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How to take care of indoor plants

Flex your green fingers in the comfort of your own home with our guide on how to care for indoor plants.


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Key steps

  1. Do your research and choose the right plants for your home.

  2. Check how often each type of indoor plant needs watering and whether it needs lots of sun or a shadier spot.

  3. Check your plants daily for signs they need watering and to rotate them.

  4. Check your plants weekly for signs of decay or infestation. Treat immediately.

  5. Repot and prune your plants only as necessary.

Ever wondered which plants can be cultivated indoors or are most suitable for your local climate? Growing plants indoors is a great way to create a welcoming space but knowing how to take care of indoor plants has its secrets.

From ensuring a proper drainage system to providing consistent watering and adequate sunlight, this article will reveal a list of top tips to help you learn how to grow plants at home.

Take care not to overwater your low maintenance indoor plants as this can do more harm than good. Most will only require watering around once a week.

The dos and don'ts of how to grow plants indoors

Here are a few golden rules when it comes to caring for your indoor plants.

The DOs of growing plants indoors

  • DO choose plants most suited to your home. The environment in your home will be different to that of other homes so check which plants grow well in your area and consider how much light different rooms get and what your home temperature is.

  • DO label each plant. This will help you remember how to look after them.

  • DO give them plenty of light. Even low maintenance indoor plants need to bask in the sun’s rays – just not always directly. Check if your plants need a window seat or a sunny spot that’s not directly in the spotlight and place them accordingly.

  • DO keep them well fed. Watering indoor plants is vital to their survival. If you'll be away from home for a while then ask a neighbour to water them or use a drip feeder to water them slowly over time so that they don’t wilt without your company.

  • DO monitor the temperature of your home. Avoid keeping plants anywhere too hot (unless that's what they like!) or too cold. Aim for a nice, happy middle ground.

The DON'Ts of growing plants indoors

  • DON’T overwater indoor plants. It is a common cause of plant death. Check the details of each plant type for recommendations of how much, and often, to water.

  • DON’T water them with anything other than plain water. At least not if you don’t want to attract flies and bugs to your green plants!

  • DON’T repot them unnecessarily or too frequently. This can cause damage and affect your indoor plant’s growth.

  • DON’T over-prune. Moderation is the key and while you may need to prune (trim) your indoor plants to keep them growing, you don’t want to go too mad. Over-pruning may do more harm than good and actually stunt their growth rather than assist it.

  • DON’T try to grow outdoor plants indoors. They are unlikely to survive so stick with indoor plants you know can thrive inside.

Indoor plant care: Checklists and FAQs

Now that you know the basic dos and don’ts, let’s cover a few common FAQs to help you cultivate a green home easily.

How often should I water indoor plants?

This depends on the plant type. Some need watering every day while others can survive with just a small amount of water once a week. Research or ask for guidance when buying plants.

What plants are best to grow indoors?

There are lots of different plants that can be grown indoors and the best ones for you will likely be based on your personal preferences. Some of our favourites include:

  • Bamboo palm: These require minimal maintenance and only a small amount of sunlight.

  • Money plant: These only needs fertilising every couple of weeks through spring, summer and autumn, and dead-heading once a year.

  • Snake plant: These are ideal for homes with low light.

How to take care of indoor plants: the ultimate checklist

Ready to start caring for your indoor plants? Follow this daily and weekly checklist to stay on top of your plant care routine.

Daily checklist

  • Check if they need watering. Look for dry, cracked soil or wilting leaves.

  • Rotate them. This will help all leaves get the chance to bask in some light and help keep the stem

  • Dust the leaves. Your plants need to respire and photosynthesise, as well as look good in your home so keep those leaves clean!

Weekly checklist

  • Repel bugs. Plants, like any living thing, are susceptible to bugs and disease. Look for signs of infestation, particularly around the leaves and stem, and treat them immediately.

  • Check for yellow signs. Yellowing leaves or signs of decay are indications your plant isn’t happy. If you spot these, try changing your plant maintenance regime or its position in your home – it may need a brighter (or shadier) spot.

  • Check if it needs repotting. When a plant outgrows its container it’s time to upgrade! Roots are generally the same size as leaves, so keep an eye out for when the leaves stretch over the side of the pot. This is the time to repot.

With our top tips for how to care for indoor plants you now know everything, you need to ensure you can start growing plants indoors with ease.

Originally published