PHOTOGRAPH (WATERING CAN): ANSHUMAN SEN, STYLING: RUCHIKA GOSWAMY
T IP FO R AM ATEURS
P o tted B eau ty
If you want all seeds—flowers or vegetables—to sprout,
use a soil-less mixture in shallow pots. The perfect
sprouting solution consists of perlite, vermiculite, and
coco peat—a moisture retaining mixture. After spreading
the seeds, cover the pots with newspapers. Once they
sprout, remove them, and move the pots into sunlight.
S U N L I G H T
This is a fairly common conundrum:
your potted plant is placed near a
window and looks bushy on one side,
but weirdly sparse on the other. The
solution just requires common sense
and a tiny bit of diligence. Turn it
around weekly so that the plant gets
even sunlight and is
bushy evenly, all over.
For more info, see Resources
W I T H B R A H M A S IN G H
H o w s h o u l d I t a k e c a r e o f p o t t e d
p l a n t s d u r i n g w i n t e r i n N o r t h I n d i a ?
There are a few basic rules to protect plants from low temperatures.
First, ensure that you cover the roots with soil thoroughly and
mulch the soil with clean straw. Next, place the pots in a cluster on
the southern side of the house, in a protected area if possible, for
adequate sunlight. Lastly, do not use any fertilizer as there is no
growth in plants during winter, and water lightly when the soil dries
out. Plants can be covered with a shade-net during severe winter
nights and frosty weather. Overall upkeep includes removing dry
leaves, maintaining cleanliness, and avoiding high humidity or
exposing the plants to cold winds.
Introduce your children to
a healthy gardening habit
by simply encouraging them
to water plants daily. This
colourful, attractive, and easy
to-carry watering can comes
in the shape of a honeybee
that will have your kids
fighting over this simple
errand. Made of metal, it
can store up to a litre of water.
It’s not very heavy so your child can easily carry it and
take the lead to water the plants every day.
Horticulture expert Brahma Singh is the author of
Roses of Rashtrapati
Trees of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
W ater W ise
P la n ts c a n d ie if
o v e r - w a te r e d ,
e s p e c ia lly in
w in te r . T o c h e c k
if th e p la n t
n e e d s w a te r , d o
a fin g e r t e s t — if
t h e t o p in c h o f
t h e so il is d ry ,
t h e n id s tim e
f o r m o is tu r e .
This M onth in the G arden
In w inter, flow ers like
begonias, geranium s,
and im patiens need to
be m oved into covered
areas. W ater th em once
a w eek to prev en t th em
from w ithering.
In w in ter dorm ancy,
certain p lan ts add
co lo u r to th e garden,
like c h ry san th em u m s,
and p o in se ttias. Ju st
d ead h ead th em on a
reg u lar basis.
In w inter, m ulch th e
dry leaves aro u n d th e
young w in ter annuals
an d d ilu te th e early
m o rn in g dew w ith
a light sp rinkling o f
w ater, tw ice a w eek.
Do n o t pru n e shrubs
hibiscus th a t have
finished flow ering.
Sprinkle w ater to
rem ove d u st and dew
and help th em breathe.
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