3 Key Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor Plants

EEdgar August 28, 2023 5:11 PM

Whether you're a novice gardener or a seasoned horticulturist, you've probably noticed that plants grown indoors and those grown outdoors have different needs and characteristics. In this article, we'll explore 3 key differences between indoor and outdoor plants.

Light Requirements

Both indoor and outdoor plants need light to photosynthesize and grow, but the amount and intensity of light they require can vary greatly.

Indoor Plants

Many indoor plants originate from the understory of tropical forests. These plants are adapted to low light conditions and can thrive in indirect sunlight. Popular indoor plants like the Peace Lily, Snake Plant, and Philodendron are examples of this group.

Outdoor Plants

Outdoor plants often need significantly more light than their indoor counterparts. This includes both flowering plants, like roses and sunflowers, and vegetable plants, like tomatoes and peppers.

Indoor Plants Outdoor Plants
Adapted to low light conditions Require a lot of light
Can thrive in indirect sunlight Need direct sunlight for several hours a day

Watering Needs

The watering needs of plants differ depending on whether they are grown indoors or outdoors.

Indoor Plants

Indoor plants generally need less water than outdoor ones. This is because the indoor environment has less variable temperatures and humidity, reducing the plant's water loss. Overwatering is a common cause of death for indoor plants.

Outdoor Plants

Outdoor plants, especially those in hot, sunny environments, need frequent watering. This is due to the increased evaporation from both the plant and the soil.

Temperature and Humidity

The temperature and humidity levels a plant has adapted to in its natural habitat will greatly affect its suitability for indoor or outdoor cultivation.

Indoor Plants

Indoor plants often come from tropical regions and prefer stable, warm temperatures. They also generally prefer higher humidity levels than are found in most homes. This can be remedied with a humidifier or by placing the plant on a tray of wet pebbles.

Outdoor Plants

Outdoor plants are typically more resistant to temperature fluctuations and can tolerate a wider range of temperatures. They also generally prefer lower humidity levels.

Understanding these key differences between indoor and outdoor plants can help gardeners provide the appropriate care for their plants, ensuring their health and longevity.

Transitioning Plants from Indoor to Outdoor and Vice Versa

Transitioning a plant from indoor to outdoor, or vice versa, requires careful consideration of these differences. If you're considering making such a change, be sure to acclimate the plant gradually to its new conditions to minimize stress and potential damage.

Remember, whether you're gardening indoors or out, the most important thing is to observe your plants and respond to their needs.

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