Monty Don: Gardening expert explains when to feed house plants and what to use

Monty Don explains symptoms of ‘overwatered plants’

Gardening expert Monty Don has shared more tips with Britons on how to look after their house plants. Gardening and caring for house plants surged in popularity in 2020 as more people spent time at home. Monty often shares his top gardening tips and advice on a plethora of TV shows.

In a video for BritBox on YouTube, Monty Don gave his top tips on how to feed house plants, when to feed them and what to feed them.

Monty explained that feeding house plants is a “tricky question”.

House plants grow all year round which means at some point they will need to be fed nutrients.

While plants in the garden can look for nutrients in the soil, house plants rely on their owners for nutrients and minerals.

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Monty said: “Every plant that is grown in a container will sooner or later need a supplementary feed because it will exhaust the available nutrients inside the pot.”

However, the gardening expert explained that there while regular feeding is good, there is also a risk of overfeeding your plant.

“If you overfeed, it will result in overly lush soft tissue and soft growth that is much more prone to disease and predation,” he explained.

“The key to it is to feed when the plant is actively growing.

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“You want to encourage lush growth and lots of greenery.”

Monty then recommended what type of feed to use in order to keep your plant healthy.

Some plants need fertilisers with certain content.

Depending on the house plant, you may need a fertiliser with more or less nitrogen, magnesium phosphorus and potassium content.

Monty continued: “You give it a high amount of nitrogen and if you want to promote flowering then you need a feed that is high in potassium.

“A general purpose tomato feed will do that perfectly well.

“I use liquid seaweed but use it sparingly.”

According to Gardeners’ World, plants with foliage will need a feed that’s rich in nitrogen.

If leaves look like they’re yellowing then they will need a nitrogen-rich feed which also has magnesium in it.

Meanwhile, flowering plants need a weekly feed that’s rich in potassium.

Succulents and cacti don’t need feeding to survive.

Those that flower can be fed to encourage flowers to bloom.

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