Indoor Plant Care Tips for Beginners + FREE Plant Care Card - DIY - Caitlin De Lay Blog
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indoor plant care tips for beginners + DIY printable plant care card

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With the current quarantine, you may be finding you have more time to invest in keeping your house plants alive!

We all love a little green in our lives. Plants clean our air, make for beautiful home decor, decrease anxiety, and just make us happy!

It’s so fulfilling to get something to grow and thrive, but it’s equally as frustrating when you don’t know what they need.

Although I consider myself a beginner plant parent, I have learned a few indoor plant care tips in the last couple years that have really improved my success!

Today, I’m sharing a some simple indoor plant care tips for beginners along with a helpful plant care DIY!

indoor plant care tips

indoor plant care tips for beginners + Free printable - Caitlin De Lay Blog

start with 1-3 easy indoor plants

Although it’s tempting to buy one of every dreamy plant you see at the farmers market, it’s better to start with a few easy plants and learn to care for them really well.

As a beginner, I found more success learning to work with 1-3 indoor plants. Obviously, there’s no hard and fast rule for the number of plants to start off with, but you know what you can handle!

The point is to really get to know your plant babies and what they need. Then, after feeling really comfortable with their plant care, add a couple more.

I have also had more success with purchasing large, mature plants. They tend to be more hardy and can bounce back easier from beginner mistakes.

CHECK OUT THIS POST: 5 House Plants I Haven’t Killed Yet

find helpful house plant resources

books + blogs

For Christmas, my mom bought me this little book called How to House Plant, and it has been a game changer! It’s nice to have a little resource to refer back to when I have questions or need tips. Another great book is New Plant Parent: Develop Your Green and Care for Your House-Plant Family.

Additionally, there are so many fantastic plant blogs that give detailed help for every type of plant. Find something that works for you. Here are a few blogs that I’ve found helpful recently. Pastel Dwelling, House Plant Journal, and the Smart Garden Guide.

Indoor Plant Care Tips for Beginners + FREE Plant Care Card - DIY - Caitlin De Lay Blog

set aside a designated watering day

Setting aside a designated watering day helps you remember to intentionally check in on your plants. Use this day to water, prune away dead leaves, and assess your plant babies.

indoor plant care tips for watering

  • Although it’s technically a ‘watering day’, be aware that every plant may not need to be watered. Some plants like to be dry!
  • Give your plants a shower. You read that right! House plants get dusty and need their leaves cleaned so they can absorb proper sunlight. You can clean them with a soft cloth or give them a rinse in the shower.
  • Humidity loving plants will thrive with a quick shower or misting every day. As the water evaporates, it creates a humid environment for the plant. Additionally, if you have a new shoot growing, mist it daily to help it grow healthier and faster.
  • Don’t use extreme water temperatures, very cold, or very hot water. Plants prefer tepid or lukewarm water temperatures.

know your plant’s lighting requirements

One of the single most important factors for indoor plant growth is lighting.

It’s very important to assess the lighting level in your apartment or home before buying plants. Selecting plants for your specific light level will help them thrive, therefore boosting your confidence as a beginner!

If your home has poor lighting or have winter months with low lighting, don’t worry, there’s still hope!

Consider buying full spectrum grow lights and using them in your home. I haven’t had to use these due to how bright my apartment is, but I have heard good things.

Grow lights mimic natural sunlight and are typically used to grow seedlings, but they work great for indoor plants as well! Whatever brand you choose to buy, make sure it’s full spectrum and also know that white LED lights look prettier!

To make your grow light blend with your decor, try creating a custom fixture with a pendant light cord and a modern lamp shade. Here’s a perfect example from the Dossier blog of how to style a grow light in your home!
Indoor Plant Care Tips for Beginners + FREE Plant Care Card - Caitlin De Lay Blog

use planters with proper drainage

Having pots that drain well is so important to prevent root rot. I can’t tell you how many plants I’ve killed due to improper drainage.

Buy planters with drainage holes or drill your own holes. You can also put rocks in the bottom of the planter to create a drainage system.

I’ve had the best luck leaving the plant in it’s original nursery pot and setting that inside a decorative planter or basket.

This way it can drain well when watered, but it isn’t an eyesore in my home. I haven’t been brave enough to do too much re-potting yet. I’ll let you know when I do!

use an indoor plant care card + #wetyourplants

As a beginner, I found it helpful to condense all the plant care instructions into one spot for a quick reference guide.

You can use a simple index card or download and print my custom FREE plant care card below! Just download, print on card stock, fill in the plant info and you’re all set! If you have a lot of plant care cards it may be helpful to put them on a ring so they all stay together.

I also created a plant marker DIY option, if you prefer to have the card stay with the plant.

I highly recommend laminating this plant marker so you don’t have to worry about ruining it when watering or misting your plants. If you are unable to laminate, you can also use packing tape to waterproof it.

If you have Instagram, be sure to use the blogs hashtag #wetyourplants when you care for your plants! We can all support each other as new plant parents!

DIY indoor plant care marker


  • card stock
  • jumbo craft sticks
  • packing tape
  • optional: laminating machine


  1. Download and print the plant marker care card printable.
  2. Fill in plant care information.
  3. Optional: If you plan to laminate your project, do so now.
  4. Cut out cards along the black lines
  5. Optional: If you choose to cover your project packing tape, do so now.
  6. Tape craft stick to the back of plant marker. Voila, all done!
  7. Remember to snap a picture of your plant and use the hashtag, #wetyourplants!

If you found these indoor plant care tips helpful, I would love to hear your feedback! Just drop a comment below!


Indoor Plant Care Tips For Beginners + FREE Printable Plant Care Card - DIY Plant Marker - Caitlin De Lay Blog

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  1. Thanks so much for these! I collaborated with a second grade teacher. The kids propagated spider plant babies and rooted in water. I brought in plastic pots from the dollar store and the kids embellished them! The kids then put them in soil in the pots and they are going home for Mother’s Day. I plan to laminate and attach the care cards to each one. I may also make the craft stick option.

      1. 🌼I love plants I haven’t printed these yet tho I’m excited I have a lot of plants easy ones of course