Houseplants have done a great job over the years at both decorating homes and helping to better the air of homes. Unfortunately, houseplants can also be the source of mold, which does the exact opposite for a home’s air. Since plants require a lot of moisture to survive, it makes them the perfect feeding grounds for mold growth to occur. However, that mold growth can be prevented. In this article, we will discuss some houseplant mold removal and prevention methods.
What Causes Houseplant Mold?
Mold is known to need 3 things to thrive. Those three things are food, oxygen, and moisture. Organic matter, such as the soil and leaves, are some of mold’s favorite foods. Also, plants require water in order to survive – lots of water. This combination of elements makes plants the perfect habitat for mold to grow.
Houseplant Mold Prevention
To prevent active growth in plants, treat them just like any other parts of your home. That is to control the moisture levels. Listed below are mold prevention tips that will lower the chances of houseplant mold.
- Don’t over water: Most houseplants come with instructions to water. Follow these watering instructions for best practices. If your plant does not come along with instructions, check out this Watering Plants Article from Better Homes and Gardens.
- Cinnamon: Cinnamon is a natural, harmless anti-fungal substance. You can prevent mold growth by adding cinnamon to the plant soil.
- Gravel: Adding gravel to the bottom of the soil will help the plant drain more efficiently.
- Ventilation: Make sure your plants are in a well ventilated area. This may be the most important prevention method. Run fans, open windows and run ventilation fans regulary. If none of these methods are available, you can try using a dehumidifier on a regular basis.
Houseplant Mold Removal
If your plants already have mold growth, you will need to get rid of it. Check out these steps to safely remove mold from your plants.
Removing Mold from Leaves
- Dampen a paper towel with warm water and drain.
- Use the paper towel to wipe the mold from the leaves. Remember to change and dispose of the paper towels frequently.
Removing Mold from the Soil
- Use a spoon to scoop the infected layers into a sealable bag.
- Once you have removed the visible mold, replace the soil with fresh soil.
Before attempting to either of these removal processes, be sure to use a face mask and rubber gloves to prevent affecting your health. Also, dispose of any items used to remove the mold immediately into a sealable, disposable bag. Most importantly, immediately apply cinnamon to the soil and implement some of the other houseplant prevention tips to prevent future mold growth.