Urban gardening not going well? Here's how to save dying plants


Urban gardening during lockdown not going well? Here’s how to save dying plants

Shower them with some TLC. And water, of course

By Sonali Shah  May 25th, 2020

Have you left your plants unattended since a few days out of sheer laziness (blame it on the quarantine), or has your interest in plants waned because there haven’t been any flowers blossoming? Chances are, the sun, water and a little effort on your part might still revive them. Plants are hardier than we think, and there is special joy in seeing wilting plants thrive. Here’s how to save dying plants.

 

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Using the reparo charm

If you see limp stems and drooping leaves, immediately water the plant deeply. That is, pour water gently from all sides, until you see it seeping out from the drainage hole at the bottom of the pot. This ensures that all parts of the roots will receive their share of water. Now, focus on the soil. The top layer has probably hardened from the harsh summer sun. Grab a large spoon or a shovel, and dig up the top layer. Be careful not to damage the roots. Give the tilled soil a good mix, and if you have any compost lying around, this is the time to add it to the soil. Pat down the soil with the spoon and place the pot in a partially sunny spot. Water the plants everyday–early in the morning or late evening.

 

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Strict actions

You may have plants which simply refuse to grow any further, or bear flowers. Your regular watering is making sure they don’t die, but there are no new leaves. There are two way to remedy this–one, move the plant into another pot with different soil. Two, prune some stems. This is a bit heartbreaking because you’re essentially cutting off stems from your beloved plant, but know that it helps the plant grow more foliage. Choose old stems to snip off, and any where the leaves are drying out or attacked by pests.

 

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Save the succulents

If you have succulents though, they demand a completely different care method. Most of us tend to overwater our succulents, leading to their rapid death. The trick is to use all your willpower to resist watering them often. Water only once a week, and that too because it’s summer currently. In the monsoon, just once a month! Pour gently, through the sides of the pot without letting the water touch the leaves. Succulents love the sun, so place them in the sunniest spot you can find and keep your fingers crossed for their rare flowers.

 

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TIP:  Avoid watering in the afternoon, as the sun heats the water, causing root-burn.

 

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