The Secret of Fast Grow Indoor Plant
Posted by bsledlee on February 24th, 2014
Have you has an awful grow plant indoor experience? Such like the plant does not grow, the internodes (spaces between the leaves) on the new growth are much longer than the internodes on the older part of the plant, the new leaves are smaller than the older leaves, the leaf color is a lighter green on the newer foliage than on the older foliage, the older leaves are dead. I think you suffer at least one of them.
Want to know the secret of grow plant success? Yes, it sounds like nonsense. Today, we bring this great welfare for you.
Here is several factors of decide how to success in grow indoor plant
Of all of the factors affecting plant growth in indoor, sufficient light is by far the most important. Light is needed for plants to produce food and survive — generally, the more light available, the more food produced for growth. Light is measured in units called foot candles. One footcandle (ft-c) is the amount of light cast by a candle on a white surface 1 foot away in a completely dark room. Outdoors, the light levels on a bright day range from 10,000 ft-c in an open sunny area to 250 ft-c or less in the shade of a large tree.
It is very helpful to have a general idea of how much light is present in a given location in your house. You can get a fairly good estimate with a handheld light meter, or you can use a 35 mm camera and do the following:
•Set the film speed indicator to ASA 25 and the shutter speed to 1/60th second.
•Place a piece of white paper where you want to measure the light levels, aim the camera toward the paper close enough to fill the view, and adjust the f/stop so that the meter indicates a correct exposure.
•Read the approximate light level from Table 1.
Table 1. Indoor light levels and appropriate f/stop settings
f/stop SettingLight Level
With the help of this table, you can obtain the light intensity reading from anywhere in your home. For example, if the f/stop setting is f/16, the approximate light level is 2,400 ft-c.
Using the light readings, your home can be divided into four areas, which have the following light levels for 8 hours per day:
1.Low-light areas: 25 ft-c – 75 ft-c
2.Medium-light areas: 75 ft-c – 200 ft-c
3.High-light areas: over 200 ft-c but not direct sunlight
4.Sunny light areas: at least 4 hours of direct sunlight
In your home, the amount of light in a given location is variable — it is affected by the presence of trees outdoors (may shade at certain times), roof overhangs (may shade at certain times), wall color (reflectance), window curtains, day length, time of day, and time of year.
When shopping for indoor plants, select plants for a given location based on the approximate light levels in the spot. The plant’s label will usually contain information on the light requirements of the plant. If the plant label lists “high light” but the selected area in the home does not provide adequate light, artificial light sources such as fluorescent and/or special incandescent lights may be used to supplement the natural light.
Increasing the number of hours of light exposure can also help—for example, 16 hours of light and 8 hours of dark. This extends the number of hours during which plants receive light.
While adequate light is crucial for plant growth, too much light can be damaging (Figure 1).
Indoor plants are classified according to the amount of light needed for growth. (A list of plants and their light requirements is provided in Table 3.) Look for this information in general terms on the plant’s label:
•Low: minimum 25 ft-c – 75 ft-c, 75ft-c – 200 ft-c for good growth
•Medium: minimum 75 ft-c – 150 ft-c, 200 ft-c – 500 ft-c preferred
•High: minimum 150 ft-c – 1,000 ft-c, 500 ft-c – 1,000 ft-c preferred
•Very high: minimum 1,000 ft-c, 1,000+ ft-c preferred
Windows with eastern exposure within the home generally provide the best light and temperature conditions for most indoor plant growth because plants receive direct morning light from sunrise until nearly midday. Footcandle readings at these windows can reach 5,000-8,000. As the morning progresses, the direct sun recedes from the room.
An eastern room is cooler than southern or western rooms because the house absorbs less radiant heat. Light from the east is cooler than that from the south or the west, and thus it causes less water loss from the plants.
Windows with southern exposure give the largest variation of light and temperature conditions. The low winter sun shines across the room for most of the daylight hours.
In the summer, when the sun is farther north than it is in the winter, the sun rises at a sharp angle in the morning and is high in the sky by noon. Direct light comes into a south window only at midday. If there is a wide overhang covering the windows outside, the sun may not enter the room at all. The sun at noon on a summer day may measure 10,000 ft-c. Indoors, however, a southern window with wide eaves on the outside will receive about the same amount of light as a window with northern exposure. Southern and western exposures are interchangeable for most plants. In the winter, most plants, except those with definite preference for northern exposure, can be placed in a room with southern exposure.
