plants to their respective places.
This hydration will give your plants extra support and help develop young, strong healthy growth. This is also the ideal time to relocate and rearrange your plants as the light changes to find them their optimal growing position for the summer months.
4. FEED YOUR HOUSEPLANTS
As the plants exit their dormancy, they will require nutrients to support them through their active growing season ahead.
Start off slow and remember to never apply fertiliser to dry soil. While you give your plants a good soak, add a ¼ to ½ strength liquid Organic Fertiliser to the water. This will help replenish any nutrients that may have been washed out during winter and give your plants the much needed extra energy to put out beautiful lush growth.
As the weather gets warmer, increase your feeding regime. You can add dilute fertiliser every time that you water, or a stronger concentration every second time that you water. You may also consider foliar feed, which is absorbed through the leaves or a slow release granular fertiliser if you prefer not to think about fertilising.
Overall, make sure to get the fertilising strengths right. Too much fertiliser that isn't absorbed can burn the roots and weaken the plant.
Giving your plants that little extra attention with these four simple tips, during this perfect time of year will set you and your plants up for a successful and flourishing growing season.
This is also the perfect time to assess and re-adjust your plants making sure they get their optimal growing conditions, as they say “change is as good as a holiday” and this kind of change can lead to a new fresh and lush looking urban jungle.