1 Easy Tip That Keeps All My House Plants Alive

how to keep house plants alive

I am a firm believer in plants.  House plants in particular – the more the better!  Years ago I felt like my house was missing something, some life…  I had plenty of color, but was lacking plants.  As soon as I started adding house plants, my spaces just felt more home-y, more welcoming, more fresh (imagine that!).

how to keep house plants alive

I’m also a huge fan of flowers, but I don’t splurge on them often because they feel like a luxury to me – they are so beautiful, but don’t last for too long, and are kinda pricey.  So house plants fill that void for me and provide a less expensive, longer lasting option.

how to keep house plants alive

But how do you/I have a ton of house plants and not kill them?  I have a secret for you that has kept my plants alive and well, some for several years!

how to keep house plants alive

It’s not a special fertilizer or repotting (although I really need to do that on many of my plants outgrowing their homes), or playing calming music for them (ha!).

Its way easier…

how to keep house plants alive

Ice.  Yep, ice.

A friend mentioned this tip to me years ago because I was tired of moving all my plants to my sink to water (and drain), or ruining my furniture because I was too lazy/forgetful to put a tray under the plants to catch drips.

This makes watering the plants (we call it icing the plants) super easy for the kids to do, also.

how to keep house plants alive

Depending on the size of the plant, they get 3-7 or so ice cubes.  The best part: the ice melts so slowly that the water doesn’t drip through.  Now I will say that most of my plants have liners under them (I often wrap foil on the bottom of the plastic pot plants come in) or some sort of drip tray just in case, but I never have the issue of overflow like I used to when the kids or I would water the plants before.

The smaller plants get about 3 cubes, and the big ones, like the fiddle leaf figs, get 7 or more.  I should also note that our ice cubes are kind of big.

A lot of my plants have moss on top (I was tired of looking at the dirt), so the ice goes under the moss, otherwise too much of it evaporates before getting to the soil.

how to keep house plants alive

We also try to put the ice just on the soil and not leaning against the stem of the plant.  I have no basis for why I do this, other than I feel like the frozen ice cube might do some damage to a more fragile plant?

This ice technique hasn’t worked well with succulents for me.  I tend to just water them lightly occasionally – I’m still learning.  I can keep succulents growing for years outside, but they are more fickle inside for me.

I also find really delicate plants, like maiden hair ferns, to be really hard to keep alive.  I over water or under water… I don’t know!  But all my other plants have done really really well using this technique!

how to keep house plants alive

Every once in awhile I will put my plants in the sink (like once a year) and give them a “bath” – spraying them to get dust off.  And every couple months I’ll take a barely damp rag and wipe down my fiddle leaf fig leaves because they catch a lot of dust.

But other than that, just using ice has kept them alive!  My guess is that its partly due to the slow drip of the ice melting.  Whatever the reason, I know it works, I’m going to keep doing it!

Have you ever tried “icing” your plants?

Comments

  1. 1

    I’ve never iced…I’ll admit, I just toss out and buy new if it starts to look sad. Succulents are the WORST for me! I try so hard but I find them so tricky. I’ve started to supplement with fake in an arrangement of real ones……perfect! Lol.

  2. 2

    Wow! That’s a great idea! I’ve done it with the succulents I winter in the house but never thought of it for house plants! How often do you give them ice? Once per week? When dry? When to water is my biggest problem, that’s probably how I can only keep succulents alive…I give them very little care, lol!

  3. 6

    GENIUS!

  4. 7
    Shirley Foulk says:

    Your plants are BEAUTIFUL and so HEALTHY! What is your secret for Fiddle Leaf -besides the ice cubes?
    Mine always drop leaves indoors during the winter months and new growth seems stunted indoors.

    I await your secret :)

    • 8

      ha! my secret is probably their location – always near a window but with indirect light only. i think the need the light but not too much heat. i also wipe down the leaves to get the dust off.

  5. 9

    I’ve never iced! I water my succulents only once very 4-6 weeks. They like to be ignored. My houseplants live on my screened porch from May to October so I tend to let them get very dry between watering in winter. When I initially move them outside, I do feed them. I like the ice idea!

  6. 10

    Thank you for ice tip!!

  7. 11

    I am really good at killing plants. Icing them sounds like a great idea! I will have to try this next time, thanks.

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