Grow your own wellbeing sanctuary with our top plant tips

Posted by Liz Earle Beauty Co. August 24, 2019 | 4 min read

Monsteras, succulents, cacti… there’s no question, houseplants are having a ‘moment’ right now. And with the Bank Holiday upon us – the perfect time for a visit to your local garden centre – we thought we’d share our top plant care tips to help take you from plant-novice to green goddess. 

 “There are important psychological benefits from being in nature such as relieving stress and anxiety as well as boosting mood, all whilst improving overall wellbeing.”

James Wong, our Ethnobotanist

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Wise words from our Ethnobotanist, and we couldn’t agree more. But it can be hard to get out into nature regularly, so why not bring the outdoors in with some houseplants? Watching a houseplant thrive will fill you with joy, and learning how to care for them is a calming, gentle hobby that will help you to unwind after a stressful day. If it wasn’t obvious already, yes, we’re an office full of houseplant lovers!

And no one loves houseplants more than our Lifestyle Ambassador, Sarah Carr: 

“I never thought a Sunday afternoon trip to IKEA 4 years ago would be the beginning of a house plant obsession! After numerous trips, my flat looks like a garden centre. Living in central London but from Yorkshire originally, I’ve always craved green and the outdoors so creating a garden inside seemed quite logical.”

Of course, we aren’t going to tell you to fill your home with plants and then leave you to it! Here are some of our team’s top plant-parenting tips for cultivating a successful indoor garden. 

Start simple

Some plants are easier to care for than others. So if you’re currently convinced that the only plant you’d be able to keep alive is a plastic one, try a jade plant, pothos, snake plant or peace lily to begin with.

Factor in your home’s light levels

Cacti and most succulents need direct sunlight, and love to live on bright windowsills where it gets warm in the day and cool at night. Many popular leafy plants, like monstera deliciosa, banana plants, parlour palms, and pileas thrive in bright but indirect light. For low-light living, you could try a snake plant, pothos, or asparagus fern.

Seasonal care 

Houseplants will grow less in winter, so they need less water and fertiliser. Its often recommended not to water a cactus at all during the winter, but this depends on how much light you get, and how much central heating you use. Be sure to update your plant care routine with every change of the season.

Water less than you’d think

Many plants shouldn’t be watered until the top layer of their soil is completely dry. Research the watering needs of your plants, write them down, and make sure everyone in the house follows the schedule – overwatering can lead to root-rot, which is frequently the demise of otherwise healthy houseplants. 

Be careful with fertiliser

Just like with water, it’s usually better to under-fertilise, as using too much can damage your plant’s roots. How much fertiliser your plant needs depends on the time of year, the size of the plant, how much light it gets, and whether or not it flowers or bears fruit. 

Repot carefully

When you repot, it’s essential that you treat your plant’s root bundle gently. Make sure you watch a few video tutorials before you start, and only do it when absolutely essential because adjusting to a new pot can be a big strain a plant. 

Be alert about pests

A mealybug or aphid infestation can tear through a houseplant collection leaving devastation in its wake. Be vigilant and familiarise yourself with the appearance of common houseplant bugs – and keep some neem oil close to hand, just in case!

Make your own Liz Earle plant mister

This one is great tip from Sarah Carr that we’ll all be incorporating into our plant care regiments - our Instant Boost™ spritzer is the perfect bottle to repurpose as a plant mister – the fine spray is ideal for moistening the leaves of plants that thrive in humidity like ferns and monsteras, and misting the soil or roots of plants that you want to be careful not to overwater, such as cacti and air plants.

Talk to them!

Yes, you read that right! Tell your plants what you’re doing when you water them or cut their leaves. Tell them what you like about them, tell them about your day, play music for them… it’s been scientifically proven to help them grow, and you’ll be amazed by how natural it feels after your first couple of goes. 

Whether you’re aiming for a full indoor jungle, or just trying keeping a little pot plant going strong, we hope you found these tips helpful on your journey to houseplant success.