Windows with northern exposure provide the least light and the lowest temperature. Because the United States is in the northern hemisphere, it receives most of its sunlight from the south. Out of the four exposures, the northern exposure receives the least light and heat year round.
Because of the low-light levels, maintaining healthy plants can be a challenge. A northern windowsill can measure light levels as low as 200 ft-c on a clear winter day, which is optimal for some plants, such as the African violet. This exposure is best for plants with green foliage because the coloration on variegated foliage tends to disappear under low-light conditions. Although most plants grown indoors will not grow in a northern room, they may tolerate it for short periods of time.
Seasons change the amount of natural light entering through windows. For example, the summer sun reaches a higher zenith compared to the winter sun (Figure 2). Therefore, sunlight penetrates farther into a room during winter.
So much work, right? If you want to grow indoor plant easy, you may need to buy led grow lights.
Temperature is the second most important factor influencing plant growth in interior environments. People feel comfortable in the range of 72 degrees F-82 degrees F, and interior plants can tolerate and grow well in the 58 degrees F-86 degrees F range because most indoor plants originate from tropical and subtropical areas of the world.
Temperature and light are linked through the processes of photosynthesis and respiration. These processes can be thought of as the “yin and yang” of plant life — two parts of a circle. Photosynthesis builds sugars and starch, which are then broken down by respiration to provide energy for the development of new tissues (growth) and the maintenance of existing ones. High temperature speeds up respiration. If the plant is not producing sufficient sugars (as under low light), then high temperatures may break down what little sugars are made, leaving little to none for growth. Maintenance takes precedence over growth; therefore, under insufficient light, plants do not grow. If light is so low that sugars produced are insufficient for maintenance, the plant eventually dies.
When sugar levels are low, the plant takes nutrients and sugars from older leaves to maintain new leaves. To help plants in an indoor environment, two options are available: (1) raise light levels to increase photosynthesis and sugar production or (2) reduce night temperature to lower respiration rates and allow more sugars for growth.
What temperatures are likely to occur in homes? During the summer, air conditioning that may have been turned off at night or weekend thermostat settings that may have been raised result in higher than desirable night temperatures. During the winter, heating that may have been turned off at night or weekend thermostat settings that may have been lowered may result in lower night temperatures. Be especially careful not to allow temperatures to drop below 50 degrees F, or chill damage will result on some sensitive foliage plants (e.g., Chinese Evergreen, Aglaonema). Chill damage is manifested with the yellowing of lower leaves and/or defoliation.
Plants vary in their minimum and maximum temperature requirements. Examples of cool-loving plants suitable for locations where temperatures drop to the low 50s at night and 60s during the day are Cyclamen, Wonder Plant, Fatshedera, Japanese Aralia, and Fatsia.
Not all interior plants have the same temperature requirements for optimal growth. For example, Cast Iron Plant, Aspidistra, and ferns actually grow better with cooler temperatures (72°F), while other tropical plants grow best if the temperatures are 90 degrees F – 95 degrees F. Such temperatures are rarely allowed indoors.
The best temperature range for indoor plants is 70 degrees F – 80 degrees F day and 65 degrees F – 70 degrees F night.
Relative humidity is the amount of moisture contained in the air. For interior plants, relative humidity below 20 percent is considered low, 40 percent – 50 percent is medium, and above 50 percent is high. Relative humidity is a very important factor, but it is easily overlooked. In a greenhouse, relative humidity is 50 percent or higher. Rapid transpiration and water loss may result when newly purchased plants are placed in the 10 percent – 20 percent relative humidity typical of most homes (Figure 3). Most indoor plants come from the tropics where high relative humidity is common. Therefore, take the following steps to help your plants adjust to the low relative humidity in your home.
•Place plants close together to create a microenvironment with a higher relative humidity.
•Use a shallow container filled with water and lava rocks or gravel, which will provide evaporation from a large surface area and increase relative humidity.
•Use a humidifier.
•Use mist bottles to spray water around the plant; however, in reality, you would need to mist every few minutes for an indefinite amount of time to make a difference in relative humidity around the plant.
•The foliage and flowers of plants with hairy leaves should not be sprayed with water. Water on such leaves may stay longer, providing opportunities for disease spores to germinate.
