Symptom: Spindly Plants, Few Flowers
Possible Cause: Poor lighting conditions.
Management: Most indoor plants need an average of 14 hours of sunlight each day. Do an Internet search to find out the proper amount of direct light, indirect light, or shade that your particular plant requires to thrive.
Symptom: Few Flowers, Excessive Foliage
Symptom: Yellowing Leaves
Possible Causes: Overwatering, low humidity, poor soil drainage, low temperatures, or pot-bound roots.
Management: If the weather has changed suddenly, make sure that your plant is not in a draft, near a heater, or reacting to an unexpected environmental change. Check that your pot has adequate drainage and that the plant isn't root bound.
Related: 8 Plants Never to Grow Indoors
Symptom: Scorched Leaves
Possible Cause: Too much direct sunlight.
Management: Move plant from direct to indirect sunlight, prune the affected leaves, and resume deep, infrequent waterings to promote healthy root growth. Avoid overfertilizing, as this will exacerbate the burn.
Symptom: Brown Leaf Tips
Possible Causes: Too much fertilizer or pesticides, dry soil, low temperature, hot air, accumulated salts, or root rot.
Management: It bears repeating—most indoor plants need to be fertilized only once a month, at most. Stand pots in shallow, pebble-lined trays that are filled with water to increase humidity (pots should sit on the pebbles, above the water line). Once a month, apply enough water to the top of the soil to thoroughly flush excess salts through the drainage hole.
Symptom: Small Leaves or Wilting Plant
Possible Causes: Soil remains either too wet or too dry.
Management: Develop a watering routine that is infrequent but deep to promote healthy root growth and combat root rot. If root rot is suspected, remove the plant from its container, examine the root system, and cut out infected roots (blackened root tips with slimy decay), then repot using sterile potting mix and a clean pot.
Symptom: Spots on Leaves
Possible Causes: Fungal leaf spot, water spots.
Management: If the plant is already affected, isolate it from other plants and pick off infected leaves. To prevent spotting, increase air circulation by increasing space between plants, and take care not to splash water on leaves when watering.
Symptom: Leaf Tips Turn Yellow, Then brown; Entire Leaf May Die
Symptom: White Powdery Fungal Growth on Foliage, Leaf Distortion, Leaf Drop
Symptom: Brown to Black Soft or Punky Roots, Wilted Plants
Symptom: Stunting, Dieback, and Distortion
If you pay close attention, your plants will tell you what they need.
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