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Are you ready to give your house plants the love and care they deserve this spring? It’s that time of year again where we shed our winter blues and embrace the sunshine and fresh air of a new season. And what better way to welcome the change than by spring cleaning for your plant babies? In this episode, we’ve got you covered with a checklist of things to do to set your plants up for success this season, while also cultivating joy and mindfulness in the process!


In this episode, we learn:

  • [02:42] What is spring cleaning for your houseplants
  • [03:45] How the health of your plants can reflect your mental state
  • [04:00] Spring Houseplant Care Checklist 
  • [04:09] 1. Understanding how the change in daylight affects plant care
  • [05:09] 1.a. How to adjust watering frequency during spring
  • [08:10] 1.b. More light equals more photosynthesis (Ensure your plants are getting enough light!)
  • [10:18] 2. Mind your temperature (Keep your plants in a comfortable environment!)
  • [11:20] 3. Spring cleaning!
  • [13:10] 3.a. Prune brown and yellow leaves to promote growth
  • [16:45] 3.b. Why you need to wipe your leaves
  • [19:30] Where can you get plant-rich meals delivered to your door?
  • [22:22] The best place to get safe and easy-to-use gardening products for your houseplants
  • [24:17] 4. Refresh soil if necessary
  • [25:45] 4.a. Repot or pot up your plants
  • [29:41] 5. Fertilize if your plant is growing
  • [31:23] 6. Consider the pros and cons of moving plants outside in the spring
  • [36:06] 7. Why it is important to assess your plant collection
  • [38:18] How tending to your plants can reveal interesting parallels between them and your life


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Change in Daylight, Change in Care

With the change in daylight, your plants’ care needs will change as well. More light equals more photosynthesis, which means your plants will need more water as they grow. To ensure they’re set up for success, you’ll want to:

  • Adjust watering. Plants thrive with water, especially in spring. Keep an eye on each plant’s unique needs and wait until the soil is dry to give them a drink. Take a moment to appreciate their growth when you do!
  • Wash windows. Dirty windows can act as a veil to light, preventing your plants from getting the light they need. Wash your windows from the inside to ensure that your plants are getting as much sun as possible.
  • Keep an eye out for burn. Be mindful of the sun getting stronger in the spring, as it can potentially burn your plants if they’re placed too close to a window.


Mind Your Spring Temperature

With warmer weather, it’s important to pay attention to your temperatures to prevent your plants from being shocked. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • AC: Be mindful of where your plants are in relation to your air conditioner as the cold air can shock them.
  • A drastic change in weather: Spring can have drastic changes in weather, so be mindful of your plants’ temperature needs.
  • Open windows: Open your windows on nice days to get some fresh air circulating in your house. This will increase humidity and help your plants thrive.


Spring Cleaning for Houseplants

It’s totally normal for your plants to get yellow or brown leaves in the winter, as they go into a state of quiescence. Take this opportunity to check in with your whole plant collection and:

  • Prune back brown or yellow leaves: The plant has reabsorbed the green chlorophyll back into the plant, making these leaves useless. Prune them back to help them start fresh.
  • Prune if a plant has gotten leggy: If your plant has grown too tall and leggy, pruning it back can encourage new growth and a fuller, healthier appearance.
  • Clean leaves: Your plants’ leaves are like little magnets for dust particles. Wipe them down with a microfiber cloth or give the plant a shower to remove the dust.


Refresh Soil

Nature has unlimited nutrients, but houseplants are limited to a pot, so they need fresh soil to take up fresh nutrients. What are some signs to look out for when it’s time to refresh your plant’s soil?

  • Roots growing out of the bottom of the pot: Roots searching for more nutrients and space may grow out of the drainage holes.
  • Plant looks like it’s going to burst out of the pot: The plant is being pushed out of the pot due to excessive root growth, indicating it’s potbound.
  • Water runs right through the pot: Hydrophobic soil, caused by underwatering, repels water instead of absorbing it; soaking or bottom watering can help.

Roots are potbound: Roots grow in the shape of the pot, indicating they need more space and nutrients; gently shake off old soil and repot with fresh potting mix in a slightly larger container.


Fertilizing During Spring

While the rule of thumb is to fertilize in the spring and summer and not in the winter, it’s important to remember that if your plant is growing, you should be fertilizing. So if your plant is growing in the winter, go ahead and fertilize it!

There are various ways to fertilize your plants, but one of the easiest ways is to use a liquid houseplant fertilizer like Espoma. Simply add it to your watering can and water your plants as you normally would.

Remember, when using normal fertilizers geared for outdoor plants, you need to dilute it by half, as houseplants are more sensitive and require less fertilizer.


Consider the Pros and Cons of Moving Plants Outside in the Spring

If you’re considering moving your plants outside, here are things you need to think about before doing so:

  • Wait until evenings don’t drop below 65 degrees: This ensures that your plants won’t be shocked by low nighttime temperatures, which can cause damage or even kill them. Monitor the nighttime temperatures and only move your plants outside when it’s consistently above 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • If moving to direct sun, you might need to “harden off” your plants: Hardening off means gradually exposing your indoor plants to the outdoor environment to help them adjust. Start by placing them in a shaded area, and then slowly introduce them to more sunlight if necessary. Most houseplants will thrive in the shade, but some, like fiddle leaf figs or citrus trees, might require more sunlight.
  • Manage pests when you bring them back indoors: Be prepared to deal with pests that your plants may contract while outside. Before bringing them back indoors, spray them down with horticultural soap or insecticidal soap, and quarantine them for two weeks to prevent the spread of pests to your other indoor plants.


Evaluate Your Plant Collection

Take spring cleaning as an opportunity to evaluate your plant collection. Get rid of plants you’re not loving, and make space for new ones. Make plans for upcoming houseplant projects.

This is also a great opportunity to reflect on your life while you’re doing these tasks. What dead or yellowing leaves in your life can get pruned away? What area of your life is stagnant or covered with dust and needs good washing? Are you fully hydrated and satiated, with the literal or figurative nutrients your body and soul need?

Happy spring cleaning!



Mentioned in our conversation:


Thank you to our episode sponsors:


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Visit to find your local Espoma dealer or check my Amazon storefront.



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