Best Care for Spider Plants (Indoors and Outdoors)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

House plants are easy to grow, but only if you have the right information about how to go about it. My favorite houseplant is the spider plant; I have since learned my way around it. However, there are things I did when I first got the plant that I should not have done. From my experience, I learned how to achieve the best care for spider plants, and I am here to share the knowledge with you.

I have broken down some spider plant care tips into topics that you will find below.

1) First, Planting Spider Plants

First, Planting Spider Plants

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The spider plant likes an average environment with just enough supply of everything. Therefore, the best time you want to propagate the spider plant is during summer or spring, as these are the general growing seasons. However, you can propagate the spider plant any time of the year. Since the spider plants are both outdoor and indoor, you can control the environment in which it grows, and the external factors will not be so much of an issue.

You can grow the normal or the variegated spider plant.

There are three methods you can use for propagating spider plants.

  1. Planting from seeds
  2. Dividing or cutting the spider babies
  3. Planting via the stolon

Note that you cannot plant the spider from its leaf cuttings. I break down these methods on how to plant a spider plant in this article(link to the new article) as the first best care to give a plant is to plant it properly. (sample article. It is a bit off-topic if I discuss how to plant the spider plant).

2) Pot or no Pot

Pot or no Pot

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While the best and most convenient place to plant a house plant is in a pot, not just any pot will do. For example, spider plants can grow on the ground just like any other plant. However, the pot is a more controlled environment and is more convenient to use in the house.

Should you use a large pot or a small pot? If you want spider plant babies, you need to use a smaller pot for the parent plant. If you use a large pot, the spider will focus on extending its roots instead of getting babies.

A smaller pot will force the spider plant to reproduce.

The pot you are using needs proper drainage holes, as spider plants need just an average amount of water.

3) Soil

Spider plants prefer well-drained loam soil. You should keep the soil moist without flooding it with too much water. You can use potting soil to plant the spider plant, and they will do just fine. You can walk to a store and find nutrient-rich premixed soil.

4) Light

Keep spider plants away from direct sunlight. You can grow spider plants at a spot where they can receive indirect light from the sun. However, too much sunlight might cause brown leaf tips and spots, which are not aesthetically pleasing.

5) Watering

watering

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When watering, all you need to consider is the season. During winter, the spider plant does not require too much water as it can get water from the atmosphere. However, autumn will not dry up the plant either, so you should give water in moderation.

6) Indoors vs. Outdoors

Spider plants are indoor plants as well as outdoors as long as the conditions are optimal. When growing the spider plant indoors, ensure it gets enough sunlight instead of keeping it in the dark.

If the spider plants are outdoors, you can find a spot that receives moderate indirect sunlight or a partial shade that will keep the spider plant from getting brown tips.

If you are wondering if spider plants can thrive in low light conditions, the answer is yes.

7) Temperature

The spider plant will do well in temperatures between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. While the spider plants will tolerate cooler temperatures up to 35 degrees Fahrenheit, they will not do well if exposed to temperatures below 65 degrees for a long time.

During winter, you can bring the spider plants inside the house to protect them from the harsh winter weather.

8) Shared Pot

Shared Pot

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Spider plants can share pots. However, the plant roots grow relatively fast and might run out of space soon. The best way to put spider plants in one pot is if you are trying to propagate baby spider plants whose roots are yet to mature and will not fight for space with the larger plant.

After propagating a young spider plant, it is best to transfer it to its pot. ca

9) Fertilizers

There is no special fertilizer for the spider plant. Therefore, you can use the compost fertilizer made from kitchen waste or a normal fertilizer for flowers. If you use potting soil for the plant, the soil has nutrients that will keep the plant going for a long time.

You can use a granular time-release fertilizer or a water-soluble fertilizer on the plant. But, for the most part, the nutrients in the soil are just enough.

Remember, too much fertilizer is not good for any plant. More of anything is not good for most plants, including water, direct sunlight, very low or high temperatures, and more.

10) Positioning in the House

If you have space near your window, that is the best place to have the spider plant. The other places you can have the plant are near the door or patio. As long as the spider plant is getting a good amount of sunlight, then you can place it anywhere in the house.

11) Longer Lifespan

A spider plant can last up to 20 years. If well taken care of, the plant can reach 50 years, as attested by some owners. One way to keep the plant growing for a long time is to give it the space to grow and focus on its roots. The best way to help the spider plant grow its roots more is by repotting.

Pay attention to the spider plant’s health by looking at the leaves and seeing how long it takes to flower or produces baby spider plants.

12) Pests

Pests

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Unlike most leafy vegetables, spider plants are not affected by many pests. However, you can still have trouble with aphids and flea beetles on the seedlings before the plant grows.

