A Beginner’s Guide to Caring for Indoor Plants

Indoor plants can really brighten up and add beauty to your living space. However, a lot of people shy away from house plants because they feel they don't know how to look after them or have had plants die in the past. But caring for indoor greenery doesn't have to be hard work, as there are plenty of low-maintenance plants out there to make your life easier. If you're tempted to give creating a house jungle a go, read on for our beginner's guide to caring for indoor plants.

Choosing the right plants

Picking the best plants for your home is about more than just deciding which ones you like the look of. It’s a good idea to take the time to choose your greenery carefully, as this can save you wasted money and disappointment later on. Most indoor plants will want somewhere nice and bright to help them grow. But if your home has low levels of light or you’re starting out in winter, there are plenty of plants that can do well in shadier spots.

The heart-leaf philodendron and the cast iron plant are two good examples of indoor greenery that don‘t need much light. Another is Zamioculcas zamiifolia, better known as the ZZ plant – no, it doesn’t have a beard or cheap sunglasses, but it is incredibly easy to look after. And talking of low-maintenance plants that are ideal for beginners, regardless of your home’s light levels, why not check out spider plants, peace lilies or succulents?

Indoor plants

Location, location, location

It’s important to consider which rooms you want to put your plants in. If you have a room that gets very cold, it’s unlikely to be a good environment for growing things. Humidity is another consideration: a lot of house plants thrive in humid conditions, and will do well in bathrooms or kitchens. If you’re thinking of placing any moisture-loving plants elsewhere, a regular misting of their leaves with water from a spray bottle will keep them happy and healthy.

Are the leaves on your house plants looking a little bit limp or yellow? It’s often worth moving them somewhere with different light or humidity levels and seeing how they fare in their new home.

watering indoor plants

Looking after your plants

Your plants need water to grow, so regular watering is a must, and adding some plant food every fortnight is also a good idea. But it’s also important not to over-water, as this can be harmful to your plants – you might want to try watering in steps and letting it soak into the soil before adding more. Some house plants, like cacti or aloe vera, don’t need much watering at all, making them ideal for novices.

All living plants will eventually outgrow their pots and need repotting to keep them healthy. Telltale signs to look out for include the plant rising out of its container or the roots showing through the drainage holes at the bottom. Repotting is as simple as adding a layer fresh of compost to a slightly larger pot, transferring the plant over and filling any gaps with more potting mix before watering.

Feeling inspired to bring a little of the outdoors into your home? If you’re ready to start your own indoor garden, why not check out the wide range of plant listings on Gumtree?