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How to Take Care of Indoor Plants

How to Take Care of Indoor Plants

Are you one of those who love indoor plants but aren’t sure how to maintain them?

Many people would like to grow plants indoors, but a lack of care instructions keeps them from achieving their goals!

Care for indoor plants is indeed a bit different than for outdoor plants. Outdoor plants are mostly taken care of by nature. But indoor plants require a bit more attention and care.

In addition, if you are a new parent of an indoor plant, you may initially find the amount of care required overwhelming.

Regardless, this article will confidently provide the information you need to care for your indoor plants.

Indoor Plants Care


  • Always keep the soil moist. Whether the soil is too dry or overwatered, both obstruct your plant’s growth.
  • In some cases, underwatering or overwatering also hampers the plant’s growth. For instance, a plant with lush and thick leaves needs longer drinks than plants with waxy or leathery leaves.
  • An easy way to spot the sign of overwatering is mold formation on the soil’s surface. Another sign is standing water at the bottom of the container.
  • Standing water kills the indoor plant. So, whenever you see standing water in or under the container, please immediately pour it out.
  • Also, give water to your indoor plant when you notice soil turning into lighter color or seems cracked.

How to check the watering requirements of the indoor plant?

Insert your finger in the container to check below the surface. If the soil is moist, then it is fine. But if it feels dry, give some water to your plant. Moreover, watering requirements differ from plant to plant.

However, you can check the following signs to understand the water requirement of your plant.

DehydratedSlow leaf growth, curled yellow leaves, brown leaf edges, and dried leaves.
Overhydrated Soft rotten patches, slow leaf growth, loss of leaves, and Discoloured leaves.Soft rotten patches, slow leaf growth, loss of leaves, and Discoloured leaves.

What is the best water temperature for the plant?

Firstly, do not use too cold or hot water for your plant.

Water that is too hot causes root damage, and too cold water cause dormancy in your plant. Both can hamper the plant’s growth and may kill your indoor plant.

And the best water temperature for plants is 68℉ or 20℉. Water at room temperature is highly suitable for the plants.

Should you Spritz or not on your plant?

Every plant grower loves to spritz their plant. But not all plants love or even like spritzed regularly. 

For some plants, you should avoid spritzings, such as monsteras, peace lilies, or any plant with a waxy leaf. There is no water going through waxy leaves; it is a disservice to them as you are making it easier for fungi to penetrate that waxy layer and attack the plant.

However, few plants enjoy watering, such as air plants, orchids, and ferns; you can spritz these plants.

How to water a succulent indoor plant?

For succulents, feel the soil and ensure it is bone dry when you water them. If your succulent plant is in a bright sunny window, that will dry it out quickly. Especially the smaller succulents, they dry out super-fast. So, provide watering as soon as it hits dry.

Also, be aware of the seasonal changes. The succulent plant may require watering every few days on hot days. 

Plants watering demands

Plants requiring more wateringPlants requiring less watering
Flowering plantsPlants potted in clay potsPlants were grown in small containersActively growing plantsPlants placed in direct sunlightLarge-leaved or thin-leaved plantsPlants that are native to wet areas.Dormant plantsRecently repotted plantPlants were grown in high humidityThe plant located in a cool roomPlants potted in a non-porous potPlants with thick or rubbery leavesPlants that are grown in a water-retentive mix

Tip: If you have a busy schedule and cannot keep up with a regular watering schedule, then there are several self-watering devices available, and you can use them.

  • A moisture wick can draw water from a dish of water into the root ball.
  • Capillary mats and moisture tents keep your plants watered.
  • Moreover, you can make your self-watering plant pot out of a 2-liter pop bottle.

Steps to Create a Self-watering plant pot out of a 2-liter pop bottle

Are you one of those who loves the plants but tend to forget to water them due to your busy schedule, and by the time when you remember and rush over to get your water bottle, your plants have croaked and moved on to the next plane of existence?

Does this happen to you?

If yes, then you are surely going to get benefited from this section. With that said, let’s begin.

Step 1: Tools and materials

First thing first, get ready with the following list

Utility or xacto knife
Medium or Fine Sand Paper.
Sharpie (to mark the fill line, so a glance is all it needs.)
Scrubbing pad for removing the last traces of paper
2-liter bottle. Clear is preferable.
rag from a cotton t-shirt. (8″ x 8″)
Spray paint
Potting mix

Step 2: Cut the 2-liter bottle in half and sand them

As there are several ways to cut a 2 liter in half, whatever works for you is best. Just keep the cut 5.25 inches from the bottom.

Use a tool to cut down 2×4 with a utility knife to make the mark and cut.

