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13 Houseplants With Big Leaves For Lively Home

Are you looking for large leaf houseplants that will create a focal point in your house and home decor? Here are the top 13 houseplants with big leaves that will bring a lot of joy and be a great addition to your home decor collection. 

African Mask Plant (Alocasia amazonica)

Alocasia amazonica is one of the greatest houseplants with big leaves
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African mask plants are one of the most striking houseplants with big leaves popular among lots of people. They have large dark green leaves accented by dark white or light green veins. The leaf shapes are usually heart or arrowhead, and the underside of the leaves is often dark purple.

Similar to some houseplants, this plant is also toxic to humans and pets if ingested. Basic information for growing and caring for:

  • Light: Indirect and bright
  • Water: Keep the soil humid but not soggy
  • Soil: Nutrient-rich, well-drained

Banana Tree Plant (Musa)

Although banana tree plants are more popularly grown outdoors, they can also be great houseplants with big leaves when you grow them in a sunny and bright spot. When they grow up, their leaves can be 9 feet in length and 2 feet in width. 

Another huge plus is that this plant is non-toxic for your pets. 

  • Light: Full sunlight
  • Water: Keep soil humid but not soggy
  • Soil: Nutrient-rich, well-drained

Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia)

Bird of paradise, also known as the strelitzia, is a type of tropical plant that has become famous for its outstanding flower, which looks like a bird in flight. These houseplants with big leaves usually grow in a forward-facing habit. In other words, their foliages will grow in layers from the central stem.

When mature, the bird of paradise can grow up to 4 feet in width and 7 feet in height. However, be aware that these houseplants are really toxic to your pets. So keep them away from your cats and dogs. Basic information:

  • Light: Bright direct or indirect light
  • Water: Water when the soil is dry out 
  • Soil: Well-drained, humus, and nutrient-rich soil

Calathea orbifolia

Calathea orbifolia is one of great houseplants with big leaves
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For those who don’t know, calathea orbifolia is a kind of prayer plant characterized by its big globe-shaped leaves. The good news is that this houseplant is non-toxic to humans and pets.

  • Light: Indirect and bright
  • Water: Keep soil evenly humid
  • Soil: Nutrient-rich, well-drained

Elephant Ear Plant (Calocasia)

Elephant ear plants are popularly planted outdoors. However, they are great for growing indoors too. They have leaves that can grow up to 3 feet in length, depending on different varieties. 

However, you need to keep these houseplants away from your kids and pets since they can be toxic when they eat them. Here is some basic information about light, water, and conditions to grow elephant ear plants:

  • Light: Indirect and bright light
  • Water: Keep the soil humid
  • Soil: Peat-rich and well-drained soil

Fiddle Leaf Fig (Ficus lyrata)

Fiddle leaf fig is one of the greatest houseplants with big leaves
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Fiddle leaf fig is one of the greatest houseplants with big leaves that makes a splash in any room. They are usually distinguished by big, waxy, and spokes-shaped leaves that can be pruned into different shapes. 

Even though these plants are very popular, they are quite difficult to grow and care for. Nevertheless, they will thrive and their leaves can grow to their full sizes if you care for them properly. 

When planted indoors, their size is often limited due to being potted and carefully pruned. Be aware that their leaves are really toxic to humans and pets if ingested. Basic information to grow: 

  • Light: Bright and indirect light
  • Water: Water when the soil is dry out
  • Soil: Nutrient-rich and well-draining

Majesty Palm (Ravenna rivularis)

Majesty palm is one of the most common and attractive houseplants with big leaves that can reach up to 10 feet in height. However, it grows slightly slow. The great advantage of this plant is that it is safe for humans and pets.

  • Light: Indirect and bright
  • Water: Keep the soil moist but not soggy
  • Soil: Succulent soil mix

Monstera Deliciosa

Monstera deliciosa is one of the best houseplants with big leaves
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Monstera deliciosa is one of the best houseplants with big leaves and also Instagram favorite plants. It is a large ornamental plant with big vibrant yellow leaves that immediately add a tropical feel to your room. They can grow up to 10 feet in height, with leaves up to 3 to 4 feet in length when you grow them indoors.

Unfortunately, this houseplant is a little bit toxic to humans and pets if ingested. Basic information to grow this plant:

  • Light: Indirect light, from medium to bright
  • Water: Water when the soil is dry out
  • Soil: Well-draining and nutrient-rich

Philodendron Gloriosum

Philodendron gloriosum is a beautiful large-leaved philodendron, characterized by velvety dark green leaves with white veins. This houseplant is slightly rare and you probably won’t find it at your local garden center and you might even need to order it from a collector or online. Philodendron gloriosum is also toxic to pets and humans when ingested.

  • Light: Indirect and bright 
  • Water: Water when the topsoil 1-2 inches is dry out
  • Soil: Nutrient-rich, well-drained

Philodendron Xanadu

Philodendron Xanadu usually comes in large, outstanding, lobed, and leathery leaves. When they grow up, their leaves can reach up to 30 cm in width and 40 cm in length with the number of lobes around 10-15.  

Unfortunately, this houseplant is also toxic to pets and humans when ingested. So, just keeping them out of your pets and kids is okay. The basic information to grow this plant:

  • Light: Indirect light, from medium to bright
  • Water: Water when the soil is dry out
  • Soil: Well-drained

Rubber Tree (Ficus elastica)

Rubber trees are one of the most popular houseplants with big leaves that can be found in a variety of shapes and colors. They usually have large and waxy leaves which can reach up to 50 feet tall when mature. Unfortunately, their shape and size can be a little smaller due to growing indoors. 

They are also a little bit toxic to humans, dogs, and cats when ingested. But you can completely avoid this by putting them away from the reach of your kids and pets. Basic information needed for the growth:

  • Light: Direct light
  • Water: Keep the soil humid
  • Soil: Well-drained 

Ruffled Fan Palm (Licuala grandis)

Ruffle fan palm is one of the unique varieties of palm plants with big and pleated leaves that look like hand fans. This plant is great to grow indoors because it is safe for humans and pets.

  • Light: Indirect, bright to medium
  • Water: Average water
  • Soil: Well-drained

Tropic Snow Dumb Cane (Dieffenbachia seguine)

This is one of the biggest varieties of dumb cane, and it can reach up to 10 feet in height when grown indoors. Its large, patchy leaves and ease of care make it one of the most common houseplants with big leaves. Unfortunately, it can be toxic to you and your pets. 

  • Light: Bright to low 
  • Water: Water when the soil is dry out
  • Soil: Well-drained, but not picky about soil.

Conclusion 

So, those are some of the greatest houseplants with big leaves you can try to grow indoors. They are not only beautiful, but also a great addition to your home decor, making you feel better. Just keep in mind that some plants are toxic to you and your pets. So, keep them away from their reach. 

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How To Care For A Prayer Plant Indoors

The prayer plant is one of the most beautiful houseplants you will find among various types of plants native to the tropical forest of Brazil. When your prayer plants are spreading wide and low, it’s ideal to hang them in baskets as decoration indoors. Let’s learn how to care for a prayer plant indoors with these instructions. 

How to care for a prayer plant indoors
How to care for a prayer plant indoors. Image: Unsplash

Prayer Plant Overview

Prayer plants usually have broad, oval, dark green leaves with light green white running along the leaf’s spine. Sometimes, you can see the veins running on the leaves have a red color. For those who don’t know, prayer plants are named for their unique habit of lifting their leaves upright at night. Besides, their leaves often fold together like your hands while praying.

Before delving into how to care for a prayer plant, let’s take a look at the overview of prayer plants.