Once a seedling starts germinating, you can have a problem with Bagrada bugs. However, once the plant grows, you will experience only slight problems with mealybugs, spider mites, or Whitefield.

You can use insecticides to eliminate pests and keep them at bay. However, there are home remedies for keeping pests away, and I recommend using them first before going for pesticides.

13) Diseases

The spider plant is very resilient and not susceptible to diseases. However, the roots and leaves can have a fungal infection. Root rot can only be caused if the plant is watered too much. Otherwise, there are not many diseases that will attack the plant.

Frequently Asked Questions About Spider Plants

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Frequently Asked Questions About Spider Plant Care

i) Should I prune my spider plants?

Spider plants do not need pruning of any kind. The only thing you can do is to get rid of any withered parts. If there are inflorescences that are showing signs of bad health, then you can get rid of them.

You can prune the plant if the inflorescences are developing offshoots. You can use these parts to propagate other plants from the mother plant.

Here is how to prune a spider plant if you have to.

ii) When does the spider plant flowers sprout, and why?

When a spider plant is pot-bound, it begins to produce flowers. The spider plant becomes pot-bound when it can no longer grow its roots in other parts of the pot.

Whenever a spider plant is root bound, it wants to spread its seeds to other areas for the good of the species. At this point, the spider plant will start flowering. If the spider plant is taking too long to flower, it means the pot the plant is in might be a bit too large.

If you do not want the spider plants to flower often, you can periodically repot them to larger pots as they grow. This way, the plant will always refocus its energy on growing its roots instead of flowering, as it will not feel as though its existence is threatened.

iii) Can I grow spider plants in water?

Can I grow spider plants in water?

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The best time to grow a spider plant in water is when you are trying to propagate new spider plants. This is because water makes it easier for the plant to grow its roots and stands a higher chance of surviving when placed in soil.

iv) Is the spider plant hallucinogenic?

Spider plants contain mild hallucinogens. So if you have been wondering why your cat or dog loves to chew on the plant, it is because they are getting high from it.

Not to worry because spider plants are NOT toxic to pets or humans and will not cause any harm. You

v) Do spider plants have any benefits?

If you have spider plants in your house, you will have fresh air since the plants purify the air. Spider plants purify the air by removing toxins like xylene and formaldehyde.

The plants have great aesthetic value and are one of the best-looking plants in the house, with star-shaped flowers and beautiful leaves. Furthermore, it is safe to have the plant in the house if you have kids or pets.

In some Eastern cultures, the spider plant is one of the Feng Shui plants that have positive energy and bring good luck and health. The plant is placed in hospitals because it is believed that they reduce cortisol levels, which is a hormone that is responsible for stress.

vi) Should I use tap water on spider plants?

Should I use tap water on spider plants?

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Tap water has some chemicals that spider plants are sensitive to. The chemicals include chlorine, which is used in tap water worldwide. Therefore, rain or distilled water is the best to use on the plant.

If tap water is the only available option, you can let the water stand in a can overnight before you water the plant. Letting the water stand there for a while gives the chemicals time to disperse, making the water safer for the plant.

vii) Should I trim off the brown tips on the spider plant’s leaves?

Yes. When you see brown tips, yellow leaves, or dull leaf margins, you can nip off the leaf tip or the whole leaf using scissors. When you remove a part of the plant, the plant focuses all its energy on healing the damaged part, and this will revitalize the leaf.

Brown tips can sometimes signify salt buildup in the soil due to fluoride. However, these brown tips are not harmful to the plants.

Once mature plants start flowering, you can nip off the flowers if you want the plant to grow healthier.

Sometimes trimming off parts can be an effort to maintain a neat pot. As long as the plant is in the same pot it has been since it was young, it will make every effort to outgrow it.

viii )Can I plant the spider plant in a hanging basket?

Spider plants are resilient and can survive in most environments. Therefore, a hanging basket is close to perfect for the plant. Furthermore, the basket will do a great job of keeping the spider plant away from plants.

Ensure the hanging basket has at least one drainage hole to avoid soggy soil.

ix) Is the spider plant the same as the airplane plant?

The spider plant, whose scientific name is “Chlorophytum Comosum,” has many names. Some names include the airplane plant, the ribbon plant, and the spider ivy. The plants have their native habitat in Southern Africa and are one of the most common tropical plants.

Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

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The spider plant is a lifetime plant if well taken care of. The best care to give a plant is to pay attention to watering, fertilizing, and pruning times. Taking notice of any anomalies in the plant is key. Luckily, the spider plant is a survivor and will not need too much care.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books

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