Once you have cut the 2-liter in half, sand the new edges of both halves, they can be sharp and jaggy.

You can use a foam sanding sponge for this.  But do not forget to do the inside rim to remove any burrs.

After sanding both halves’ edges, do a general sanding all around the outside.

On the upper half, this roughens up the surface, so the paint has a better hold.

For the lower half, this gives the plastic a “frosted” look. However, this is your call. Whatever works best for you, you can do it.

Once the pieces have been sanded up to your mark, wash them off with soap and water. This will remove the plastic dust and any residue from what came in the bottle. Next, allow them to dry out.

Step 3: Paint the top

After clearing the top and bottom is time to break out the spray paint.

Tip: Dark color for the planting container is recommended as they stop light from damaging the roots.

Firstly, apply one coat of black primer. (Choose your preferred color). Once it gets dry, do two thin coats to your topcoat.

Of course, this is the most time-consuming step as you must wait for the paint to dry. However, thanks to our ongoing sunny and hot climate.

Step 4: Add wick, potting mix, and plant

It’s time to put it all together after the final coat of paint has dried.

Note: The upper piece of the bottle is the planting container, and the lower piece is the water reservoir.

Use a scrap of the cotton t-shirt as a wick, about 8×8 inches. Anything close to that size will also do. Now, take one end of the wick and push it on the neck of the top piece. Wet it down to see the wicking action. In such a way, that half part is sticking out of the bottom, and the other half is inside.

Next, add the potting mix. Put one scoop in the bottom of the planting container. Also, pull the wick up to surround it with the potting mix. Tap that down and put some water to make the potting mix moist.

After that, put in the plant and add some potting mix to fill the sides. Again, tap it down and water to make it moist. At this point, it is similar to re-potting.

Once you’ve completed that step, look at the neck at the bottom of the planting container. The line should be filled about halfway up the neck, where the water only touches the wick and not the potting mix.

Make a mark with a sharpie on the fill line, lift the planting container and fill the reservoir with water to the mark.

That’s it! You’re done!

The nice thing about this method is that it gives the plant roots a constant level of moisture, it’s not flooded and dry like normal watering. 

Every few days, check the fill line to see where you are. Mostly it needs a refill on hot sunny days.

This is a nice and quick way to make a planter that will give your indoor plants a fighting chance with a forgetful waterer.


  • Choose the place for your indoor plant where it can get enough sunlight.
  • As sunlight is vital for plants to prepare food through the process of photosynthesis. In addition, the quality, time, and intensity of sunlight affect the growth of plants.
  • Also, remember not to place your indoor plant under direct sunlight. Keep your plant in a well-lit room that receives enough light.
  • Also, it is not advisable to move your plant around a lot.
  • Never move your indoor plant to an entirely different temperature zone (darker to the lighter area).
  • However, if you want to move your plant, slowly try to adapt them to a new place by taking them to a new spot for an hour a day in the beginning. And keep on increasing the time till they adapt fully.

How much sunlight does the indoor plant needs?

Similar to different watering needs, plants also differ in sunlight needs. For indoor flowering plants, provide them with 12-16 hours of sunlight per day. And for foliage, plants offer 14-16 hours of light.

Tip: If you cannot provide sufficient sunlight to your indoor plant, use fluorescent light.

Where to place an indoor plant?

If you don’t know where to place your indoor plant, put it in the window. Because there is no “low light” plant, light is the food for your plant.

They eat the sunlight. So, to do well, plants need as much sunlight as possible. (Placing your plant under low light is like putting your precious plant on a diet).

Moreover, if you are growing plants like succulents, cacti, or begonias as an indoor plant. Provide them a bit of direct sun indoors. The sunniest window will be an ideal place for them.


  • Plants enjoy humidity. So, you can get a room humidifier from the store with a cool mist and place it close enough to your plant to provide moisture in the air. If you have tropical indoor plants, it is necessary to avoid dry air, as it can harm your plants. Also, make sure it does not wet flowers or foliage.
  • For a cheaper way, fill a tray with pebbles. And put water just up and below the top of that pebbles. The evaporating water will promote humidity in the room.
  • Additionally, you can use a spray bottle with distilled water and drizzle it over the plants to provide extra moisture.
  • Check for signs like Wilting browned leaves and flower buds, indicating that your plant is suffering from low humidity.
  • Another way to increase humidity is to keep your plants close.


Indoor plants get all the nutrients from potting soil and fertilizer. Most of the indoor plants survive in balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer. Therefore, while repotting your plant add new nutrients to the soil. Otherwise, your plant will die over time.