Common namePrayer plant
Botanical nameMaranta leuconeura
FamilyMarantaceae
Plant type Herbaceous perennial
Native areaCentral America, South America, West Indies
Mature size6–12 in. tall, 6–12 in. wide
LightBright, indirect sun
WaterAverage
Temperature60-85°F
HumidityHigh
SoilMoist but well-drained
FertilizerAverage
PropagationStems or cutting
PestsSpider mites, mealy bugs, aphids
Hardiness zones11, 12 (USDA)
Companion planting Begonia, orchid, monstera, pilea, sansevieria, philodendron, spider plant.
Overview of prayer plant.

How To Care For A Prayer Plant

You can refer to these instructions to understand the process of how to care for a prayer plant. Here you will learn how to water a prayer plant, what light, humidity, and temperature is considered good for prayer plants.

Water & Humidity

To ensure your prayer plants grow well, be aware that they don’t like to dry out. So, always maintain the soil evenly moist, but do not allow the roots to stagnate. When you water your prayer plants, it’s best to use room-temperature water, if not relatively warm.

During the cold days, you should decrease the frequency of watering because the dry and cold weather will make prayer plants inactive. Hence, they will need less water to thrive.  

Light and Temperature

Image: Unsplash

Prayer plants tend to thrive better with indirect sunlight. In general, they can grow even when in poorly light areas as long as there is good airflow there. What’s more, they can die if you expose them to direct sunlight. 

Soil

You can use all-purpose indoor potting soil to grow prayer plants, as long as it has good drainage. In case your soil doesn’t provide good drainage, you can add coarse sand or perlite to the soil mix. 

Here are some things you’ll need to mix the soil for your prayer plants:

  • Garden soil
  • Coarse sand or perlite
  • Coir or peat moss
  • A little bit of lime dust

You can add gravel or rocks to the container’s bottom to enhance drainage. And, of course, make sure it has drainage holes to avoid waterlogging.

Fertilizer

You will need to feed your prayer plants every two weeks during the growing seasons from spring to fall. It is recommended to use high-quality water-soluble eggplant feed. Furthermore, during cold weather, less fertilizer should be applied because conditions are not conducive to the growth of prayer plants.

Repotting

There is no need to frequently repot or replant your prayer plants. Nevertheless, once they take root in a pot, they will grow very slowly.

If you choose to repot your prayer plants, it’s recommended to go for the one that’s around 1-2 inches wider than the current pot. All you need to do is take it off from the existing pot and place it in a new pot with a slightly added soil mixture. What’s more, remember to water well so that your prayer plants will grow fast. 

Pruning​

In case you want your prayer plants to grow more strongly, you can prune them. You just need to use your garden scissors and cut the prayer plant stems just above a leaf node. Make sure you sterilize your scissors before clipping. 

Your prayer plants will then react by producing new buds just below the cut region, creating denser and bushier prayer plants. 

Propagation

Once you care for your prayer plants, they will become really easy to propagate. Simply dip the cut in a rooting stimulant solution and put it in a cup of water. In addition, don’t forget to change the cut around every two days or twice a week.

Besides, you can put the cut directly into the potting soil. But the important thing to keep in mind is to maintain the soil moist and spray them once in a while.

You might also love: How To Grow Basil From Seed Indoors: Easy Steps for Beginners

Common Problems For Prayer Plants

so, now you know how to care for a prayer plant indoors. However, during the growth of a prayer plant, it can encounter some diseases, and here are some common issues for prayer plants and how to solve them. 

Growing Issues

When you notice the tip of your prayer plants’ leaves start to curl up or turn brown, that might be the sign of excess light. In addition, chlorine in tap water can also be a common cause of brown leaves. If yes, you should use filtered water instead of tap water. Or you can also leave tap water for around 24 hours before watering your prayer plants.

Diseases

If you see water spots on your prayer plant’s leaves, it might be a sign of leaf spot disease. Your prayer plants might be destroyed by this disease if you don’t control it. And the simplest way to deal with it is to avoid over-watering your prayer plant, and stop getting the leaves too damp. In case you notice an outbreak, neem oil can be an effective way to solve it.

Pests

In fact, almost all popular indoor pests can cause unhealthy prayer plants, but the most common ones might be spider mites. Moreover, you should note that prayer plants love high moisture, while spiders hate it! So you can prevent them from infesting your plants by keeping them highly humid.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here you will find several commonly asked questions about how to care for a prayer plant indoors. 

Why are the leaves on my prayer plant turning brown?

There are different reasons for the brown leaves of prayer plants, such as too much sun, wrong watering, low moisture, or excess fertilizer. Rememebr to check if you do anything wrong and fix it.  

How often should I water my prayer plant?

Since prayer plants don’t grow well if they are dry, you will need to water them when you notice there are just one or two inches of the soil dries out. During hot weather or summer, they should be watered every 3-5days, depending on different factors, such as moisture, temperature, and light in your area. 

How to make my prayer plant bushier?

If you want to make your prayer plants thrive more, pruning is a great way to encourage their growth. Cut branches just above a leaf node using sterilized garden shears. Your prayer plants will produce new sprouts just under the cut region, making them look bushier.

Why do my prayer plants’ leaves curl up?

That might be a sign of excess light during the day. You can try to put them in another spot with less light, and check the root area for moderate moisture in the soil.

When should I repot my prayer plants?

If you see your prayer plants’ roots growing out of the drainage holes, that’s when you should repot them. When the plants are inactive in cold weather, you should let the soil dry a little bit between waterings. 

Why aren’t my prayer plants closing?

If you put your prayer plants near a lamp or other light sources during the nighttime, it might not be dark enough for them to close. So, you can consider moving them into a new place away from the light.

Conclusion 

While prayer plants may not be the most carefree houseplants, with their wonderful leaf patterns and daily lifting and lowering of leaves, they are among the most interesting plants to grow indoors. Some important things to remember are to provide them with well-draining soil, added moisture but not waterlogged, and under indirect light. That’s all you need to know about how to care for a prayer plant indoors. 

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The renowned Philosopher and Scholar: Aristotle

Early life of Aristotle

Aristotle was known to be the most influential philosopher ever. He was born in the Ancient Greece around 385 BC. After a few years, Aristotle was just thirteen or fourteen years old when his parents died and while he turned seventeen, he left for Athens where he started to work with Plato and taught by him. For almost a few years he lived in Athen until the death of his teacher Plato, the responsibilities of the academy of Plato were later given to his nephew and Aristotle didn’t like his teaching methods, so he left Athens. Later he taught Alexender the Great for almost 3 to 4 years. After that he came back to Athens and lived his life as a philosopher, writer, and teacher. We wrote a number of books where he covered various topics like metaphysics, physics, zoology, politics, botany, generations of animals, poetry, rhetoric, psychology, government and a few more to be named. His various studies and research are set against the backdrop of his emphasis on excellent reasoning because his natural philosophy was solely based on reasoning and observation to establish broad, casual assertions. For example, Aristotle utilizes the notion of species to make factual statements about the activities of different creatures in the world in his biology.

The discoveries of Aristotle

Aristotle was always curious to know about whatever happened in his surroundings. How a tree can stand so tall, how an egg can carry a chick inside how a person can stay happy etc. In one of his books, he has described the difference between a happy and successful and unhappy and unsuccessful person. According to Aristotle, the former person has some attributes which makes him different from the latter therefore, if an unsuccessful and unhappy person develops the similar attributes, he too will become happy and successful in life. Many of the philosophies of Aristotle are now used as a reference in today’s world. Despite the fact that many of his findings were incorrect, his theories yet dominated the Western scientific though for many years. Not just Western scientist, but Muslim scientists also acknowledged the philosophy of Aristotle. Indeed, he was a remarkable man. 

