When planting, it's important to choose the right pot for the job. Size is important, as your pot needs to provide a comfortable environment with enough room for the plant to grow. It's best to check the label of what you're planting to see how big it'll grow. As a guide, you want to be choosing a pot that is double the size of the plastic pot the plant comes in. Keep in mind you can always re-pot a plant.
When it comes to potted plants, a quality potting mix provides the perfect environment. Potting mix retains moisture and drains well, and it allows the plant to breathe. Good quality potting mix will display an Australian Standards Mark certification label, meaning the products have been tested and display the relevant consumer and health warnings.
Soil is another alternative to potting mix, however, potting mix is usually better for maintaining your plants. Soil is best used for garden beds or lawns, due to its heavy, dense and compacting nature. If used in a pot, the soil provides no oxygen to the plant and doesn't allow the roots to grow as freely.
As your plants grow, they'll require more space. Giving them more room to grow stops their roots from becoming too tightly bound, which can prevent their growth. Some signs that you need to re-pot a plant is if you notice a stunt in its growth or you can see its roots growing through the drainage hole.
Potted plants require more fertilising as they don't receive nutrients from the ground. The frequency of feeding depends on the size of the plant, and how much the plant is watered. If you're watering the plants every day, it's recommended to feed them every few weeks.
How much you water your plants depends on the time of the year. In summer, plants will need to be watered every few days to keep the soil damp and cool. In winter, be sure not to leave the bottom of the pot in a pool of water as this will cause root rot and death. Be sure to water the soil, not the foliage or flowers. This can lead to issues with the plant such as disease or scorched spots on leaves.