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3 Ways to Get Started Growing Your Own Food Today

3 Ways to Get Started Growing Your Own Food Today

Learning how to grow your own food can be tricky, especially if you’re in an apartment or a rental house (or even just a tiny house that you own). Sometimes it can feel like you need a large outdoor space to get started, but today…

The Best Macramé Plant Hanger Kit for Beginners

The Best Macramé Plant Hanger Kit for Beginners

Macramé plant hanger kits can help make the process of creating your own macramé hanger less intimidating. Can it be done by just buying macramé and tying a few knots? Absolutely! If you’re looking to create a simple macrame plant hanger without a kit, you…

Propagating Succulents: A Complete Beginner’s Guide

Propagating Succulents: A Complete Beginner’s Guide

We love succulents for beginners – they’re easy to grow, beautiful, and easy to start propagating! If you’re a first time propagator, look no further. Propagating succulents is one of the easiest ways to begin, keep reading to learn more.

Why Succulents?

Besides acting as beautiful home décor, succulents have wonderful benefits. They are used in medicine and to improve the quality of air. There are toxins in our environment that are removed by succulents. So why not keep them at home to improve the quality of air around them. Succulents help counteract dry indoor air, which can cause dry skin and sore throats. They have also been used to treat burns, cuts, and scratches for ages.

Succulents release oxygen at night thus they can provide an extra boost of fresh air to your bedroom and help you in breathing.

Learn how to Propagate Succulents

Succulents are easy to care for, and easy to propagate.

Propagating Succulents from Leaves

Propagating succulents with leaves is an easy way to grow your collection quickly. However, you’ll need to practice patience throughout the process. Depending on the variety you’re planning to use, some of them may take up to two to three months to form an individual baby succulent. Lets dive into how to do it.

Preparing the plant

  • The first step is the preparation of the mother plant. It is necessary to water your mother plant a few days before removing the leaf. This is important because whatever is in the leaf when you pull it out of the mother plant is what the pup growing from the leaf will use.
  • Try to make sure that the leaf you select is fleshy and well hydrated.
  • Do not go for wrinkled or yellow-brown leaves when selecting the leaves for propagation. Try to reach out for bigger and mature leaves.
  • Smaller leaves will take a longer time and the pub growing from small leaf may be weak rather than the pup growing from the bigger leaf as bigger leaf will be capable of holding more water and nutrients.

Steps to propagating succulents:

  • Select a variety that you want to propagate.
  • Identify the leaves you want to use for propagation. Mature leaves are faster to propagate than immature ones, so keep that in mind during the selection process.
  • Put cactus potting mix in a tray. You can also use regular potting soil if you have it on hand. We recommend the Miracle Gro Succulent potting mix as a good budget friendly option.
  • Wiggle off the succulent leaves so that they break off from the stems like a clean-cut so you can get a clear view of the base.
  • The next very important thing to remember is to sit dry the leaves for three to five days – this allows the succulents to callus. You don’t need to do anything prior to this, hold off on watering the succulents until at least 3 days have passed.
  • Wiggle the leaves so that they are sitting right in the soil. This way all the roots will attach and start growing. Do not bury them.
  • From here it is a waiting game. Succulents need minimal watering, but try to keep it somewhat moist. You don’t want the succulents to dry out completely but if they’re overly moist it can damage the plant. If you’re leaves look shriveled and wrinkley check if the soil is dry as they may need more water.
  • After a month you will find babies growing off the edges.
  • Pop them into a new pot so they can grow there.
  • Fill up a container with the cactus potting mix.
  • Take off the baby succulents. Try to grab off as much of the roots as you can.
  • You can leave the original leave that it was growing from.
  • Set the baby succulent in a container. Push the soil around it so it holds it in there.
  • It will then grow and be big enough so that you can plant it out.

Succulents are quite expensive. There are several ways to have a lot of succulents. The most commonly used method is leaf propagation. Due to some mistakes, we fail to achieve that number of successes with leaf propagation.

What to Expect

  • Everyone wants to get 100 percent success but that is not a possible case. If you have taken 10 leaves, not all 10 needs to be successful. Some might root, some might rot and some may dry the very next day or even rot.
  • The key factor is greater the number of leaves, the greater will be the success rate.
  • Each leaf of succulents grows differently.
  • Another important thing to follow is to let the succulent leave callus. Otherwise, there is a hundred percent probability of the mother leaf being rot. This usually takes around 3 to 5 days depending on your environment.
  • Place the leaf in a dry place. Give it some time to callus and you can keep it on the soil.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much light do they need?

