Indoor Plant Watering

Indoor plant watering is a subject that many do not understand well. We find that some of our indoor plants need more water than others. We also see that plants seem to need different amounts of water at different times of the year. Lets examine some of the factors that lead to these differences.

Different types of plants need different amounts of water. Those with stiff, shiny leaves need less than those with softer leaves. less water evaporates from the stiff, shiny leaves like those of a pothos than evaporates from the softer leaves of a fern. Succulents, like cacti or aloe vera, require very little water.

Larger indoor plants need more water than smaller versions of the same plant. Larger plants will have more growth and more leaf surface area.

Indoor plant watering is also affected by the consistency of the soil. The sandier the soil, the faster it will dry out. The sandy soil does not hold the water as well as a less sandy soil.

Indoor plants also need more water during the part of the year they are growing most quickly. As well as carrying the nutrients to the leaves, water is used in the growth process.

The amount of light a plant receives also affects indoor plant watering. This increase in light can be due to the longer days in the summer. The longer days stimulate many plants to put on a spurt of growth requiring more water. The increased strength of the sun in summer will also increase plant growth. The strength of light is also affected by the location of the plant in the home. How near is it to a window and what direction does the window face.

The humidity of the room affects the amount of water a houseplant needs.  A houseplant in a humid room will require less water than the same plant in a room where the air is drier. Indoor heating will cause the air in the room to become drier.

The room temperature will affect the indoor plant watering requirements. As the temperature of a room rises, a houseplant will require more water.

These are just some of the factors that affect indoor plant watering needs. We need to adapt our watering schedules to accommodate the watering requirements of different indoor plants at different times of the year. We need to water houseplants according to their needs, not some predefined schedule.

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