3x3 Plant Subscription Program
Welcome to our classic subscription program! We’re excited to have you embark on this journey with Grounded. Every month for 3 months, you will receive 1 of 3 of the following plants: Sansevieria Laurentii Snake Plant, Golden Pothos, and Jade Plant at your door step.
On this members only exclusive page, you will have access to exclusive information, tips and tricks to assist you with caring for your plants. We will update it with content periodically that will help you navigate owning your plants.
Our 4 inch Crassula Ovata, also known as the Jade plant, is a renowned good luck plant and native to South Africa. Low maintenance and beginner-friendly, the Jade plant has a miniature, tree-like appearance that makes them very appealing as a decorative houseplant. They live for a very long time, often being passed down from generation to generation and reaching heights of three feet or more when grown indoors. Jade plants adapt well to the warm, dry conditions found in most homes.
Our 6in Epipremnum Aureum, commonly called the Golden Pothos or Devil’s ivy, is native to the Solomon Islands. It is a climbing vine that produces abundant yellow-marbled foliage. In its native habitat, it climbs tree trunks by aerial rootlets and tumbles along the ground as a ground cover, reaching up to 40 feet or more in length. The Golden Pothos is arguably the easiest of all houseplants to grow, even if you are a person who forgets to water your plants.
Our 6in Sansevieria Laurentii, also known as the Snake Plant or Mother-In-Law's Tongue, is one of the most popular and hardy species of houseplants. An architectural species, it features stiff leaves that range from six inches to eight feet tall, depending on the variety. Snake Plants usually have green banded leaves, while the variety commonly known as Mother-In-Law's Tongue typically features a yellow border. Sansevieria has a demonstrated ability to remove formaldehyde and benzene from the air.
caring for your plants
Firstly, congratulations on becoming a new plant parent or continuing your plant parent journey with us! In this section we will highlight a few essential tips regarding to caring for your plants.
Watering can: You'll need to water your plant of course, so investing in a watering can is a good idea.
Spray Bottle: Most indoor houseplants come from tropical climates so recreating the environment in which they come from enhances the plant growth. Misting your houseplants creates a humid environment.
Pruning Shears: Chances are you'll need to prune your plant at some point, so a pair of pruning shears may come in handy, though they can be pricey and scissors will do the job unless your plant has woody stems.
Gardening Gloves: For repotting and handling your plants!
Dirt: Always and we mean always, keep a bag of indoor potting mix.
There are a variety of ways to gauge when your plant is eager for another drink, but the easiest is to feel the soil an inch or two down (surfaces can be deceiving). If it’s dry, water. If it’s not, don’t. If you’re not sure, leave it alone for another day. Most plants prefer to be drier rather than wetter, and overwatering invites pests and disease.
Other ways to tell if your plant needs water:
- Lift the pot. If it feels abnormally light, it needs water.
- Look at it. Is it visibly drooping? Do the leaves feel limp rather than firm? It probably needs water.
- Poke a toothpick or pencil an inch or two into the soil as if you are testing to see if a cupcake is finished baking. Water if it comes out clean.
Other things to keep in mind about watering:
- Plants in terracotta pots need to be watered more than those in plastic or glazed ceramic containers. Terracotta “breathes” through the pores in the clay.
- Plants in small pots need to be watered more than plants in large pots because they have more surface area relative to their mass, meaning they dry out more quickly.
- Plants use more water when they are actively growing than they do during the dormant season. If you see signs that new leaves and buds are forming, it might be time to ramp up watering.
- Thick-leaved plants like succulents or sansevieria need less water than plants with thin leaves like a peace lily (which droops noticeably when thirsty).
Rainwater: Rainwater is the #1 preferred choice of plants to grow fast and healthy. Rainwater is 10)% soft water free of salts and treatment chemicals. It is full of natural minerals that are necessary for plant growth and will make your plants grow bigger and healthier than any other type of water.
Spring Water: Using bottled spring water for your indoor plants will make a big difference for them. Bottled spring waters may contain natural minerals that are needed by plants, depending on the water source. They do not contain added chemicals or contaminants, including chlorine and fluoride.
Tap Water: Tap water is the least preferred type of water for your houseplant. Tap water contains calcium and magnesium which can build up on the wall surface causing a whie powdery film. These concentrated salts can cause dehydration of the root structures.
