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In recent years we've seen a resurgence of houseplants, and if our modern world has proved one thing, it's that we love our leafy friends as much as our pets and kids (sort of). If you really want to show your green-fronded friends some love, you might want to introduce them to a skincare regime...
Okay, we're not suggesting you wash your plants' leaves with CeraVe, but there are some specially formulated plant care products out there designed to make your indoor garden happier and healthier than ever. Sowvital is a new plant care brand committed to nourishing your plants with all the goodness they lack confined to pots indoors, and it could be the key to a more impressive display of green decor.
Whether you're just setting out with houseplants for beginners or you're a well-seasoned plant parent, a proper care routine is essential. The basics should involve dusting leaves to promote photosynthesis and regular fertilizing to boost growth, but, to find out whether you should upgrade to a more elaborate 'skincare' regime, we put Sowvital's three-step kit to the test. Here's what we found out.
Is a care ritual for your houseplants taking things too far? Sowvital thinks not. The premium plant care brand, launched in 2022, is pioneering a new generation of products for dedicated plant lovers, so naturally, we had to learn more.
You might be wondering, 'Why all the fuss?' If your houseplants seem to be flourishing you might be hesitant to interfere at all. However, according to Jack Lewis, founder and CEO of Sowvital, urban houseplants are chronically nutrient and mineral deficient. And, for the most part, we don't give them the care and attention they need to reap their full benefit.
'Plants have often been sidelined as ornamental, however they can hold a higher function, enhancing health and harmony in the home by lowering stress levels and revitalizing focus,' he says. 'Healthy plants create a healthy home.' All the more reason, then, to give them a well-deserved ritual.
The Sowvital team decided to formulate a unique blend of powerful botanical ingredients rooted in centuries-old botanical practices to elevate your plant care. Their range of products can be used together in a three-step routine based on a simple framework - cleanse, nourish, and promote healthy growth.
As an avid houseplant hoarder, I thought my plant care game was already up to scratch - my monstera is growing at a rate of knots and my successful succulent propagation is surely a testament to my plant prowess - but I'm committed to making my plant babies happy, so I gave Sowvital's plant care kit a go. This is how it went.
Step 1: Aqua leaf cleanser
Just like your daily skincare regime, step one in Sowvital's plant care plan is the Aqua Leaf Cleanser. The spritzer bottle is filled with powerful actives to clean your houseplants' leaves from dust and debris and contains the key ingredient Aomori Hilba Essensia which naturally deters fungus spores and rot.
With leaves with such a large surface area, I figured my monstera would be the best plant to trial the cleanser on. You start by giving the bottle a good shake and then spraying liberally onto the plant’s leaves. Instructions then say to wipe over with a soft cloth, so I used a microfiber one I normally use for cleaning my laptop screen. The waxy leaves of my cheese plant immediately looked shinier and brighter (likely thanks to the coconut oil in the cleanser), and I didn't encounter any leftover dusty residue as I typically do when I wipe the leaves with a normal damp cloth.
Instructions suggest using the cleanser twice a week. I used it on the uppermost leaves of my monstera for comparison, and they certainly look more vibrant (the Yucca plant extract is said to support cell-wall health and hydration). It's worth pointing out that you should only use the product at dawn or at night as this is when the pores of your plants' leaves are closed and the rate of photosynthesis has slowed down, and it's not suitable for hairy-leaved plants.
Step 2. Houseplant Elixir
Next for some nourishment. Dubbed by Sowvital as a plant ‘serum’, packed with essential nutrients like Nitrogen, Potassium, and Magnesium, this is the step that acts as a fertilizer. The ultra-concentrated formula actually includes 10 key macro and micronutrients to help grow and repair healthy tissue.
Similar to many liquid fertilizers, this product comes in a dropper bottle. Once shaken, you dilute the formula in water (one full pipette to a one-quart watering can) then simply water your houseplants as normal. Feeding with the elixir is recommended once a week. As you'd expect, I haven't noticed any immediate results, but the dropper was super simple to use and has recommended diluting instructions relative to the size of your houseplant on the side of the bottle.
Step 3. Houseplant Spritz
Last in the three-step care kit is the houseplant spritz. This formula contains botanical extracts and nutrients such as Zinc and Copper and delivers them directly through your plant's leaves. They then absorb the solution into their metabolic system to promote chlorophyll formation (the compound that allows plants to absorb energy from light and is responsible for their green hue). The mist is supposed to replicate the humidity that many plants would benefit from in their natural environment.
The bottle instructs you to shake and then gently spray onto both leaves and stems, repeating two to three times a week (like the cleanser, either at dawn or after sunset). I practically witnessed my monstera liven up after a generous spritz, and I'd say it looks more luscious and green after a week's use already. The mist was also much finer than the usual spritzer bottle I use, which I've since learned is better for your plants. This product is best used on humidity-loving houseplants (not your smaller succulents) and should be avoided on hairy-leaved plants.
All in all, Sowvital's care kit is super simple to use and the initial results look promising! We'll wait to see the effect of continued use, but my monstera certainly looks shinier and brighter than it did this time last week. The bottles themselves, made with green frosted glass, feel really luxurious and can easily be integrated onto a shelf amongst your plants. This will be the go-to gift set for all my fellow houseplant lovers for years to come.
The Livingetc Newsletter
For style leaders and design lovers.
Lilith Hudson is the Staff Writer on Livingetc, and an expert at decoding trends and reporting on them as they happen. Writing news, features, and explainers for our digital platform, she's the go-to person for all the latest micro-trends, interior hacks, and color inspiration you need in your home. Lilith discovered a love for lifestyle journalism during her BA in English and Philosophy at the University of Nottingham where she spent more time writing for her student magazine than she did studying. After graduating, she decided to take things a step further and now holds an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London, with previous experience at the Saturday Times Magazine, Evening Standard, DJ Mag, and The Simple Things Magazine. At weekends you'll find her renovating a tiny one-up, one-down annex next to her Dad's holiday cottage in the Derbyshire dales where she applies all the latest design ideas she's picked up through the week.
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