Watering Houseplants

Very few plants thrive in very wet or very dry soil. Each plant has its own requirements, but a good rule of thumb is to keep the soil nicely moist.

Remember, excess watering is by far the number one cause of houseplant failure. In fact, overwatering is the most common problem in growing plants in containers.

Dont take literally the old advice to allow a plant to dry out between waterings. Think of a sponge. If its totally dry, you can’t squeeze out a drop of water, no matter how hard you try. If its totally saturated, water will run out of it without even squeezing it. But if it is just nicely moist, the sponge will produce a drop or two when you gently squeeze it.

Watering from the top with room-temperature water is the rule for most plants. When you water, be thorough. Pour on enough water so that some seeps into the saucer or tray below the pot. In fact, its essential that your plants are potted in containers with drainage holes. An hour later, discard any water remaining in the saucer. With practice, you will soon learn just how much water each of your plants need.

To help keep moisture from evaporating from your plants, use mulch, pebbles or moss. If you think you might often forget to water your houseplants, then perhaps you should consider a moisture retention soil .