There’s nothing like bringing home fresh, vibrant green plants to spruce up our home, refresh our space, and improve our mood. Taking care of houseplants is therapeutic and can often remind us of how we should be taking care of ourselves. No wonder why plant sales have skyrocketed over the last few years! As more and more plant parents seek advice on how to keep their new green and flowering houseplants healthy, the internet is crawling with more and more plant care myths. With so much misinformation out there, the plant and flower experts here at Eastern Floral decided that it’s time to set the record straight. These are the most common plant care myths we’ve come across that will, unfortunately, do more harm than good.
Common Plant Myths to Ignore
MythI Don’t Need to Water My Cactus or Succulents
A common misconception is that cacti and succulents are “desert” plants and don’t need to be watered. This is a great myth that deters a lot of succulent and cacti owners from exploring more options as plant parents. Watering your succulents and cacti, especially during the summer when they are in “growth mode,” is highly important. If you see their stems and leaves become soft, dry, or droopy, that is your sign that these little guys are craving a nice, big drink of water.
MythPlants Grow Faster in Bigger Pots
It is important to keep your plants in pots and containers that are suitable for their size and growth rate. However, the size of a plant’s pot has no effect on its growth rate. Keeping plants in properly sized containers ensures a healthy life with adequate amounts of soil that retain just the right amount of water.
MythHouseplants Should be Watered Consistently on a Routine Basis
Every plant requires a different amount of water, and their schedules vary from one plant species to another. Another factor that determines a plant’s need for water is the amount of sunlight they receive. The best way to gauge if your plant is ready for another drink is by the moistness of its soil. If you stick your finger in the soil and it comes out clean, then the soil has dried out, and your plant is ready for another round of watering.
MythMisting Plants Increases the Humidity
The best way to keep your plants properly hydrated is by watering the soil. While misting the leaves of your plants will often keep the leaves looking clean and fresh, it causes only a negligible increase in humidity. Furthermore, misting your plants or watering plants directly on the leaves increases the chance for mold and bacteria growth, which is sure to harm your plants.
MythIndoor Plants Need to Be in Direct Sunlight All Day Long to Thrive
All plants vary when it comes to direct sunlight, so it’s important to do some research before giving them a permanent home. While some houseplants thrive in our home’s sunniest window, too much direct sunlight can be harmful. Other houseplants prefer indirect sunlight or even a cool corner in your home.
MythA Wilting Plant Requires Water
Just because your plant is wilting and seemingly withering away, it does not mean it is dehydrated. Many things can cause a plant to wilt, even overwatering! Before giving your houseplant a big drink of water, check its leaves for pests or insect damage, drooping leaves that might not get enough sunlight, and the moistness of the soil.
MythOrchids are High-Maintenance and Difficult to Care For
Orchids have a reputation for being high-maintenance plants or “fussy.” In reality, the case is that orchids are tropical plants that thrive in warm, humid conditions and indirect sunlight. Finding the perfect watering regiment for your orchid may take a minute, but once you have it figured out, orchids can actually turn out to be a hands-off, low-maintenance houseplant.
MythStones, Pebbles, Bricks, etc., Should be Placed at the Bottom of the Plant Container to Improve Drainage
This myth can be detrimental to the health of your houseplants. Studies have found the opposite to be true as water does not drain easily when it moves between layers of various particle sizes. This means that your plant is more likely to experience an oversaturation of water that often leads to root rot.
MythHumidity Around a Plant Can be Increased by Placing it On or Near a Tray of Pebbles and Water
There is no truth to this myth, and although your grandmother may stand by it, we’re not sure where it came from. Instead of pebbles, you can increase the humidity around your plants by placing them close together in your shower with the curtain drawn shut. If you are going to be away for a week or two, this is the best way to keep your plants’ humidity levels up.
MythPotting Soil Should Not be Reused
It takes quite a very long time for potting soil to go “bad,” as most of it is comprised of peat moss, which decomposes slowly. If you are transitioning your plant to a larger pot, you can confidently reuse the old potting soil and mix in new soil until the pot is adequately filled.
Learn more about plant care essentials and how to care for popular houseplants by visiting our Plant Care page. Then, peruse our plant and flower selections to add even more greenery to your life!