  • Usually, every fertilizer contains three major nutrients: Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium. You can remember them as NPK.
  • A flowering plant needs high Potassium.
  • Whereas a foliage plant needs fertilizer or potting soil rich in Nitrogen.
  • Cacti or succulent plants can survive in a harsh, desert-like environment. However, they require a special potting mix specially designed to drain water efficiently. 
  • You can also have a container with plenty of holes on the bottom. These will prevent plants from holding too much moisture in the soil, killing your indoor plant.

Fertilizer types

Natural fertilizers are less likely to burn or harm indoor plants than synthetic fertilizers. However, it is crucial to apply the correct amount of fertilizer. Choose an organic fertilizer specific to your indoor plant and read the instructions carefully.

 In general, plants grown in low light do not require as much fertilizer as plants grown outside or in bright light.

To begin, apply about one-fourth of the fertilizer recommended on the label once a month. As soon as the overall color of the plant becomes lighter, increase fertilizer applications to every two weeks. 

Fertilize less often when the new growth is dark green, but the leaves are small, and the space between the leaves seems longer than on the older growth.

Tip: A layer of salt deposits can form on the soil’s surface due to the accumulation of soluble salts from synthetic fertilizers. To prevent toxic salt build-up, remove this layer and water the soil generously every 4-6 weeks. The plant is more susceptible to disease and insects when excessive salts damage roots.

What is the best kind of fertilizer for indoor plants?

Visit a garden center near you and look for a fertilizer with an “indoor plant” on the label. Also, an indoor plant needs less fertilizer than outside plants. Therefore, use the rate specified for indoor plants.

If you are looking for fertilizer for flowering plants, get a fertilizer labeled with the type of plant. For example, orchids. But it is unclear which one you should get; it is fine to use fertilizer for an indoor plant.


  • Certain plants require root pruning at regular intervals. Therefore, it is necessary to know about your plant and its requirements.
  • If you do not prune your indoor plant, it will outgrow the pot or vase. So, by pruning your plant regularly, you will keep them healthy and prevent replanting.
  • Plants will grow more robustly and fuller if you prune at a 45° angle above a leaf node.
  • Moreover, shave off the dead branches or stems of the plant. They tend to attract insects or bugs.

What to do to get rid of bugs?

It is annoying to see bugs on the plant! If you spot bugs, go to the garden center and get insecticidal soap. Whenever you notice bugs, spray insecticides undersides and on top of the leaves and the plant’s stem. Next, wait for two weeks and repeat the same procedure. Wait two more weeks and spray it again.

If your plant is dealing with a severe infestation of pests and you cannot eradicate it, then it’s better to throw out the plant. But before doing that, try to remove pests using a damp paper towel. Maybe you need to spray three times as soap will not eliminate eggs, which could hatch.

Tip: Do not put tea or coffee into your indoor plant. As this will attract flies that can eat your plant. Moreover, sugar serves as a breeding ground for some insects.

Cut off any dead leaves

One of the advantages of indoor plants is that you can constantly keep an eye on them.

Keeping a close eye on the plant will allow you to catch diseases or distress early before they cause significant damage. Every week, pluck out dead leaves or wilted flowers. 

This will also prevent pests from settling on dead and decaying leaves and reserve your plant nutrition for optimal use by growing leaves. Additionally, it will give your indoor plant a good aesthetic look.


  • If your indoor plants are thriving and growing the way you want, eventually, they will need a bigger pot and some fresh potting mix. 
  • Spring is the best time to re-pot your indoor plant as they are just starting to grow. As the roots grow rapidly, the plant can quickly adjust to its new container.
  • To re-pot, choose a soilless organic medium specifically designed for indoor plants. A variety of options are available, or you can make your own.
  • Choose a pot slightly bigger than your current pot, but not huge. A pot that is too big will rot the root and be susceptible to other problems. Because the soil will remain wet for days or even weeks before your plant can use it.
  • While repotting, be careful with the roots to avoid damaging them. Ensure that the soil around the root ball is not compacted. Lastly, leave enough space at the top of the new pot for water and water it thoroughly.


That’s all! Follow these care guides for your indoor plant and enjoy your sanctuary inside your home for a long time.

Planting an indoor plant is a wise choice; it is soothing to the eyes, a great home decor, and spreads a sense of peace and calmness in your home. Additionally, they are great for every single room in your home.

Also, it is not that difficult to keep your green friends happy. Show them some love and care, and you will have a healthy relationship for years. 

So, which one is your favorite indoor plant, and how do you care for it? Share your indoor plant care tips with us in the comment section.

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