Tips For Buying a Houseplant: 14 Tips for Newcomers to Indoor Gardening

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The process of choosing indoor plants can be confusing and overwhelming. These tips will greatly simplify the process for beginners.

It may seem tough to get your head around how indoor plants should be handled if you don’t know what’s right for them or what they require to stay alive and healthy.

The questions and answers on this page about buying Houseplants, along with the tips on buying them, is intended to aid indoor gardening beginners. 

We also could have named this post “Things To Consider Before Buying Houseplants” or “How To Choose The Right Houseplant”. Indoor plants need favorable conditions to thrive and require maintenance, unlike furniture and home decor.

I worked for years in the interior plantscaping industry. I understand how houseplants grow and which ones do best over the long haul.

This is why you need to choose indoor plants that you’ll keep for years when combined with proper care.

14 Things to Consider When Buying Indoor Plants

Knowing where the plant will go is the first step

If you know what you are looking for, you will invest wisely!

There is a tendency to buy the first cute plant you see, but all plants have different needs when it comes to light exposure.

Many homes have lower light levels, making them better for some plants.

Research what plants would thrive in that location

Take some time to look around online to discover your options and begin the selection process. What you want is the right plant in the right location.

The information we provide on this website can be very useful.

Start With a Tried and True Plant

There are better standsbys like Pothos, Snake Plants, Hoyas, and ZZ Plants, while Maidenhair Ferns and Prayer Plants may be more difficult to keep alive.

I have many indoor and outdoor plants that need watering, so it’s an easy task for me.

Be Prepared to Give Your Plants The Level of Care They Require

Is your approach to gardening “water and ignore” or do you plan on a more careful approach? Different plants require different amounts of attention.

Succulents and cacti prefer you to leave them alone if there is enough light.

Consider Starting With a Smaller Plant

They’re much less of an investment than a full-sized plant, and you won’t be out too much if they don’t succeed. A smaller plant that costs $10 won’t incur as much risk as one that costs $40.

It is important to remember that not all plants do well indoors for the long haul. There are many 4′′ plants that like high humidity such as aralia, staghorn ferns, zebra plants, Boston ferns, English ivy, etc. 

The short-lived flowering plants such as Kalanchoes, Candelabra, Phalaenopsis Orchids, Bromeliads, Cyclamen, Begonias, etc. usually are grown inside only for their floral appearances.

Not All Plants Grow at The Same Rate

Kentia Palms grow much slower than Pothos. Plants may outgrow their location rapidly for one plant, while this is unlikely for another. This is something you should research in advance. I list the plant’s growth rate when I do a post on indoor plant care.

It is Best to Purchase Seeds and Plants from Independent Garden Centers or Specialty Nurseries

One or two people are usually responsible for buying, caring for, and advising on houseplants.

The weekends I spent at Berkeley Horticultural Nursery during the busy spring season were spent working on the nursery’s greenhouse. There was only 1 person who looked after the greenhouse and answered all questions.

Be Picky When Buying Plants From a Big Box Store and Check The Plants

Do not just buy the plant nearest to you. They tend to smush the plants together. There may be better plants in the middle or in the back, so pick them out and look them over.

In Lowes one day, I helped an old lady choose a better African Violet than the one she had picked from the very front of the table.

Look for The Plant’s Name on The Pot If You’re Not Sure

Most indoor plant growers label their plant pots with the name of the plant and some care guidelines. The big box stores sell a lot of 4′′ plants and often they are labeled as 4′′ foliage.

This is when a little research helps. Some books aren’t labeled, so ask and hopefully someone can help you out.

The Plant Should Be in Overall Good Health

Do the leaves have a healthy amount of foliage? When you purchase a healthy plant, it is much more likely to stay healthy. 

You Should Also Examine The Soil

Do you see any mold on the surface of the soil? Ideally, you want the soil level to be near the top of the grow pot. Is the soil level way down in the pot?

This may mean the roots of the plant have not dried out sufficiently because they have been kept too wet before they reach your hands.

Plants Can be Purchased Online

Some great sources for buying houseplants are online. Companies like Bloomscape and The Sill have filters like “low light”, “pet friendly” and “beginners”.