Learning to water is one of the most important skills in plant care. Applying too much water can suffocate plant roots and too little water causes growth to become erratic and stunted. Watering frequency will depend on the conditions under which the plants are growing. When dealing with how much water to apply, consider the following:
•Plant type: A list of plants and their moisture requirements is provided in Table 3. Not all plants are similar in their water requirements. This information, along with the light preference, is usually included on the plant label. For example, a croton, which prefers high light, will likely need more frequent watering compared with a succulent plant such as Opuntia cactus. Both have similar light needs but dissimilar water requirements.
•Plant size: Larger plants need more water compared to smaller plants.
•Container volume: If the growing container is too small, watering may be required more frequently.
•Soil moisture: The amount of water already present in the growing medium will also affect your watering frequency.
•Light intensity: Plants under high light transpire more water compared with plants under low light.
Improper watering causes many problems. Containers with saucers may cause an excessive build-up of soluble salts (from the applied fertilizer). High levels of soluble salts can cause damage to plant roots and a decline in growth. Discard any water that had drained in the saucer after irrigation, and apply large quantities of water to the soil to leach the accumulated soluble salts. In deciding when you should water, feel the soil by pushing a finger an inch or so below the surface. If the soil is still moist, no further water is needed. Water devices or water meters are also available to simplify watering.
The quality of the irrigation water is an issue with plants that are susceptible to fluorine and chlorine, such as Corn Plant (Dracaena), Ti Plant (Cordyline), Peacock Plant (Maranta), and Rattlesnake Plant (Calathea) (Figure 4). Alleviate this problem by letting the water stand for several days — so that some chlorine and fluorine will be released from it — before applying the water to the plants. Move susceptible plants away from the edge of the pool to prevent water splashes from reaching the foliage. Do not use susceptible plants around enclosed pools. In general, plants with long linear leaves (such as the Spider Plant) are more susceptible to fluorine.
Many indoor gardeners have the same problem with fertilizer that they have with water — they want to give their plants too much. Danger from over-fertilization occurs because any fertilizer used, whether in liquid, powder, or tablet form, will dissolve in soil water and will form salts in the water. When you over-fertilize, the water in the soil becomes so salty that it “burns” the plant’s roots by removing water from them (Figure 5). Excess soluble salts accumulate as a whitish crust on the surface of the growing medium and/or near the rim of the container.
Figure 5a. Soluble salt burn is manifested as leaf martinal and tip burn. Dead roots also invite root diseases.
Figure 5b. Soluble salts can burn roots; notice that the healthy roots are white, while the dead roots are brown. Dead roots also invite root diseases.
Before feeding plants, consider the following:
Plant type: Some plants are heavy feeders (e.g., Ficus species), while others need little or no additional fertilizer for months (e.g., succulents).
Volume of soil: The growing medium that is present — smaller pots require less fertilizer compared with larger pots because they contain less soil.
Light intensity: The higher the light levels, the more nutrients needed for plant growth.
A newly purchased, healthy plant rarely needs an immediate application of fertilizer. In most cases, the amount of fertilizer applied by the commercial producer will supply enough nutrients for two to three months in the home. This rule is flexible — if deficiency symptoms are evident, fertilizer application is desirable.
The secret to fertilizing plants indoors is to apply small amounts of fertilizer as the plant grows. Without new growth, the plant has a limited need for more fertilizer. During the winter when light levels are low, a plant’s need for fertilizer reduces. During the summer when light levels increase and the plant is actively growing, its need for fertilizer increases. As a starting point, use about one-fourth the label rate for monthly applications. If the overall plant color becomes lighter green, fertilize every two weeks. If the new growth is dark green but the leaves are small and internodes seem longer than on the older growth, decrease the fertilizer rate.
Varying fertilizer formulations are available to the indoor gardener. Many fertilizers come in specially designed formulas for indoor plants. Generally, they contain a lower percentage of the required mineral elements to prevent over-fertilization problems.
The growing medium provides anchorage, water, and minerals. When repotting plants, make sure that the new mix is well drained and aerated, holds water and nutrients well, and is within the right pH range (5.0-6.5). A good potting mix provides ample amounts of oxygen to the root system. Most professional mixes are good to use. Some plants require special mixes, e.g., bromeliads, orchids, and African violets. Either purchase these mixes or prepare your own. Below are some formulas that can be used to prepare a homemade potting mix.
Ok, now we know the factor of effect indoor grow plant. We can refer those factor to grow plant. You will success in next time.