9 Mistakes You May Be Making With Indoor Plants - Backyard Boss
We are reader supported. External links may earn us a commission.

9 Mistakes You May Be Making With Indoor Plants

Do you have a green thumb? If not, don’t worry! Most indoor plants are easy to take care of and can really brighten up a room. But before you start picking out your new plants, make sure you’re aware of the mistakes people commonly make when it comes to plant care. From not watering them enough to placing them in the wrong spot, read on to find out what you need to avoid if you want your plants to thrive.


Rotting roots
Image credits: Xondra via Canva

One of the most common mistakes people make with indoor plants is overwatering. This can lead to root rot, limp and rotten leaves, and other problems. To avoid overwatering, water your plants when the soil is dry to the touch about an inch deep. Also, be sure to empty any drainage trays after watering so that your plants aren’t sitting in water.


Take care of household plants and flowers. Flower got yellow and dry at home. Orchid losing dead yellow leaves
Image credits: Pencil case via Shutterstock

Underwatering is also a common mistake. This can cause your plant leaves to wilt and turn dry. So, how often should you water your plants? It depends on the type of plant and the size of the pot, but a good rule of thumb is to water them once a week. However, as with overwatering, check your soil first. If the soil is dry to the touch, give them a good soaking.

Not Cleaning Your Plants

Lady cleaning a leaf with baby wipe
Image credits: Dikushin Dmitry via Shutterstock

Another mistake people make is not cleaning their plants. Many people think that they don’t need to clean their plants because they’re already inside and aren’t exposed to the same dirt and grime as outdoor plants. However, if you don’t clean your plants on a regular basis, then dust, pollen, and other debris can build up on their leaves. This can block sunlight from reaching the leaves, which can stunt plant growth and halt photosynthesis.

To clean your plants, simply wipe their leaves down with a damp cloth, or baby wipes, to remove any dust and dirt. As a bonus, you can make your plant leaves shine with lemon juice!

Not Pruning 

Woman pruning basil plant
Image credits:
Tina Dawson via Unsplash

Not pruning your plants is a mistake you may be making with indoor plants. Plants are living things, and, like all living things, they need to be cared for in order to stay healthy and thrive. Pruning is an important part of plant care that helps to encourage new growth, remove diseased or damaged parts, and improve the overall appearance of the plant.

While it may seem like a lot of work, pruning is actually quite easy to do and can make a big difference in the health and appearance of your plants. If you’re not sure how to prune your plants, there are plenty of resources available at your local nursery or garden center. With a little bit of practice, you’ll be a pro in no time!

Not Fertilizing Your Plants

Farmer filling a soil with fertilizer during planting a golden barrel cactus in flower pot. Golden barrel cactus is popular for ornamental plant in contemporary garden designs.
Image credits: Boyloso via Shutterstock

Are you making the mistake of not fertilizing your indoor plants? If so, you could be harming their growth and development.

Plants need nutrients (such as nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus) to survive, just like any other living thing. And while they can get some of these nutrients from the air and water around them, they also need to get them from the soil. This is where fertilizer comes in.

Fertilizer provides plants with the extra nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy. Without it, your plants will likely suffer from poor growth, yellow leaves, and weak stems. However, you should be careful not to over-fertilize as this can burn the roots of your plants. When fertilizing, be sure to follow the directions on the label.

So, if you want your indoor plants to thrive, be sure to give them a regular dose of fertilizer. Your local nursery or garden center can help you choose the right choice for your plants.

Using the Wrong Soil

Image credits: mixetto via Canva

We all know that plants need soil to grow, but did you know that using the wrong type of soil can be a mistake you may be making with indoor plants? Indoor plants are different from outdoor plants in many ways, including their soil needs.

One of the most common mistakes people make with indoor plants is using outdoor soil for their indoor plants. This can be a big no because the outdoor soil may be too heavy for the indoor plant, and it could cause the plant to become sick and die.

In general, it’s best to use a potting mix that is specifically designed for indoor plants. Potting mixes are also typically lighter and easier for indoor plants to grow in.

Not Getting Enough Light

Basil plant with direct sunlight
Image credits: gartengoere via Pixabay

Indoor plants need light to photosynthesize and grow. If they don’t get enough light, they can become leggy, and pale, and produce fewer flowers. They may also start to drop their leaves.

There are a few things you can do to make sure your indoor plants get enough light. First, move them closer to a window where they’ll get more natural light. You can also buy grow lights and place them near your plants. Be sure to give your plants the right amount of light each day so they can thrive.

Getting Too Much Light

Houseplant disease.
Image credits: Alie04 via Shutterstock

That’s right! Too much or anything can be a bad thing. But, did you know that too much light can actually be harmful to your indoor plants?

If you’re giving your plants too much light, you may notice that the leaves start to turn yellow or brown. This is called leaf scorch, and it’s a sign that your plant is stressed.

Too much light can also cause your plant to lose its color, or it can start losing its leaves. If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to rethink your plant’s lighting situation.

There are a few easy ways to fix this problem. You can try using a sheer curtain to filter the light or moving your plant to a spot where it will only gets indirect light.

Not Checking for Pests

Image credits: Avalon_Studio via Canva

Pests can be a problem for indoor plants. Common indoor plant pests include aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, and whiteflies. To prevent pests, be sure to check your plants regularly for the signs. If you find any pests, be sure to remove them from your plant and treat the plant with an insecticide or other pest control product.

Avoid Making The Same Mistake Twice!

Indoor plants can brighten up any room and make your home feel more alive, but it’s important to remember a few things in order to keep them looking their best.

Avoid common mistakes by following these tips, and if you have any tricks of your own, be sure to share them in the comments below! With a little bit of effort, your indoor plants will be thriving in no time.