, Newburyport, MA


December 4, 2013

Tim's Tips: Check your houseplants for insects


If you aren’t sure when to water your plants, you can buy a moisture meter. This device has a probe that is stuck into the soil. The probe then measures the moisture level in the soil. A chart that comes with the meter tells you what the optimal level of moisture is for the plant.

Poinsettias are a traditional plant for the holiday season. The vast majority of the plants come with either a foil or plastic pot wrapper over the pot. This looks nice, but it can lead to the death of the plant. Poinsettias don’t like to sit in water. If their roots are kept constantly wet, the roots will die.

The decorative pot cover will hold in any excess water that flows out the bottom of the pot. If you poke holes in the bottom of the pot cover, the excess water will drain out. If you place a plastic saucer under the pot, you can catch that excess water and then you can dump the water that collects in the saucer.

Well, that’s all for this week. I’ll talk to you again next week.


Tim Lamprey is the owner of Harbor Garden Center on Route 1 in Salisbury. His website is Do you have questions for Tim? Send them to, and he will answer them in upcoming columns.

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