Houseplants generally like the same indoor temperatures that people do—somewhere between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 50 and 70 degrees at night. Hardy houseplants will flourish anywhere in this spectrum. More delicate selections might shiver if your house runs cold. Above 80 degrees, you’ll encounter frequent wilting for most all houseplants.
Keep in mind, too, that some rooms (and even some areas of those rooms) will be cooler or warmer than others, no matter what the thermostat says. Plants sitting directly below a heating vent can suffer under the deluge of hot, dry air. The kitchen and bathroom are frequently warmer than your bedroom, which may factor into placement. Keeping plants near a window in winter is not usually an issue unless it is particularly drafty. Do your best to seal up the cracks or find your plant a new spot.
Nope, it’s not, but finding a good potting mix isn’t hard. Good potting soil has a light crumbly texture and retains moisture without becoming muddy or swampy when you water it. The best choices for most houseplants should have lots of organic material (humus, compost, bark, loam) and some peat moss. Organic brands are great options.
Lots of times you see recommendations for soilless mixtures that don’t contain any organic material because they have good drainage and don’t compact. These are made mostly from peat moss mixed with vermiculite, a mica, or perlite, a type of volcanic glass. But they also don’t have any nutrients, aside from whatever the manufacturer adds in, and they dry out more quickly. A good organic humus mix will serve you better in the long run.
An environmental note about peat moss:
Peat moss, or sphagnum peat moss, is a common ingredient in potting mixes. Peat moss is mined from bogs, mostly in Canada and Europe. It’s formed as moss decomposes over several millennia beneath the bog’s surface without the presence of air. It’s great at retaining water while still providing good drainage, which is why it’s become a popular ingredient in potting mixes. Unfortunately, it’s also a nonrenewable resource since it forms so slowly, and mining it releases a lot of carbon into the atmosphere, so it’s best to look for mixes that use it sparingly. If you’re interested in learning more, you can read this deep dive into the peat issue in the Washington Post.
Specialty soil mixes:
Most houseplants will love an all-purpose, ordinary organic potting mix, but some are a little extra. Cacti and succulents like a sandy mix designed especially for them (although most will deal if you don’t want to buy them something separate). Orchid mix contains a lot of bark and hardwood charcoal, which works for orchids and other epiphytic types like bromeliads that naturally grow clinging to trees or logs rather than in the ground. The blend is named for orchids because they are especially fussy about it.
Sunlight: Moderate maintenance. Locate it in bright indirect light to prevent leaf scorching.
Water: Water once a week so the soil is moist but not wet, making sure drainage is adequate. Reduce watering to monthly in the winter.
Pets: Mildly toxic to pets if ingested.
Aesthetic: Glossy, oblong or round foliage, shining in a deep shade of green resembling a miniature tree.
Benefits: Air purifying and removes volatile organic compounds in your home. Also absorbs CO2 at night increasing the quality of air while you sleep.
Spiritual Interpretations: Jade plant is believed to attract prosperity and fortune in Asian countries. In Feng Shui, it’s a symbol of good luck and consistency because it’s an evergreen plant.
Sunlight: Low/Moderate maintenance. Locate it in bright indirect light. A forgiving houseplant that grows even in low lighting and drought-like condition in cool temperature.
Water: Water once a week. You should wait to water the plant until the potting medium is dry a few inches down.
Pets: Mildly toxic to pets if ingested.
Aesthetic: Known for their heart-shaped leaves and fast-growing vines. Perfect in entryways, on bookshelves and bookcases.
Benefits: Purifies your air from formaldehyde and carbon monoxide. Toxins that can lead to poor health and low productivity. Resistant to insects.
Spiritual Interpretations: Perseverance and longing. Abundance energy. Known as the money plant in many cultures. For someone who continually follows their dreams.
Sunlight: Low Maintenance, slow growers that thrive in bright light but can uniquely flourish in low light. Resilient.
Water: Water bi-weekly or when soil is completely dry.
Pets: Mildly toxic to pets if ingested.
Aesthetic: Recognized by its evergreen sword-shaped leaves that grow upright. presents as slender, green leaves with grey or silver horizontal streaks. Perfect in the bedroom, office/desk, and on a coffee table.
