Tag: indoor garden

Do I need a Grow Light to Start Seeds Indoors?

Do I need a Grow Light to Start Seeds Indoors?

If you’re new to gardening indoors, you might have the question: Do I need a grow light to start seeds indoors? Getting the right amount of natural light is a common question or issue that new gardeners face. In this article we’re covering how much…

Begin Gardening in an Apartment Without a Balcony

Begin Gardening in an Apartment Without a Balcony

We cover ways to garden in small spaces very frequently, but often those methods require some outdoor space to garden in (i.e. either a balcony or patio). If you’re in an apartment that lacks any outdoor space it can be difficult and intimidating to get…

Plants that Love Leca as a Growing Medium

Plants that Love Leca as a Growing Medium

Ever wondered what types of plants love leca as a growing medium?

If you follow our content or get our newsletter, you know we love using leca in gardening. Leca is a more niche growing medium in the gardening industry, but its been growing in popularity recently – and for good reason!

We’re going to cover what plants love growing in leca in this article, but if you’re interested in how to use leca as a growing medium then be sure to check out this article for more information.

What is Leca?

The name leca is actually an acronym, which stands for Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate.

Leca is a growing medium made up of small to medium sized clay balls. The clay absorbs moisture as you water your plant, and then allows roots to draw moisture from the clay as needed. This prevents your plants from sitting in standing water, which will help fight off root rot and other various diseases.

Leca is also a reusable growing medium, which makes it more cost efficient in the long term than traditional potting soil. We cover the pro’s and con’s of using leca more in depth in this guide here.

Or, if you’re sold on using leca and want to know what the best brands of leca are, we’ve got a guide for that too! If you need to make a quick purchase though, our top brand is Mother Earth Products on Amazon.

What plant characteristics are good for Leca?

Before we jump into plants that love leca, we’re going to talk about some of the characteristics of plants that will thrive in leca.

Likes to dry out thoroughly before watering

Because leca absorbs the water that drains off of plants, it is great at preventing root rot. Plants that enjoy their roots being pretty dry in between waterings will likely do well in leca.

Remember, your plant’s roots will still be able to draw moisture out of the clay, so they won’t be parched in between waterings. Rather they’ll just avoid staying too moist in sitting water like they might if you were using traditional soil.

Prefers Oxygen Rich Soil

One of the biggest perks of using leca is that it provides both drainage and extra aeration to plants roots when compared to traditional potting soil. With leca, there’s a lot of room for airflow between the clay balls to get to your plants roots.

Plants that Love Leca as a Growing Medium

Many plants will do well in leca as a growing medium, but below is a list of some of the top candidates that will thrive in it. By no means is this list exhaustive though, so don’t be afraid to try leca with other types of plants!

Types of plants that love leca:

  • Orchids
  • Pothos
  • Philodendrons
  • Monsteras
  • Hovas
  • Pileas
How to Create a Moss Terrarium

How to Create a Moss Terrarium

A moss terrarium is fun, easy to create, and easy to care for. These terrariums are growing in popularity in the gardening industry, and they’re are an easy way to get started with your very own. What is a Moss Terrarium A terrarium is essentially…

What is Coco Peat?

What is Coco Peat?

You may or may not have heard of coco peat before. Its been growing in popularity in the gardening industry as a form of growing medium, or addition to soil mixes. Today we’re covering what coco peat is, and the different uses and benefits of…

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Container Gardening

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Container Gardening

As you may have guessed, there are both advantages and disadvantages of container gardening. Sometimes container gardening is the only option if you’re living in either a rented space or smaller space.

Other times, you might be able to consider either container gardening or a traditional in ground garden. Our goal today is to help you compare the advantages and disadvantages of container gardening to help you decide if container gardening is the right choice for you.

Looking for more content on container gardening? We have a bunch of resources for new container gardeners, check it out here.

Advantages

Able to Garden in a Small Space

The first major advantage to container gardening is that you can garden in a small space. If you’re in an apartment, or a house without a large yard, it may not be an option at all to have an in ground garden.

