Posts tagged Plant care
Plant Care Tip #38: Soggy Bottom
soggy_bottom.jpg

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

Occasionally, feeling the top 2 inches of soil before watering just isn't enough. Despite all your best efforts, the bottom of your plant's soil may not dry out, and your plant eventually suffers from overwatering. Here are a few precautions you can take to prevent this from happening.

  • Air circulation - every month or so, remove your plant from its decorative pot to make sure the base is drying out. You can also open your windows or use a fan to help them get fresh air.  

  • Chopstick test - insert a wooden chopstick or bbq skewer deep into the soil to test for moisture at the bottom. If still wet, hold off from watering. 

  • Moisture meter - a simple gadget that can provide the most accurate readings of whether or not it's time to water your plant, especially recommended for ficus trees like the Fiddle Leaf Fig or Rubber Tree. Read more on this from our partner plant expert Claire Akin.

Fertilizing your Plant in the Fall
Plant Elixir by  Museum Studio

Plant Elixir by Museum Studio

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

It’s getting colder and the eating season is upon us!  While we enjoy our feasts, it’s time for our plants to go on a fast. This time of year our plants just want to relax and stay cozy inside with us. They become less interested in new growth, which means they're less hungry and less thirsty. Here are simple feeding adjustments to make:

  • Feeding - shift to fertilizing once a month and cut the recommended amount in half. 

  • Exceptions - new growth - if your plant decides they're up to the task and it sends out new growth, they can have a snack afterward. Never fed? If you've never fertilized your plant and you’ve had it for more than 4 months, give it a nutrient boost. We suggest starting with diluted liquid fertilizer and observing how your plant responds. 

  • Watering - slow down, but don’t completely stop your watering. Always check the soil's moisture first. Most indoor plants prefer if their soil dries out completely before being watered again, which might take longer when it's colder.

Remember every plant species has different wants and needs, so read up on your plant friends and spend time with them, it makes a difference!

How to maximize your plant’s air purification powers
animate.gif

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

Plants have shown that they can remove toxins in the air. They do this through the pores in the epidermis of their leaves. Keeping their leaves clean and dust free will help them breathe better and smile brighter. Here are our favorite ways that keep people asking "are those real?!"

  • Damp Cloth - take two pieces of tissue, t-shirt scraps or microfiber cloths and wring it through water. Take one cloth in each hand, gently take each leaf between your hands and wipe down the surface. 

  • Feather Duster - take a clean duster and gently wipe or shake it through the leaves. Swiffer dusters are pretty efficient and compact. 

  • Shower - take your plants out of their decorative pot and wash them off in your sink or shower. Make sure the water drains all the way through the bottom and return after a few hours of drying. 

For tough stains like sap from other leaves or white crusty buildup from water, you can use a damp cloth mixed with soap and water. 

Plant Care Tip #35: Hours of Light
Photo credit:  9to5chic ’s Bird of Paradise

Photo credit: 9to5chic’s Bird of Paradise

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

Hooray for waking up to "more" daylight! Like us, plants need sunlight to survive. It gives them the energy they need to photosynthesize, which is basically how they eat and breathe. If they're not getting enough light in your home, you'll start to see them struggle. Most plants would appreciate at least 6 hours of bright sunlight. If that's just not possible in your space, here's what you can do.

  • Next to a window receiving bright light is ideal for most house plants. You can keep your plants farther from the window, but then you'll need to be extra careful about not overwatering.

  • If your plant is in a shadier spot, rotate it once a week to give its foliage equal access to light.

  • If you're risking a spot where there's really little light, you can try fulfilling its needs with an artificial grow light. You'll need to keep it on for at least 6-8 hours.

Daylight savings time is man made and plants have no idea that the time has changed 😉

The right balance of light and water in relation to the temperature and humidity of your space is all they need all year round. Just like you feel the change in seasons, your plants feel it, so make sure to take care of them as you do yourself.


main.jpg

BIRD OF PARADISE

A popular indoor plant for creating that instant jungle atmosphere.

3-4ft tall in white ceramic planter: $299

Plant Care Tip #20: Propagating & Dividing
Snake Plant division, photo credit: L&G plant parent David D.

Snake Plant division, photo credit: L&G plant parent David D.

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

When you see new babies growing, experiment with dividing and growing yourself new houseplants! Different types of plants have different propagation methods, this weekend we’ll focus on a method called Division, applicable to Snake Plants, Zanzibar Gems, Magenta Triostars, Parlor Palms, Elephant’s Ears, Birds of Paradise and Peace Lilies.

  • Step 1: Find a pot that is proportionate to the size of your new plant, smaller than larger is best, and get some new soil.

