Up next in Indoor Plants & Container Gardening (15 videos)
Create your own indoor Garden of Eden -- or at least keep that fern from dying -- with these container gardening videos.
You Will Need
- A plant
- Knowledge of its native environment
- A soothing voice or a radio
Pick a plant that's tough to kill. Hardy varieties include spider, rubber, and snake plants, and pothos, aloe vera, and peace lilies.
Choose a good location. Plants do best in the light and temperature of their native environment. For instance, tropical plants like their surroundings bright and humid, while cacti need sunlight but very little water.
Find out your plant's foot-candle requirement, which is how many candles it would take to light the plant from one foot away. A plant that needs 250 or fewer candles is a low-light plant; one that needs more than 1,000 requires very bright light. If your plant didn't come with this information, search for it online.
Poke the soil with your finger before watering. If it's moist, leave it alone. Overwatering is the no. 1 killer of houseplants.
Fertilize a few times between the spring and fall. Low-light plants only require fertilization once or twice a year. Slow-growing plants need less fertilizer, while faster growing varieties need more. Choose a fertilizer that contains nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Water the soil before fertilizing to prevent fertilizer burn.
Talk or sing to your plants. Some research has indicated this can help them thrive, as does playing certain kinds of music. Indian sitar music works best, followed by classical music. Stay away from heavy metal: Plants exposed to loud rock music died after a few weeks in one famous experiment.