General Plant Care Instructions
Most indoor plants require bright indirect light, most cannot cope with full sun even for a part of the day. That being said, most also don’t like being put in a really dark corner.
Water sparingly! A moisture meter is your best friend, or in a pinch a finger poked in the soil works too. Most indoor plants like to dry out between watering and pests like gnats thrive in constantly moist soil. Constantly wet soil can also promote root rot.
You can feed your plants every few weeks (more in summer, less in winter) and can be a liquid or granular feed – but don’t feed much as indoor plants tend not to be as fast growing as a tomato plant for example. Another option to not forgetting to fertilise is to use a weak solution of liquid fertiliser every time you water. We recommend Growth Technology products for fertilising.
We use a well draining mix in the nursery – approximately thirds of orchid bark, perlite and premium potting mix. It is available for sale if you would like to make life easier and use what we use. If you would prefer to go soil-less, most plants could be grown in LECA or other methods.
Fungus gnats – what worked for us was mixing apple cider vinegar with a few drops of detergent in a little dish or container and putting near groups of plants (not in the soil or on leaves, etc). Also, when we water its a drenching of the soil when the soil is dry, not a little trickle of water every few days. Fungus gnats thrive in damp soil so letting it dry out between watering helps.
Aphids – little green bugs usually grouped on a tender new part of a plant. Pyrethrum spray or rose spray helps, just be careful of the Long Life Pyrethrum spray that’s around, we have had tender leaves burnt from it.
Scale – Little brown bumps usually on the underside of the leaf or on a stem. Pyrethrum or scale spray will help.
Brown patches appearing on leaves – This could be sunburn or cold burn depending on the conditions the plant has been in recently. A reaction to cold could also be a yellow mottling of leaves.
Spider Mites – the bane of our lives!!! Anyway, signs of these little things are pinpricks of yellowing on the top of the leaf and the plant going downhill in health. You may see teensy tiny mites on the underside of the leaf or a very fine webbing not unlike a spiderweb. Treating these is a case of getting in early if you can. Wipe down with soapy water and treat with neem oil (according to manufacturing instructions) as the adult mites may die but more eggs will hatch. Predatory mites are also a great idea as they are a natural way to maintain. There are also miticides in varying strengths but bare in mind spider mites have gotten resistant to some over time so alternate the active compounds if you can.
Mealy Bugs – Looking like tiny white fluff and normally hiding in crevices or undersides of leaves, these are similar to aphids in that they suck out juices from the plant and cause it harm. There are a few ways to get rid of them, isopropyl alcohol on a cotton swab and dabbing them, spraying with a pesticide or encouraging beneficial bugs.
If in doubt for caring for your indoor plants, we can help with more specific instructions for individual plants by getting in touch with us through the Contact tab below.