How to not kill your indoor plants

I asked you guys on Instagram if there was anything you would like me to write a blog post about, and several of you asked me to write about my indoor plants and how not to kill them. As someone who was recently a killer of houseplants herself I am happy to share with you my easy rules for not becoming a plant murderer.

The checklist

  1. Do your research before you buy. Don’t just get what looks pretty. When I started out I googled things like “best plants for beginners” and went from there. YouTube is also a great resource.
  2. If you’re unsure of how to take care of a plant, find out what it’s called and Google it. Google and YouTube knows everything.
  3. If in doubt, it’s better to water too little than to water too much.
  4. If a plant is unhappy it will let you know. Does it look dry and crusty? It’s probably in too much direct sunlight. Does it look yellow and limp? Maybe too little sunlight? Does it look squishy and sad and a bit too moist and moldy? You might’ve given it too much water. Move it to an area with different lighting conditions, adjust your watering a bit, and see if it looks better after a week or so.
  5. Find a watering schedule that works. Me, I check and water all my plants every Saturday. Check being the operative word here – I don’t just water all of them once a week willy nilly. Take an actual look at them and check the soil to see if they need it. Some plants I water more often and some of them I water much less.

 

My personal rules of thumb

  • Is it an orchid? Leave it under running lukewarm water in the sink for 5 minutes once a week, then let it drain for another 5 minutes before putting it back in its pot. Put it in indirect sunlight.
  • Is it a succulent? Give it a tiny bit of water once a week. You should be worried about not watering it enough, that’s when you’re probably doing it right.
  • Is it a cactus? lol, leave it alone for another 2 weeks. You don’t have to be worried until it looks a bit shriveled up.
  • Does it grow long and hangs down, like an ivy? It probably enjoys being moist-ish.
  • Is it a regular plant? Water it once a week and take it from there.

Bonus tip: Don’t buy ALL the plants. Eventually your plants will start having plant babies and congratulations, you now have free plants for life.

Bonus tip 2: If you kill a plant, don’t throw away the plastic flower pot that it sits in. You will need those when your plants start having plant babies.

Bonus tip 3: I take all my plants outside to my sunroom for some extra sunlight on weekends, but that’s just me being extra. Nobody needs to do that.

P.S: If you have pets that like to nibble on things, make sure you don’t get any plants that are poisonous.

 

Plant videos that helped me 

 

Congratulations, you are now well on your way to not killing plants! I currently have 30+ plants that are not yet dead. If I can do it then so can you.

4 thoughts on “How to not kill your indoor plants

  1. Are you sure, though? Are you sure ANYONE can do this? Because I feel like a Disney Villain each time I bring home a new plant, knowing it’s bound to hate me in a few week’s time. They don’t die, usually, but they look shrivelled AND yellow at the same time, and the earth gets weird, both slightly mouldy AND cracked and dry, and I just… and I just kep buying them, because plants are pretty and I’m forever hopeful.

    From your clever blog post I’ve deduced that my problem is twofold: the plants have to live in the boiling hot, direct-sunlighty window sill (because it’s the only possible place in the apartment), and also that I water them too much. #bigsurprise

    I’ll watch those youtube-videos ASAP (thanks for posting them here!), but when I get my own place again I suspect you’ll get a few snaps of plants asking «O Mother of Creation, do you think I can live here?». Ye be warned.

  2. Yay Plants!! May have watched to much Disney (or DC) as a child, but I’ve always wanted a home filled to the brim with greenery: my own Enchanted Forest(TM) with wifi and flushing toilets.

    Of course, I must watch these videos and try to put my legacy as a serial plant-killer behind me. Like much of my life, it appears my main problems stem from #overthinking.

    Here’s hoping your green thumbs are, in fact, contagious.

    1. I also wanted to live in a forest house – I even went as far as hanging half a tree up in my ceiling and covering it in plastic leaves and flowers when I was 13-ish. Good luck with your plants! :)

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