Caring for Peace Lily and Dracaena

We recently purchased these beautiful plants, but I am afraid that we are unsure as to how to properly take care of them. The clerk at OSH said that the plants were slightly burned because of exposure to direct sunlight, so we put them indoors. Our apartment gets very little sunlight (we even have our lights on during the day), so they are under LED indoor lighting. I noticed that the peace lily looked droopy, so I moved it outside to our balcony, where is exposed to indirect sunlight. What is better for these plants, indirect sunlight throughout the day or indoors under LED light? Should I leave the lights on all day? How often should I water and how much water each time? These plants are so beautiful, and I want to make sure that they are healthy!

Hi Mohit,

Your Peace Lily is a lowlight plant and should do well indoors if you have a window and are careful with your water. bright indirect lightVery few houseplants should be placed in direct sun. High light refers only to bright indirect light since direct sun often burns the leaves of indoor houseplants. An area that is too hot and dry encourages Spider Mites and causes blooms to quickly fade. A northern exposure really doesn't provide enough light for high light plants. These plants need to be placed directly in front of an east-facing window, within 1-3 feet of a west-facing window, and within 5 ft. of a south facing window. A high light area has over 300 ft. candles of light. on the porch is great, but any direct sun willburn the leaves. The plant droops quite a bit when it needs water, so wait until that happens before watering. Don’t be concerned because it will perk up again about 30 minutes after you water it. When you water, water well enough so that the water comes out the drip holes in the bottom of the pot into the drip saucer. The plant can sit in the water for about 10 minutes but then the excess water should be poured out. Leaves get black marks on them when the plant is over watered and may quickly die from too much water. Stressing the plants by allowing the leaves to droop seems to encourage more flowers. You can read all of my care tips in the Popular Houseplant section of the website.

These plants are considered poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children. Read more about common houseplants that are poisonous in my book Don’t Feed Me To Your Cat! A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants

Your dracaena massangeana (dracaena corn plant) can tolerate low light but grows faster and produces larger leaves in medium to bright indirect light. Direct sun will burn the leaves. Like all Dracaenas, the top 50-75% of the soil  needs to dry out before watering. A Dracaena Plant survives under-watering but quickly dies from over-watering. If your water contains fluoride or chlorine, allow it sit out over-night so the fluoride can dissipate before using it on your Dracaena.  High concentrations of fluoride and chlorine cause brown tips on the plant leaves. Also, never use water that has passed through a softener on any of your houseplants. It is too salty and damages the leaves. You can read all my tips on how to care for this plant in the Popular houseplant section of the website.