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Gardener shares 'the only way' to keep fungus gnats out of your houseplants: '[They] love laying their eggs in wet soil'

"The top layer of the soil looks completely dry."

Bottom watering, protecting houseplants

Photo Credit: @ohtheplacesyoullgrow / TikTok

A TikTok praising a water meter just shared advice that will change the way you feed your houseplants.

@ohtheplacesyoullgrow Replying to @oliviapolk5 #watering #wateringplants #bottomwatering #bottomwateringplants #planttips #plantcare #plantcaretips #plantsoftiktok #planttiktok #planttok #plantmom #plantlover #plantsmakepeoplehappy #planttherapy #ficustineke #howtotiktok ♬ Run Boy Run - Woodkid

The scoop

In a recent video, TikTok user Michelle drops an enormously helpful tip for keeping your plants happy and healthy. 

In the video, Michelle discusses her rubber tree. "The top layer of the soil looks completely dry," she explains — but its appearance is deceiving because "it's completely wet and saturated underneath," as indicated by her digital water meter. Just because your house plants look dry on top doesn't mean they're thirsty.

How it's helping

The primary reason to embrace bottom watering — the process of putting water below your potted plants, allowing them to soak without putting water on top — involves nasty pests.

"This is perfect because fungus gnats love laying their eggs in wet soil, but when you bottom water, that top layer of the soil is dry — but you can clearly see everything underneath is fully watered," Michelle explains.

Bottom watering also saves water (and therefore money spent on water) and helps keep your plants alive with fewer resources.

Since we spend about 90% of our time indoors, it's important to make our homes and offices into healthy spaces — and houseplants help make that goal a reality. NASA studies suggest that house plants help improve air quality by absorbing harmful compounds from the air, according to The Sill.

Maintaining healthy gardens and house plants in your home can have a multitude of benefits for your mental and physical health. Studies indicate that having plants can help reduce your levels of stress, increase your productivity, and help you recover more quickly from illnesses, according to Healthline

Other online experts have shared similar tips for saving money and resources on your gardening adventures, including homemade eggshell fertilizer, mosquito-repellent plants, and using binder clips to support fragile plants.

What everyone's saying

TikTok users expressed their support for this tactic in the comment section of the video.

"The only way 🙌," one user writes.

"I also want this Plant. 😍," another says.

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