Just because you live in an apartment doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy an indoor organic garden. All you need is some space near windows and a desire to grow plants, fruit, or vegetables indoors. Just about every kind of plant will grow in pots or containers. Indoor gardens add more than aesthetic appeal to modern décor. They can provide you with fresh, organic produce and even help clean the air.
Indoor Organic Garden Challenges
Of course, there are challenges with caring for an organic garden indoors. It can be challenging to get humidity, lighting, and moisture levels right. Also, it’s not easy to get organic fertilizer levels right to grow healthy plants. However, overcoming these challenges is worth it when you have plants that thrive indoors.
In this article, you will find helpful tips and advice on caring for plants organically indoors. You will also learn how to deal with common problems that affect indoor gardens.
Tips for Indoor Organic Gardening
Here are some tips on how to grow healthy plants—houseplants, vegetables, herbs, or fruit—indoors. Of course, individual plants have their own specific requirements and needs. This guide to caring for an indoor organic garden looks at the basic principles.
Get Enough Light Indoors
All plants need light to get the energy they need to survive. Even low-light plants need some amount of light—natural or artificial. In general, most plants you grow indoors need plenty of bright, indirect sunlight. Windows that face east or west are ideal because your plants will benefit from morning or evening sun.
South-facing or north-facing rooms are more of a challenge. In a room that faces south, the all-day sun can be too much for some plants. In rooms that face north, lack of light is the major problem. (Please note this depends on which hemisphere that you live in) So, you may have to supplement the dark, dim conditions with grow lights or LED lights.
Temperature and Humidity
Many house plants grow well in average room temperatures. The biggest challenge is getting humidity levels right. Household air tends to be too dry for many plants. So, when growing plants indoors, you may need to mist the leaves every day.
Another indoor gardening tip is to put a few plants growing in pots together to increase humidity. Or, you could use a room humidifier to increase moisture in the air.
One challenge facing indoor gardeners is sudden changes in temperatures. You should keep house plants away from drafts—for example, airflow from air-conditioning units and open windows or doors. Also, don’t place house plants next to radiators where direct heat could scorch the plant.
Watering Plants in an Indoor Organic Garden
All plants, just like humans, need water to survive. Watering can become a big issue when caring for an organic garden indoors. Too much water, your plants can suffer from root rot and bacterial or fungal infections. Too little water, they will wither and die.
The best tip for indoor gardens is to use well-draining potting soil. You can make a suitable potting mix by combining soil, peat, and perlite or vermiculite. The organic matter, peat, helps retain moisture without becoming soggy. Adding perlite helps aerate the soil and lets the water drain better.
Another gardening tip, always avoid letting indoor house plant pots sit in saucers or trays of water. You’ll end up with moisture problems and, ultimately, dead plants.
Organic Soil Fertilizers for Indoor Gardens
Another challenge of caring for an indoor garden is choosing the right organic fertilizer. Different plants have different fertilizer requirements, so you should check your plant requirements before feeding.
One of the advantages of using organic fertilizers is that there is less risk of fertilizer burn. A buildup of fertilizer can occur when using chemicals, and this can affect your plants’ growth. Also, organic fertilizers have the advantage because they also act as growth enhancers.
FAQ: Indoor Organic Gardens
Looking after an indoor garden is a rewarding experience. However, you may still have some questions on the best way to make sure all your plants thrive indoors.
How do you maintain an indoor garden?
The best way to look after plants that grow indoors is to avoid over-watering them. Pots can hold a lot of moisture, and soggy soil is never good for any houseplant. As a general rule, wait until the top two centimeters (1 inch) of soil is dry before watering thoroughly. Avoid the temptation to water houseplants every day.
How do I keep my house plants healthy?
Keep houseplants strong and healthy by fertilizing regularly and keeping them in bright light, away from direct sunlight. Healthy indoor plants are more resistant to disease and pests such as aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, and scale. If you notice any sign of pests, use an organic neem oil solution to get rid of them.
What does it mean when indoor plant leaves turn brown?
There are several reasons why leaves on your houseplants turn brown. One common reason is not watering enough, or that the air is too dry. When watering, always pour in enough water until it drains out the holes in the bottom of the pot and mist leaves every other day. Other reasons for brown leaves could be too much heat or not enough light.