Another consideration is if you only want to plant a couple of plants, it may not be worth taking the space up with an in ground garden. Planting a couple of plants may not be worth the hassle of setting up an in ground garden. A good alternative could be to plant your plants in containers.

Plants can be Moved as needed

This may be an obvious perk of container gardening, but its a perk none the less.

If you plant your garden in containers, they can be moved around as needed. This is particularly useful if you’re renting a space or may be moving at some point in the future. Container gardens are easy to pick up and move to your new place whenever you need!

You can also bring your plants indoors during the winter. This means that your plants can live a lot longer than a normal grow season, and depending on the type of plant some can live year round. You can even bring your plants indoor or outdoor as needed when the weather fluctuates.

No Heavy Garden Equipment Needed

When setting up an in ground garden you often need a fair amount of expensive equipment. Soil tillers, wheel barrels, sprinkler systems, garden hoes and more are all things that you might need to get started with an in ground garden.

Container gardening, on the other hand, really only requires pots, potting soil, and your plant of choice. They’re much simpler and easier to set up and take care of season after season.

No Weeding Necessary

With container gardening, you virtually never have to weed your garden. You’re also less likely to run into pest issues that you’d have in an in ground garden.

Disadvantages

Plants cant draw nutrients from the ground

In an in ground garden, your plants pull nutrients and moisture from the ground. When you put plants in containers, they lose this ability. This can somewhat be balanced out by fertilizers and ensuring that your potting soil is made with high quality ingredients.

Another benefit plants get when living in an in ground garden is earthworms help fertilize the soil. This isn’t something that’s really possible for container gardens, so that is a disadvantage and something to keep in mind.

More likely to overwater

Overwatering is a pitfall that many beginner gardeners run into. In an in ground garden, its not as likely to be detrimental to your plants. This is because water will run over your plants roots and get soaked into the ground.

When plants are in a pot, the water is contained in one area. You can mitigate this somewhat by adding drainage holes, mixing in perlite to your soil, or other solutions. However even with these solutions in place you need to be mindful that its possible to overwater plants when container gardening.

Another lesser known issue that plants in containers can run into during summer months is overheating. Especially in pots made of terracotta or something similar, overheating can be an issue that damages roots of plants and dehydrates them. Be mindful of how much direct sun the pots are getting and if you’re concerned, you can also consider a grow bag.

Not all Plants do well in Containers

The final disadvantage we’ll mention is that at the end of the day, not all pots do well in containers. While many can thrive, its just not optimal for a few types of plants.

This can be disheartening if you’re looking to plant a specific type and don’t have space for an in ground garden, but its better to know upfront than to plant something that will end up withering away in your pot.

Do your research on the type of plant you’re planning to plant in a container before actually planting, you may save yourself some heartache in the future.

Do you have an in ground garden, or a container garden? Let us know in the comments below!

5 Ways to Create Drainage for Plants in Pots

5 Ways to Create Drainage for Plants in Pots

Learning how to create drainage for plants is an essential skill to have when you’re dealing with potted plants. Sometimes it seems like an unwritten rule that the best plant pots have zero drainage holes. This means that you have to get creative and find…

The Best Potting Mix for Vegetable Container Gardening

The Best Potting Mix for Vegetable Container Gardening

The best potting mix for vegetable container gardening can be tricky to find. Think of soil you use for your plants is the investment you make up front to get high quality harvests later on in the season. If you skimp on your potting mix,…

The Best Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees

The Best Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees

Ever considered using a faux fiddle leaf fig?

There’s no way around it, fiddle leaf figs are fickle beasts. If you’ve ever owned one, you know they can be super finnicky. Between the amount of light it requires, how much water it needs, how susceptible it is to root rot, and more, these plants are tough for beginners to manage.

Which leads us to our topic today – faux fiddle leaf fig trees. Faux plants are a little taboo in the gardening world, but at Fig and Spruce we feel like there should be zero shame in faux plants. Keep reading to why you should consider using a faux fiddle leaf fig, and what the best options are!

Best Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees

Not all faux plants are created equal! When choosing you want one that looks natural, and that can be tough to find. We’re covering our top picks below for realistic looking trees in a variety of sizes!

