Not everyone has a green thumb when it comes to plants. But these 7 tips will help you bring dying plants back to life.

Appearances can be deceiving. Sometimes a plant looks completely dried out and dead. However, with the right care, your plant can miraculously come back to life. As long as a few green leaves and flexible stems remain, there’s hope. However, this requires patience, as it can sometimes take years to bring a plant back to life.

There are many reasons why a plant’s leaves may be discolored. So you should first determine what’s wrong with your plant. Consider all the possibilities: the amount of water you’ve been giving it, missing nutrients, pests and diseases, and whether it’s been getting the right amount of sunlight.

To find out how to revive your dying houseplants without immediately throwing them into the compost or organic garbage can, follow these tips:

1. Cut off dead parts

It’s important to get rid of the dead parts so that the plant can concentrate all its energy on the parts that are still alive. Start by trimming all dead leaves. Then do the same with the dead stems, cutting off about a third of each stem until you see signs of greenery. If the stems are completely dead but the plant’s roots are still alive, don’t cut the dead stems down to the roots. Leave about five centimetres of stem above the ground. If you succeed in reviving the plant, it will grow back from these stems.

2. Reassess your watering

Obvious signs that a plant is thirsty are brown, dry-edged or curled leaves. The soil around the roots is also completely dry. In this case, the solution is simple: water it!

A plant that has been over-watered will look wilted. It may also have brown or yellow leaves that look dead, while the soil around it is damp. If your plant dies because you’ve given it too much water, the best solution is to replant it in dry soil.

3. Consider light conditions

Some plants need a lot of light to grow. A plant that doesn’t get enough light will have small, pale leaves and weak stems. Growth can also be slowed down. Sometimes, all you need to do is buy more translucent curtains so that plants get enough light. Otherwise, try moving your plant to a sunnier spot to bring it back to life.

4. Find a warm, humid spot

If your plant is parched, watering it alone may not be enough to revive it, especially if you tend to forget to water regularly. So place it in a damp spot away from direct sunlight, such as the bathroom. This can help revive it.

5. Care for your plants with care

Humans and pets aren’t the only living things in the house that need food. Plants can also be undernourished. Signs of this are discolored leaves and slow or no growth. Depending on the nutritional deficiency, adding fertilizer can help the plant recover in just a few days. However, overdosing and using the wrong fertilizer can burn the plant’s roots. It’s best to use a water-soluble fertilizer, which releases nutrients slowly and causes less damage to the plant’s roots. Add it to the water before watering your plants.

6. Change your pot

If your plant is dying, it may simply have outgrown its pot. Transplant it to a larger container with fertile, well-drained soil. This will allow the roots to develop sufficiently and your plant will be able to recover.

7. Eliminate pests

Pests and diseases can also damage and kill your plants. Look for signs such as curled, deformed or discolored leaves, holes in the leaves, abnormal growth and, of course, pests. A mild solution of soap and water sprayed on the leaves can help get rid of most pests.

Plants communicate with us. So looking after them isn’t always as difficult as it seems. All you have to do is keep an eye on your plants’ leaves and soil to make sure they’re thriving.

Don’t blame yourself if you don’t have a green thumb and can’t bring your plant back to life. Maybe it’s time to let go and opt for an (almost) immortal cactus next time.