  • Step 2: Remove the mother plant from the nursery pot and clear the soil from the roots.

  • Step 3: Identify where you would like to divide the plant and gently pull apart the roots or use a sharp knife.

  • Step 4: Plant your cutting deep enough into the new pot so that the roots can be covered and the top will be stable.

  • Step 5: Lightly water your new plant and place it in bright, but not direct light.

Voila! Now you have a new plant! Don’t forget to nicely plant the mother back in her home and enjoy as mother nature takes its course.

Our plant doctors are available 24/7 for any questions about keeping your plants happy and healthy! Email us anytime plantdoctor@leonandgeorge.com


Indoor Plant Inspiration

main.jpg

SNAKE PLANT

A large succulent and thus extremely adaptable and low maintenance, the perfect gift for the garden-challenged. It is also a terrific air purifier, making it a healthy and attractive addition to any indoor space.

1 ½ft tall plant + ceramic pot + stand
Delivery in SF included

Choosing the Best Soil for Your Fiddle Leaf Fig
Photo by Léon & George

Photo by Léon & George

A post by resident plant expert Claire Akin of the Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Resource.

The soil you choose may be one of the most important decisions you make for the health of your fiddle leaf fig plant. Fast draining, well aerated soils are the best choices for a fiddle leaf fig, which prefers relatively dry soil to keep its roots moist but not wet.

Poor soil can cause problems with root aeration, bring fungus or bacteria into your plant’s root system, or harm your plant with salts or other chemicals.

Soil for indoor plants provides four basic functions:

  1. As a place to anchor roots to provide support to the plant

  2. To provide nutrients for growth and photosynthesis

  3. To allow oxygen to access the root system

  4. To deliver ample water to the roots

Which Soil is Best for Your Fiddle Leaf Fig?

To do all four of these functions well, you’ll need a versatile soil designed for house plants. Be sure to choose a fast draining soil when possible to reduce your risk of root rot. Most houseplant soil blends combine perlite to aid with faster drainage and peat moss to retain moisture. Any good houseplant soil mix will work for your fiddle leaf fig.

Some house plant enthusiasts get into mixing their own soil, but I’ve found that purchasing a top-quality commercial soil provides equal results. MiracleGro indoor potting mix is specifically designed to provide aeration, fast drainage, and nutrition for your plants, while being resistant to fungus and gnats.

Make Sure You Have Proper Drainage

The best soil in the world won’t provide a healthy environment for your plant with inadequate drainage. Make sure that your plant has appropriate drainage and that the roots can breathe.

Don’t Forget to Fertilize in a Few Months

Keep in mind that soil will only provide nutrition for your fiddle leaf fig for the first three to six months, so you will need to fertilize your plant to make sure it gets adequate nutrition. If your plant stops producing new growth or its leaves begin to yellow, it may be a sign that it’s lacking nutrients.


FiddleLady.jpg

About Claire

Claire Akin is a Fiddle Leaf Fig lover and created the Fiddle Leaf Fig Resource to share what she's learned about growing healthy and vibrant plants. She even created her own fertilizer specific to the needs of Fiddles! Learn all you'll ever need to know about these gorgeous plants at fiddleleaffigplant.com

 

fiddleleaffigbush.jpg

Indoor plants, potted & delivered.

Premium plants paired with stylish ceramic pots. Order online at leonandgeorge.com

The Ten Commandments of Fiddle Leaf Fig Care
The ten commandments of fiddle leaf fig care

A post by resident plant expert Claire Akin of the Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Resource.

What does your fiddle leaf fig need to thrive?

Caring for your fiddle leaf fig can be complex and overwhelming, especially if you are a first time plant owner. Good care makes your plant stronger and more resistant to disease. But poor care creates a downward spiral of sickness and problems. Luckily, there are ten critical components to successfully caring for your fiddle leaf fig plant. Follow these ten commandments of fiddle leaf fig care for a happy and healthy plant.

1. Provide Proper Drainage
Your plant’s root system is the basis of its health. Many people are not aware, but to work properly, roots need both water and oxygen. Proper drainage allows your plant’s root system to breathe and stay healthy. Without adequate drainage, root rot can set in and kill your plant.

2. Don’t Drown Them
In addition to providing proper drainage, it’s important to let your plant’s soil dry out a bit between waterings. Too much water is one of the most common mistakes fiddle leaf fig owners make. Be aware of your plant’s water requirements and make sure you aren’t drowning your plant.

3. Give Them a Rest in Winter
During the winter, your plant receives less sun and as a result, it has less energy to complete its metabolic functions. As a result, it uses less water and nutrients. Water less and suspend fertilization during the winter to give your plant a chance to rest.

