A young plant planted in the ground.

How The Plant Grows

In order to thrive, every part of the plant has to be kept actively growing and in good condition. I his can be achieved by creating as ideal an environment for the plant as possible.


During daylight hours, carbon dioxide in the air is absorbed via stomata on the undersides of the leaves. Green pigment (chlorophyll) in the leaf cells absorbs light, causing water in the cells to separate into hydrogen and oxygen. Oxygen is released through the stomata at night while hydrogen com­bines with carbon dioxide to form sugars and starches that feed the plant.


Transportation of carbohydrates down from the leaves and nutrients up from the roots to the rest of the plant, is achieved through a series of cells in the stem of the plant. The flow is continuous, unless there is a shortage of water, when an interruption will cause the plant to wilt. Indoor plants in warm conditions tend to dry out quickly, so regular water­ing is essential.


Water and nutrients in the soil or potting mix are absorbed by thin feeder roots. They are then trans­ported to the rest of the plant along thicker, more fleshy roots. These larger roots also serve to anchor the plant in the soil mix and hold it steady. If the roots dry out, they are unable to function, and any restriction in their growth will limit the growth of the rest of the plant.

The growing medium

A good-quality growing medium, which is kept moist and well-supplied with nutrients, will provide all the stability and nourishment a growing plant requires. It should be checked on a regular basis to make sure that the roots still have enough space in which to grow, and that no soil-dwelling pests have taken up residence.