Houseplant Care 101

This article is sponsored by Earl May Garden Center

houseplant careHouseplants have many benefits and can be very rewarding. They are known to relieve stress, improve air quality, create a more inviting atmosphere to your home and even provide a learning opportunity for the kiddos! Here are some important things to consider when searching for your next houseplant.


All plants require light, especially during their growing season, which generally lasts from spring through fall. ZZ Plants, Dracaena, and Snake Plants tolerate a low level of light, while others, including Cacti, Croton, Schefflera, and other tropical plants require bright light.

Light from a window is one-sided, and plants respond by turning their leaves toward the light. To keep houseplants healthy, turn the plants occasionally to avoid lopsided growth.


houseplant careThe second requirement to keep houseplants healthy is moisture. A general rule of thumb is to water when the top 1-2 inches of soil is dry. However, each plant is a little different. Succulents, Cacti, Snake Plants, and ZZ Plants are known to thrive on little water, so wait a few weeks before watering again. Ferns and certain types of Philodendron enjoy consistently moist soil, so it’s best to give them a drink every week.


The air in which plants grow must contain enough moisture or they might dry up. Inside air is drier than outdoor air, especially in winter. Keep your houseplants away from any vents or drafty areas, as it may cause them to dry more quickly. Favorable humidity levels can houseplant carebe obtained by resting pots on shallow saucers or plans filled with moist, coarse gravel or pebbles. Do not leave your plant pots sitting in standing water.

Soil Drainage

When potting plants, choose a pot with a drainage hole. If your favorite pot doesn’t have one, don’t worry! You can put your houseplant in a nursery pot and simply place it inside your favorite decorative pot. Place broken flowerpot pieces, coarse gravel, pebbles, or Earl May’s Better than Rocks container filler in the bottom. That way excess water can pass freely out of the pot, which is important for plants that don’t enjoy moist or damp soil.


Most houseplants appreciate an even temperature, generally ranging from 55-75 degrees. However, there are a few exceptions. Tropical houseplants can die when the temperature dips too low, especially at night.

houseplant careOther Tips

  • Fertilize during the growing season, but not during the winter months.
  • Houseplant propagation can be a fun family activity. Watching roots grow in water and then potting the plant can be a fascinating project for kids. It also gives them more responsibility and interest for caring for that plant in the future.
  • Most importantly, have fun!

Whether it’s your first houseplant or you’re thinking about adding more, houseplants are a fun way to bring energy and greenery into your home, especially during the cold winter months. With so many varieties available, you’re sure to find one you love. As always, don’t hesitate to contact your local Earl May Garden Center with any questions.

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This article is part of series of sponsored posts by Earl May Garden Center

Late Fall Lawn & Landscape Tips

Lawn and Planting Tips for the Fall

Have more questions about fall lawn care and landscaping? Visit the experts at Earl May for more great tips and advice.



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