4. Accept the Loss of Older Leaves
Plants are always growing and shedding older leaves in favor of new growth. Fiddle leaf fig plants will drop their lower leaves as they grow taller. Don’t worry if your plant regularly drops it’s lower leaves, so long as it has healthy new growth.

5. Give Them Humidity
The ideal humidity for a fiddle leaf fig is between 30 and 65 percent. If you live in a very dry climate, you may need to supplement your plant with extra humidity by misting it or providing a humidifier. Be sure not to put your fiddle leaf fig near a heater vent, which will dry out your plant.

6. Treat Problems Immediately
Fiddle leaf fig plants are relatively slow growers, since their large leaves require a lot of energy to build. This makes treating ailments quickly even more important, since it takes them so long to recover from problems. Be sure to act quickly if you see brown spots, leaf drop, or an insect infestation.

7. Repot When Needed
If your fiddle leaf fig is healthy, its root system will begin to outgrow its pot in a few years. If you see roots growing near the bottom or edges of the pot, it may be time to repot to give your plant more space to grow. If you’ve reached your maximum container size, top-dress instead of repotting, by removing the top four inches of soil and replacing with new soil.

8. Feed Them Properly
Fiddle leaf fig plants require a lot of nutrients to grow their large leaves. Feed them with a liquid fertilizer like Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food, which is specially formulated with a NPK ratio of 3-1-2.

9. Use the Proper Tools
To take proper care of your plant, it’s important to keep the proper tools including a watering can, moisture meter, sharp pruning shears, and even a rolling plant stand that allows you to move and rotate your fiddle leaf fig.

10. Check on Your Plant Every Week
The best way to take good care of your plant is to get to know it better. Take the time to check on your fiddle leaf fig every week. First, take a look a the soil to see if it’s wet or dry before you water. Look at the leaves for any signs of wilting or brown spots. Rotate your plant to make sure it gets even sunlight. Finally, take an overall assessment of your plant and make a note of any changes like new growth.


FiddleLady.jpg

About Claire

Claire Akin is a Fiddle Leaf Fig lover and created the Fiddle Leaf Fig Resource to share what she's learned about growing healthy and vibrant plants. She even created her own fertilizer specific to the needs of Fiddles! Learn all you'll ever need to know about these gorgeous plants at fiddleleaffigplant.com

 

fiddle-bush-white-stand-nude-leather-chair.jpg

Indoor plants, potted & delivered.

Premium plants paired with stylish pots, plus lifetime plant care support. Order online at leonandgeorge.com

Plant Care Tip #5: Feeding Frenzy
Photo by  Léon & George

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

Spring is a great time to feed those hungry plants. When fertilizing, less is more. Follow the steps below to ensure your plants are getting the proper treatment:

  • Too much fertilizer can seriously harm on your plant

  • Err on the side of caution and stick to half the recommended dose of fertilizer for most plants

  • Don’t fertilize weak plants (like plants that are shocked from repotting, or plants that are VERY new to their environment)

  • Fertilize in spring and summer as your plants are more dormant in fall and winter and will not utilize this food properly (and this unused fertilizer could hurt their roots)

Fertilizing can be a touch and go process. If you're finding it difficult to navigate, we can help! Email your specific questions to us anytime plantdoctor@leonandgeorge.com 

Source: http://www.dummies.com/home-garden/gardening/fertilizing-fundamentals-for-houseplants/

Are You Starving Your Fiddle Leaf Fig?
closeupFLFJPG.JPG

A post by resident plant expert Claire Akin of the Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Resource.

How Often Should You Fertilize a Fiddle Leaf Fig?

Fiddle leaf fig plants need fertilizer for proper growth because their leaves are large and dense. One common mistake people is neglecting to fertilize a fiddle leaf fig plant. This will result in slow growth and poor overall health for your plant.

Unlike plants growing outdoors in the wild, where nutrients are naturally being added to the soil and roots can search deeper for more nutrition, potted fiddle leaf figs depend on their potting soil for all nutrients. If you haven’t repotted your plant in over a year, chances are that your fiddle leaf fig is in desperate need of fertilizer.

How Should You Fertilize a Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant?

You should fertilize your plant every time you water, except in the winter. During the winter months (the length varies depending on where you live), the plant will go dormant and rest. While it’s not actively growing, it will not have the need for additional nutrients.

If you live in a place with severe winters where the days get very short, fiddle leaf fig plants will stay dormant longer. However, in locations with mild winters, your plant may only stay dormant for a month or two before it resumes growth.

