Starting to propagate houseplants is always exciting considering the benefits it would bring to you and your environment. However, when challenges arise that affect the budding and flowering of houseplants, it can seem that previous efforts have been wasted.
Finding out that your favorite houseplant is stunting is always disheartening, and not knowing why the houseplant is dying is frustrating.
This is a comprehensive guide that explains the symptoms of a dying houseplant, why they go bad, how to revive them, and how to prevent them from dying.
How do I know my houseplants are dying?
The following symptoms are indicators that your plants are no longer growing healthily:
- The leaves are turning yellow.
- Mold grows on the floor.
- The leaves are falling at an alarming rate.
- Leaf color change from light to dull; the leaves turn brown.
- The leaves are starting to wilt.
Why are my plants dying?
A slowdown in the growth process of a houseplant is often caused by many factors. It is best to familiarize yourself with the clues that make it difficult for the desired houseplant to survive before propagation so that you are properly prepared for any problems that arise during the propagation process.
These are common factors that can lead to the death of your houseplants. The aggregation of all these factors contributes to a rapid decline in the growth process of the indoor plant.
1. Inadequate lighting
Most houseplants need lots of bright light, although this will vary depending on the type of houseplant and the variety of that houseplant.
In general, houseplants thrive in environments where they receive plenty of bright light, either sunlight or artificial light. When exposed to insufficient exposure, a deterioration process begins with a change in foliage before other signs take over.
While most houseplants need bright light, most don’t do well in full sun. If exposed to direct sunlight for a long time, they tend to lose their colors, a sign that the appearance of the foliage is compromised.
2. Bad soil mix
Your houseplant may die faster if propagated in unsuitable soil. Therefore, you need to study the nature of your plant and all that goes with it in order to propagate it successfully.
Some houseplants need organic soil without added chemicals, while others can thrive in organic or inorganic soil. The soil mix always depends on the type of houseplant and its variety.
Indoor plants usually have to choose the environment in which the plant is grown, either indoors and outdoors, outdoors, in pots, or in the ground. All of these factors contribute to the right soil mix for your houseplant.
3. Humidity level
It is an important factor that contributes to the survival and flowering of your houseplant. Most indoor plants need a warm climate and a humid environment to survive. The humidity your houseplant needs to survive plays a role in choosing the environment for your plant.
Some can survive both indoors and outdoors, but changes still need to be made when a new season begins, especially in winter when weather conditions are not suitable for the houseplant.
If a tropical houseplant is exposed to extreme weather conditions, it is likely to decline because the weather is harsh and not beneficial to the plant. You have to be flexible when it comes to changing the environment of the houseplant to offer it what suits it best.
This is a struggle that most indoor plant growers face. Insufficient irrigation and excess water hinder the growth of houseplants because watering is vital for the survival of the houseplant. Houseplants, depending on their variety, need a lot of water, although some need more water than others.
If the plant is not watered enough, the plant will not receive any nutrients and the leaves will start falling, indicating that the plant has run out of necessary nutrients. When overwatered, all houseplants face the problem of root rot, a condition in which the roots begin to rot and affect all parts of the houseplant.
In general, houseplants thrive in moist, not soggy soil. Wet soil is soil that is neither dry nor soggy, while soggy soil is soaked with water.
5. Inappropriate containers/bottles
As mentioned, some houseplants can be grown both indoors and outdoors. When grown indoors and in some cases outdoors, depending on the growers choice, the use of pots and containers is often used to enhance the beauty of the houseplant and limit the growth and business to some extent.
Selecting pots that do not allow free drainage of water from the soil is not suitable for indoor plants, as they are prone to overwatering.
Fertilizers provide additional nutrients to the soil and thus stimulate the growth of the indoor plant. As much as fertilization contributes to a plant’s survival, it’s important to know the recommended fertilizer and the amount needed at the same time.
Pests occur when a large number of insects or pests invade your houseplant. Infestations are difficult, especially when the plants start to be affected.
They occur when the houseplant’s soil is dry or when infested outdoor soil is used for a houseplant. The sign that your houseplant is infested with pests is a change in leaf color and holes in the leaves. If not detected and treated early, pests can take a toll on your houseplant.
Transplantation is necessary when the soil of the houseplant needs to be changed and the plant has outgrown the container. The soil of potted houseplants loses nutrients over time and needs to be changed.
Soils lose nutrients over time and lead to a decline in plant growth. Refusal to transplant plants results in root binding and prevents the root from getting the nutrients it needs.
9. Environmental shocks
Some houseplants do not tolerate shock well if moved to a different environment. A small change in temperature and humidity level can negatively affect plants, causing them to weaken and die.
If you’ve recently changed your houseplant’s environment and you’re noticing leaves falling off or plants dying, environmental impact may be to blame.
In addition to preserving the shape of houseplants, pruning helps eliminate unhealthy plant parts and ensures even distribution of nutrients to all parts of the houseplant. When plants are not pruned frequently, they struggle for available nutrients which are disadvantageously insufficient.
How to revive dying houseplants?
When trying to revive a dying houseplant, determine what caused the decline and how far the houseplant has gone to determine if the plant has a chance of surviving. The following measures can help breathe new life into your houseplant:
- Transplantation: Transplant the plant by changing the soil; Seeing that the new soil has enough nutrients needed for plant survival gives the plant a fresh start and a better chance of survival.
- Relief: If insufficient lighting is responsible for the deterioration; provide bright but indirect sunlight to the plant. Artificial lighting can be used instead of sunlight. If in direct sunlight, provide shade to shade the plants.
- water: Adjust your watering schedule to the needs of the plant. If the plant has had too much water for too long, the soil should be amended. You need to water minimally to allow the roots to fully recover. Check the soil structure before and after irrigation to measure the amount of water needed. At the end of the irrigation, the soil should be moist and not soggy.
- pan above: When selecting pots or containers, perforated specimens are suitable for all houseplants. They help prevent flooding
- Humidity: Provide a humid environment for your tropical houseplant. Humidifiers and misting sheets provide the proper atmosphere and environment for indoor plants. In winter, outdoor plants should be moved to a warmer area.
- infections: If an infestation has not gotten out of hand, insecticides or insecticidal soaps can be used to repel pests and insects. Consider separating infested plants from healthy plants to limit the spread.
- Fertilization: Dying houseplants usually need to be repotted to give them a fresh start. If over-fertilization is not responsible for the decline, it would help stimulate plant growth. On the other hand, if over-fertilization is the cause of dieback, avoid using fertilizer after transplanting to help the roots recover.
- cut: Once the plant becomes too bushy, prune to remove unhealthy parts. Sterilize pruning equipment before use to prevent the spread of parasites. Also, make sure the plant is not infected before moving an outdoor plant indoors. Close it off from other plants for a while to watch for signs of pests and limit the spread of pests.
- Environmental shock: If the houseplant is susceptible to the impact of environmental changes, avoid altering the environment except in unavoidable cases. If the environment changes, choose a permanent location for the plant and maintain it properly. In a short time, the plant would recover.
The survival of a dying houseplant depends on how far that plant travels. If all the above measures seem ineffective, then maybe it’s time to throw out such a houseplant and start a new propagation, but this time well equipped with enough information.
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