What are the Most Common Diseases Affecting Indoor Plants?
Looking for ways to liven up your home, add character, and improve air quality?
Having plants in your home can make you happier, healthier, and even more productive. Indoor plants can even remove up to 87% of the toxins in your home.
Owning plants is an investment as they need proper care to thrive. Many plants are sensitive to temperature, light, humidity, and moisture levels.
It's important to offer favourable growing conditions to prevent plants from dying. Diseases can affect plants from their flowers and leaves down to the stems and roots.
Read on for the most common diseases that plague household plants and how to keep them healthy.
This plant disease is as awful as its name suggests. It occurs when fungal pathogens are present in the soil and the plant cannot get enough oxygen.
It's once green and vibrant leaves turn yellow and wilt. The affected house plant may also take on a collapsed appearance.
To determine if a plant has root rot, you'll want to examine its roots. A diseased plant will have black roots that feel mushy to the touch.
Overwatering is the main cause of root rot. As well as problems with potting and poor drainage of the plant.
It can be tough for a plant to recover from this disease. Try rinsing the roots in fresh water then removing the affected areas.
Re-pot the plant in fresh soil and ensure it has proper drainage. You may also want to apply a fungicide to the remaining healthy roots.
Plants with leaf spot first show symptoms of color spots in yellow, back, or brown.
This happens due to a fungus which reproduces throughout the plant. It can take over the whole leaf and cause it to fall off. It can also spread throughout the entire plant.
Leaf spot is a result of high temperatures and humidity levels. One way to combat this is to increase air circulation by spacing your house plants further apart.
Be sure to only water the soil, rather than the plant leaves. This will create less moisture. You'll also want to avoid spraying or misting the plant.
It's crucial to save plants as soon as you notice signs of leaf spot before it spreads. If a plant becomes infected, remove the spotted leaves. A natural solution of baking soda and water can also help kill the fungus.
You've most likely heard of the Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree. This indoor tree is all the rage among interior design bloggers and decor magazines.
It is more difficult to care for but well worth the effort. Be sure to inspect the tree during each watering for any brown spots on its large beautiful leaves. With proper care, the tree can recover from leaf spot disease.
The tree thrives in drier soil and indirect sunlight. It can become sensitive to strong midday sun exposure. It also needs less water than other indoor trees.
Nothing kills the appearance of a lovely hanging plant like powdery mildew. While this disease is not likely to kill your plants, it takes away from their beauty and development.
The plant's leaves become coated in a white powder or film. Their color drains or becomes dark. The mildew can cover the entire plant if left untreated.
This happens due to poor air quality within the home. High humidity or damp living conditions can also spur mildew growth. The plant could also be in need of greater sun exposure.
To save the plant, remove film covered leaves. Applying a bit of sulfur, neem oil, or baking soda can also help.
Also called Botrytis, this plant disease gets characterized by wilting and fading colors. It can also show up as spotting or rotting of the plant.
Extreme humidity and moisture are the most common causes of gray mold. It's quick to spread and should get treated right away. Remove dead and infected parts of the plant as soon as you notice them.
Be careful to only water the soil of your plant and watch its humidity levels. Providing better ventilation conditions can improve the quality of the plant.
Tips and Tricks for Keeping Healthy Indoor Plants
Any homeowner or apartment dweller can grow a green thumb. The key is to learn the habits and needs of each plant and pay attention to the changing weather patterns. Follow these tips for how to keep healthy plants.
Picking the Right Plants for Your Home
You may want to consider an indoor plant that is easier to care for, such as the Fruit Salad Plant or Devil's Ivy. They are adaptable and great starter plants to develop your green thumb.
Watering Your Plants
It's vital to learn the watering needs of each of your plants. Go through a house plant identification checklist. This will help make sure you are well informed on the temperament of each plant you own.
Time of the Year
The time of the year matters when watering plants. Winter is more of a resting season for plants and they need less water to survive. Summer and spring classify the plants growing period, with water essential for development.
Temperature and humidity also come into play. They can make plants more susceptible to diseases.
Plants need more water in hotter summer months. The more humid it is, the more water plants will hold onto.
Natural sunlight is essential for plant growth. Yet, it's important to note that the more sunlight your plant receives, the more water it will need.
Potting and Drainage
Each plant should have the proper pot size and drainage. Don't overwater as it can flush out nutrients in the soil or drown the plant. Excess water should drain out of the plant pot.
Only water plants when the soil is dry. Pay attention to plants needs rather than sticking to a strict schedule. It's best to use filtered water, at room temperature.
Routine Plant Inspections
Always inspect your plants and remove any dead flowers. If a plant looks ill separate it from the other healthy plants as not to infect them. Here are more tips for keeping your indoor plants alive and thriving.
Growing Your Collection of House Plants
Caring for and maintaining your indoor plants is key for their survival and growth. Yet, the source that you buy your plants from is of equal importance in helping them thrive.
Always buy your plants from a trusted source. Do your research and ensure they have gotten well cared for before bringing them into your home.
When beginning your collection of house plants, start with more low maintenance options. Or check out this selection of the most popular plants to have in your home.