This indoor fiddle leaf fig plant in sunny San Diego, California only stopped new growth in November and started growing large healthy leaves again in early January! As soon as the days begin getting longer and you see signs of new growth, resume fertilizing your plant every time you water with diluted plant food.

Fiddle leaf fig plant with new growth in January.

Fiddle leaf fig plant with new growth in January.

What is the Best Fertilizer for a Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant?

The easiest and safest way to fertilize a fiddle leaf fig plant is by feeding with diluted liquid plant food each time you water your plant. Be sure to read the directions to avoid burning your plant with too much fertilizer.

Plant fertilizers have a specific N-P-K ratio, which tells you the percentage of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (chemical symbol K). The best NPK ratio for a fiddle leaf fig plant is 3-1-2. The nitrogen helps with new leaf growth and phosphorus encourages root growth.

You can purchase Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food, a special formulation designed to be used at every watering. Dilute 1 teaspoon of Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Food in one cup of water and water your plant as you normally would.


About Claire

Claire Akin is a Fiddle Leaf Fig lover and created the Fiddle Leaf Fig Resource to share what she's learned about growing healthy and vibrant plants. She even created her own fertilizer specific to the needs of Fiddles! Learn all you'll ever need to know about these gorgeous plants at fiddleleaffigplant.com

Plant Care Tip #1: Eat, Drink & Be Merry- Holiday Plant Care Tips
fiddle leaf fig christmas

The latest in plant care tips for keeping your foliage happy and healthy, brought to you by premium plant delivery service Léon & George.

The holiday season is upon us which means we get to eat, drink and be merry! When it comes to our houseplants though, these things mean something a little different... 

Eat

During winter months, houseplants are not actively growing and don’t need to be “fed”. They reach a state of dormancy this time of year as they sense the colder temperatures and drier air. As a result, your plants won’t need fertilizing until February or March!

Drink

Like us, plants notice seasonal changes and unlike us, they don’t love the warm air our heaters provide. Furnaces and fireplaces cause houseplants to dry out very quickly. Be sure to check the soil of your plants on a weekly basis. Stick your finger an inch into the soil to test moisture levels. If it is dry, add water around the base of the plant. About 1 cup for small plants and 2 cups for big plants.

drinkplants.jpg

Be Merry

Keep your plants cheerful and bright by dusting off their leaves. This keeps them shiny and allows them to absorb more light.  

Trimming the tree (or in this case, your houseplant) is another way to keep them merry. Clipping off brown or yellow areas highlights healthy greenery and ensures that nutrients are being distributed properly. With regular scissors you can re-shape leaves, or remove dying leaves completely by clipping close to the base of the stem. This encourages new, fresh growth!

Untitled design (25).jpg

The tips we've provided are a general rule of (green) thumb. Keep in mind, different plants have different needs and each space has varying conditions in terms of humidity, light, and temperature. Finding the right balance is key to the overall health of your plants and will ensure that they are able to eat, drink and be merry this holiday season!

Making Sure Plants Survive Your Vacation

Your plants can be okay even if you’re not around to take care of them. With just a tiny bit of advance prep, you can leave home for weeks at a time without killing off your leafy green friends.

Some tips:

  • If you’re leaving for a week or less, a good soaking will be all you need. You normally don’t want to oversaturate the soil with water, but this is an exception. As always, be sure not to leave any standing water in the saucer, as that may result in pests or root rot.

  • If you’re leaving for a couple of weeks, after watering as described above, try putting some moss, leaves, wood chips, or pebbles on top of the exposed soil. Basically any natural material than can keep moisture in. Our plants at Léon & George come with green moss on top that’s decorative but also helps the soil retain moisture.

  • If you’re leaving for a really long time, well that sounds pretty exciting, but it also means you’ll have to cover the plant in a plastic bag to help keep moisture in. Make sure the bag sits above the top of the pot, and keep it off the foliage with some sticks. Cut some slits in the bag to make sure the plant can still breathe. Alternatively, you may consider simply asking a friend to come water the plants for you.

  • Plants that like humidity may do better in the bathroom while you’re gone, provided there’s a source of light in there. But remember not to give plants more light than they’re used to getting, because that might stimulate growth which uses up more water.

  • For the same reason as above, don’t feed the plant any fertilizer in the days and weeks before you leave, as that will also stiumlate growth at the wrong time.

  • Prune off any unhealthy, dead or dying leaves by plucking them off if they come out easily, or by cutting them with a sharp scissor at the base of the stem. In doing so, the plant will waste less energy trying to keep those leaves alive.

If you’re looking for a quick and stress-free way of getting beautiful houseplants, try Léon & George. We have a great selection of easy-care plants and beautiful pots and deliver them right to your door.