Bringing the Outdoors In: Indoor Plant Care

Jun 22, 2016 | By New Darlings

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsNew Darlings - Indoor PlantsIt’s no secret we love adding plants to our indoor spaces. Every room in our apartment is full of everything from small cactus and succulents to hanging plants and indoor trees. We’re not exactly sure where our love for bringing the outdoors in began, but thinking back on it a bit, it most likely had something to do with our love for the 60s & 70s, along with vintage home decor. When looking back on old photos of our parents from the 70s, their homes were always full of potted and hanging plants (and a ton of macrame). They add character, purify the air, and bring so much positivity. We love the watering routine. Waking up in the morning and grabbing the watering can is usually the first thing we do when getting out of bed on the weekends, after getting the coffee brewing of course. One of us makes breakfast, while the other is making their way from room to room trying not to forget any plants. We have so many tucked away in each corner, on every shelf, even in the bathroom. Basically, the more plants, the better.

So, how do we take care of them? This is probably one of the most asked questions we get and fear not, we will share all we know about indoor plant care. We never really had green thumbs, but we picked up some tips and tricks along the way, learned what worked and also what really didn’t work and are pretty proud of some plant babies that have been with us for several years now.

So let’s dive in!

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsWHAT PLANTS ARE RIGHT FOR ME?
This is probably the first thing you should ask yourself when creating your own indoor jungle. Every plant is different and it may sound silly, but considering your lifestyle is the best way to choose which plants to bring in your home and how to hang/display them. We work from home most of the time and thankfully have a lot of natural light in our apartment. If you travel a lot or are gone for most of the day and don’t like keeping your curtains open, low light plants will be a better option for you. Here are a few of our favorite indoor plants that are relatively easy to take care of:

-Heart-leafed Philodendron
-String of pearls
-Lipstick plants
-Fish hook/Banana plant
-Golden Pothos
-Burro Tail

Potted/Floor Plants:
-Rubber trees
-Fiddle Leaf Fig trees
-Snake plant
-Monstera Deliciosa/”Cottage Cheese Plant”
-Zamioculcas/”ZZ Plant”
-Staghorn Fern

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsWHERE SHOULD I BUY MY PLANTS?
We are constantly finding new nurseries and plant shops in Phoenix. If you’re local, Berridge Nursery, Dig It, Camelback Flowershop, and The Bosque are some of our favorites that we definitely recommend. There are also some big box stores like IKEA, Home Depot, and Lowes, that have some great options. For bigger purchases like a Fiddle Leaf Fig or large cactus, we like to stick to some more of the local specialty nurseries. In our experience they last longer and continue to thrive more quickly, and you’re more likely to find something a little different and unique. That doesn’t mean that you won’t have luck at Home Depot for example, just our own experience with it. We do pick up succulents here and there at our local Home Depot and still have a ZZ plant from IKEA that is going strong with very little care.

New Darlings - Indoor Plantshanging shelves made by The Perspective Shop | watering can via Amazon

So this will be different for everyone, and especially dependent on the type of plants you have and where you live. In Arizona, the air is VERY dry, so our watering routine may seem a little different. Here’s what works for us…

Leafy Plants: All of the leafy plants in our home (Fiddle Leaf Fig, Philodendrons, Pothos, Snake plants, Fishhook/String of Bananas, Monstera, etc…) we water once a week like clock work. Once on Sunday morning and a little misting in-between during the week (to create a humid environment for them) has done the trick. If you see a plant getting a little droopy here or there, give it a good soak. We saw this happen with our Monstera Deliciosa/”Cottage Cheese Plant”, (which can be a little temperamental). We put it in our bathtub gave it a little shower and it perked right back up. Side note: We’ve noticed those plants in particular really don’t like to be moved often. They get used to where they are in your home and will react to a change in light and/or location.

Cactus: We keep an eye on these and just water them when the soil feels dry. This is usually every two to three weeks and probably one of the easiest ways to bring some greenery into your home.

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsTriangle shelf c/o DarkMarqueeDeigns on Etsy

Succulents: These were the most difficult for us to take care of, because we wanted to baby them, but we are getting better remembering not to over water them and just let them do their own thing with a bit of misting in between. We’ve read and heard all different opinions on this, but in our experience, the more we left the succulents alone, the better they did. They require adequate light, but not direct sunlight, so don’t put them too close to a window. If they look almost bleached in color, they’re getting too much sun. We keep our succulents (and small cactus) on a shelf opposite a window in our living room. So far, so good.

