Growing season is nearly here. Some plant fanatics might be excited for it, but some people are definitely a bit nervous. Think about it. The amount of people who have embraced plant life over the last year is staggering. And for some of those plants parents, this will be their first growing season.
And I hate to break it to you, it’s a lot of responsibility.
The good news is you might find it easier to take care of plants in the spring and summer because it’s easier to tell what your plants want. In the winter you can overwater a lot more or get stumped by plants looking a little bit sad (most of the time—most likely—the plants are just sleeping).
But spring can be daunting, too. Just preparing for the growing season is a lot of work alone. Here are the three main reasons you may be feeling a little anxious about growing season, plus tips on getting through the process.
Plants Need Constant Care
Caring for plants may take up a lot more of your time than in the wintertime. With growing season on the horizon, you’ll have to start changing your habits. Your plants will want way more attention in the spring and summer. You’ll need to water more, repot plants that have outgrown their homes, and give them food.
When it starts to warm up it’s time to start fertilizing your plants. Plants will need food after slumbering during the winter. It will help kickstart new growth and keep your plants happy.
The soil will also dry out quicker in growing season, which means more watering without overwatering.
You’ll also need to repot any plants that need it. If the plant itself looks like it's very crowded and if there are roots coming out of the drainage holes, it's likely in need of a new pot. Finding the right soil mixture for each type of plant, detangling and trimming bad roots, and buying new pots (increase pot size by an inch each time) all point to one thing: work. (We thought this IG Reel by @so_fresh_so_green captured our sentiment perfectly.)
Open Windows Can Bring Pests Inside
If you live in a country where air conditioning isn’t as prevalent—or you just enjoy fresh air more—your windows will be open more frequently. That means that insects and bugs, such as fungus gnats can fly inside and make a home inside your plants' soil and on their leaves. So make sure to check your plants' leaves frequently. If you see anything moving on them, give them a good wipe-down, followed by a nice spray in the shower. Move them away from any other plants to stop the spread of pests. You can also try spraying the soil with neem oil, which is a natural way of dealing with pests.
Plants Get Bigger and Bigger
A lot of new plant parents don't realize just how big plants can get in one season.
If your plant is getting too big for your space, you can give it a haircut and propagate it (just make sure you have a node on the part of the plant you’re snipping so it can grow new roots). This is an excellent way to tame your indoor jungle and expand it without spending any money (propagated plants also make excellent presents).
You can also get creative with the way you use your plants in your decor. Think about hanging trailing plants from curtain rods, using command strips to help your plants climb, or moss poles that help manage the craziness of plants like monsteras.
At the end of the day, caring for your plants should be fun and not stressful. If you make a mistake it’s okay. If you overwatered your plant, let it dry out before watering it again. If your plant is looking a little sad, move it closer to a window. Being a good plant parent is all about trial and error and growing season is the perfect way to test your skills. And remember: a lot of plants can be salvaged by propagation if you think you’ve caused too much damage to the roots.
So, to all those new plants parents out there, take a deep breath, and get ready to spend all of your free time checking for new growth because there is nothing like watching your plants thrive.