Benefits: Emits oxygen and improves air quality by filtering toxins from the air such as benzene, xylene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde.
Spirituality Interpretations: long life, prosperity, beauty, health, strength, intelligence.
TROUBLESHOOTING your plants
If your plants are healthy and you let the soil surface dry out between waterings, insect infestations should be rare. Bugs go for the weaklings.
If you do spot bugs, your plan of attack will depend on what kind of insects you have. Some are easily decimated. Other times it might make more sense to sacrifice the plant rather than wage a war.
Aphids are the most common pest for indoor plants. They are smaller than an ant, have soft bodies, and are found in handfuls. Organic insecticidal soaps usually do the trick against them. Insecticidal soap can also be used against spider mites, which weave tiny white webs in foliage, and scale bugs, which look like brown lumps on the leaves and stems.
Whiteflies, tiny things that look like white gnats, can be attacked with a combo of sticky traps and insecticidal soap. Mealybugs create cottony globs on the leaves and stems (root mealybugs do the same in the roots). They are notoriously hard to treat with insecticides and infected plants may be better off composted.
Dropping leaves are like the fever-and-stuffy-nose symptom equivalent of the plant world. It can mean anything. Maybe it’s just allergies, but it might also be the flu.
Or it might be nothing. Even healthy plants drop leaves sometimes. So if your plant loses a leaf here and there, don’t panic. Don’t even bat an eye.
But if your plant is losing a bunch of leaves at once and showing signs of discomfort like yellowing and limpness, you need to investigate. Start with the most common culprit: water. Overwatering is frequently the cause of falling leaves, but it could also be underwatering.
If you’re sure watering is not the problem, reconsider the light source. Move your plant to a brighter spot and see if it picks up. If it is in a particularly drafty spot, give it some protection from the cold and see if things improve.
Another possibility is that your plant is low on nutrients and therefore can’t support all its leaves. If you have recently potted your plant, this is unlikely, but if it’s been a couple of years there’s a possibility your plant has outgrown its pot and/or used up all the nutrients in the soil. If that’s the case, you should notice the leaves turning lighter in color before they start to drop. A dose of fertilizer or a pot upgrade may be in order.
Step 1: Quarantine your plant away from other plants, ideally outside if you can. You don’t want an epidemic on your hands.
Step 2: Identify the suspect. If you are not sure what you’re dealing with, go to the library and get an insect identification book or call your local agricultural extension agency.
Step 3: Get an insecticide, preferably organic, that is designed to treat the pest you are dealing with. Insecticidal soap works for most common houseplant pests, but do your homework and read the labels.
Step 4: Apply the insecticide according to the directions. Do this outside while wearing gloves. Keep the plant outside until the insecticide dries, even if it is organic.
Step 5: Keep the plant in quarantine until all signs of insects are gone for at least a week. Reapply the insecticide as needed according to the directions.
If the browning leaves are paired with visible wilt and soil the consistency of dust or mud, you’ve got a watering problem. Review the “Is there a right way to water?” section posthaste.
Certain houseplants are sensitive when it comes to humidity, though the tough ones often recommended for beginners are not. Still, some houses can have exceptionally dry air, especially when you crank up the heat in winter, which can result in brown-tipped leaves, especially on plants with long leaves like spider plant and peace lily. Take another look at the section on humidity.
Too Much Fertilizer
If the brown crinkly bits are showing up on the outer edges and tips of the leaves, you might be using too much fertilizer. Lay off for awhile and watch for improvements.
Your Plant is Growing Up
If you’re only noticing the occasional brown leaf here and there, you’re probably not doing anything wrong. Plants drop old leaves sometimes as they mature. It’s just part of growing up!
Your plant is dead
Are ALL the leaves brown and dry? Your plant is probably dead. Skip ahead to the “How do I know if my plant is dead?” section.
When a plant isn’t getting enough light, it may start to get lanky, with extra long stems as it tries to stretch to get as much light as it can. You might also notice that it leans severely to one side as it tries to soak up every ounce of sun possible. When plants aren’t getting enough light, you may notice the leaves start to go yellow and that the plant grows more slowly than it did previously.
How To repot your plant
Classes + Office hours
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If you have any questions, need assistance with your plant, repotting, or diagnosing please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org. We offer FREE zoom office hour calls for all members!