We all know what that means… Wet Ass Plants! And this kind of WAP is not a good thing.
Water is a basic necessity to keep your plants alive, but sometimes people mistake watering their plants for love – the more water the more love. It is possible to overwater your plants which will leave your plant baby struggling to survive.
It’s better to be on the drier side than the wet in the case of house plants. Overwatering will basically prevent oxygen from reaching your plant’s roots. Roots need oxygen and too much water will drown them. Rotting roots will not absorb any more water so ironically it cannot drink. The roots immediately affected will start to rot and then spread to the healthy roots (root rot). If caught in time it can be reversed, but it is better and simpler if you avoid the situation altogether.
How do you know if you have been overwatering your plants? It can be a bit confusing since some of the signs are similar to if you have been under-watering them. That is why you need to check the wetness of the soil. Some signs are yellowing leaves that are dropping off or no new growth. The soil may smell funny since excess moisture will encourage bacteria and fungi to grow. Another obvious sign is those pesky little fungus gnats (I like having a few sundew plants or those yellow sticky traps).
There are plenty of ways to check to see if your plant needs watering. Probably the easiest way is to lift your plant and pot. Does it feel significantly lighter? Has the soil started to contract from the pot? Does the plant pop out of the nursery pot? If you have answered yes, then it is definitely time for a good drink. Another simple way is to insert your finger (I like to use a chopstick) into the soil about five cm deep (I prefer halfway down the pot). Like a cake, if it comes out clean then your house plant will need to be watered. If there are still some soil damp ‘crumbs’ then leave it another day or so. Your plants don’t need a regular watering routine, but a regular routine of checking your plants is always a good idea.
We send out our houseplants in a nursery pot made of recycled plastic. There are drainage holes to try to prevent the soil from getting saturated after watering. If you want a decorative pot for indoor plants, then get one so that your nursery pot will fit into it. We have loads to choose from. If your nursery pot says 12 cm then aim to get a decorative pot a few cm larger (message us if you need a confirmation your plant fits into your chosen pot).
Our range of pots includes Bergs Potter and Elho which are sustainably made and easy to clean. If you do overwater your plant, the nursery pot will drain the excess water into your decorative pot. The excess water can be disposed of instead of your plant sitting in wetness. We wouldn’t really recommend repotting a house plant directly into a decorative pot because it leaves too much to chance. You can either water them from the top, but be careful not to get too much onto the leaves or water them from the bottom by leaving your plant in about five to 10 cm of water for 10 to 20 minutes.
A little time, practice and patience will mean no more WAP!