During the brighter months of Spring and Summer, feeding our plants can be as important as watering. It’s during this time that most indoor plants will begin to grow again after their Winter hibernation. To assist this spurt, we must provide the plant soil with a fresh boost of nutrients to keep it healthy and allow it to flourish.
In the Wild
In the wild, plants can sprawl out and find nutrients in soil, rain and decomposing materials. However when we keep them in pots - nutrients in the soil will deplete over time as the plant consumes them. It's up to us to find our plant the nutrients it needs.
We can do this by supplementing the soil with some plant food or fertiliser. Thus saving our plants from growing in soil devoid of nutrition.
Types of Fertiliser
They’re are many different forms of fertiliser that you can get and even make yourself.
Different forms include liquid, capsules, granules, slow release, and pre-mixed compost. If you prefer to DIY, you can make your own plant food using materials that decompose such as egg shells, coffee grounds, tea bags and epsom salts.
How Often Should I Feed My Plant?
How often you feed your plant will depend on what type of fertiliser you are using, and what type of plant it is. It's not necessarily one-size-fits-all. It’s advisable to follow the individual instructions on the bottle of your fertiliser.
It’s also important to research your specific plant for an idea of feeding frequency. Some enjoy a weekly dose, others every few months.
It's important to remember that fertiliser should only be used on healthy plants that are growing. Feeding a plant that’s in decline, or dying is not a great idea, as you may over stimulate it and even contribute to its death.
Think of your plant feed as a way of maintaining the plant's health - like vitamins for people.
When does the Growing Season Begin?
As a general rule, the growing season is the Spring & Summer months. Indoor plants will see the most growth during the summer with brighter and warmer temperatures. The increase in light has a huge impact on their foliage from which they obtain their energy.
In the Northern Hemisphere, our ideal growing months are roughly March to September.
When to Stop Feeding Your Houseplants?
The growth of your indoor plants will slow down hugely as the months get colder and darker - from around October to March. (Read more about this here) For this reason, they wont require as much nutrition. Plants can get overwhelmed easily, particularly when they are in a near dormant phase. So feeding them during the Winter could prove detrimental to your unsuspecting plant. This is also why we cut down on the frequency of watering during these months.
Clay's Organic Plant Food by Botanopia
Here at Clay, we stock an Organic Plant Food Nutrient on our website; ideal for your plants, and the planet. Our plant feed is made from 100% beets vinasse which is a byproduct of the sugar beet plant.
Using the Plant Feed
For Potted Plants, use two drops per 250ml of water. So one litre watering cans will require eight drops. How often you feed your plants will depend on the plant. Some require less frequent than others, but on average, we would recommend every 2/3 weeks.
Grown in Water
Our organic plant feed is also suitable for hydroculture plants that grow in water. Similarly to soil, water will become depleted from its nutritional value after just a few weeks. Topping it off with a few drops of this fertiliser will replenish those nutrients.
Just remember that this solution must be diluted in water. Don't apply it directly to your plants of you could harm them.
Clay's Organic Seaweed Feed by Norfolk Natural Living
Alongside Botanopia's Organic Plant Feed we also offer an organic seaweed-based feed and atomiser set from Norfolk Natural Living, basic in Holt, Norfolk in the United Kingdom.
Using the Plant Feed
The advantage to seaweed-based plant feeds is the nutrient balance contained within them can be absorbed through the leaves and stems of plants, meaning the feed can be applied directly onto the foliage using a mister or atomizer. This alternative method reduces the risk of overwatering while also still allowing you to give your beloved plant a nutrient boost even when it may not be in need of water.
To use this feed mix roughly 8 drops in 150ml of water in a mister or atomiser. Spray the feed directly on to the leaves and stems of the plant. We recommend making the feed fresh each time you wish to apply.
Our Composts and Plant Feeds
Clay: The Contemporary Botany Company
We lovingly curate a selection of indoor plants & handmade pots. Delivered across Dublin and Nationwide.
Words by: Clay: The Contemporary Botany Company