Fertilizing Indoor Plants
Different elements are required for a plant to grow in the soil. If these elements are not present in the right amount, the plants will not be healthy as expected. This is where fertilizers are required to add to the missing elements – it could be either phosphorus or nitrogen or potassium or any other elements. Giving more of these elements will also leads to adverse effects which could be dwarf, lesser produce or any unusual things.
Also, fertilizing needs vary for the same species of plants growing indoors and outdoors. Those grown indoors does not need more fertilizer than those of the outdoor ones. The rate of the growth indoor will be lesser comparatively from the outdoor plants but that does not mean that they lack fertilizer. It is just the time matters and you are not supposed to be over fertilized which will be harmful for the plant.
Get the proper quantity
But how do we know how much fertilizer to be given to the plants and can it be given anytime? I would suggest to go through the instructions given in the packet if you are purchasing from outside. There will be instruction tags which comes with the fertilizing instructions. You may also observe the plants whether any signs that indicates lacking nutrients. It may be some unusual things like plant becoming dwarf, tall, shrinking leaves etc.
As I mentioned, your plant might need fertilizer if it is not growing as fast as it should. If you notice the growth of the plant is stunted during spring or summer, it is safe to apply some fertilizer in small quantity for one to two weeks. Many indoor gardeners add fertilizer as part of routine maintenance each spring and that is alright. You just need to be extra careful when applying as too much of the fertilizer will overdo the plants. Leaves turning brown or leaves drooping downward is also another sign which requires fertilizer.
All fertilizers are available in different ratios of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium as they are not of the same. Buy a fertilizer meant for indoor plants or one that is made for a specific type of plant.
Fertilizing indoor plants needs extra care as you might overfertilize when it needs little.