  • Light is of great importance especially when the mother leaf is kept to callous. It is okay to keep in the shade as it will help the mother leaf not to dry out. Once you see the root make sure to keep it in bright light. Do not expose it to direct sunlight because the new roots are still very sensitive and weak.
  • Healthy leaves will usually be light pink to pink in color. But if you notice the roots are darker or if the roots are reddish maroon, that is s sign that the roots are getting burnt.
  • Gently put some soil over it and move it to moderate lightning.
  • Leaving the light in the same light condition what it was earlier is a big mistake.
  • When the pup comes up, it means that the roots are stronger. Slowly introduce them to light but either indirect bright light or in the form of filtered light. Otherwise, you will end up with the stretched pup.
  • Once the succulent pup starts receiving the correct amount of light, you will notice that the succulent pup will start getting compact.

How much water do they need?

  • Most pups die from overwatering or improper methods of watering.
  • Watering all of the pups in the same way without checking the roots is a mistake. Water the pups only by noticing the roots.
  • Avoid watering on the mother leaf. This can be achieved easily by bottom watering. In this type of watering, there is no fear of overwatering and there is no issue of dropping water on the mother’s leave.
  • Do not mist your mother’s leaves because that will rot your mother’s leaf very soon.
  • You must know the difference between slightly moist soil and soggy soil.
  • Pups like slightly moist soil but they do not want to be kept in soggy soil.

Things to Remember:

  • Remember these are not money plants or potholes that will quickly start to root.
  • Succulent leaves will take anywhere around 2 to 3 weeks or at times a month to even show visible roots.
  • Some varieties of succulents might even take more time. Patience is much appreciated.
  • The rooting of the mother leaf is all internal and nothing external. This is the reason why you need to have a well-hydrated leaf because the roots are promoted to grow from the water inside the leaf.
  • Whether there is moisture present or not, the roots will still come out.
  • The succulents are opportunistic growers. Wherever they will find an opportunity they will start growing.
  • It can propagate even if the small cutting gets dropped anywhere.

Interested in more propagation tips? Check out our complete guide on propagating mint, or our indoor plant guide section has more resources available too!

The Ultimate Guide to Propagating Mint

The Ultimate Guide to Propagating Mint

Mints are vigorous perennials that thrive in light soil with good drainage. Here’s a step-by-step guide on propagating mint plants from cuttings.

How Close Should Grow Lights be to Plants?

How Close Should Grow Lights be to Plants?

Lots of us know about the grow lights used to supplement natural light for the plants that are grown inside. But there is some confusion on how close should we place them to our plants. Keep reading to learn more about how close should grow…

The Ultimate Guide to Growing Mint at Home

The Ultimate Guide to Growing Mint at Home

Growing mint at home is one of the most popular ways for beginners to start their herb garden. Mint is one of the most well-known and popular herbs known today. From Asia to Australia, many expert gardeners and botanists enjoy growing this herb because of its sweet smell and refreshing taste. Although the US grows more than two-thirds of the mint produced in the world, it is grown across every country.

Whether it be tea or a full-fledged meal, mint is used in a variety of dishes. Mint is also one of the most versatile and diverse herbs known to mankind. There are surprisingly more than 600 varieties of mint that boasts various tastes and colors. Although generally known for its sweet and refreshing taste, there are several varieties of mint which possess a different flavor. For example, orange mint is somewhat sour while Red Raripila Mint is used to produce poisonous oils.

Because of these benefits, it is always a good idea to grow mint in your backyard (or wherever you like!). Although growing a mint is fairly simple, there are some points that might trouble young and novice gardeners. That is why we have written this elaborate guide that takes you through all the necessary steps to make your mint garden bloom in no time!

Light Requirements for Growing Mint

The importance of sunlight for a plant cannot be underestimated. Mint needs a sufficient amount of light to thrive. Ideally, mint grows best in full sun (six to eight hours of sunlight per day). However, with regular watering and maintenance, they grow fairly well in full sun as well. It is one of the few edible herbs that can grow well in both of these settings. Mint belongs to the hardy perennial species of plants and can survive rough weather.

