The Q&A Archives: How often do we need to water our indoors plants?

Question: I am wondering if indoors plants need to be watered very often or it is fine to water it once in a while. Thanks for your answer. Marge

Answer: House plants have varying watering needs. Most house plants like their soil kept evenly moist. A few prefer that their soil dry out entirely between waterings. No matter what the watering needs of a given plant may be, always water thoroughly, then wait until the plant needs more water before starting again. You can either use tepid water straight from the tap or let water stand overnight. In areas where water is very hard or where water is artificially softened, rainwater is often the best choice for watering your house plants.

Plants will often tell you they need water by dramatically collapsing, but it is best not to wait that long, since most plants never recover from severe wilting. Learn to judge your house plant?s needs by checking it every two or three days.

There are various ways of telling if a house plant needs water. Some people go by soil color: The mix changes from dark brown to pale beige as it dries out. This is not always an adequate factor, especially for house plants in large pots. The soil at the top of the pot can often be quite dry, while that in the middle is still moist. For that reason, many people prefer sticking a forefinger into the mix. If it feels dry to the touch one inch down, it is time to water. There are moisture meters available that can also test for water needs. Other people prefer to lift the pot. When it approaches dryness, a pot will weigh considerably less. Choose whichever method best suits your needs and stick with it. Say hi to Bart for me!

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