Summer is especially the time for plants–and houseplants are no exception! Your houseplants will need some extra care and attention in the summer months. If you care for them properly, they should thrive over the summer and you will be delighted in the results.
The longer hours of summer allow your houseplants (and you) to enjoy more sunlight! More sun means more time to grow. Just like you enjoy getting outside more in the summer, so will your houseplants. Houseplants love the humidity of summer! If you can spare their glorious presence in your house, consider placing them outside–just make sure they are never in direct sunlight. Also, make sure you allow them to acclimate accordingly. Don’t take them outside for the first time on a day when it is 95 degrees. Place them outside now when it is cooler.
Your houseplants are in their growing season during the summer, so make sure they have enough water! Whether you are keeping your plants inside or out, they will definitely need to be watered more frequently. Don’t forget different houseplants have different watering requirements. For example, just because succulents need more water in the summer, they still don’t need nearly as much water as other houseplant varieties. Take the time to do a little research if you are unsure about how much water your houseplant needs.
You will want to fertilize your plants spring through fall (March through September). Buy a fertilizer high in nitrogen, and follow the directions for fertilizing frequency. Just like we don’t do well when we are overfed, neither do houseplants.
If you feel like your houseplant has “gotten too big for its britches”, now is the time to repot your houseplant. Repotting can be a bit of a shock, so you will want to take care to repot properly.
- Measure the diameter of the pot your houseplant is currently in.
- Choose a pot that is approximately 2 inches larger. If you choose a pot larger than that, you will have a houseplant that has beautiful roots, but not the foliage growth that you are hoping for.
- Use soil that is formulated for houseplants or containers.
- Prepare the new pot by putting a layer of soil on the bottom of the pot. Make sure that you put enough soil, but not too much.
- Carefully remove the plant you want to repot. Talk to and soothe the plant while you work. 🙂
- Loosen the roots gently with your hands. If the plant is very root-bound, use a serrated knife or scissors to cut into the roots. Don’t butcher the plant, but also don’t worry too much about harming the plant by doing this. Cut into the plant about 1 inch deep, 1 inch long, every 2 inches.
- Place the plant in the new pot. Don’t bury your plant. Make sure you have about an inch of space from the top of the existing soil to the rim of the pot.
- Fill in the sides with soil. Pat down gently saying kind, soothing words. We all need a little encouragement.
- Water well.
If any of this is overwhelming or you have more questions about how you can care for houseplants in the summer, come by the Garden Center. One of our associates will be glad to give you more tips or help you pick out a new houseplant to care for! Happy houseplanting, friends! 🙂