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Houseplant advice you should ignore

Ice cubes on orchids? Cacti under glass? Disregard common indoor gardening myths to make your life easier and your plants thrive

As a complex cocktail of both art and science, I love how horticulture is such a wonderful myriad of different approaches and ideas. A perhaps unsurprising side-effect of all this creativity, however, is that it is also a field that can be full of myths and misconceptions. For example, there are several houseplant myths that you can simply sidestep and, in the process, get better results.

Misting plant leaves with water is a practice that has been recommended for more than a century as a way of increasing humidity for forest species that hate dry indoor air. Admittedly, it’s really effective at doing that – for about 10 minutes, before the benefits literally evaporate. Trials have shown that you would have to be misting at least once an hour to make a significant change to ambient air humidity and even I am unlikely to do that. If you really need high humidity conditions, place your plants in groupings in a bathroom or, for real moisture cravers, a terrarium.

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