Houseplants are a great addition to any home. They are not only decorative but help keep your home clean and free from pollutants that would otherwise affect the quality of the air you breathe, helping you stay healthy and comfortable. But sometimes plants can develop mold, which can infect your living space and create a health hazard for you and your loved ones. But how does this happen, and what can you do about it?

  1. Excessive moisture breeds mold – One of the most common ways in which houseplants develop and spread mold is from being too wet. Moisture and soil are breeding grounds for mold, so make sure your plants are always dry. Avoid watering them every day and only do so when the soil in the pot has dried out. Otherwise, you may be inadvertently creating a health hazard for your family from exposure to mold.
  2. Keep your plants clean – Mold also thrives on plant leaves and stems, so make sure to wipe down your plants regularly. Keep in mind you should use a spray bottle with clean water and moistened paper towels to do so, otherwise you run the risk of mold spores volatilizing into the air you breathe. Additionally, make sure you change paper towels often to prevent any unwanted accumulation of spores and move your plants to an open, well ventilated area to make sure you don’t unwillingly contaminate the air you are breathing as you clean.
  3. Remove mold from the top layer of pot soil regularly – This is a bit more complicated, but if your plants have been kept in soil that is too wet, mold might develop on the top layer of soil, which must be removed regularly before it infects other areas of your home. Use a spoon to remove the moldy soil and make sure to replace it with new soil mixed with an anti-fungal product to prevent its spread.
  4. Use gravel for better drainage – If your houseplants tend to collect a lot of moisture and you have problems dealing with mold on the top layer of the soil in the pot, you can try adding a layer of gravel at the bottom of the pot to improve your plant’s drainage. This will help them stay drier and healthier.
  5. Change the soil of new plants as soon as you get home – Let’s face it, you never know where that beautiful plant you just got at the store has been. Storage conditions are not always optimal and the chance of it bringing mold into your home is extremely high. So, as soon as your new plant enters through your doorway you have to change the soil. To do this, remove all the soil from the plant itself and its roots as gently as possible. Rinse off the roots and replant it in sterile soil, preferably using a new pot.
  6. Make sure your plants get enough sunlight and ventilation – Mold hates the sun and fresh air. These two elements help remove excessive moisture which leads to mold. So make sure your plants get plenty of sunlight and good air circulation to lower the chances of them growing mold that could infect your home and become a health hazard for your family. Also, don’t forget to remove any dead leaves and debris that may accumulate under your plants and on the top layer of soil. This rotting matter is the perfect place for mold to grow, which will ruin your other efforts to keep your plants healthy and clean.

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