1. Position
    To select the right plant you need to look at the position you will
    put it in. Indoor plants need some light – direct or indirect and to
    be warm or out of drafts.
    Light is the most important as plants cannot survive where the is
    little or no light – you must be able to cast a shadow or even low
    light plants will not survive. For windows that let in a lot of light
    or direct light you must have a plant that will not burn and
    requires high light. There is a free app you can get called Lux
    LightMeter.
    There a plenty of lists on the internet detailing high and low light
    plants Eg. Happy plants, Janet Craig or Zamia for low light. Ferns
    require medium light and succulents, ficus high light.
  2. Plants

    Happy Plant
    Janet Craig (great for a dark spot)
    Aglonema (pink or green leaves)
    Zanzibar Gem
    Pothos (Epipremnum varieties)
    Spathiphyllum (we like Blue moon)
    Sanseveria (mother in law’s tongue)
    Ficus varieties (Ficus Lyrata, Ficus Elastica)
    Kentia palm or Rhapis palm
    Succulents(high Light)
    Hanging, trailing for shelves use Pothos plants (devils Ivy)
    Narrow spaces, cane based Happy plant of Janet Craig
    More room Palm/Kentia, ficus lyrata
    Bowl plants – anything that you buy or propagate that is in a small
    pot, Aglonema, Zanzibar Gem (they will grow)
  3. Purchase or Propagate
    Buy plants small and let them grow as it is cheaper, especially as
    you are learning to keep them alive. Propagating your own plants
    from cuttings, vegetative propagation, is fun and really cheap and
    doesn’t take any special skills. Take leaf or stem cuttings and put
    them into a pot or even a jar of water. Simple plants to propagate
    are Pothos by stem cutting, succulents by leaf cutting or division
    of ‘pups’.
  4. Pots
    A decorative pot lets you match décor and your own sense of
    style. Practical issues. Not too big for the plant. Go up to 1 size
    larger no more. If plant in 350mm pot go to 300mm pot.
    Sealed pot so no leaks, or use a sealed liner, or if it does have
    holes a saucer
  5. Potting & Potting mix
    You can make your own from basic ingredients – sand, peat moss,
    perlite, coir, but don’t use garden soil for indoor plants as it
    doesn’t drain and dry out easily.
    Most Australian potting mixes you can buy are decomposed pine
    bark, with additives such as fertilizer and water crystals. This is
    okay to begin with, any brand especially if it says for indoor use.
    When you repot plants you will freshen up the mix. Pot up plants
    when they are filling the existing pot or if they develop a solid
    root mass in the pot. Don’t disturb the roots too much as they will
    tear and rot and are very fragile in most indoor plants, unlike
    trees and shrubs.
  6. Watering & Feeding
    How much water does my plant need? Simple rule is when they
    need to be dry before watering again. Most indoor plants are
    killed by over watering not under watering – often over watering
    floods the roots which die and the plant wilts so you give it more
    water. Quantity of water? Fill the top of the pot with water and
    let it drain into the potting mix. Big pot more water eg. 2 litres
    for 250 – 300mm kentia, small pot less water eg 500ml for 200
    mm pot. Actually the volume you water isn’t the issue, it is the
    time between watering. If you give say 1 litre to a big palm it may
    dry out in a few days, so you water it again. We would aim to set
    up a watering cycle of no more than weekly. See equipment; water
    meter. Plants have to be fed if they are going to grow. Generally,
    we feed in the warmer months of Spring, Summer and Autumn, 3
    times. Best feed is a soluble type that is watered into the plant.
    We use Manutec African Violet food as it doesn’t give off an
    odour. Organic, seaweed, fish emulsion types of feeds are more a
    tonic for the soil and may smell a little, but still okay.
    Rule is not to use too much feed, especially if the pot is sealed as
    salts will build up over time, causing leaf spots and stunted
    growth.
  7. Equipment
  • Moisture meter, takes the guess work out of when to water
    and let the plant dry out between watering.
  • Scissors or secateurs to trim plants, roots etc
  • Spray bottle for misting, cleaning and watering of succulents
  • Watering can, small so it’s easy to get the water into the pot,
    can just use a small drink bottle etc..
  • Gloves or wash your hands
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