Houseplants may be ‘extra thirsty’ in summer – ‘good way’ to check if plants need water

Houseplants: RHS advises on watering techniques

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Houseplants need specific care depending on the season in order to thrive. Despite summer being when it needs a lot more water, overwatering can actually cause more harm than good. According to one expert, houseplant owners can do a simple check to see if their plant needs watering.

Dani Turner, customer experience director at online florist Bunches, explained how to water houseplants throughout the summer.

The expert told “Throughout the hotter summer months, it is important to recognise how the heat can affect houseplants. 

“The most important factors to consider are the changes in light, heat and moisture.

“For green plants, continue with your weekly watering, keeping in mind that too much water can cause rotting and stunt the growth of your plants.”

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It can be hard to tell when houseplants need water, especially if you’re not sticking to a routine.

However, it is extremely important to water them when they need it.

Dani said houseplants tend to be “extra thirsty” when it is hot outside.

The expert added: “A good way to check if your plant may be extra thirsty in the heat is to stick your finger into the top couple of inches of soil, if this feels dry your plant is likely to need another drink. 

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“A damp plant is a happy plant in most cases. 

“Thoroughly soak plants once a week but allow them to drain fully. 

“Water build-up can result in root rot and will affect your plant’s health.”

For flowering plants, these can continue to be watered as soon as the top couple of inches of the soil feels dry.

If you’re scared of overwatering, it may be best to regularly mist the houseplant.

This can help to boost the plant’s humidity levels as well as reduce the risk of watering it too much.

Dani said this was a “safer option”.

Misting spray bottles can be purchased from garden centres as well as online.

The expert added: “Regulating the temperature of your plants is also extremely important as draughts or fluctuations in the temperature, through air conditioning and fans, in your home or office can cause instability in your plant’s environment, putting it under unnecessary stress. 

“Try to keep a consistent temperature for plants wherever possible as this will keep them happy and thriving.”

Depending on what type of houseplant you choose depends on the location you should put them in.

Not all plants like sunlight, some prefer shaded areas so it is important to check which plant prefers and arrange accordingly.

Dani continued: “Indirect sunlight is the best option to prevent sun-scorching the leaves and keep away from window sills as the sun may be too strong.

“Succulents, Cacti and other hardy plants such as Ivy, or Snake Plants thrive in warmer conditions. Keeping windows and doors slightly open will allow a breeze to keep plants cooler – regular watering and misting will prevent soil from drying out. 

“Keep plants away from direct sunlight in summer and away from radiators in winter. Keeping curtains or blinds partially closed on hot days will help regulate the room temperature and prevent soil from drying out. 

“Mist plants regularly and water at least once a week during May-September, more during high temperature days. Check water levels by pressing your finger an inch into the soil – if it feels dry then water again. Keep plants away from draughts and cold spots in the house.”

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