How to Care for an Airplane Plant

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Airplane plants (Chlorophytum comosum) are one of the most popular household plants because they are extremely easy to take care of. Originating in South Africa, Airplane (or Spider) plants are characterized as tropicals, have a maximum height of 24 inches and do extremely well indoors with partial (indirect) sunlight and cool air. Airplane plants are self-propagating, and if cared for properly, can last for generations.

Things You'll Need

  • Airplane plant
  • Watering can
  • Watering spritzer
  • Organic home fertilizer
  • Keep your plant near a window so that it can gather sunlight, but make sure that it does not sit in direct sunlight. If you notice that the leaves of your airplane plant have browned or are brittle and breaking, it may simply be because it is getting too much sunlight and should be moved to another window in your home.

  • Water your airplane plant at least once a week. Generally, airplane plants are very resilient, but try not to over-water your plant. If the soil is flooding, you have watered too much. Also, if possible, use distilled water.

  • Moisten the soil throughout the week if it seems to be getting dry. A small watering bottle will work best, as it will wet and moisten the soil without adding too much water. It is important that the plant's soil never gets completely dry, as it may affect the leaves.

  • If your airplane plant is looking weak or unhealthy, add home fertilizer to the pot, but only in small portions. Remember that airplane plants should look the most vibrant during the following blooming times: late winter/early spring, mid spring and late spring/early summer. If they look unhealthy or brittle during those times of the year, change the water you are using or add an organic home fertilizer to the plant's soil.

  • Periodically tear off brown or brittle leaves. Do this by tearing the leaf just below the point where it is brown or brittle (not the entire leaf). Tearing by hand allows the healthy part of the leaf to continue to get air and sunlight, something that is sometimes harmed by trimming with gardening or plant shears.

Tips & Warnings

  • Because airplane plants can be sensitive to chemicals, use water that is distilled (rather than from your tap) and organic home fertilizer, which can be found in any gardening store.
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