Aristotle certain beliefs

With all the knowledge he pursued, it was never enough for him. He believed that only experience is the foundation of knowledge a man possesses. Observations were not enough but, the explanations generated with those observations were valid. To put it another way, Aristotle believed that hypothesis should always begin with facts as he always believed in reasoning. As we all know, this is the concept of the scientific process as well. Unlike other philosophers, Aristotle used scientific reasoning to give explanations for various things. For example, his best contribution to science was when he did an experiment to discover how a chick hatches from an egg. He did use scientific reasoning and not just philosophy to justify this discovery.

The death of Aristotle and his legacy

The last days of Aristotle’s life were very hard on him. Anti-Macedonian prejudice prompted against Aristotle after the death of Alexender the Great. He was charged with atheism; the similar charge was also put on Socrates (where he was sentenced to death) by a few people who did not like their work or philosophies. As a result, Aristotle then departed Athens and was later diagnosed with a stomach ailment. He died with that issue at the age of 63 and his will was to be buried next to his wife who had died before him a few years previously. Aristotle work might did not get the praise at that time, however, later he was known and acknowledge by many western scholars. He is regarded is the most phenomenal philosopher and thinker. He was influential because he gave rational and common-sense explanations for everyday events. These he articulated so authoritatively and eloquently that it was simpler for generations of followers to accept Aristotle than to put his ideas to the test.

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How To Grow Green Peppers From Fresh Seeds

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Growing green peppers from seeds can be a bit daunting for beginning gardeners, but it’s actually quite easy. In this article, I’ll show you steps on how to grow green peppers from fresh seeds. I also give you some tips so that your pepper plants will thrive. Let’s delve into it!

How to Grow Green Peppers From Fresh Seeds

I will give you a general guide to growing green peppers from fresh seeds, regardless of their kinds. Hence, you can follow these steps even when you don’t have green pepper seeds to grow. You can apply these instructions for most types of peppers. 

Different Types Of Pepper Seeds To Grow

One of my most favorite things when it comes to growing pepper is the incredible variety I can find and grow. Even though this post is about growing green peppers from fresh seeds, you can use any type of pepper seeds to plant. In fact, there are a lot of pepper types you can choose from, depending on your area and climate.

They range from the mild flavor of bell peppers, to the sweetness of bananas and chili peppers, to the moderate spiciness of chili peppers… to the super HOT cayennes, jalapeños, habanero or ghost peppers.

Recommended Methods Of Starting With Pepper Seeds

For those who don’t know, pepper seeds take quite a long time to mature enough to produce fruit. Besides, they need a relatively long growing season.

In addition, they take slightly longer to germinate (some varieties even take up to a month!). So, if you don’t live in warm weather, it’s best to start growing your green pepper seeds indoors before transplanting. 

When To Plant Green Pepper Seeds

One of the best ways to get a fruitful pepper crop is to sow the seeds indoors around 8-12 weeks before your average last frost date.

Depending on your region, the exact date to start sowing pepper seeds will vary. For example, my average last frost is between early and mid May. Hence, I will grow my pepper seeds indoors sometime at the beginning of March.

Planting Pepper Seeds

Another great factor that makes growing green peppers from fresh seeds so simple is that you don’t need anything specific or unique to prepare them for growing.

There is no need for moulding, soaking or cold stratification. All you need to do is put pepper seeds directly from the pack into the soil, and then they will thrive!

A quick word of warning here. If you want to sow fresh seeds from hot peppers, ensure that you wear gloves when delivering them. Otherwise, the capsicum oils might get on your hands, leading to irritation (or worse, it can get in your eyes).

You may also want to learn: How to grow green peppers in pots.

How To Grow Green Peppers From Fresh Seeds Step-By-Step

How to grow green peppers from fresh seeds step by step
Image: Unsplash

In order to grow green peppers from seeds, you don’t need to invest in too much expensive equipment. But here are some necessary items:

  1. Pepper seeds
  2. Seedling trays with covers
  3. Seed starting mix/oil or peat pellets
  4. Water 
  5. Gloves (if you grow seeds from hot peppers)
  6. Heat mat (optional)

Step 1: Fill the seedling flats– Fill the trays with seed-starting moist soil or pre-moisten peat pellets. Then put them in the seedling flats.

Step 2: Take the amount of seeds you want to plant. – If you are using new pepper seeds, then you can simply grow one seed per pellet. On the contrary, if they are old seeds or the survival rate is low, it’s better to grow 2-3 plots per pellet.

Step 3: Grow the pepper seeds – The general rule for seeding depth is twice as deep as the width of the seeds. It is recommended to grow your seeds around 1/4 ″ – 1/2 ″ deep.

To sow seeds, you can place them on top of the soil, then gently press down. You can also make the holes first, then drop them in those holes.

Step 4: Cover the pepper seeds with soil – Fill the holes, then delicately press down to ensure the pepper seeds are in contact with the soil. However, don’t compact the soil, just sofly push it down.

Step 5: Provide water – If the soil is not wet, you should water more. It is recommended to water from the bottom up so that the seeds are not disturbed.

Simply add water into the pellet until it is just above the drainage holes or about 1/4 the height of the trays. Empty excess unabsorbed water within 15 minutes.

Step 6: Cover the pellet – Put a clear plastic cover on top of the pellet to keep the soil warm and make sure it is always moist.

Step 7: Place the pellet in a warm space – If possible, you can place your pellet on a heat mat’s top. By doing this, you can speed up seed germination. If not, put it in as warm a spot as possible. You can also run a space heater nearby. This can help speed up germination if it is too cold.

How to Transplant Green Pepper Seedlings Into The Garden

When the weather warms up, you can come across a lot of ants to plant seedlings into the garden. But it is essential to transplant pepper plants at the right time and in the right way, or else all the effort you put into growing green peppers from fresh seed will be needlessly.

When To Transplant Pepper Seedlings

Peppers hate cold weather, and they can die if you move them into your garden too soon. Even if they can survive the cold, they can still be stunted because of it and might not produce good peppers. So, you should wait until the frost is gone and the soil warms up to transplant them into your garden.

Hardening Pepper Seedlings

You must first take care of your pepper seedlings to prepare them for life outdoors by hardening them. 

As they get used to living in a warm environment indoors, without rain or direct sunlight, you need to give them a little more resistance to life outside.

How To Space Pepper Seedlings

Most pepper plants are quite compact and do not require much space to grow. So plan on placing your pepper seedlings around 12-18 inches apart in your garden.

However, larger varieties may require a little more space. Nevertheless, they like to touch each other slightly after they get older, so don’t put them too far apart.

Depth

It is recommended to grow your pepper seedlings a little deeper than in a pellet. However, don’t go too deep, only about 1/4-1/2 ″ deeper than before is enough. 

At least you should grow them at the same depth, just to be sure that all the pepper roots are entirely buried.

Frequently Asked Questions

You will find some of the most commonly asked questions about how to grow green peppers from fresh seeds. You can leave your questions in the comment box if you don’t find yours here.

How many pepper seeds should I put per hole?

If you use fresh or new green pepper seeds, you can grow one in each hole. However, if your seeds are old, it’s better to plant 2-3 seeds per hole to increase viability rate.

How deep should I plant pepper seeds?

Generally speaking, you should grow pepper seeds twice as deep as they are wide. So sow them around 1/4 1/4 – 1/2″ deep.

What is the fastest way to sprout pepper seeds?

One of the best and fastest ways to germinate green pepper seeds is heat. They will germinate much faster if you add heat to the bottom and place them in a warm spot.

Can I plant seeds from a pepper?

Yes, you can. But make sure they are mature since small, young seeds from unripe pepper will not grow.

Do pepper seeds need light to germinate?

The answer is no. pepper seeds don’t need light to sprout. Nevertheless, the seedlings will start to grow tall as soon as they germinate, so make sure you turn on the lights immediately.