Best Overall: Nearly Natural Fiddle Leaf Fig

If you’re looking for a premium faux fiddle leaf fig tree, Nearly Natural is a great brand to start with. Their faux fiddle leaf fig tree comes in four height options: 48 inches, 60 inches, 72 inches, and 84 inches.

This plant also comes in a small black planter that can be used long term if you like. However we think you’ll probably want to replace it with a larger planter like this large woven basket to balance out the height of this faux plant.

Nearly Natural’s team of designers are experts in recreating faux plants for those wishing to avoid untimely deaths of their plants. Their leaves are noted as very natural and realistic. Reviewers of this product mention that after you receive your plant, fluff the tree’s leaves to give it a more realistic vibe. Some have even removed a leaf or two to make the plant appear more real – but this is totally optional and up to you!

This brand does come at a higher price point than its competitors, but it is the most realistic option in our opinion if your main concern is getting a natural looking plant.

Best Budget Option: Besamenature Artificial Fiddle Leaf Fig

If you’re looking for a slightly lower price point than our first option, BesameNature is another great brand in the faux plant industry. Their faux fiddle leaf fig comes in three height options: 22 inch, 30 inch, and 40 inch.

While they’re not as tall as the options from nearly natural, they are very high quality and realistic looking. Similar to nearly natural, this plant comes in a small black planter that you’ll most likely want to replace with a more attractive one that suits your home’s décor.

The biggest pro to this brand is that their plants start at a lower price point than other comparable models. Their tallest 40″ fiddle leaf fig rings up at just under $60. Comparatively, nearly natural’s comparable option is 48″ for over $100.

Best Small Option: Real Touch Fiddle Leaf Tabletop Plant

Maybe you only have a small space where you want to place your fiddle leaf fig, and need something small?

This faux fiddle leaf fig from Naturally Home Accents is only 12″ tall, making it the smallest option of the three. It also comes with an attractive white ceramic pot, which means it arrives ready to be placed in your home! Simply remove the plant from the box, fluff the leaves, and place it wherever you want.

Why consider a faux fiddle leaf fig?

Easy maintenance

The most obvious advantage of a faux fiddle leaf fig is is that you can’t kill it. Fiddle leaf figs are notorious for being temperamental. Its extremely easy to over water or underwater a fiddle leaf fig, which is a common pitfall for new gardeners.

Fiddle leaf figs are also very sensitive, to basically everything. If you move them to a new spot in your room it can cause leaves to drop. Repotting a fiddle leaf can cause trauma for the plant. Sometimes it can feel like just looking at your plant the wrong way will cause an issue. With a faux fiddle leaf, you avoid a lot of potential heartache and trouble.

Pet friendly

A lesser known fact about fiddle leaf figs is that their leaves are actually not pet friendly! When you have a live fiddle leaf fig you should be weary of any leaves that may be consumed by your furry friends.

If your pets have a tendency to munch on leaves right off the plant, be aware that fiddle leaf fig leaves can be toxic for cats and dogs. If ingested, the leaves can cause gastrointestinal irritation, as well as a range of other unpleasant symptoms for your fur babies.

Great for low-light rooms

Real fiddle leaf figs are very sensitive to light. If your home does not get a lot of natural light, it could be difficult to keep a real fiddle leaf fig happy in your home. In keeping with its difficult temperament, fiddle leaf figs need a lot of indirect light. However, if you give them too much direct light you risk burning the plant.

All that to say, if you have a room that does not get the right amount of natural light for a real fiddle leaf, a faux fiddle leaf fig will be your best friend.

Interested in more resources for indoor gardeners? Check out our Indoor Plant Guides for more info!

Why Every Beginner Gardener should use a Soil Moisture Meter

Why Every Beginner Gardener should use a Soil Moisture Meter

We’ve all done it before. We’ve all checked the moisture of our plant’s soil with our fingers. Its a good quick fix, or “rule of thumb” if you will (pun intended). However, a much more accurate and efficient way to check your soil’s moisture is…