Avoid Making Rash Decisions Unless You’re Willing to Gamble 

You might not be able to grow that plant long-term or in your home’s conditions.

If you’re more experienced with buying houseplants, don’t make those snap decisions!

Learn How to Take Proper Care of Your Plant

This is obviously important, but can vary from season to season.

Watering your houseplants should be less frequent in the winter than during the summer. In the darker months, you may need to move them to a location with more natural light.

You can find numerous care guides about houseplants, as well as guides about specific species, which are listed throughout this post.

What are Indoor Plants for Mental Health?

Indoor plants can be a great way to improve your mental health. A study published in the journal “Psychoneuroendocrinology” found that people who have positive indoor environments are happier and more relaxed.

This is likely due to the fact that indoor plants provide an oasis of calmness and beauty in an often chaotic world. In addition, they act as a visual reminder of nature, which has been shown to have cognitive benefits including improved memory and learning abilities.

Furthermore, research has also shown that spending time inside with plants can reduce stress levels and anxiety symptoms. Plant-based aromas may also stimulate serotonin production, which is responsible for feelings of happiness, well-being,and Calmness sensations.

So whether you’re looking for a new home decoration or just want to relax after a long day at work; adding some healthy greenery indoors will definitely do the trick!

Get Ready to Take Down Notes Because These Tips for Buying Houseplants Will Help You Avoid Buyer’s Remorse

When it comes to houseplant shopping, newbies need not worry – here are 14 tips for buying houseplants that will help you avoid buyer’s remorse.

Before making your purchase, be sure to inspect the plant for pests and diseases. If everything looks good, purchase theplant from a reputable retailer who will take care of shipping for you.

Once you have your plant, get a sense of what size you want it and how much space it will need. Don’t forget to factor in how much light theplant will receive and whether or not it will require watering in summer.

Last but not least, be patient – new plants take time to adjust to their new home.

Plan Before You Buy

Before you buy a houseplant, it’s important to do your research. There are different types of plants with different needs and watering schedules.

It can be tough to choose the right one for your home, so it’s best to get acquainted with all the options first.

Once you have an idea of what type of plant you want and how much water it will need, make sure that its pot has good drainage so excess water doesn’t build up on the plant or soil surface.

You’ll also want to decide whether you would like a large or small plant – this will help in making a decision about which type of houseplant is right for you!

Finally, take into account where your new houseplant will ultimately reside – either in direct sunlight (ideal for bright spaces) or low light (better suited for corners). And lastly? Decide what kind of plant you’d like!

Avoid Impulse Plant Shopping

When plant shopping, it is important to take some time for research. This will help you avoid making impulse buys that might not be in the best interests of your plants or yourself.

Before actually heading to the store, make sure that your new plant has been given a good water supply and place it in a sunny spot.

Once you have decided on what type of houseplant you would like, go ahead and buy one accordingly! Remember to factor in how big the plant will grow eventually and set an appropriate budget as well.

Lastly, know whether artificial plants or real ones are better – both offer different benefits and drawbacks depending on your preferences!

Read the Label

When it comes to house plants, it is important to read the care instructions included with the plant. This way, you will be able to water them correctly and avoid over-watering or under- watering.

Additionally, get advice from a professional before making your purchase so that you know what kind of soil and environment your new plant needs.

It’s also important to know which type of plants are typically water tolerant and can handle being forgot about for a while.

For example, ferns can survive without moisture for up to six months ifkept in an airtight container; succulents such as cacti can go several weeks without any water at all.

Finally, make sure notto buy a plant that is too large or small for your home – they might not fare well in either case!

Learn the Signs of an Unhealthy Plant

  1. To help improve air flow and reduce the risk of plant pests or diseases, remove dead leaves and branches.
  2. Healthy plants that have been grown in a sunny location will not require much care – just make sure they get enough sunlight, water, and air circulation.
  3. Over-fertilization can lead to unhealthy plants as it Cause soil erosion which affects the plant’s root system adversely; also overwatering causes root rot which ruins the plant’s structure completely!
  4. Check your plant’s soil moisture level regularly – if it starts drying out then bring it indoors until its levels are back to normal.
  5. Keep an eye on your houseplant’s watering habits – too much or too little water can cause leaf yellowing (chlorosis), wilting, stunted growth, & even death of your plant.

