Learn how to properly water your houseplants to avoid common issues such as root rot and dehydration. Discover the best practices for watering frequency, signs of overwatering and underwatering, and troubleshooting tips. Ensure that your houseplants thrive and continue to bring beauty to your home with these essential watering techniques.


Houseplants are a popular way to bring nature indoors and add beauty to our living spaces. However, many people struggle with properly watering their houseplants, leading to issues such as root rot or dehydration. In this article, we will explore the best practices for watering houseplants, including how often to water, signs of overwatering and underwatering, and tips for troubleshooting common watering problems. By following these basic care guides, you can ensure that your houseplants thrive and continue to bring joy to your home.

How Often Should You Water Houseplants?

The frequency of watering houseplants depends on several factors, including the type of plant, its natural habitat, and the time of year. It is recommended to check on houseplants at least once a week to see if they need watering. Wilting leaves can indicate that it’s time to water the plants, but ideally, it’s best to water them before they reach this point.

To check if a plant needs water, you can stick your finger about an inch into the potting mix. If it feels dry, it’s time to water, but if it feels damp, it can be checked again in a day or two. Another method is to lift the pot and feel its weight. If it feels significantly lighter than when it was last watered, it’s a good indicator that the plant needs watering.

Timing and Technique: Watering Houseplants

The timing and technique of watering can also play a role in the health of your houseplants. Watering houseplants in the morning is preferred over evening because it allows excess moisture on leaves to dry and evaporate throughout the day, reducing the risk of diseases. Watering in the morning also gives the plants a full day to absorb the water and use it for growth.

The type of water used for watering houseplants depends on the circumstances. Tap water is usually fine, unless it is softened as softened water contains salts that can build up in the soil. Chlorinated water is safe for most plants, but filtered water is better. Collecting rainwater is also an option. It is essential to use room temperature water as extreme temperatures can shock and damage the plants.

When watering, it is important to fully soak the soil around each plant until water starts to run out of the drainage holes at the base of the container. This ensures that the water reaches the plant’s roots and encourages healthy root growth. However, for plants that don’t like wetness near their stems, such as cacti and succulents, a method of filling a saucer or basin with water and placing the plant containers inside for them to soak up water from the base is ideal.

Signs of Overwatering and Underwatering

Overwatering can be detrimental to plants, causing root oxygen deprivation and potentially leading to root rot. Signs of overwatering include no new growth, yellowing leaves that drop off, wilting, and unpleasant odors in the soil. If overwatering is suspected, allowing the soil to dry out before watering again is recommended. If the problem persists, repotting with fresh soil and trimming away dead or mushy roots might be necessary.

On the other hand, underwatering can also harm plants. Signs of underwatering include wilting leaves, dry and crispy foliage, slow growth, and soil that pulls away from the sides of the pot. If you notice these signs, it’s important to increase watering frequency or adjust the amount of water given to the plants.

Troubleshooting Watering Issues

To avoid watering issues, it is crucial to understand the specific water requirements of each plant. Different plants have different watering needs, so it’s important to refer to the care instructions specific to each plant. Some plants require more frequent watering, while others prefer to dry out slightly between waterings.

In addition to watering, other factors like fertilizer, light conditions, humidity levels, and soil quality can also affect the health of your houseplants. It’s important to consider these factors and make adjustments accordingly.


Properly watering houseplants is an essential part of their care and maintenance. By following the basic care guides outlined in this article, you can ensure that your houseplants receive the right amount of water at the right time. Remember to check the soil moisture, adjust watering frequency based on plant needs, and provide adequate drainage. By understanding the signs of overwatering and underwatering, you can troubleshoot any watering issues and keep your houseplants thriving and beautiful.


  1. ‘How to Water Houseplants the Right Way (and How to Know if You’re Overwatering)’: Link
  2. ‘How often should you water indoor plants? Get it right with this expert advice’: Link
  3. ‘How to Water Houseplants’: Link
  4. ‘Here’s Why Morning Is the Best Time of Day to Water Your Plants’: Link
  5. ‘New Homeowner Houseplant Watering Guide’: Link
  6. ‘The Dos and Don’ts of Watering Plants’: Link
  7. ‘How To Water A Houseplant – Learn The Basics Of Watering A Houseplant’: Link
  8. ‘Tips on how much water to give your plants and when’: Link
  9. ‘Are you overwatering your houseplants?’: Link
  10. ‘How often should I be watering my plants?’: Link
  11. ‘How often should I water my plants?’: Link
  12. ‘Tips for giving your houseplants the right amount of water’: Link