Is your houseplant turning brown on the tips?
There are several factors that can contribute for your plants foliage to have dried tips. Just like our hair, dry split ends are a warning that something needs to change with your regiment.
Here’s 3 reasons that will help you to prevent it in the first place.
1. Watering Habits
With the exception of succulents and some herbs, houseplants all have the same watering rules. The key word is, consistency. Brown tips is often “the” indication of bad watering habits. Most indoor plants require water only once a week, unless the weather is hot and dry or if the plant is rapidly growing. Before watering, check how dry the soil is, by using your finger at least 2 inches below the surface; then, slowly water your plant giving it time for the water to go through its roots. Stop when you see water run out the drainage holes, and don’t forget to empty the saucer, so the pot doesn’t absorb unnecessary water, which will consequently rot the roots of your plant, causing other issues.
2. Lack of Humidity
I know, I keep on comparing plants to humans, but the truth is, were not that different. Air condition is a huge part of our daily life and the same way it affects us humans by making our skin dry and itchy, eyes irritated, increasing the risk of flu and other infections substantially; to plants, it will dry their natural “transpiration”, which is what helps the plant to cool down. Dry air acts almost like a straw, that pulls the water from the soil, into the roots, through the stems, up to the leaves and into thin air. To boost their natural transpiration, fill up the bottom of the pot with about 3 fingers of medium pebbles, so when you water your plant, the excess water can be left in the saucer; as it evaporates, it will create a micro climate and keep humidity levels up. If this is too much work, just simply sprinkle water on the leaves in between watering.
3. Salt build-up
House fertilizers carry salt, which with time, it will build-up in your soil. Now, most potted plants need fertilizer, so they get the nutrients needed to a healthy growth; but just like our body and our vitamins, a little goes a long way. When your feeding the correct amount of fertilizer, the build-up will still accumulate in the potting mix, so, it is wise to repot with fresh, new soil, a minimum of every couple of years. Distilled or filtered water will also help to keep your plants happy.
Away with the tips
Once you start making these changes, new, healthy leaves will start to grow. As for the miserable leaves with the brown tips, cut the tip off with a scissor, I promise you will not hurt it. If your plant is a dracaena or a spider plant or any plant with a long foliage, take the chance to be artistic and cut the tip at an angle to imitate the natural shape of their leaves. This is a “almost as new” trick, just until the fresh new foliage fills in.