Conclusion 

How to grow green peppers from fresh seeds will become much easier once you get the hang of it. Hope this instruction makes it more simple and practical for you to grow your green peppers from seeds or any other types of peppers. 

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How To Grow Green Peppers In Pots: 10 Easy Steps

Planting green peppers in pots is a good way to have fresh peppers added to your daily meals. They are quite easy to grow, but there are some important things to keep in mind, typically if you are a beginning gardener. So in this article, I have covered the entire process of how to grow green peppers in pots. Follow it to grow a fresh pepper garden at home. 

How to Grow Green Peppers in Pots

In this part, I will give you easy and practical steps on how to grow green peppers in pots or containers at home. I also cover details in each step so that you can understand and apply them to your garden.

  1. Prepare pepper seeds and other supplies

It’s always best to get all the necessary things on the first day before growing green peppers in pots. You will need to buy pepper seeds, containers or pots, soil, fertilizer, and stakes. If you already have any of these at home, that’s great. 

  1. Sow pepper seeds indoors

You can completely sow your pepper seeds indoors. Just make sure to keep it moist and warm so the seeds can start to germinate. 

  1. Provide seeds light when it germinates

When growing green peppers indoors, you can use LED lights. However, you can take advantage of sunlight if you want to turn the lights off.

  1. Start fertilizing

You can add fertilizer to help your young pepper plants to grow faster. Green peppers can handle the full force after around 3 or 4 weeks of growth. Here are some suggested fertilizers you can use. 

  1. Transplant peppers into larger containers after 2-3 weeks
  2. Pluck early flower buds

When green peppers grow, they can start to flower while still being indoors. It’s better to trim early flowers until you put your peppers outdoors in their final growing position for 2-3 weeks. 

  1. Harden the pepper plants

Once the danger of frost is gone, and nocturnal temperatures are always above 55°F, you can start placing your green pepper plants outdoors. Just be sure to gradually adjust them to external factors starting 2-4 weeks before moving them out permanently.

  1. Water regularly 

Green peppers love to be watered evenly but never over-watered! Keep your peppers always moist, but never soak them. More importantly, always let the water drain away from the roots.

  1. Adjust nutrients when plants start producing peppers

When your green peppers start to bear fruit, they don’t need as many nutrients as initially to produce more peppers. So, you should adjust the number of nutrients for a fruitful crop. 

  1. Harvest peppers when they are ripe

You can harvest green peppers when they reach their mature size and ripen. Even when they are still green, you can pick them. 

6 Green Pepper Plant Care Tips

How to grow green peppers in pots and care for them
How to care for green peppers. Image: Unsplash

Gardening tips are always necessary for beginning gardeners. To properly care for your green bell pepper plants, you should follow these tips:

  1. Mulch well. This is because mulch can absorb the sunlight and keep the topsoil of your pepper pots warm. 
  2. Water thoroughly. While green bell peppers love warm weather, they won’t thrive in extreme heat, so gardeners in more heat-prone climates should water around twice a day if necessary.
  3. Provide peppers with sunlight. Green bell peppers require quite many sunlights to grow and ripen in an appropriate way. So, place your pepper pots in a sunny place.
  4. Use appropriate fertilizers. Fertilize with a low-nitrogen compound to help your green bell peppers grow without affecting fruit production.
  5. Pest inspection. Aphids and fleas are the two most popular garden pests that love green peppers. You can use organic pesticides to care for your pepper plants.

6. Consider companion plants. You can grow your green bell peppers with cucumbers, corn, and carrots, but they will not thrive near plants in the cabbage family or fennel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about how to grow green peppers in pots.

How often should I water my green pepper plants in pots?

You can water the green pepper plants in pots at least one time per day when the temperature is above 18 °C or 65 °F. But when the temperature is above 80 °F, you should water them at least two times per day. 

Do green peppers grow well in containers or pots?

Yes, they do. And you can grow green peppers in any type of pot as long as it is wide enough and drains well. If your pots don’t have holes, you can drill some. Also, don’t forget to cover those drainage holes with a mesh to keep the soil clean and prevent pests.

How many peppers can I put in a 5-gallon pot?

Usually, you can grow one pepper plant in a 5-gallon bucket. However, if you have larger containers, you can completely grow 2-3 plants per pot, depending on the size of the bucket. Besides, it depends on different varieties of peppers since some are bigger in size than others.

How much space does a green pepper plant need?

Almost all varieties of pepper plants should be put 12-18 inches (30-46 cm) apart. Larger types can have a bit more space, but they usually don’t need space more than 18 inches.

How long does it take for green peppers to grow?

You can harvest almost all varieties of green peppers between 60 to 90 days after transplanting them outdoors.

How long does it take for green peppers to grow from seeds?

This all depends on the different types of pepper seeds. In general, green peppers need between 4 and 5 months to be ready to harvest if they are grown from seeds. Some varieties can take quicker or even longer.

Do I have to dry pepper seeds before planting?

It is not required to dry pepper before planting. In fact, peppers can be stored for 2 to 5 years, and when stored, they should be kept dry. However, you do not need to dry them to germinate immediately.

Conclusion

So there you go! I hope this guideline on how to grow green peppers in pots could help you. If you want to know more details about how to grow green peppers from seeds, you can read this article. 

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How To Fill A Raised Garden Bed Cheaply

For novice gardeners, how to fill a garden bed cheaply seems to be a challenging task. However, it is obvious that raised garden beds bring us a lot of benefits. For stance, you can easily control the soil type, the appearance of weeds and also keep the garden beds warm quickly in spring.

In fact, there are various ways to fill the soil in the raised garden that work very effectively. In this reading, you’ll find great ways on how to fill a raised garden bed on a budget while maintaining effectiveness. 

What’s Your Raised Garden Bed Used For?

Before you start filling your raised garden bed, decide its usage. This is because different plants have different root systems. Some plants have shallow roots while others have long roots. For example, drought-tolerant plants usually have long roots and vice versa. If you know the root depth of each pot, you can easily customize what to fill your raised garden bed. 

Calculate the Amount of Soil Needed

This is considered one of the most crucial steps towards filling your raised garden bed. Whether you are purchasing soil bags or digging soil from your yard, you must determine the amount of soil and organic materials needed for your garden bed. By doing this, you can know the estimated amount needed and the costs you’ll need to spend. Here is a simple formula for this.

Volume (cubic ft) = Length (ft) x Height (ft) x Width (ft). 

For example, if your raised garden bed measures 8x4x1 ft, then the volume should be 32 cubic feet. 

How to fill a raised garden bed with proper soil.
Image: Unsplash

Soil Source

With a tight budget, buying filler material bags might be difficult. Therefore, mixing the top layer of your garden soil with an adequate amount of compost is a good way to try. If you are still determined to invest in some, you need to be very careful not to be fooled into buying cheap stuff made from the ground. That won’t be good for your tree.

How to Fill a Raised Garden Bed With a Tight Budget

Here are four methods on how to fill a raised garden bed for those who don’t have too much money to invest in.

1. Core Gardening

This is considered one of the most simple ways to fill a raised garden bed cheaply. The main purpose is to create an internal sponge in the middle of your raised garden bed. The sponge’s responsibility is to hold water and absorb moisture evenly in both directions.

Filling Process:

Here are the details on how to fill a raised garden bed using the core gardening method.

  1. Fill your garden bed with organic matter
  2. Spread evenly to make sure it reaches around 4-5 inch thickness of packing material.
  3. Water it thoroughly, which will form a sponge-like center to provide your plants with during the season.
  4. Fill the rest of the raised bed with soil. You should also create a mound in the middle as it will settle down over time. Don’t be too picky! You can mix the topsoil and compost at the rate of 50/50, which is considered great for raised garden beds. You can also make your own compost to keep costs down, but this might take quite a long time.
  5. Add more nutrients and plants, typically if it is a new raised garden bed. Organic fertilizer will be very helpful.
  6. Cover with mulch and add compost on top of the soil. You should do this at least once per year so that you might not have to buy organic fertilizers in the future.

