Complimentary Australian Shipping on orders Over $50.00


Autumn Plant Care Guide for Indoor Enthusiasts

Coming in a month or so late, but we've had a few emails about this so figured its time to whip a blog up! Our indoor gardens are an oasis of tranquillity in our bustling homes and a vibrant extension of nature within our walls.But as nature outside transitions from the heat of summer into the calming chill of autumn, the needs of our indoor plants change too. This transformation is critical to understand as it influences the health and happiness of our green companions.

This guide will walk you through the key adjustments you need to make in your indoor gardening routine to ensure your plants thrive during the fall season. Whether you’re looking to enhance your plant care knowledge or have just started growing a veritable jungle in your living room, the following advice will act as an invaluable seasonal companion.

Understanding Plant Needs in Autumn

Before we jump into tips and tricks, it’s imperative to understand why autumn heralds change for our indoor flora. Australian autumn is typically marked by decreasing daylight hours, with the subsequent effect on plant growth. Additionally, there’s a gradual reduction in humidity, and an overall cooling in temperatures - a package of shifts that can be both delightful and challenging for our indoor plant collections.

Your first course of action is to observe how these macro changes affect your plants on a micro level. Look for cues such as slowed growth, drying soil, or even browning tips on your plant's foliage. These could be ‘tell-tale’ signs of autumn affecting your indoor ecosystem. Now, it’s time to tailor your care regimen in response to these environmental shifts.

Adapting Your Fertilising Routine

Fertiliser is food for plants. With autumn’s emergence, the growing season wanes, and your plants’ needs for nutrients change likewise. It’s best to start tapering off on fertilising your plants and eventually cease, or at least reduce, the frequency of feeding them.

During autumn, your plants are preparing for a dormant phase where they won’t be producing new growth at the same pace as during spring and summer. Over-fertilising at this time can lead to salt-build up in the soil, which is detrimental to a plant’s overall health. Therefore, consider cutting back on fertiliser or switching to a organic product which is lower in nitrogen, as this nutrient is mainly responsible for encouraging new growth.

Watering with the Changing Seasons

Adjusting your watering routine is one of the most significant changes you'll make in autumn. With the shorter days, there's usually less evaporation from the soil, and the need to water less frequently. You might find that the topsoil remains damp for longer periods, which is a clear indication that your plants need less water.

Ensure you water thoroughly when you do. This means allowing the water to soak the entire root ball of the plant. Remember to always check the soil’s moisture level by inserting your finger about an inch into the soil. If it feels dry, that's your cue to water. Be mindful to avoid overwatering, which can be more damaging than underwatering for most plants.

Foliage Care and Cleaning

Plants breathe through their leaves, and any dust, grime, or pollution can clog their stomata, or small pores, making it difficult for them to take in the much-needed carbon dioxide and release oxygen. During autumn, it’s especially crucial to keep foliage clean as plants get ready to spend more of their time indoors, with windows likely closed.

On a regular basis, grab a bottle of Neem Oil and gently clean the leaves with a soft, damp cloth to remove dust and keep their breathing apparatus in top-notch condition. Not only does this foster their health, but it also maintains their aesthetic appeal.

Pruning and Maintenance

Pruning is a year-round responsibility, and autumn is no exception. With the slowing growth and many plants preparing to enter a dormant phase, it’s a great time to assess which plants need a trim. Remove any dead or dying leaves or stems to prevent the spread of disease or pest infestations which can thrive in the stagnant winter air.

Pruning also encourages your plant to put energy into its healthier branches and root systems, which is especially beneficial if you’ve neglected it over the busy summer months. Remember to use clean and sharp tools to avoid damaging your plants and always cut at a 45-degree angle just above a node or dormant bud.

Sunlight and Plant Placement

With the shift towards shorter, less intense days, your plants’ sunlight needs also change. Many indoor plants that require bright, indirect light during spring and summer can often do with a little less as we transition into autumn. Also, ensure that your plants are not near drafty windows as the Australian autumn can bring with it surprising temperature drops.

Observe any changes in the way the sun streams through your windows and shift your plants accordingly. If your location experiences a lot of cloudy days, you might also want to consider getting a grow light to supplement their light intake. This exercise of moving your plants can also act as an opportunity to clean and rearrange your space, adding a touch of seasonal décor through your indoor greenery.

Humidity Control

Indoor heating can lead to a significant drop in humidity levels during autumn. This dry air can be stressful for plants, especially those native to tropical climates. Consider using a humidifier or other methods to raise the humidity, but ensure it doesn’t contribute to overwatering. A pebble tray or grouping plants together can help create a micro-climate of slightly higher humidity around your greenery.

Pest Precautions

Autumn is the season of migrating pests. These unwelcome visitors are more than happy to hitch a ride into your home on pets or through open windows. Before you know it, your indoor garden can become a hotbed of infestations. Keep a close eye on your plants for any unusual spots, webs, or critters. Quarantine any affected plants immediately and treat them with an appropriate solution to avoid spreading the issue.

Re-potting and Soil Considerations

Re-potting is mainly done in spring, but autumn also offers a window to assess if your plants have outgrown their current pots. The cooler months mean less energy is spent on top growth, giving plants more resources to build a healthier root system. If you do decide to re-pot, choose a vessel that is only slightly larger than the current one, as excess soil can hold moisture and lead to overwatering issues.

Additionally, consider whether the soil mix is adequate for your plant’s needs. A mix that drains well is crucial, especially in autumn, when plants may be more susceptible to root rot due to receiving less light. You might want to resurrect the moisture meter or pay extra attention to known moisture-loving plants like ferns and peace lilies.

Engage with the Plant Community

One of the joys of indoor gardening is the robust community that surrounds it. Utilise social media and online forums to compare notes with other plant enthusiasts. Share your experience, highs, lows, and any questions or discoveries you make throughout the autumnal phase of your plant care. This exchange not only deepens your understanding but also enriches your connection with the broader green-thumbed community.

By being proactive in adapting your indoor plant care to the specifics of the autumnal season, you are not only fostering a healthier garden but also growing a deeper appreciation for the intricacies of your indoor ecosystem. Each change is a gentle dance of nurture and nature, and as your plants adjust, so do you, always learning and perfecting the delicate balance that is indoor gardening.

Leave a comment (all fields required)

Comments will be approved before showing up.