Choose Buds Over Blooms

When it comes to houseplant selection, don’t forget the environment your plant will be living in. Choose plants with good light and ventilation, water them regularly but not too much, and keep them healthy by fertilizing and pruning as needed.

Finally, make sure you are aware of pests before making your purchase – they can wreak havoc on new plants if left untreated.

Don’t Be Afraid of Small Houseplants

House plants can add aesthetic value and a touch of greenery to any room. However, not all houseplants are created equal – some need a lot of water while others don’t.

It is also important to purchase one that is compatible with your home’s environment and has been inspected for plant health.

If you have any questions about the plant you are buying, be sure to consult an expert – they will be able to help guide you through the process smoothly!

Buy Local Whenever Possible

Buying plants locally is always a good idea as they are cheaper and more sustainable. Additionally, you can be sure that the plant you are buying has been inspected and is of good quality.

Make sure the pot your plant(s) will be living in has good drainage and size – bigger is better! When it comes to choosing which plant to buy, think about its size, shape, and color.

As long as these characteristics match those of the plant you plan on replanting in your home or office space, go for it! In addition to watering plants regularly (especially new arrivals), fertilize them when necessary with a balanced fertilizer solution.

If for some reason you cannot find what you’re looking for at a local nursery or garden center – check online retailers like Amazon or eBay first. There’s bound to be something there that meets your needs 🙂

Ask a Certified Nursery Professional

A houseplant is a great addition to any home, but care needs to be taken when choosing which one and how it should be cared for.

Remember to take note of the care instructions included with the plant, as well as follow them carefully! If something seems wrong or your plant isn’t growing properly, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a certified nursery professional for help.

Once you have chosen your houseplant and purchased some soil and potting mix, give it plenty of sunlight (ideally around six hours per day) and humidity (65-70%). Don’t overwater your plant – give it regular water droplets instead of streams.

And lastly – try not to have plants that clash with each other in terms of decor; this will only end up stressing them out unnecessarily!

Check for a Warranty

Before you buy a houseplant, it is important to check for its warranty. This will give you peace of mind in case there are any issues with the plant once you receive it.

Most plants come with a warranty that covers both manufacturing defects and natural problems like pests or fungus.

It’s also advisable to ask for help from a salesperson when choosing what plant to purchase. They will be able to provide advice on which type of houseplant best suits your home and preferences.

Sunshine is essential for houseplants – make sure trees near windows get enough light!

Choose the Nursery That Suits Your Plant Needs

Choosing the right nursery to purchase your plant from can be a challenging task. Here are some tips that will help make things easier:

  • First, decide on whether you want a container or an actual pot for your plant. This will dictate the type of soil and watering requirements of the plant.
  • Next, ask around to see which nursery has plants that suit your needs – this will save you time and money in the end! nurseries usually carry different types of houseplants, so finding one that matches your climate and preferences is easy.
  • Take note of the watering requirements and choose a plant that can withstand wetness and dryness (like ferns). Knowing this information ahead of time makes it much easier when it comes to watering plants regularly.
  • Finally, think about the size of your plant – big or small? What kind of light does it need? What type of soil does it grow best in? Once you have these details figured out, picking up aplant at any nursery becomes relatively straightforward!

Bonus Tips for Buying Houseplants

Buying houseplants can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it’s important to be patient when doing so. It is also advisable to take your time and look at as many different options as possible before making your purchase.

Once you have decided on the plant, make sure to get a warranty in case it arrives damaged or in poor condition.

Lastly, keep in mind what type of houseplant you are looking for – some might require less care than others. And lastly, don’t get plants that will require too much effort on your part – these will likely become more difficult over time!


Buying a houseplant is a great way to add some color and life to your home, but it’s important to do it right. Follow these tips for buying houseplants and you’ll be sure to have a plant that you love for years to come.

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