Soil Requirements

Mint prefers a mix of fertilized and moist soil. They show the best growth in well-drained soil with a layer of mulch on top. A pH range of 6.5-7 is known to promote optimum growth. Although mint can grow in a variety of soil types, a soil that has sufficient content of minerals and organic matter would be the best choice.

Steps to Growing Mint at Home

The most important step in growing a mint plant is planting the seed and making sure that the mint germinates on time. Follow this step-by-step guide to ensure that your mint plant grows perfectly.

  • Buy a mint seed or plant from the nearby store. Mint seedlings are accessible and can be purchased from any nearby plant nursery.
  • Although mint is a sturdy plant, it is best to grow it during spring. During this season, the ample rainfall and moderate temperature are conducive for a mint’s growth.
  •  The majority of expert gardeners suggest growing mint in pots. This is one of the easiest ways to reap the benefits of this plant since you will be able to use it frequently.
  • Choose a spacious pot a foot wide and 8-10 inches deep. This would give the seedlings sufficient space to grow.
  • While planting the seedlings, make sure that the seeds are at a sufficient distance from each other, at least at a distance of 12-16 cm from its neighboring seed. The reason for this is that mint grows strong roots which can deteriorate the root structure of nearby seedlings.
  • Keep the plant soil moist and provide sufficient light. Do not over-fertilize, since it will affect the mint’s flavor.
  • If you are having trouble growing the seedling, you could always try transplanting. It is easier and much faster.
  • Grow the mint at a place with adequate sunlight. Morning sun and partial shade encourage the growth of a mint plant.
  • Water the plant twice or thrice a week. However, soggy and wet soil limits growth, so try to avoid overwatering your plant. Keep the soil moist but not overwatered. You can use a soil moisture meter to help estimate this too.

Water Requirements

Mint is not one of those herbs that require extensive watering. If you live in a dry climate with lots of direct sunlight, watering the mint plants 3 to 4 days a week should be enough. However, if you live in a cool, humid climate even watering them twice a week would do.

If the soil feels dry on touching, you should add water. Keep in mind that both under-watering and over-watering mint plants can result in poor growth and the plants may die. If you’re unsure or want to be certain you’re at the right water level, we recommend using a soil moisture meter to measure your plant’s moisture levels accurately.

How to add fertilizers to a mint plant

Fertilizers stimulate the rapid growth of a variety of plants. If you are planning on harvesting heavily, adding an adequate amount of fertilizers would make sure that the mint matures early.

Mint prefers slow-release of granular fertilizers, like this one from Miracle Gro. The fertilizer should be added in small quantities to the plant is in the early stages of its development. It is better to ensure that the fertilizer does not touch the leaves of mint, otherwise it will affect the taste and flavor of mint.

Care and Maintenance Tips

  • The best thing about mint plants is that they grow with minimal care. If you are growing mint in any outdoor setting, then adding a light layer of mulch ensures maximum growth.
  • If you are growing potted mint indoors, simply make sure that they are watered regularly and are receiving ample sunlight.
  • Mint plants are known for their aggressive growth. At times, it will become difficult for you to limit their growth. To avoid such circumstances, keep their growth in check; if they are growing out of space, then either transfer them to a more spacious pot or cut them.
  • When the mint is fully flowered, it is time to prune them. With a pair of scissors, cut about one-third of the plant stem.
  • Be weary of cracked pots. If the pot is cracked, the mint roots will continue to spread by moving out of the pot.
  • Although mint does not attract lots of insects, pests and fungi might damage the plant. Using a fungicide restricts the growth of any unwanted fungus.
5 Types of Indoor Terrariums You Can Build Today

5 Types of Indoor Terrariums You Can Build Today

An indoor terrarium is a fun, low maintenance addition to your indoor garden. A terrarium is simply an enclosed ecosystem, so the specific type of terrarium can vary depending on what you want. We recommend them for beginners because of the easy maintenance and general…

5 Handmade Pots with Drainage for Plants

5 Handmade Pots with Drainage for Plants

It seems like an unwritten rule that the best planters don’t have drainage for plants. Drainage is key to preventing pests and diseases like root rot, which can be deadly for plants. Looking for a great housewarming gift? Birthday gift? Even for Christmas? We’re rounding…

The Best Tomato Grow Bag Options

The Best Tomato Grow Bag Options

If you’re new to gardening, chances are you haven’t thought of using tomato grow bags. Grow bags are essentially a fabric pot that you can grow your plants in, and they’re handy when planting tomatoes for a few different reasons. Keep reading to learn more!

