Watering houseplants sounds simple, yet many of us have lost a plant friend to overwatering! Knowing exactly how much water your plant needs can be tricky as there are many variables to consider. However, fear not! We have some simple tips for you and your plant friends so we can help keep your plants happy and healthy.
If you want to have a simple, no-fuss watering routine, this first section is just for you!
Once a week, stick your index finger into the plant pot up to your second knuckle. If the soil is moist, you’re all good! If it's bone dry then it's time to water!
Normally watering once a week in the summer and once every two weeks in the winter is a good routine to keep. However, if you are finding that your plants are completely dried out each time you're going to water them, you might need to start checking more regularly.
If the leaves are turning yellow or that they appear to be wilting even when the soil is moist, then your plant is most likely suffering from overwatering. If this is the case, there is no need to worry! Just make sure to let it dry out before you water again, reduce the amount of water you usually use and see how it improves from there.
These are just the basics, some plants have very specific needs, so it is always best to look up specifics on your new plant friend before you purchase, as some can be quite picky! There are also other variables such as the temperature of your home, how close it is to the window, or your chosen watering method that can affect the watering needs of your plant and how often it has to be done. However, as long as you are regularly checking your plants you shouldn't need to worry. You can check out our post on plant care routines here. Once you have your routine down you can just sit back and watch your plants flourish!
Different Watering Methods
Below are some different watering methods to help you effectively water your plants!
A personal preference of mine is to always use a pot with a drainage hole in the bottom, the main reason being is that I find it a lot easier to make sure that I’m not overwatering due to the excess water being able to drain from the bottom.
With watering, you need to make sure you are soaking it through; just splashing some water until the top of the soil looks wet won't be enough as the roots aren’t sitting around the top of the pot. By picking a pot with a drainage hole, you can thoroughly water the plant without the worry of having it sat in excess water.
If your pot has a drainage hole there are two options;
- Water your plant until the water starts draining out from the bottom of the pot, let it sit on the saucer for about 5 minutes, then pour out excess water.
- Fill the saucer (or any container) with water, let your plant sit in the water for about 10-15 minutes, then pour away any excess water. This is often called ‘Bottom Watering’.
If you have a lot of houseplants, it is not uncommon to let your plants soak in the bathtub. You can let them sit in there to soak, then they can also stay in there to drain once you have emptied the tub.
Unfortunately, a lot of nice indoor pots don't have drainage holes! If you don't have a drainage hole in your pot, it is harder to tell if you are giving your plant too much water.
One way is to water it enough so that when you stick your finger in, it is moist past the second knuckle. Another is to check the weight of the pot while you are watering. If it feels a lot heavier than it did after it had dried out, then there may be a lot of excess water sitting at the bottom of the pot. Keep an eye on your plant week to week, if it's starting to go yellow, or wilt even when the soil is still moist, then there is a chance you are overwatering.
These are just some basics to watering your indoor plants!
If you have your own tips, tricks, or even a question then let us know in the comments.
We are always looking for new info to help us look after our plant friends the best we can!