Maintenance

After one year, the organic matter may have turned into excellent compost for your garden. The core seems to have disappeared and the worms will dig through the garden naturally. So there is no need for plowing the garden.

Core gardening is one of the most effective ways on how to fill a raised garden bed
Image: Unsplash

2. Hugelkultur Raised Bed

Filing process

  1. Put old rotten wood and other debris around 10-12 inches in your raised garden bed.
  2. Fill in all excess gaps between big logs with wood chips, scraps, bush decorations, large leafy logs, and more. This saves a lot when it comes to filling a raised garden bed.
  3. Water thoroughly because these organic materials will be the main source of water for the whole season.
  4. Fill soil in the empty space. With a tight budget, it’s better to use pre-excavated materials initially rather than to buy more. You can mix the topsoil with several bags of compost. This is considered a good way on how to fill a raised garden bed.

3. Ruth Stout Garden Bed

Filing process

  1. Directly add a few inches of compost or manure on top of the soil without eliminating weeds or grass.
  2. If you plan to grow potatoes, simply place the seed potato in the manure or composite layer.
  3. Spread the hay over the potatoes 8-12 inches high and deep.
  4. You can water this garden bed or not and just wait to harvest your potatoes.

4. Eden Raised Garden Bed

Filing Process

  1. Start by coating some organic matter on the cardboard. 
  2. Mix topsoil and compost at the ratio of 50/50, and fill your raised garden bed with that mixture about 6 inches high.
  3. Cover it with mulch by spreading wood chips on the topsoil. You can put as much as you want, but generally, 4 inches is ideal.
  4. Add a few or more organic fertilizers for the first few crops. The wood chips will rot then create good soil for your plants over time.

Pro tips: Adding a few worms if possible for each method above because they can help enhance drainage, moisture retention, and oxygen flow to your plants’ root system. They also provide your plants with more nutrients by breaking down the organic matter in them faster.

Image: Unsplash

Frequently Asked Questions

How to fill a raised garden bed with a tight budget will not be a difficult task anymore. But here are some frequently asked questions about this topic that you can refer to apply to your garden bed.

What should I fill my raised garden bed with?

Here are some things you can put into your raised garden bed:
1. Organic matter, such as twigs, wood stumps, sticks. 
2. Rocks or gravels for added drainage.
3. Straw and grass clippings
4. Sandy soil
5. Organic compost

How many bags of soil do I need for a 4×8 raised bed?

You will need 4 bags of soil for a 4×8 raised garden bed. Each bag will be 2 cubic feet. You should avoid using topsoil from your yard because it can harbor weeds and pests.

What vegetables grow best in raised garden beds?

Here are the top 5 best vegetables to grow in a raised garden bed: 
1. Onions 
2. Potatoes
3. Tomatoes 
4. Leafy greens
5. Root vegetables 

Can I put cardboard on the bottom of a raised garden bed?

Yes, you can completely put cardboard at the bottom of your raised garden bed, typically when you have a tight budget. Cardboard will ultimately break down over time. Nevertheless, as it’s thicker and tougher than newspaper, it will take longer to break down.

Should I put rocks in the bottom of my raised garden bed?

No, you should not put rocks at the bottom of a raised garden bed. This is because they can prevent water from draining. 

Should I line my raised garden bed with plastic?

Yes, you can. This method can help you prevent toxins from seeping into the soil. It’s advisable to use landscape fabric or cloth fabric for the lining. You should avoid any kind of non-porous plastic because it might hold too much water and weaken beneficial and destructive insects.

Conclusion 

Depending on the free resources you use, any of the four methods above on how to fill a raised garden bed will work effectively for you. Hope you find this reading helpful and don’t forget to ask any questions if you’re still confused somewhere.

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Top 15 Easy Vegetables To Grow In Summer

Summer is the peak of the growing season when the vegetable garden starts to perform well. While some vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and cauliflower need a cooler climate in spring and fall to thrive, other kinds of vegetables, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers, prefer hotter temperatures of summer to grow. And here are the top 15 easy vegetables to grow in summer. I also give you some tips to get started with these summer vegetables, so keep reading.

1. Beans

Beans are one of the best sources of plant-based protein. In addition to the once-popular green beans, there are many other varieties to grow, such as black beans, lima, pinto, and fava. How to grow beans from seed is really easy. Just simply sow bean seeds outdoors when the soil temperature is around 60 degrees F and air temperature is ranging between 65 and 85 degrees F. 

The time to harvest beans is different depending on the bean types. For example, from mid-summer to fall is the best time to harvest pole beans. On the other hand, you can sow seeds of bush types every few weeks during the summer for a continuous crop. To maximize production, you can use space-saving pots or containers.

Beans are one of the 15 easy vegetables to grow in summer
Image: Unsplash

2. Berries

Although berries are not really a kind of vegetable, they are considered a must-have addition to any vegetable garden. If you want a longer harvest, then you should choose varieties of berries producing fruit at different times of summer. 

For those who don’t have a large space to grow berries, dwarf varieties are the best type to plant because they can be grown in containers. While other types pollinate by themselves, blueberries require at least two plants for cross-pollination. Make sure you grow your berries under full sunlight, water them fully in the summer, and cover them with bird netting when the fruit begins to ripen.

Choose different types of berries to grow in summer. Image: Unsplash

3. Cucumber

Cucumber is a kind of vegetable that loves hot temperatures to grow. They are a great crunchy addition to salads, and other tasty meals such as snacking or pickling. For best results, you shouldn’t sow the cucumber seeds until the soil warms to 60-70 degrees F. 

You should grow these plants on a fence or trellis, or leave them with plenty of space enough to crawl. Make sure you plant them regularly with lots of water to prevent the fruit from becoming bitter or disfiguring. Harvest regularly to encourage the plant to produce new fruit.

Cucumber is one of the easy vegetables to grow in summer
Cucumber is great to grow in summer. Image: Unsplash

4. Corn

Fresh sweet corn is one of the most favorite vegetables at barbecues and picnics. It is also one of a few easy vegetables to grow in summer. This kind of vegetable grows very fast and it needs lots of fertilizer and water to generate soft and plump kernels. 

Corn requires cross-pollination for a successful crop. To ensure this, you should plant corn in different rows or 4 x 4 foot squares. Harvest just before eating. You can also freeze or store them for the best taste. You can try to eat corn with different toppings such as pesto, aioli, mayonnaise or fresh herbs for unique tastes and twists. 

Image: Unsplash

5. Eggplant

Eggplant is easy to plant and becomes fruitful when grown in hot summer weather. However, you can also grow them in cooler climates. In such a situation, use some heat-intensifying methods, such as a sheet of black plastic mulch, to warm the soil and speed up their growth. 

Make sure you plant eggplants in full sun, provide them with nutrient-rich soil, and water them frequently. For the best taste, you should harvest them when they are young. You can try to coat eggplant slices with olive oil and grill them over the barbecue. This makes a fast and delicious side dish. You can also season with different condiments, such as salt, garnish, pepper, fresh herbs, pesto, cheese, etc., depending on your taste.

Image: Unsplash

6. Greens

While salad greens are often grown in cool climates, you can still enjoy these fresh greens during summer with several ways of planting. Firstly, you should choose varieties that can thrive well in high temperatures, such as Malabar and New Zealand spinach, mustard, Swiss chard, and collards. 

Even common lettuce varieties can also be planted in the high temperatures of the summer if you provide them with plenty of water and grow them in the shade instead of sunlight. It’s best to harvest greens when the leaves are young for the best taste.

