10 Common Summer Houseplant Mistakes You Need to Avoid

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As temperatures rise in the summer months, it’s crucial to pay attention to the needs of your houseplants. While indoor plants may seem low-maintenance, they require care and attention to thrive. Neglecting their needs can lead to several problems that can be easily avoided with some simple changes in care routine. In this article, we’ll look at ten common summer houseplant mistakes that you need to avoid to keep your indoor garden healthy and beautiful.

1. Overwatering

One of the most common mistakes in summer houseplant care is over-watering. We sometimes assume that plants need more water in the summer, but many indoor plants are more prone to root rot and other fungal diseases when the soil is constantly moist. So, always check the soil before watering.

2. Underwatering

On the other hand, not giving enough water can be lethal for houseplants, especially during hot weather. Depending on the plant species, some will wilt if they feel too dry. To prevent underwatering, make sure to water your plants when the top inch of soil is dry.

3. Incorrect Lighting

Plants need different amounts of light to grow, but intense sunlight can damage many houseplants. Make sure you’re aware of the light requirements of your plant, and avoid placing them in direct sunlight during the hottest hours of the day. Also, if you notice your plants leaning towards the window, they may not be getting enough light.

4. Ignoring Fertilizer

Plants require nutrients to thrive, and fertilizer provides an essential boost of nutrients. However, many houseplant owners often forget to fertilize their plants during the summer months. It’s recommended to use a half-strength, water-soluble houseplant fertilizer every two weeks in the growing season.

5. Not Repotting When Needed

As plants grow, their roots will outgrow their current pot, and they’ll need to be transplanted into a larger container. Neglecting to do so can restrict their growth and impact their health. Signs that your plant needs repotting include roots protruding from the drainage holes, yellowing leaves, or stunted growth.

6. Not Cleaning Your Plant’s Leaves

Dust and dirt can accumulate on your plant’s leaves, and this dust buildup can impair their ability to photosynthesize. Use a damp cloth or sponge to gently clean the leaves every few weeks to keep them healthy.

7. Not Checking for Pests

Houseplants are prone to insect infestations, especially during the summertime. Common pests include spider mites, mealybugs, and aphids. Always check regularly for signs of pests, such as yellow or brown spots or webbing on your plants. If you notice pest activity, use a mild insecticide or insecticidal soap immediately.

8. Not Properly Controlling the Temperature

The indoor temperature of your home can have a significant impact on your houseplants. Sudden temperature changes can shock plants, so it’s best to avoid placing them next to drafty doors or air conditioning units. Also, try to keep the temperature consistent by using a humidifier or placing trays of water nearby.

9. Neglecting to Thin Out Foliage

As plants grow, foliage can become crowded, and leaves can fall to the bottom. This can attract pests or even cause mold and mildew to grow. To promote healthy growth, remove crowded or dead foliage regularly.

10. Not Using the Right Soil Mix

Different plants require different soil mixes, and using the wrong soil can cause them to wilt and eventually die. Always research the proper soil mix for your plant species and make sure your soil is well-draining.

Concluding Thoughts on Summer Houseplant Mistakes

By avoiding these ten common summer houseplant mistakes, you can help your indoor garden thrive all season long. Keep in mind the specific needs of your plant and tailor your care routine accordingly. If you start to notice any issues, don’t hesitate to adjust your care immediately.

FAQs About Summer Houseplant Mistakes

1. Can I keep my plants outside during the summer?

Some plants can thrive outside during the summer, but this depends on the plant species and the climate in your area. Always check the optimal temperature range for your plant and avoid placing them in direct sunlight or harsh wind.

2. How often should I fertilize my plants in the summer?

Most plants benefit from a half-strength, water-soluble houseplant fertilizer every two weeks during the growing season.

3. Can over-fertilizing be harmful?

Yes, over-fertilizing your plants can cause salt buildup in the soil, leading to root damage and other issues. Always follow the recommended guidelines when fertilizing your plants.

4. Should I mist my plants during hot weather?

Mist is beneficial for some plant species, but it depends on their needs. If your plant is native to a humid environment, misting can help promote healthy growth. However, it’s important not to mist plants that prefer dry conditions, as this can cause them to develop diseases or rot.

5. What’s the best way to check if my plant needs watering?

The best way to check if your plant needs watering is to feel the top inch of soil. If it feels dry to the touch, it’s time to water. If it feels moist, wait until it dries out before watering again.


Taking care of houseplants can be a rewarding experience, but it requires effort and attention. By avoiding these ten summer houseplant mistakes, you can help ensure that your indoor garden thrives in the warm weather. Remember to research the needs of your plant species, and always adjust your care routine accordingly.


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