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsFerns: We have a Staghorn Fern (pictured on the bench in the photo above), which is such a fun and unique looking plant with fuzzy leaves. We water it twice a week but if you live in a more humid climate or have your fern in the bathroom once a week should be alright. Ferns make perfect bathroom plants!

When purchasing new plants, we always like to repot them a week or so after bringing them home, just so they don’t get “shocked” in their new environment. This was something we started doing the last year with our plants, and it has made a huge difference. Thankfully, we haven’t had to replace one yet. After your plants get acquainted to their new home, take them outside to be repotted.

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsNew Darlings - Indoor PlantsNew Darlings - Indoor PlantsWHAT ARE SOME DIFFERENT WAYS TO DISPLAY PLANTS?
Macrame and beaded hangers, ceramic pots, baskets, the list goes on. We like to use a mix of terra-cotta pots and basket throughout our home. Baskets are an easy way to being a boho touch to any space. We’ve gotten lucky with finding great ones at thrift stores, even one for around $5 in Palm Springs on our last trip there. When using baskets be sure to pick up a plastic tray/floor guard. This will protect your baskets and floors from any damage when watering. Terra-cotta planters are always a nice classic go to, and can easily be found at any local nursery. We’re fans of the white washed look too, plus its a simple weekend project to do with friends. Some sites like CB2 and Crate and Barrel have some sleep solid ceramic pots, for a more modern look. A lot of online stores are also selling plant swings now, which a great way to add a variety of heights and create depth with your plant displays.

Below are a few of our favorite planters from around the web:

New Darlings - Indoor PlantsLast but not least, mix up the textures and sizes of your plants when creating your indoor jungle. Create a vignette that looks effortless, yet still cohesive with a nice flow. Mix a large floor plant with thicker leaves, a softer airy plant, and possibly something with a bit more structure like a snake plant. There’s really no right or wrong way to do it, as long as it brings you joy and don’t forget to sing to your plant babies!

Follow along with us on Pinterest for more plantlife inspiration!

28 comments on “Bringing the Outdoors In: Indoor Plant Care”

  1. YES. I was just about to hang my head and say bye to my plants (that keep dying on me!) but you inspired me to keep trying — and to leave my succulents alone! 😉 xoxo

    1. So glad this post helped a bit. Don’t give up on them. You can definitely save your plant babies and try just misting your succulents here and there, rather than giving them a full water. 🙂 XO

  2. One thing Andrew and I do with our succulents is spray them lightly rather then fully watering them. They only need a tiny bit of water every week or two depending on the dryness. So a few squirts will do. We created our giant succulent filled shelf about a month ago and our cacti are already growing and sprouting newbies! Great post you two!

    Cody & Andrew

  3. This might be a silly question, but I always have this issue of overwatering then getting the floor or whatever surface the plant is resting on wet. To avoid it I started bringing the plants into the tub to water them but this obviously takes ages. Do you have any tips, how do you know that you gave a plant enough water, but not so much that the roots rot or water damage the house?

    1. Hi Chantal, its not silly at all! We have trays under all of the pots our plants are in, or if they’re in baskets we have plastic trays within the basket to avoid any water that may seep out and get on the floor. When talking with the employees at a local nursery they said that when watering, if the tray fills up completely with water, then you overwatered the plant. So, we kind of just take it slow when watering them, sometimes going in a circular motion like pour-over coffee, if that makes sense. Haha. This way we can see how much is seeping out into the tray. Hope that helps a bit! 🙂

  4. Pingback: » Cafe Charm
  5. the water canister seems to have a nozzle that is easy to distribute water. where might someone find one like that?

  6. I’m an AZ local, so it’s helpful to read your tips on watering for our persnickety environment. 🙂 I had a few succulents but had to move them outside because I got gnats. Have you experienced this or have any tips on how to avoid it? I suspect it was a cactus that I was gifted that I found out after the fact was from a their yard. 🙁

  7. Hi!
    What a lovely blog and informative and encouraging post!
    I was wondering if you ever have to deal with mealy bugs? They are on my plants I can’t seem to get rid of them!

  8. Hi
    I was wondering what the beautiful plants are that you have hanging in the beaded hanger as well as the double macrame hanger? Thanks so much. I am obsessed with houseplants and this has been a great resource for me. I enjoyed this post a lot!

  9. Hey! Great post, i love the hanging planter recommendations. Quick question though, have you ever had issues with bugs in your indoor plants? If so, how have you gone about it? I think my Pothos (not sure the full name of the plant) as tiny tiny white critters on it and i’m freaking out! If you have any tips of experiences to share, that’d be awesome!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

powered by chloédigital