Interested in reading more about the pros and cons of using grow bags? Check out our article on it here.

What is a Grow Bag?

Essentially, a grow bag is a fabric version of a pot. Instead of using a traditional pot in your container garden, you’d plant your plants in a grow bag. Because of the breathability of the fabric growing in a grow bag can have some advantages and disadvantages.

Pros of using Grow Bags for Tomatoes

One of the main pro’s in using grow bags is that your plant’s roots will get a lot of aeration. This is good for tomatoes especially, who like a well aerated soil.

Additionally, grow bags will help keep your plant from overheating. This is not as big of a risk if you’re thinking of planting tomatoes in the ground. However if you’re deciding between a typical planter and a grow bag, then grow bags will keep your plant’s roots much cooler. In the hot summer months that tomatoes thrive in you risk overheating your plant in traditional planters. A tomato grow bag is breathable and helps keep your plants cool in the heat.

An obvious pro of using a grow bag is that its less permanent than traditional in ground gardening. You can move your plants around, and dont need a space for a garden. This is a good solution for renters or if you’re unsure of where you want your plants to live.

Cons of Grow bags for Tomatoes

The biggest con of using a tomato grow bag is that you risk dehydrating your plants. Tomatoes require frequent watering. A grow bag is porous by nature and as a result it can mean that water will drain quickly from your plant after watering. If using a grow bag for your tomatoes its best to plan to water frequently and generously.

The Best Tomato Grow Bag Options

Best General Use- IPOW Grow Bags

The IPOW Grow Bags have a mix of everything. They’re made with breathable fabric that provides great drainage, allowing plants to regulate temperature and aerate the soil.

The fabric is durable, and has built in handles allowing for easier mobility for people who may want to move plants around. This is a great feature for someone in an apartment or space with limited sunlight, as it allows you to move your plants to wherever the sunniest spot is.

These grow bags are also very versatile. While in this article we’re covering the best grow bags for tomatoes, these grow bags have a flap that makes them particularly useful for potatoes or other plants that grow fruit below the ground. The easy open flap allows you to harvest quickly and efficiently with minimal disruption.

Best Budget Option: VivoSun Grow Bags

As the #1 Best Seller on Amazon, Vivosun had to be one of our top picks for a grow bag. Their price is one of the best, but you also get pretty decent quality for your money here too.

They’re made with durable non-woven material that allows for excellent drainage. They also come with handles built in, making it easy to maneuver and move plants around as needed. Its also worth noting that these bags are BPA free and environmentally friendly.

The 16k reviews on Amazon speak to their durability too – with many users noting they’ve used them for multiple grow seasons with no issue.

These bags come in a wide variety of sizes, with both a 5 pack of 10 gallon size option on Amazon. The affordability combined with durability makes this is our pick for a bargain grow bag.

Runner Up: Wraxly Fabric Grow Bags

We love the Wraxly Fabric Grow Bags for a few reasons. First – you’ll notice they have a great aesthetic compared to other brands. Their two tone design and variety of colors sets them apart from the competition.

Aside from the look, they are also crafted with great care. The sides have a unique waterproof liner to prevent leaking while watering plants. The bottom still allows for plenty of drainage to gain the porous benefits of grow bags.

You can order these grow bags in a pack of 5 bags that come packaged gift-ready in a bonus 2 gallon bag! Perfect for giving as a gift to your green thumbed friend. The downside to this brand is they only have two sizes available – 5 gallon and 7 gallon, which may not be big enough for some larger plants/trees.

Frequently Asked Questions

What size grow bag do you need for tomatoes?

It somewhat depends on what type of tomatoes you’re trying to grow. There are miniature varieties that dont require much space at all. However, a general guideline that will satisfy most of your tomatoes is a 5-7 gallon bag at a minimum.

If you happen to have a larger one on hand, feel free to use that! You can always size up to a larger grow bag, however a smaller size might slow your plant’s growth. If you’re unsure what your type needs (although it usually says on the plant care tags), better to go larger to avoid crowded roots.

The Best Microgreens Growing Kit for Beginners

The Best Microgreens Growing Kit for Beginners

Ever thought about using a microgreens growing kit at home? We love incorporating microgreens into a healthy diet for an added nutritional boost to your dishes. Microgreens are easy to grow and a great way to get started growing food at home. If you’re just…