Think summers and ice-cream and mangoes come to mind almost the same time as sweat and a perennial yearning for an AC. While we find our respite in summer-fresh foods and cooling hacks, our beloved gardens often end up taking the brunt of the harsh sunlight and rising temperatures
Summers in India are generally harsh on low light plants. The months of March, April, May, and June, in particular when the Sun is in its full glory, these low-light plants face a tough time. While every living organism, flora, and fauna, depend directly or indirectly on sunlight as its food source, in certain cases, too much light may prove fatal. Many of the plants kept in small indoor plant pots prefer low light conditions in order to survive and thrive. If you are having a collection of such low light plants kept in decorative indoor flower pots or plant pots and want to makes sure that your collection not only survives but thrives in these months of harsh summer, be mindful of the following:
Shade them: This is the first precaution that you need to take in the month of March itself. Shift the light-sensitive plants to a shaded area, where direct sunlight can be avoided.
Manage the light source: For indoor plants, the biggest source of sunlight in the window. Try and shift the position of such light-sensitive plants to a place away from the window to avoid overexposure to light.
Prevent evaporation: During summers, the rate of evaporation from soil happens is very fast. The lack of moisture is one of the biggest reasons why plants find it difficult to survive through summer. By watering the plant a couple more times than usual, you can keep the soil moist.
Manage humidity: Most plants need high humidity levels in the range of 80% to thrive. During summers, the moisture level in the atmosphere drops drastically, making the weather dry. Hence, in such conditions, it is advisable to group all such light-sensitive plants together or mist them a couple of times a day. To group them together, you may want to use slimmer planters that occupy smaller space. You can order such slim plant pots online and get them delivered to your place.
Learn to recognize stress: Last but certainly not least, being ready to catch problems early is key to stopping them before they take hold and ravage your indoor plants. Common signs of stress to keep in mind for summer plant care usually have to do with too much heat and too little water.
- Tropical plants, especially those with tender leaves, usually wilt with exposure to too much heat.
- Foliage that was once bright green may look pale when stressed.
- Sunburn manifests in a variety of ways but often looks like a rough brown or yellow patch on leaves/stems.
- Flowers (and leaves) often drop off or yellow when a plant is stressed
Just like we human beings need heat protections, plants too need protection from harsh weather conditions. The way we tend to keep away from direct sunlight and adequately hydrated, preventing the loss of moisture through sweating and taking special supplements like juices and other liquids, plants too need the same regimen to survive the summers.
While wild plants are hardy and strong enough to survive on their own; your indoor and household friends need a little extra care to tide over the situation.