Image: Unsplash

7. Lettuce

You can easily sow and plant lettuce right in your vegetable garden bed or sow them indoors for later transplanting. It is one of the few types of vegetables that can be planted year-round. However, you should grow them in the shade and harvest at a smaller size if growing them in the heat of the summer. Lettuce is slow to grow in the shade. It is also slower to get to the seed. In other words, it can be harvested for longer.

Lettuce leaves can be cut when they grow, and you can enjoy some harvests from the same type of lettuce by simply cutting away the ones you want to eat each time.

If you want full heads of lettuce leaves to grow, then cut them thinly. Spacing between plants should be around 8 to 10 inches. When you prune young plants, save the small leaves for salads.

Lettuce can be grown all year round. Image: Unsplash

8. Melons

Biting into a sweet, succulent slice of melon is one of the greatest pleasures during hot summer days. Melons require lots of heat, water, nutrient-rich soil and fertilizer to thrive and produce ripe and succulent fruit. 

It’s best to choose a location facing south to get reflected heat and provide melons with more places to thrive. Wait for seeding until the soil temperature is between 65 and 70 degrees F. You can also start growing melons from the nursery. Heat-enhancing methods, such as black cloth or resin, are also a good way to warm the soil and accelerate growth.

Melon is one of the 15 easy vegetables to grow in summer
Image: Unsplash

9. Okra

Okra is very easy to grow and it can thrive in warmer weather because of its excellent tolerance to heat and drought. You can harvest okra within 50 or 60 days after the germination. Sow seeds directly outdoors in nutrient-rich and well-drained soil. Another important thing to remember is that you only plant okra when soil temperatures reach 65 or 70 degrees F. Although okra is drought-tolerant, it will grow better when watered regularly. After flowering for a few days, you can start harvesting okra.

Image: Unsplash

10. Peas

Although peas are typically grown in cool weather, you can still plant them in mid to late summer and harvest them in the fall. To calculate the best time to grow peas, you should first decide your average first frost date, then subtract the days to maturity listed on the pea seed package. After that, give them an extra week for the seeds to germinate. 

To speed up pea seed germination, you can soak them in water and leave them overnight. Besides, you should shade new seedlings from direct sunlight during the hottest time of the day and cover them with organic mulch to help lower the soil temperature. Keep the peas adequately watered to produce flowers.

Peas are great and easy vegetables to grow in summer
Image: Unsplash

11. Peppers

Due to the long growth period, you should grow peppers indoors or buy them as the nursery starts. Wait for planting outdoors until nighttime temperatures stabilize at 60 degrees F or higher. Peppers grow best in a sunny spot with well-drained and nutrient-rich soil. Initially, add an all-purpose vegetable fertilizer to the soil to keep the peppers evenly moist. They will need to be caged or staked so that it does not bend or break due to the weight of the fruit.

Image: Unsplash

12. Summer squash

Unlike winter squash, summer squash does not store well and it’s best to eat them when they are fresh. Varieties include zucchini, straightneck, crookneck, zephyr and pattypan. Choose a location with lots of sunlight, grow them in nutrient-rich soil, and good drainage. Grow summer squash in rows or hills and sow them directly when the soil temperature are around 70 degrees F. You will need to water these plants 1 to 2 inches of water every week. You can use drip irrigation to lower the risk of foliar diseases.

13. Sweet potatoes

Unlike regular potatoes, this root vegetable is tropical in origin, requiring a few months of heat to grow well. When the soil temperature reaches at least 60 degrees F, the bulbs will slide into a sunny spot with nutrient-rich, loose, and well-drained soil. Moisturize them evenly with 1 inch of water every week. When the foliage starts to turn yellow, you should stop watering 2 to 3 weeks before harvest.

14. Tomatoes

Tomatoes need several months of warm weather in order to produce a bountiful harvest. They are highly edible plants that need nutrient-rich soil and fertilizer to grow best. You should choose a location with full sunlight, water them regularly, and provide them with supplemental fertilizer. Wait for transplanting outdoors until nighttime temperatures reach at least 55 degrees F. To support the fruit, you should grow tomatoes near trellises, stakes, or cages. 

Image: Unsplash

15. Tomatillos

Tomatillos are a kind of small green round fruit of this tomato relative that grows inside a paper rind. This kind of vegetable is typically sensitive to cold. Hence, they grow best in soil temperatures of between 70 and 80 degrees F. You can either start sowing seeds indoors 4 weeks before the last frost date in your region or buy nursery-grown tomatillos. Different varieties need different times to mature, but most will take 75-100 days to be ready to harvest. For successful cross-pollination, you should grow two or more plants. 

Easy Vegetables To Grow In Summer: 6 Tips for Beginners

So now you know some easy vegetables to grow in summer. And in this part, I will give you some tips to get a bountiful harvest with these crops.

  1. Grow by region: Choose varieties that will thrive best in your specific region. If your growing season is shorter, then choose varieties that mature faster and vice versa.
  2. Mulch: You can save water, prevent weeds, and cool down the soil temperatures by spreading a 1-2 inch layer of compost or other organic substances around the vegetables.
  3. Watering: Water the plant in the morning to minimize the possibility of transpiration and prevent foliar disease. You can also try to use drip irrigation to save water and decrease the rate of waterborne diseases. 
  4. Shade: Vegetable varieties such as peas, greens, cauliflower broccoli, etc., will thrive if you provide them with partial shade during the hottest time of the day, typically in hot summers. Plant in a place out of the midday heat or use fabric shade.
  5. Continuous planting: You can re-sow vegetables such as beets, lettuce, etc., every few weeks during the summer so that you can harvest them continuously.
  6. Harvest: It’s better to pick vegetables or fruits early or late in the day, typically during hot days. This way, they will provide a fresher and more flavorul taste.

Conclusion 

So, that’s the 15 easy vegetables to grow in summer. Remember that you can plant more types of vegetables depending on your climate. Just follow the tips above and you will get a bountiful harvest.

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How To Care For Mint Plant: Easy Tips for Beginners

Mint plants are really easy to grow, either in pots or in the garden. However, there are a few important things you should look for when growing mint. Typically, lots of beginning gardeners don’t know how to care for mint plant. So, in this post, I’ll give you the ultimate guide so that you can successfully grow your mint.

What to Look for When Choosing Mint Plants

Growing mint from seed can be an experiment for beginner gardeners. Because mint’s germination period is usually slow and initial growth can even be slower. Hence, it is advisable to sow mint seeds indoors several months before the last frost date. Due to this, most gardeners purchase mint through nurseries that offer pre-planted plants. These rooted mint cuttings are much more straightforward to maintain and will often produce more foliage than seed-started mints within the first year.

Here are some important things you should keep in mind when choosing mint to plant indoors or in the garden:

Variety: Are the mint plants labeled? There is a wide range of mint varieties available to the home gardener, so make sure you know what type of mint you have!

Health: Visually check the mint plants to see if there are any signs of disease. If it has any brown-orange spots on the lower foliage, then you shouldn’t use this plant. Such mottled spots are a common sign of mint rust, a disease needed to be destroyed or burned.

Pests: Inspect for any chewed parts or discoloration on the mint leaves. Large holes in the foliage are usually a sign of fissures, while small colored spots can be a sign of aphids, fleas, or spider mites. Actually, you can control all of these pests with proper care. Keep reading to know how to care for mint plants.

Choosing the right mint type is important
Choosing the right type of mint. Image: Unsplash

How To Care For Mint Plant

Growing mint plants and caring for them is not too difficult if you follow these tips.

