Household plants have been increasingly popular over the last two years thanks to the worldwide pandemic, pushing most of us to work from home. Working from home has made us more conscious of our household and given us more time to spruce up the yard, mainly indoor and outdoor plants. This has brought about the issue of maintenance, as not everyone has as much of a green thumb as they think they do.
Looking after plants can be pretty hard work if you don’t understand the requirements or nuances of individual species. They require the perfect balance of the elements; water, sunlight and good soil. Depending on the species, some can be low maintenance, or some can be pretty high maintenance.
If some of your plants start to deteriorate or reach a near-death experience slowly, what are some of the things you can do? This article will go through the process and some tips to bring your beloved household fauna back from the grave.
Check for signs of life
The first thing you would want to do is figure out if the plant has undoubtedly kicked the bucket or if it may have another chance of salvation. Just because the plant looks dead or the leaves may have turned brown or fallen, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the end.
Check the root system and stems for any sign of life. If you see that the roots are plump and white, then the plant may still have a chance to recover. If you see any signs of green on the stem, this is also an indication that we may be back in business.
Now that we’ve determined if the plant can be salvaged or not, hopefully for you, it isn’t the end; we can now figure out what may have gone wrong and begin the recovery process. You want to check if we’ve under or over watered the plant, as plants need the correct ratio for the soil to provide nutrients.
Diagnose the issue
You will notice brown or yellow, wilted leaves with moist soil if you’ve overwatered. The roots may start to rot, and if you’ve overwatered, you’ll need to act fast, move the plant out of direct sunlight and stop waiting until the soil dries out. From here, double-check the plants watering preferences depending on the species.
If you’ve underwatered, you will notice wilting on the leaves; they will dry out, start browning and die. You will also see the soil cracking and drying. To fix this is pretty simple, just let it soak in water for a few hours; they should go from limp to beautiful in a few hours.
Repot the plant
At this point, it’s probably a good idea to completely restart the process and repot the plant. This allows us to revitalise your plants with high-quality, nutritious soil and give them a new lease on life. Choosing a slightly wider pot would be helpful as this provides more room for the roots, as lack of space may have been an issue previously. Make sure you gently remove the plant and stems before repotting, and if your plant is dehydrated, you can even add some water-storing crystals.
Remove dead leaves
If there’s any damage to the roots, we recommend trimming down the leaves. The roots would have to take on additional pressure to support large amounts of foliage. You can also pull the leaves off if they’re already dead, as they are easier to remove. Any vegetation past the point of no return needs to be removed to allow new growth.
Check the lighting
Ensure that the plant is placed somewhere where there is adequate lighting. Remember that all plants have different requirements, and too much light can be as deadly as not having enough. Once you’ve determined whether your plant prefers low light, medium light or whole light, you can then move it to a more suitable area of your house. This can make a surprisingly big difference; a seemingly dead plant may perk back up quickly if you make the right choice.
Check humidity requirements
Plants from the tropics typically need to be placed in more humid environments. The amount does depend on the environment, of course, but there are some things we can check to see if the plant does need a change of humidity. If it is low, the plant will show signs of browning and wilting. If you’re not in a humid climate, you can mist your plants regularly or increase the density of plants by grouping them.
Too much humidity can also be problematic for some plants. If the humidity is too high, the plant can grow mould, mildew, or fungal infections. Generally, plants with thicker and wavier leaves tolerate dry climates much better. So avoid humid environments if you own these species. While most houseplants are acclimated to life indoors, most wouldn’t accept being close to heaters or vents, so be wary of location in these circumstances.
Provide additional nutrients
Like humans, the nutrition of plants is especially vital to maintain healthy growth and vitality. This is especially important during the growing seasons of spring and summer. Malnourished plants will exhibit signs of weak stems or discoloured leaves. To keep plants strong and healthy, you need to feed them with appropriate compost or fertiliser. We recommend high-quality organic fertiliser, giving you the highest chance of success and high-quality nutrition for your beloved fauna.
Wait a month
Now that everything is set in place, we wait up to a month for the plant to rejuvenate. During this time, ensure that you’re adequately watering, providing the right amount of light, and constantly checking conditions. The initial changes may not have been sufficient, and you may need to tweak them here or there. It is essential to be patient during this phase and not lose hope if progress is slow. The recovery may take longer than anticipated. When you’ve reached the end of the thirty days, you can enjoy the fruits of your labour. If everything is done correctly, enjoy your recovered plant.