  • Minimal care is required for mint. You can use light mulch for outdoor mint plants. This not only keeps the soil humid but also makes the mint leaves cleaner.
  • Remember to water indoor mint plants regularly to keep the soil evenly humid.
  • Once the frost threat passes, you can start growing mint plants in the ground.
  • Water mint plants throughout the season if needed as mint plants prefer completely moist soil. So, depending on the weather condition where you live and the location of the mint plant, you might need to water them on a daily basis.
  • You can and should harvest your mint leaves regularly during the season. By doing this, you are promoting the mint plant to grow bushier. To harvest mint, use your fingers to cut away the new growth on the top of the plant. Pinch the part that grows above the button about 1/3 of the mint stem’s bottom.
  • At the end of the season, aboveground mint can be covered with mulch for wintering. For mints planted in pots, you will need to dig them up and divide the roots. If you don’t, the mint will ultimately become so rooted that it will die on its own.
How to care for mint plant
How to care for mint plant properly. Image: Unsplash

The Do and Don’t of Growing Mint Plant

Like cilantro and basil, mint is considered one of the easiest herbs to plant. Nevertheless, its roots, known as the “jogger tree,” are extremely invasive. You can imagine that they grow fast, quickly sprouting new leaves and new plants. If you are not careful, your mint plant quickly takes the place of a flower bed or garden. Keep reading to know the do’s and don’ts of growing mint:

Do

  • When selecting a place for your mint plant, it is best to look for a location that will receive morning sun and partial afternoon shade.
  • You can grow mint in containers or pots, both indoors and outdoors.
  • When growing mint plants in a flower bed, make sure you submerge a pot (container, mesh bag, or rim at least 5 inches deep). This way, the rim is higher than the ground when potted. The silver’s fast-growing roots, as a result, will be contained there. Otherwise, the mint plants will invade your garden and lawn in a nasty weed fashion.
  • Always harvest mint sprigs before they flower.
  • You can pink flower buds when they appear to prolong the harvest season.
  • If you grow mint in a garden bed, cover it with mulch to prevent it from spreading.
  • Place mint plants 15 cm apart and thin them out often.
  • If you grow mint plants indoors, place your pot in a location that receives good morning light. Also, keep them far away from drying heating items or elements.
Enough sunlight is an essential step on how to care for mint plant
Mint need at least 6 to 7 hours of sunlight each day to grow properly. Image: Unsplash

Don’t 

  • Grow mint plants in an open bed unless you immerse a vessel containing the plant’s wild-growing roots.
  • If you plan to grow mint plants in a bed with a submerged container. Make sure it doesn’t crack. Otherwise, the “runners” can find their way and keep spreading.
  • Grow mint plants in ultra-humid conditions so they don’t dry out.

Conclusion

Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions about how to care for mint plant so that you will grow mint indoors and outdoors properly.

How much sun does a mint plant need?

Ideally, growing mint in a sunny place, either indoors or in the ground. Mints usually require at least 6 to 7 hours of sunlight each day to grow properly. 

How often should mint plants be watered?

In fact, mint can grow successfully in different types of soils and light conditions. However, they need to be provided with enough and regular moisture. They also require unsaturated and well-drained oil for normal growth. Mint plants often need around 1 to 2 inches of water per week, depending on conditions.

Why is my mint plant dying?

There are different reasons causing your mint plant to die. If mint dies in a pot, it might be because the pot is too small or because there is a lack of drainage holes in the bottom so excess water cannot drain out. Long-legged plants, few leaves due to lack of sunlight or too much fertilizer are also popular reasons that make your mint plant can’t thrive. 

How do you care for a mint plant indoors?

Mint plants are the kind of plant that prefers being moist but not too wet. If the ground is dry to the touch, it needs to be watered. If not, try to keep it evenly moist. Dampness is another crucial factor. So, make sure you mist the plant between waterings or place the pot on a pebbles or cobblestone tray filled with water.

How do I make my mint plant bushy?

Sprinkle the soil with some time-release fertilizer (optional). Fully water the mint plant. Lastly, pinch two to four leaves on the top of each mint. This way, the mint branch sprouts and becomes bushy.

Why are the leaves on my mint plant turning brown?

There are various reasons why your mint leaves turn brown, such as low dampness, wrong watering, and diseases such as fungal infections. Less probable reasons could be lack of nutrients, sunburn, or root restriction. 

Conclusion

That’s useful tips on how to care for mint plants. I hope that you get some knowledge to take care of your mint. I’d also love to hear about your mint growing and caring experience. Don’t forget to share it with me and other readers in the comment box!

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How to Plant Potatoes At Home: 8 Easy Steps to Start

Home gardeners usually plant vegetables like peas, tomatoes, and peppers. But have you ever tried growing potatoes at home? Potatoes are a kind of starchy root vegetable that is considered one of the most staple foods in American cuisine. But beginning home gardeners might wonder how to plant potatoes at home. Well, in this part I will give you some information about when to plant potatoes, how to plant potatoes at home and in pots, and how to harvest potatoes. So, keep reading to prepare for your potato garden. 

When to Plant Potatoes

The ideal condition to grow potatoes is cool soil, usually between 45-75 degrees F. This means that the growing season for potatoes will be different depending on your climate, such as:

In cool climates: If your area has really cold winters and moderate summers, then you should grow potatoes right after the last frost date. For example, this weather is usually seen in the northern United States. And people there often plant potatoes in early spring, mid to late April.

In warm climates: If the region you live in has extremely hot summers and moderate winters, in late summer as soon as the weather starts to cool is the ideal time to start growing potatoes. For instance, this usually occurs in September in the southern United States.

Choosing the right potatoes for specific climate
Image: Unsplash

How Long Does it Take to Grow Potatoes?

One of the most important factors affecting the time for potatoes to reach their maturity is the variety of potatoes. For example, it will take around 75 to 90 days for early-season varieties of potatoes (such as Yukon gold) to grow and produce. Mid-season varieties (like russet) will take longer to produce, which is around 90 to 135 days. And the late-season varieties (such as French) need more time to grow. Usually, it takes between 135 and 160 days to be ready to harvest. 

It’s better for you to choose a potato variety that’s right for your climate. For instance, if you have fewer days in your living space where soil temperatures are between 45 and 75 degrees F, early-season varieties should be your consideration. 

How to Grow Potatoes At Home

Here are the 8 easy and practical steps on how to grow potatoes at home that every home gardener can do. 

  1. Buy seed potatoes. While a lot of garden vegetables are planted from seeds, potatoes are planted vegetatively. In other words, new potato sprouts will germinate from the produce on their own. In order to grow potatoes at home, you will need seed potatoes or potatoes covered in “eyes” – red spots will easily germinate for full growth. Besides, you should not use grocery store potatoes for your seed potatoes. This is because they might be treated with an inhibitor to prevent germination.
Consider when buying seed potatoes from supermarket. Image: Unplash

2. Start your potato seeds. You should put your seed potatoes in a cool, sunny place to stimulate hardy germination around two or three weeks before the time you’d like to grow. 

3. Cut your seed potatoes. Cut each seed potato into several pieces one or two days before growing. Make sure that each section should have at least two sprigs or sprouts. Don’t grow these pieces right away. They will need several days to “heal”, or they will rot in the ground.

4. Select and prepare potato beds. Choose a sunny place (make sure it gets at least six hours of full sunlight each day) in a raised bed, well-drained, a little bit acidic soil (pH level between 4.8 and 5.2), ideally rich in organic matter. Then dig shallow ditches (4 to 6 inches deep). Make sure they are long enough to grow each potato about 8 inches apart.

5. Grow your seed potato pieces. Grow the seed potatoes in the ditch so that the buds are facing up (cross section). Freely cover them with loose soil, which is considered an ideal environment for potatoes to grow. So, do not pack in the ground.

6. Keep it moist. You should water your potatoes one to two inches of water every week. To prevent potatoes from cracking, you should water the bed equally. 

7. “Pile up” potatoes occasionally. When your potatoes grow, leaves will germinate from the soil, while tubers will develop on individual stems below the ground. If the tubers are exposed to too much sunlight, they will turn green and you can’t eat them. So, make sure you bury the tubers simply by “piling” them. All you need to do is to pile several inches of mulch or soil around every plant’s base, except for the top few rows of the leaves. You should do this around 3 to 4 times during the season.

8. Keep potatoes free of pests. Potatoes are considered one of the most popular targets for Colorado potato beetles, aphids, and fleas. So, make sure you remove these pests from your potatoes or spray them off with water. Besides, you can nourish your potatoes with tea compost, ensuring the soil pH is always under 5.2 to prevent some diseases for your potatoes such as scab or blight. Also, don’t forget to maintain healthy crop rotation practices.

Pro tip: You can also grow potatoes with several plants to improve their tastes, such as yarrow, basil, thyme, etc. Learn how to grow basil from seeds indoors.

How to Grow Potatoes At Home from Potatoes

Ideally, you should grow potatoes from typically planted seed potatoes from a certified garden supply store. The potatoes you buy at the grocery store might have been treated with a germination inhibitor to prevent them from germinating in your storeroom. Nevertheless, if you have some potatoes that are starting to germinate, just grow a piece of germinated potato in a container or in the ground. Make sure you cover them with 3 inches of soil. Green sprouts will appear after 2 weeks. They will develop into shrubs and after 3 months or so, new potatoes will develop under the ground.

How to grow potatoes at home from potatoes
How to grow potatoes from potatoes. Image: Unsplash

How to Grow Potatoes in Containers

If you don’t have a large enough space to grow potatoes in the ground, you can completely grow potatoes in pots or containers. You can start with a large and deep container with plenty of drainages. Fill one-third of the pot with soil, then put your seed potatoes in the container. Then place a layer of potting soil on top. Put the potato containers in place full of sun and water them well. Plant the potatoes in the pot as they grow to about 6 inches and repeat until the container is full.

How to Harvest Potatoes

When you see the foliage starting to die, don’t worry! This means it’s almost time to harvest your potatoes. Potatoes are usually ready to harvest two to three weeks after the plants begin to die again. Once the top of the foliage is completely dead, you can start harvesting your potatoes. 

  1. Softly dig up your potatoes. You can use your fingers or a spading fork to softly lift the potatoes out of the ground. Do not dry potatoes in the sun; otherwise, they will turn green and you can’t eat them. If there are any green potatoes, throw them away.
  2. Let the potatoes dry in the air. If your soil is really moist, let the potatoes air dry (out of direct sunlight).
  3. Prepare to store potatoes. Leave your potatoes in a cool, dry, and dark spot for two weeks. This will make their skins harder and make them last longer.
  4. Store your potatoes. Store potatoes in a cool and dark place. If you don’t have a tuber cellar, you can put your potatoes in the bottom rack of the pantry. They can be kept for up to six months.
How to harvest potatoes
It’s time to harvest your potatoes. Image: Unsplash

Frequently Asked Questions

In this part, you will find out answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about how to plant potatoes at home.

What month do you grow potatoes?

This hugely depends on local weather. However, most home gardeners plant potatoes at home in March, April, and May. And the time to harvest is around 4 months later. However, some places can grow potatoes in autumn and winter if it has a mild winter climate.

Do potatoes need full sunlight to grow?

In general, potatoes grow best in place with full sunlight. They are strong rooting plants, and also produce the best harvests when grown in loose, light, and well-drained soil. 

How do I know if my potatoes are ready to harvest?

Usually, potatoes are ready to harvest when the foliage starts to die again. You need to let the top of the potato plants be completely dead before you can start harvesting.

What happens if I don’t harvest my potatoes?

Few things can happen if you don’t harvest your potatoes when they die back. For example, if the soil is too wet, your potatoes will rot. Or they can also die again if the ground starts to freeze. But if you live in a climate that is warm and dry enough, any surviving tubers throughout the winter will germinate again when the spring comes.

How often should I water potatoes?

Potatoes grow best when given 2-3 inches of water per week without completely drying out. They also need to be watered thoroughly, typically when it is really hot and dry. You should also keep the soil moist 8 to 10 inches underground. Another thing to remember is don’t overwater the potatoes for 2 weeks after growing.

What grows good with potatoes?

There are few plants that are considered to boost the flavor of potatoes, including chamomile, yarrow, basil, thyme, and parsley. All legumes, cabbage and corn will also help the potatoes grow better and thus enhance the taste of potatoes.

Conclusion

So, that’s some useful tips on how to plant potatoes at home. I hope that all of you learn something and start to grow your first potato garden, either in the ground or in pots. If there’s anything you are still confused about, don’t hesitate to leave your questions in the comment box!

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Body Odor is no longer a problem

What factors contribute to the body odor and perspiration?

Body odor is a very common problem that can have a negative impact on a person’s life. It is primarily caused by bacterial activities in sweat rather than the sweat itself. It is a frequent misunderstanding that body odor is caused by perspiration. Human perspiration, in fact, is nearly odorless. Body odor is caused by bacteria on an individual’s skin breaking down protein molecules in perspiration, resulting in the production of odor. Body odor can be treated by some ways. There is no uniform therapy for it but by taking the following measures may aid in the control of the body odor and perspiration.

Body odor and perspiration preventive measures

The one measure is washing, a person should wash himself or take bath on a regular basis to avoid sweating or body smell. Another method to avoid body odor and sweating is shaving. The last method for preventing sweating is using antiperspirants. Antiperspirants work by reducing the severity of a person’s body odor by modifying sweat quantities and altering sweat chemistry.

What differentiates a deodorant from an antiperspirant?

Antiperspirants are a type of deodorant that is used to keep perspiration and stink at a bay from an individual’s body. Antiperspirant are applied after a shower on a clean and dry skin before going to bed. They then form temporary gel-like plugs in the topmost section of your sweat pores, reducing perspiration production and prevents the human body odor when used appropriately. The main difference between a deodorant and antiperspirant is antiperspirant contains aluminum which helps to decrease sweating. Therefore, it protects against body odor and perspiration on the other hand, deodorant protects against odor only. Both will help you stay fresh but, antiperspirant will help you manage sweat which is ideal if you want to avoid dampness beneath your arms. The aluminum content in antiperspirants help you reduce how much you sweat.

The best Antiperspirants available  

  1. Dove antiperspirant

Dove is one of those brands which makes products that are moisturizing to skin. The antiperspirant by dove is hydrating to skin and also moisturizes it making the skin super soft and smooth.

  • Secret derma + invisible gel antiperspirant

This antiperspirant contains aloe vera gel to make the skin smooth and also to sooth the skin. It does not cause any irritation to skin and even reduces the irritation which occurs after shaving the armpits. The best thing about this antiperspirant is its super light weight and creamy formula which dries quickly and does not stick to the clothes.

  • Maxim antiperspirant

Maxim is famous as being a therapy for people who have the problem of excessive sweating therefore, it should not just be considered as a deodorant. This product is proven to be the best solution for people having the issue of excessive sweating and body odor. This product not just covers up the issue but also attempts to eradicate it completely.

  • Duradry 3-step Protection System Antiperspirant

This product has received many positive reviews from its customers. It is used to address the most severe symptoms of excessive perspiration and body odor. This product is recommended by several dermatologists because of the maximum quantity of active substances to successfully sure the issue of sweating and body odor. This product is effective just after three days of use.

  • Right Guard Xtreme Defense Antiperspirant

With just a single application, Right Guard prevents a person from body odor and perspiration for up to three days, taking freshness to new heights. This product is also suggested by several dermatologists, so the ingredients used in this product are tested and trusted by the dermatologists which does not cause any harm or irritation to the skin.